Leonard will have to be even better this year if the Spurs want to come close to their win total from last season. He comes in to the season with a revamped Cavs squad. Lebron seems to have a more MVP-friendly team this year than last, but how the Cavs run their offense is an unknown at the moment. Cleveland won 51 games last year, and that number will most likely increase in the upcoming season. Durant, with the help of Steph Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson, dominated on both ends of the court last year, especially in the post-season.
He also excelled on the defensive end, finishing 7th in defensive rating Fox Sports. However, his confidence should be at an all time high after winning his first ring, along with a Finals MVP. Russell Westbrook was the favorite to win last year and lived up to the expectations. He became the second player ever to average a triple double over the course of a full season.
Wall is one of the few players in the NBA who plays for a very good team and is also the obvious best player on said team.
The Wizards superstar point guard also just had easily the best season of his career in If more development is on the way for the year-old, he could be a strong MVP dark horse. Last season, the year-old center had a huge breakout season, placing second in the Defensive Player of the Year voting and making the All-NBA Second Team despite arguably deserving a first team spot.
Gobert finished fourth in in the league in win shares per 48 minutes 0. Despite all this, Bovada has him as the 39th-most likely MVP winner. None of these three players are the best players on their teams, either, unlike Gobert.
It's not that there aren't a lot of deserving players who have had good years. It's just that the powers that be seem to be entirely focused on two players, and one of them seems to have a clear edge. That doesn't mean that the situation has been entirely robbed of betting potential, though.
Let's start by looking at the two guys who are theoretically still in the race, but who don't stand a chance of winning unless something completely unpredictable and bizarre happens. His numbers are impressive - he will average more than 30 points per game which will lead the league, and has put up career highs in assists, rebounds, and field goal percentage. He is playing out of this world, and he is unquestionably among the best players in the league.
The problem he faces is that his team isn't that impressive, and he hasn't been able to elevate them to a higher level. His team limped down the stretch and, unlike Detroit and Boston, hasn't really been able to take advantage of the weak East.
The Cavs would obviously be much worse without James, but all three of the other main contenders have made their team significantly better and has their team in position to go very deep in the playoffs.
Simply put, the Cavs just aren't good enough to have an MVP. Kevin Garnett probably deserves more attention that he is getting. The Celtics have enjoyed the biggest single season turn around in the league and they have the best record in the league, and Garnett is a big reason for all of that.
The biggest reason, really.