USA Today Sports

Big weeks from LeBron, Durant shake up NBA MVP odds

LeBron James and Kevin Durant put in major efforts toward their NBA MVP bid this past week.

James scored 39 points to lead the Miami Heat to a 99-90 win over the Los Angeles Lakers Thursday and Durant followed that with a 52-point performance Friday, pacing the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 117-114 victory over the Dallas Mavericks.

Those impressive showings, along with leading their squad to the top of their respective conference, have James and Durant neck-and-neck in the race for MVP. James, the reigning Most Valuable Player, opened the season as a +175 favorite to repeat. Durant was the oddsmakers’ second choice at +275.

“Both players, without a doubt, are keeping up with expectations with some great, entertaining basketball,” Christopher Bostrom of UWin.com told Covers. “We have now shortened to +114 and +130 respectively with LeBron edging the lead in our opinion.”

Outside of James and Durant, Los Angeles Clippers point guard Chris Paul and New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony have seen some major adjustments to their opening NBA MVP odds. Paul opened at +1,200 and is now at +650. Anthony jumped from +2,500 to +700.

“(Paul) has been a major contributor in the Clippers’ stunning season start, where they’ve gotten a good grip on the Pacific Division,” says Bostrom.

“(Anthony) set the Knicks up with a sizable head start, recording a career-high points per game with his increased amount of free-throw attempts combined with 3-point shots,” he adds.

Here’s the full list of NBA MVP props odds from UWin.com:

James, LeBron +114
Durant, Kevin +130
Paul, Chris +650
Anthony, Carmelo +700
Bryant, Kobe +1,400
Westbrook, Russell +3,300
Rondo, Rajon +5,000
Duncan, Tim +5,000
Parker, Tony +10,000
Griffin, Blake +10,000
Howard, Dwight +10,000
Wade, Dwayne +15,000
Williams, Deron +15,000
Love, Kevin +25,000
Nash, Steve +25,000
Harden, James +25,000
Bosh, Chris +50,000
Irving, Kyrie +50,000
Nowitzki, Dirk +50,000
Pierce, Paul +50,000
Aldridge, LaMarcus +50,000
Deng, Luol +50,000
Chandler, Tyson +50,000
Lee, David +50,000

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