- David Troy
NBA Finals MVP Bets
We've finally made it. After a long season, we've finally gotten down to two teams - the Celtics and the Warriors. Today, we are going to take a look a the field and potential winners for the NBA Finals MVP. This won't say much about the series as a whole, though. If you want the entire futures and daily plays you can still get the daily NBA package.
A lot has been made about Steph Curry and him not ever winning the Finals MVP award. Let's be realistic, the guy isn't losing sleep as a result of it. However, this is really clear: The Golden State Warriors do not win the NBA championship this year, or probably any year, without Steph Curry doing Steph Curry things. If you think the Warriors win the championship, Steph Curry is the safest bet. He is +110 to win, and unlike other sports - football and baseball specifically - the best player almost always wins this award.
On the other side, Jayson Tatum is your guy if you're on the Celtics side. At +180 there is some good value on him to win the award. I don't think he is quite as safe as betting on Curry, but he is the frontrunner for a reason. Both Curry and Tatum won the Conference Finals MVP. Like I said about Curry, if Tatum is held in check, it will be really difficult for Boston to win the championship. One concern, aside from the fact that Steve Kerr will gameplan for him, is that Tatum disappears for a game in stretches. That leaves the door open for others to take advantage of it.
The Realistic Chance
Jaylen Brown at +1100 is one of two people on the Celtics I could see realistically winning the trophy (Tatum is the other). Brown is an offensive force, but there are also times that his shot fails him miserably and he looks like a terrible player. When Brown and Tatum are both on fire, they can beat just about any team. The guy is at the very least an All-Star, and Brown could steal this award if he can carry the Celtics when they stop Tatum.
For the Warriors, I'd take Draymond Green at +1800. I only say this is realistic because if he averages a triple-double, Green could win the MVP. That isn't that unrealistic. He also is the Warriors defensive anchor. Green is not a scorer, but that might not matter. There is also a precedent with the Warriors to give it to someone with a large defensive impact (Andre Iguodala).
My favorite sleeper/longshot here is Andrew Wiggins to be the Finals MVP at +4100 (FanDuel). Wiggins has been fantastic in the playoffs so far and the Warriors likely aren't in this position without him. Wiggins will likely be tasked with stopping Tatum or Brown. If he does, that might be enough to get him the award. If he slows them down and scores 17 points per game, he could win it from there. Aside from Steph, this is my favorite bet for the Warriors side.
Marcus Smart at +4500 could have a chance too. Again, this comes down to defensive play, but he can score. If he gets hot, he could score enough points to win a game. Though, if he thinks he is hot, or a true offensive threat, he could shoot the Celtics out of the Finals altogether. I don't think this happens, but if Steph doesn't make an impact on this series, look at Smart as the reason why.
How I'd bet it:
If you're on the Warriors bet a full unit on Curry. I'd be willing to sacrifice a little bit on a win with Curry to bet a touch on Wiggins, too.
If you're on the Celtics, Tatum at +180 is good value. I'd probably just do a half unit on Tatum and a half unit on Brown. Good luck no matter how you play it.
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