Despite a 41-point performance from Nikola Jokic in Game 2, the Finals MVP leaderboard has opened up now that the series is tied, 1-1.
The latest: Jokic is still favoured (-265), but his lead isn't nearly as large as it was following his 27-point triple-double in Game 1. Denver Nuggets teammate Jamal Murray, meanwhile, has seen his odds take a nosedive while Bam Adebayo is among the most notable risers.
Check out the latest NBA Finals MVP odds as of June 5.
NBA Finals MVP odds
Check out the latest odds to win NBA Finals MVP. Click linked odds to add selection to betslip.
|Player||Odds (June 5)||Odds (June 2)||Odds (pre-Finals)|
NBA odds as of 1:15 p.m. on 06/05/2023.
Best odds to win NBA Finals MVP
Jokic put on a wire-to-wire masterclass in Game 1, becoming just the second player to record a triple-double in their Finals debut. He scored 27 points on just 12 shots.
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Game 2 was a scoring clinic for Jokic, who dropped 41 on a whopping 28 shots — the most he's attempted since Game 4 of the conference semis. Jokic had a playoffs-low four assists last time out, though, so perhaps the Heat are trying to force the big man to shoot more.
Whether he's shooting or dishing, Jokic is often doing something right. He's averaging 30.4 points, 12.9 rebounds and 10.1 assists per game in the playoffs.
Only one time has the Finals MVP been awarded to a player from a losing team (Jerry West, 1969). So as long as the Nuggets win the title, this award is almost certainly going to Jokic, the ultimate stat-stuffer.
Next best odds
Butler (+400): Jimmy Butler had a stinker in Game 1, and was better in Game 2 ... but he's not playing like he should be the favourite to win this award among all Heat players.
Over his past 10 games, Butler is shooting just 40.4%. He was only 7-for-19 in Game 2, but he sank all five of his free throws and a pair of threes to surpass the 20-point threshold (while adding nine assists).
Butler is typically more involved than any other Heat player, but that hasn't always been for the best lately. Still, if the Heat can hang around in this series, he'll likely have a chance to author a signature moment or two.
Other names to watch
The Nuggets' size advantage has highlighted the importance of Adebayo. And so far, he's been a massive plus for the Heat.
Unexpectedly, Adebayo has turned into a midrange savant, splashing fallaway jumpers with ease over Jokic and other Denver defenders. The Miami centre has averaged 23.5 points, 11.0 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game in this series.
From a +4,000 price point before the Finals to +450 now, Adebayo has risen faster than anyone in this market.
If you're looking for a non-Jokic option on the Nuggets' side — which we don't recommend — Jamal Murray is your man.
Murray entered the conference finals as a +2,200 choice and dropped all the way to +800 following Game 1. After averaging 32.5 points on 52.5% shooting in a series sweep of the Lakers he stepped up with a 26-point, six-rebound, 10-assist game.
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