Can you feel the excitement in the air NBA fans? The start of the NBA Finals sits only 24 hours away as the Denver Nuggets and Miami Heat will try to get their hands on the Larry O'Brien trophy. With some big-time names on both rosters heading into the finals, which superstar has the best odds to win Finals MVP? Let's check out our NBA odds series where our Bill Russell MVP Trophy prediction and pick will be revealed.
A year ago, the Golden State Warriors led by eventual Finals MVP Stephen Curry disposed of the Boston Celtics in six games to capture the franchise's seventh overall championship. Fast forward to this year, and there is no question that history will be made. With some of the game's more historic names like Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and LeBron James all winning Finals MVPs in their respective illustrious careers,
Here are the NBA odds, courtesy of FanDuel
2023 NBA Finals Odds: Bill Russell MVP Trophy
Nikola Jokic: -340
Jimmy Butler: +430
Jamal Murray: +1200
Bam Adebayo: +4000
Why Nikola Jokic Could Win MVP
The odds on favorite to take home his first-ever Finals MVP and for good reason, Nikola Jokic is in the midst of one of the greatest statistical playoff runs in recent memory. In absurd fashion, “Big Honey” is averaging a 30-point triple-double in 15 playoff games and is putting up numbers that most players could only dream of putting together in the box score. At first glance, Jokic is one of the more fascinating players that the NBA has to offer. He isn't necessarily fast or boasts great athleticism, but he may be the smartest player in the entire league.
Not to mention, he is arguably the best passing center in the history of the game as he is strictly a pass-first player who thrives on getting his teammates involved offensively. Simply put, if the Nuggets are able to take care of business against the Heat, then it is hard to imagine Jokic won't win MVP honors.
Why Jimmy Butler Could Win MVP
Also known as “Himmy Butler” or “Jimmy Buckets”, Butler has been the main orchestrator in an epic Cinderella run that has seen the Miami Heat become only the second eight-seed ever to make it to the NBA Finals. Clearly, Jimmy Butler has talked that talk and exuded so much confidence that jokingly rumors have swirled about whether or not the 33-year-old is the son of Michael Jordan. He was sizzling hot in the Heat's opening-round upset of the Bucks as he averaged 37.6 PPG on a scorching 60% shooting percentage from the field. While he only has recorded one 30-point game since, scoring like he did against Milwaukee could see Miami end up winning the whole enchilada with Butler taking home the MVP.
Why Jamal Murray Could Win MVP
For starters, the media has been quick to call him “Bubble Murray” whenever the former Kentucky product puts together a historic performance like he did in the 2020 NBA bubble, but it is starting to become evident that Murray's recent play is the standard whenever he is fully healthy. At first glance, Murray may be one of the more lethal shooters in the NBA when he is hitting on all cylinders. Currently, Murray is averaging an extremely devastating 27.7 PPG while shooting 40% from three and 92% from the free-throw line.
Without question, the pick-and-roll game between Murray and Jokic is also something that cannot be stopped. If Murray can come close to putting up streaks where he can't miss like he did against the Lakers in Game 4 where he dropped 30 first-half points, then it could be game over for anyone else on this list hoping to be the Most Valuable Player.
Why Bam Adebayo Could Win MVP
While the chances of this happening are close to impossible at +4000, the one way that Bam Adebayo could defy all odds by winning Finals MVP is if he completely shuts down Jokic and puts together some historic performances on the offensive side of the floor. In the last series versus the Celtics, Bam averaged roughly 15 points per game and made his presence felt the most on the defense. Whether it is swatting balls out of thin air or corralling rebounds at a feverish rate, Bam is arguably a baller who has proved his worth up to this point. However, the path to Adebayo winning an unexpected MVP, to say the least will be due to whether or not he can contain Jokic to the point where the Nuggets have no answers offensively.
Final 2023 NBA Finals Bill Russell MVP Trophy Prediction & Pick
With his name included on the NBA Finals Trophy, it is safe to say that Bill Russell will be extremely proud to see a fellow generational center like Nikola Jokic take home the award.
Final 2o23 NBA Finals MVP Prediction & Pick: Nikola Jokic -340