Top 5 contenders for NBA MVP


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Mandeep Karir

The NBA has a lot of talented players who are playing at a dominant level and leading their teams as the postseason approaches.

Only a handful can be deemed the top players in the entire league and deserve to be named Most Valuable Player. Looking at season averages and team records from this season compared to last season, here is a list of the top five contenders for the MVP award this NBA season.

  1. Joel Embiid, PHI

Joel Embiid is still an up-and-coming star for the Philadelphia 76ers. Although he was drafted in 2014, he did not make his NBA debut until 2016 due to an injury that required surgery. Since his debut, he has averaged 27 points and 11.2 rebounds on 49.7% shooting.

In Embiid’s debut season, the Philadelphia 76ers were second to last in the Eastern Conference. Now, Embiid has carried his squad to the third seed in the conference with 43 wins, tied for third most in the entire league. Embiid is someone who definitely deserves to win the MVP.

  1. Damian Lillard, POR

Damian Lillard has proven to be one of the hardest-working players in the NBA. Lillard has been a problem since he was drafted in 2012, but in the last five seasons he has averaged 25.2 points with 6.7 assists per game. Over his career, Lillard has brought the Portland Trail Blazers to the playoffs eight times. Lillard carrying the Blazers again this season is his main claim to the MVP award.

  1. Domantas Sabonis, SAC

Domantas Sabonis was drafted by the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2016 and has averaged a double-double in every season since 2019. Sabonis was traded to the Sacramento Kings in 2021. The Kings have not made a playoff appearance since the 2005-2006 season, but they are currently in second place in the Western Conference. If Sabonis keeps improving on his stretch-big game, his MVP chances are even greater

  1. Jayson Tatum, BOS

The Boston Celtics took Jayson Tatum with the third pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. Tatum has been averaging at least 23 points per game and seven rebounds per game since 2019. The Celtics have made the Eastern Conference Finals three times since Tatum was drafted and reached the NBA Finals last season.

With just over a month left in the 2022-2023 season, Tatum’s Celtics are second in the Eastern Conference, just behind the Milwaukee Bucks. Tatum’s level of play has been nothing short of MVP-worthy.

  1. Luka Dončić, DAL

Despite making a blockbuster trade for star guard Kyrie Irving, the Dallas Mavericks’ star player is still Luka Dončić.

Since being drafted in 2018, Dončić has contributed 27.5 points, 8.6 rebounds and eight assists per game, leading the Mavericks to the playoffs three times in the last four seasons. Dončić is keeping his Mavericks afloat at eighth place in the Western Conference and is asserting himself as a strong team leader. Dončić is a well-suited MVP candidate.