NBA MVP – Who will win between Jokic, Embiid, and Giannis?

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After much controversy during the regular season, the 2022-23 NBA MVP will be announced on Tuesday night (7 p.m. ET, TNT). For the second season in a row, the three finalists are Nikola Jokic of Denver, Joel Embiid of Philadelphia, and Giannis Antetekounmo of Milwaukee.

If Jokic wins, he will be the first player to win three consecutive MVP awards since Boston’s Larry Bird (1984 to 1986).

Embiid, who led the NBA in scoring for the second consecutive season, finished last month as the favorite to win the award in Caesars Sportsbook at -2000. The 76ers have finished second behind Jokic the past two seasons.

A two-time former MVP, Antetokounmpo averaged a career-high 31.1 points in leading the Bucks to the NBA’s best regular season record.

ESPN’s Zach Lowe shared his official MVP ballot last month and explained why he named Embiid the MVP of the season, while NBA reporter Tim Bontemps’ MVP poll revealed how divided voters were two weeks before the end of the regular season.

Centers Joel Embiid and Nikola Jokic are two of the three finalists for the NBA MVP.Jesse D. Garaprante/NBAE via Getty Images

2023 NBA MVP Finalist

Nikola Jokic | Center | Denver Nuggets

69 games | 24.5ppg | 11.8 cpi | 9.8 apk | 0.7 barrels per gallon

Joel Embiid | Center | Philadelphia Seventy Sixers

66 games | 33.1ppg | 10.2 rpi | 4.3 apk | 1.7 bpg

Giannis Antitekounmo | forward force | Milwaukee Bucks

63 games | 31.1ppg | 11.8 cpi | 5.7 apk | 0.8 barrels per gallon

Zach Lowe MVP ballot

After sifting through the data, watching loads of games, and talking to coaches and executives across the league, this is where I end up.

best player

1. Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers

2. Nikola Jokic, Denver Nuggets

3. Giannis Antitekounmo, Milwaukee Bucks

4. Jason Tatum, Boston Celtics

5. Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland Cavaliers

What an epic race: three all-time superstars posting all-time seasons. Somehow, the hardest part—the most ridiculous part—was writing one of those three names for the third place slot. Antetokounmpo is a two-time MVP of the team, MVP of the team with the best record, tallying a masterpiece of 31.1 points/11.8 rebounds/5.7 assists—and finishing third? how?

In a normal year – and even in the midst of this historic three-season closeness – Antetokounmpo has a clean case to win. He’s the best defender out of those three, though Embiid at full power gives him a run. Even one of Antetokounmpo’s relative weaknesses – finishing about 300 minutes short of both centers – is at least partly a result of Bucks being so good, so deep, that you don’t need to push him. Should we really ‘punish’ Antetokounmo for settling Milwaukee’s roster?

The debate between players at the highest level is always hair-raising; The minutes count as a tiebreaker. Antetokounmpo also appeared in fewer games than Jokic or Embiid, and suffered a decline in shooting 2s, 3s and free throws.

In the end, it was the two centers: the two-time Defensive Player of the Year and the greatest passing man in history, and the game’s greatest giant since Prime Minister Hakeem Olajuwon.

Read more Zack Lowe’s official NBA award picks.

NBA MVP Straw Poll 3.0.0 Update

Will this NBA season see one of the closest MVP votes in league history?

If ESPN’s recent MVP poll for 2022-23 is any indication, buckle up, as the 76ers Embiid center outperforms Nuggets center and two-time MVP Jokic.

by two points.

Not only has Embiid bested Jokic in total points — 790 to 788 — but Jokic actually has more first-place votes (42 for Jokic, 40 for Embiid). The difference: Embiid finished second on 45 ballots—six more votes than Jokic—to give the Sixers’ big man a slight lead over his rival.

Meanwhile, Pax forward Antetokounmpo — a two-time MVP in his own right — has 18 remaining first-place votes, lurking within striking distance as the MVP of the team with the most wins (58) in the league. , making the difficult choice of voters even more difficult.

Read more from Tim Bontemps on NBA MVP Straw Poll 3.0.

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