Kobe Bryant has won the NBA’s All-Star Game MVP award four times in his career, and he’s surged to favorite status at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com on the odds to pick up that accolade once again on Sunday as he plays in the mid-season contest for the last time.
Bryant, after opening down the list at +700 on the odds to win the All-Star Game MVP award, heads into the weekend as the +135 favorite on those betting lines. The Los Angeles Lakers’ future Hall of Famer is retiring at the end of this season, and will be making his last appearance in the All-Star Game when he takes the court at Toronto’s Air Canada Centre.
Bryant won his most recent All-Star Game MVP award in 2011 at home at the Staples Center, in a game the Western Conference won 148-143 over their Eastern counterparts. Bryant was also the MVP of the game in 2002, 2007, and 2009 (as the co-MVP with Shaquille O’Neal).
The Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry, who opened as the All-Star Game MVP favorite at the sportsbooks, is then second at +500 on the updated betting lines, with the Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James sitting third at +800 along with the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook. Westbrook picked up that MVP award last season at Madison Square Garden in a 163-158 win for the West. James was the MVP of the All-Star Game in both 2006 and 2008.
The Thunder’s Kevin Durant, the MVP of the game in 2012, is at +1000 for this weekend. Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers is back at +5000; Paul was named the MVP in 2013. Raptors Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan are set at +2000 and +2200 odds, respectively.
As for the other events in Toronto this weekend, the Minnesota Timberwolves’ Zach LaVine is the clear -300 favorite on the odds to win the Slam Dunk Contest at the sportsbooks. Aaron Gordon of the Orlando Magic is then at +400, with Will Barton of the Denver Nuggets at +550, and Andre Drummond of the Detroit Pistons rounding out the field at a betting line of +850.
And while Curry was knocked off his perch atop the odds to win the All-Star Game MVP award this weekend he’s still the favorite on the odds to win the Three-Point Contest at -110. Warriors teammate Klay Thompson holds down second-place odds of +450 on that list, while J.J. Redick of the Clippers is third at +500 to take the event as the league’s top sharpshooter.