NBA MVP: Which center will be crowned most valuable?


Megan McKay, Staff writer

The NBA has officially released the three finalists for the Most Valuable Player this season. The players on the list come to no surprise to fans of the game.
The finalist includes reigning two time MVP of the Denver Nuggets Nikola Jokic, 76ers big man Joel Embiid, and Bucks all star Giannis Antetounmpo.
If Jokic wins this year’s MVP he will join a very few elite list and the first to win three straight since Larry Bird.
If Embiid wins it will be his first ever MVP for the league’s leading scorer. Antetounmpo will also be seeking his third MVP after winning in 2019 and 2020.
The finalists were only just released as the playoffs are in the first round which means the MVP will not be announced until deeper in the postseason.
It is tough to say who will take home the award for the best in the league but the current favorite is close between Embiid and Jokic.
Nikola Jokic has had a prominent past couple of seasons. The Serbian basketball player has incredible passing, strong shooting, and lots of versatility.
He has been unstoppable and has proven that you don’t have to be on the best team as he has won MVP the past two seasons not on a Championship winning team.
Jokic has proven to be the best passer in the NBA, most efficient scorer, and took a struggling team to the playoffs.
As one of the best centers in the league he’s been putting up huge numbers this season, averaging 26 points, 11 rebounds, and 8 assists per game.
A crucial piece to the puzzle for the Nuggets is Jokic’s defensive ability.
When Jokic plays a two way game he becomes a big component to their chances at a playoff run.
The Nuggets have already secured their second round bid in the playoffs after defeating the Timberwolves 4-1 in the first round series.
Not far behind Jokic is Joel Embiid, the league’s leading scorer.
The Cameroonian player is one of the most dominant big men in the league, known for his scoring ability, his rebounding, and his defense. Embiid has been putting up some huge numbers, averaging 29 points and 10 rebounds per game.
The 76ers are currently one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference and similar to the Nuggets, had no trouble in the first round of the playoffs.
The 76ers were able to defeat the Nets 4-0 in the series and will face the Celtics in the second round. Embiid has been an exceptional player becoming the back-to-back scoring champion.
The final candidate for the award is Giannis Antetounmpo who despite facing injury in the first round of the playoffs still has his name in the running for his phenomenal season. He is known for his incredible athleticism and scoring ability for the Bucks.
As a two-time MVP he had yet another impressive season averaging 28 points, 11 rebounds, and 6 assists per game.
Unfortunately, the Bucks postseason push ended in the first round against the Heat who took the series 4-1.
Out of the three candidates the Bucks short lived postseason will benefit Embiid and Jokic.
The current media votes for first place have Embiid as the most favored with over half the first place votes and Jokic following closely behind.
This year’s MVP race has been one of the closest races ever for the award.
There can easily be a case for many players as each team had superstars coming in big time this past season.
However, all eyes will be on the 76ers and Nuggets superstars in the run for each of their first NBA titles.