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Wolf's Wagers

WNBA MVP Odds: Top Contenders and Historical Odds for MVP Winners

by Jake Wolf
Updated On: May 7, 2022, 10:46 am ET

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The WNBA season tips off tonight with four games on the slate for Friday, May 6. I looked at some contenders for this year’s MVP award, and also analyzed historical MVP odds to see if there are any indicators as to who could win the award this season. 

A'ja Wilson is the current favorite to take home her second MVP award, but I'm staying off her short price of +300. Five of the last six MVPs opened outside the top-five in odds entering the season, with Elena Delle Donne's 2019 victory as the only exception. Outside of Delle Donne's 2019 season, the five MVP favorites since 2016 failed to garner a single first-place vote by the end of the year.

Delle Donne was also the only MVP listed at odds lower than +1000 during that span, and four of the other five winners began their MVP campaigns with odds between +1300 and +1900. The top three of Wilson, Breanna Stewart and Jonquel Jones all should be among the top players in the league this season, but the +1000 to +2000 range tends to offer the most value in the WNBA MVP market.

Arike Ogunbowale is an interesting choice, as she opened in this range but was bet down to +900 at PointsBet Sportsbook. Ogunbowale led the league in scoring during the 2020 season and Dallas could surpass expectations if she can improve her efficiency this year. The Wings also added Teaira McCowan this offseason, who should give Ogunbowale an option for dump-offs inside on her frequent drives to the rim.

Three former MVPs are listed with odds between +1000 and +2000, led by Elena Delle Donne. Delle Donne was limited by injury last season and missed the entire 2020 campaign after her dominant showing in 2019, and while I expect plenty of statistical production from the veteran, she might not play in enough games to win the award.

Another former MVP is Tina Charles, a veteran frontcourt player who made a run at a second MVP last season before missing the end of the year. Charles signed with the Mercury this offseason and last year's leading scorer could play a similarly large role in Phoenix's offense until Brittney Griner returns.

Sylvia Fowles, the 2017 MVP, is entering her final season in the league after a Hall of Fame career. I think Fowles presents more value in the Defensive Player of the Year market, an award she's won four times, especially considering Minnesota might not replicate last season's success without Napheesa Collier, Layshia Clarendon and other contributors who will miss at least some of the year.

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Further down the list, I would be eyeing Kahleah Copper to follow up her Finals MVP victory with a run at regular season MVP if not for her current presence overseas that will prevent her from playing until mid-May.


My two favorite long shot picks on the board are each listed at +4000 in Jewell Loyd and Skylar Diggins-Smith. Both guards ranked in the top-10 leaguewide in scoring average last season and could see a bump in usage this year. Adding Briann January this offseason was important for Seattle as her tenacious defense should take some of the burden off Loyd to guard the opposition's best perimeter player. I wouldn't be surprised to see Loyd push her scoring average closer to 20 PPG and increase her 1.5 steals per game as a result of playing more off-ball defense where she can disrupt passing lanes.

Diggins-Smith finished in the top-10 for assists last season but could rank even higher this year with plenty of weapons at her disposal offensively. The Mercury added Charles and Diamond DeShields this offseason, and I expect plenty of transition opportunities for DeShields off of Diggins-Smith's feeds. If the point guard can increase her scoring and assists, Diggins-Smith should be firmly in contention for the MVP award.

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Jake Wolf

Jake Wolf is covering basketball for NBC Sports Edge and has worked for FNTSY Sports Network and YES Network. Follow him on Twitter @jakewolf13 for betting content and basketball analysis.