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Giannis Antetokounmpo vs. James Harden: Which player will win the NBA MVP award?

There is a large debate that surrounds the NBA Most Valuable Player award. Some basketball experts believe the trophy should go to the individual basketball player that is the most indispensable for his team. His team would not win games without him. There is another camp of basketball experts that feel the award should go to the Association's best overall player. Regardless of which camp NBA fans fall into, they can use the best NY sports betting apps to wager on their favourite teams' games.

The NBA regular season has been dominated by two names: Giannis Antetokounmpo and James Harden. The duo has been phenomenal all season and they certainly fall into one of the two MVP camps mentioned previously. The two basketball stars have just a few games left in the regular season to make their claims for NBA MVP. Here is how they stack up.

Giannis Antetokounmpo - Best overall player

Milwaukee Bucks forward Antetokounmpo is having his best NBA season. He has led the Bucks to the NBA's best record as of this writing with a 52-18 record. “The Greek Freak” has turned the Bucks into one of the premier teams in the NBA and one of the most enjoyable to watch.

Antetokounmpo currently leads major sportsbooks in NBA MVP betting odds thanks to his 27.5 points per game, 12.7 rebounds per game, and 6.0 assists per game. Antetokounmpo has improved his points and rebounds per game totals in each of his six seasons with the Bucks.

The forward has missed five games this season with two of those games ending in losses. Although Milwaukee is capable without him, they certainly are not the NBA's best team.

Antetokounmpo is fifth in points and rebounds per game in the NBA. The Bucks need him to spread the ball and create shots for others. It is a contrast to his MVP rival Harden. Antetokounmpo is a team player and makes the Bucks better overall. Yet, he is the NBA's best overall player this season.

James Harden - Most indispensable

Harden is crushing it from an individual standpoint. The Houston Rockets guard averages 35.9 ppg, which leads the league. Harden is on pace to win the league's scoring title, but he is currently leading sportsbooks' second favourite to win the MVP.

The Rockets have regressed this season. They were the NBA's best team in 2017-18, but have struggled this year. Currently third in the Western Conference, Houston could theoretically still win the conference. However, the Rockets don't have the swagger they had last season and winning the needed games down the stretch may be difficult.

Take James out of the Rockets line-up and they would struggle to make the playoffs. Other than scoring loads of points, however, there is an argument that Harden is not the best player in the league. He is No. 7 in assists, but is outside the top 20 in rebounds. While Antetokounmpo has made his team better as the best overall player, Harden has been Houston's entire team for much of the season.

Harden has scored over 50 points on six occasions this season. He has tallied over 40 in 25 games. Without Harden's scoring, Houston wouldn't be a top eight team in the West or a playoff team.