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After weeks of fan voting, the 2021 NBA All-Star Game starters were announced tonight on TNT. But what if there was another way to determine the 10 starting spots for this year’s edition?
Here at William Hill, we have our All-Star starters based on players’ total number of tickets for 2020-21 NBA MVP.
Let’s start in the Western Conference, which is headlined by the overall leading “ticket-getter.” LeBron James is currently the favorite to win MVP at even-money odds, and he’s also tops with 17% of the total number of tickets. James is third all-time for the most All-Star Game selections with 16, only trailing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (19) and Kobe Bryant (18).
Besides James, the fellow frontcourt starters for the Western Conference are Nikola Jokic (9%) and Anthony Davis (3%). Jokic has the third-lowest MVP odds at +550, while Davis is at a much higher price of 200/1. Davis actually opened tied for the fourth-lowest odds (+750) with James when William Hill released NBA MVP odds on Nov. 10, whereas Jokic was 20/1.
In the Western Conference backcourt, it’s Steph Curry (12%) and Luka Doncic (5%). Curry saw his MVP odds swing from 12/1 to +800 last week, and still has the fourth-lowest odds at +850 now. Doncic, meanwhile, was the +400 favorite when the NBA season tipped off on Dec. 22, and is presently at his highest odds yet at 10/1.
Two other Western Conference players are the biggest “snubs.” Damian Lillard (40/1) also generated 5% of the total number of tickets, however Doncic just edged the Trail Blazers superstar in tickets overall. Additionally, the player with the lowest MVP odds who is not a William Hill All-Star starter is Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (25/1), who has received 3% of the total number of tickets.
Among all Eastern Conference players, Kevin Durant (10/1) leads the way with 12% of the total number of tickets. The other two forwards are Joel Embiid (+400) and two-time defending MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo (15/1). Embiid was originally listed at 40/1 to be awarded MVP, and has also attracted the largest 2020-21 MVP wager thus far at William Hill. A Nevada bettor placed $5,000 on Embiid +500 for a total potential payout of $30,000.
Two guards with long-shot MVP odds make up the final two spots in the Eastern Conference. Kyrie Irving (150/1) has accumulated 3% of the total number of tickets, while rookie LaMelo Ball (1500/1) has gotten 2% in that category. The No. 3 pick in the 2020 NBA draft is the overwhelming -600 favorite as of now to win 2021 NBA Rookie of the Year.
Check out William Hill’s 2021 NBA All-Star Game starters based on total number of tickets for 2020-21 NBA MVP below.