Last season Elena Delle Donne led the Chicago Sky to a 21-13 record and the number two seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs en route to winning the WNBA Most Valuable Player Award. The 6’5″ guard/forward led the league in scoring (23.4 PPG) and free-throw shooting (95%) while ranking third in rebounding (8.4 RPG) and blocks (2.06 BPG).
A three-time All-Star selection, Delle Donne received 38 of 39 first-place votes with the one dissenting voter opting for Minnesota Lynx forward Maya Moore. Moore, who was the 2014 MVP Award recipient, averaged 20.6 points, 6.7 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game last season.
Although we were unable to find historical odds, the table below displays all nineteen award winners since the league’s inception in 1997.
|2015||Elena Delle Donne||Chicago Sky|
|2014||Maya Moore||Minnesota Lynx|
|2013||Candace Parker||Los Angeles Sparks|
|2012||Tina Charles||Connecticut Sun|
|2011||Tamika Catchings||Indiana Fever|
|2010||Lauren Jackson||Seattle Storm|
|2009||Diana Taurasi||Phoenix Mercury|
|2008||Candace Parker||Los Angeles Sparks|
|2007||Lauren Jackson||Seattle Storm|
|2006||Lisa Leslie||Los Angeles Sparks|
|2005||Sheryl Swoopes||Houston Comets|
|2004||Lisa Leslie||Los Angeles Sparks|
|2003||Lauren Jackson||Seattle Storm|
|2002||Sheryl Swoopes||Houston Comets|
|2001||Lisa Leslie||Los Angeles Sparks|
|2000||Sheryl Swoopes||Houston Comets|
|1999||Yolanda Griffith||Sacramento Monarchs|
|1998||Cynthia Cooper||Houston Comets|
|1997||Cynthia Cooper||Houston Comets|
The 2016 WNBA season tipped off Saturday, May 14 and the Irish bookmaker Paddy Power became the first sportsbook to post MVP odds. Delle Donne (+350) opened as the favorite to repeat with Maya Moore and Diana Taurasi (+500) right on her heels.
The table below examines how the WNBA MVP odds have fluctuated at Paddy Power.
|Player (Team)||Paddy Power (6/15)||Paddy Power (6/1)||Paddy Power (5/16)|
|Maya Moore (MIN)||+350||+350||+500|
|Candace Parker (LAS)||+450||+450||+1700|
|Elena Della Donne (CHI)||+500||+400||+350|
|Diana Taurasi (PHO)||+550||+650||+500|
|Breanna Stewart (SEA)||+750||+900||+1100|
|Tina Charles (NYL)||+900||+1000||+900|
|Brittney Griner (PHO)||+1100||+900||+600|
|Angel McCoughtry (ATL)||+1100||+1300||+1100|
|Kayla McBride (SAN)||+1700||+2000||+2000|
|Skylar Diggins (DAL)||+1800||+1400||+1100|
|Tamika Catchings (IND)||+2200||+2200||+1400|
|DeWanna Bonner (PHO)||+2200||+2200||+2000|
|Chiney Ogwumike (CON)||+4000||+4000||+3500|
|Nneka Ogwumike (LAS)||+4000||+4000||+3500|
The section below was published on May 16, 2016
One player that could be offering value is Sparks star Candace Parker (+1700). Last year the 6’4″ forward opted to sit out for the first half of the season, but returned with a vengeance down the stretch. In 16 games Parker averaged 19.4 points, 10.1 rebounds and 6.3 assists and helping her team bounce back from one of the worst starts in franchise history. The Sparks, who started the season with a 3-15 record, went 11-5 following Parker’s return.
The Sparks (+1500) opened with the sixth-worst odds of winning the WNBA Championship this season; however, Parker should once again post impressive numbers. Parker’s a two-time MVP winner (2008, 2013), but it seems like oddsmakers are underestimating her value after last season’s brief layoff.
Will Elena Delle Donne repeat as MVP? Do you think any players are offering value? Please leave any thoughts in the comment section below.
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