Being good in the NBA often isn’t enough.
Instead, many players are judged by the sort of progress they can make from season to season.
The most celebrated stars are the ones who improve their game, sometimes by leaps and bounds.
This season, there are quite a few NBA superstars who are stepping up and becoming even better.
And one of them will be rewarded for that hard work.
Current odds to win Most Improved Player @FDSportsbook 📈
+135: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Lauri Markkanen
+350: Jalen Brunson
+5000: Tyrese Haliburton
+9000: Nicolas Claxton, Cam Thomas
+16000: Anthony Edwards, Alperen Sengun pic.twitter.com/2tfizmBPat
— NBABet (@nbabet) February 22, 2023
The race for the Most Improved Player of the Year award has never been so competitive and there are numerous players who could land the honors.
Right now, the current odds say that Shai Gilgeous-Alexander of the Oklahoma City Thunder and Lauri Markkanen of the Utah Jazz are best positioned to win MIP.
They are both sitting at +135 in betting markets.
Following them is Jalen Brunson of the New York Knicks (+350).
After a significant gap, Tyrese Haliburton of the Indiana Pacers (+5,000), Nicolas Claxton and Cam Thomas of the Brooklyn Nets (+9,000), and Anthony Edwards of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Alperen Sengun of the Houston Rockets, (+16,000), round out the shortlist.
Each of these players has shown tremendous growth over the last year.
But it truly is Gilgeous-Alexander and Markkanen who have done the most.
While Gilgeous-Alexander has been a focal point of the Thunder for years now, he is now producing 30.8 points this season, which is nearly the highest in the league.
As for Markkanen, his first season with the Jazz has featured him scoring nearly 10 points more per game than he did last year with the Cleveland Cavaliers.
They have become household names in a matter of months and have drawn attention not just to themselves, but to their entire teams.NEXT: More NBA Players Are Scoring At A Must-See Rate This Year