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Kevin Durant is MVP favorite over Kobe Bryant, says gaming site

August 27, 2010 |  3:00 am

Durantkobe It’s only a gambling site, but says Kevin Durant, who turns 22 in September, is the favorite to lay money on to win the regular-season MVP award in 2010-11, with odds of 5/2.

Remember the Rolling Stone story last spring that declared Kobe Bryant had dropped to the third-best player in the NBA, behind LeBron James and "Durantula"?

Well, the gambling site’s MVP odds mix that up a bit.

They make old man Kobe, who just turned 32, the second favorite in the MVP chase at 3/1 odds. And LeBron James, who is 26 but is going for a three-peat this season in his collection of MVP awards, is pegged at a 9/2 favorite. Perhaps James isn’t listed any higher because this season he will have to share the ball in Miami with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.

Rounding out Bodog's top five MVP candidates are D-Wade (9/1) and Carmelo Anthony (at 12/1).

Meanwhile, the site pegs Kentucky point guard John Wall, who was picked No. 1 by the Washington Wizards in June, as the leading NBA rookie of the year candidate at 5/4 odds.

Guess who’s No. 2? Clippers forward Blake Griffin, who should be entering his second NBA season, except he didn’t play in a regular season game in 2009-10 after having surgery on his kneecap. So, Griffin is an 11/4 favorite to nab the rookie award.

-- Barry Stavro

Photo: Kobe Bryant and Kevin Durant battle for position in Game 1 of the Lakers-Thunder playoff series in April 2010. Credit: Los Angeles Times / Wally Skalij.