NBA mailbag: Where does Giannis rank in the MVP race?

AP Photo/Aaron Gash

Why doesn't Giannis Antetokounmpo's dominance of the box score match his advanced stats this season?

The two-time MVP is posting the best per-game stats of his career, averaging 31.2 points per game (fourth most in the NBA) and 11.9 rebounds per game (second) while leading the Milwaukee Bucks to the NBA's best record despite playing without Khris Middleton for nearly two-thirds of the season.

As a result, Giannis is a close third in odds to win MVP at Caesars Sportsbook at plus-600, trailing clear favorite Nikola Jokic and Joel Embiid.

Yet, some of the same player value metrics that rated Antetokounmpo as the league's best player when he was winning MVP no longer have him nearly as valuable this season. What explains the disconnect?

Throughout the NBA season, I answer your questions about the latest, most interesting topics in basketball. You can tweet me directly at @kpelton, tweet your questions using the hashtag #peltonmailbag or email them to peltonmailbag@gmail.com.

In addition to the Giannis question, this week's mailbag also tackles the highest-scoring group of top-five players by name and how players' roles change when they go from college basketball to the NBA.

"Why don't all-in-one stats have Giannis Antetokounmpo as one of the league's handful of most valuable players this season?"

-- Jackson