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Several former Wildcats among early-season NBA MVP favorites

The Basketball-Reference NBA MVP Tracker is updated, and two former Kentucky Wildcats are among the top-four candidates.

Denver center Nikola Jokic is the top contender, with Philadelphia center Joel Embiid sitting second. They finished No. 1 and No. 2 last season, with Embiid winning the award behind 73 first-place votes.

For Kentucky, it has had a pipeline of elite NBA talent flow through its program. Behind those two are Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Philadelphia 76ers guard Tyrese Maxey.

Here are the full top-10 rankings.

One thing that is important when considering the NBA MVP is the success of the team. Philadelphia ranks 2nd in the Eastern Conference with a 10-3 record. The Thunder are 10-4.

For Maxey, he is averaging a career-high 26.8 points and 7.1 assists per game. Maxey is also shooting 47.5%, which is impressive for a 6-foot-2 guard. Maxey is shooting a career-best 44.6% from deep as well.

As for SGA, he is averaging 29.6 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 5.9 assists per game through 13. He is shooting a career-best 53.5% from the field.

Both players are helping lead contending teams. Expect each to continue to dominate as the season continues to progress.