NBA 2K LEAGUE – AT A GLANCE
NBA 2K League Overview
- The NBA 2K League, a joint venture between the NBA and Take-Two Interactive, is a professional esports league featuring the best NBA 2K players in the world and the first official esports league operated by a U.S. professional sports league.
- Brendan Donohue, Managing Director of the NBA 2K League, oversees all league operations.
League Structure and 2019 Season
- The 23 NBA 2K League teams are: 76ers GC, Blazer5 Gaming, Bucks Gaming, Celtics Crossover Gaming, Cavs Legion GC, Gen.G’s team (name TBA), Grizz Gaming, Hawks Talon GC, Heat Check Gaming, Hornets Venom GT, Jazz Gaming, Kings Guard Gaming, Knicks Gaming, Lakers Gaming, Magic Gaming, Mavs Gaming, Nets GC, Pacers Gaming, Pistons GT, Raptors Uprising GC, T-Wolves Gaming, Warriors Gaming Squad, and Wizards District Gaming.
- T-Wolves Gaming defeated 76ers GC 3-2 to win the 2019 NBA 2K League Finals.
- Eight teams made the 2019 NBA 2K League Playoffs: Blazer5 Gaming, Mavs Gaming, 76ersGC, T-Wolves Gaming, Kings Guard Gaming, Pacers Gaming, Celtics Crossover Gaming, and the winner of THE TICKET powered by AT&T: Warriors Gaming Squad.
- The 2019 season began Tuesday, April 2 with THE TIPOFF powered by AT&T and concluded Saturday, Aug. 3 with the 2019 NBA 2K League Finals. All NBA 2K League games and tournaments are livestreamed on the NBA 2K League’s Twitch (twitch.tv/nba2kleague) and YouTube (youtube.com/nba2kleague) channels. The 2019 Finals re-aired in China on Tencent.
- Teams compete in 5 vs. 5 gameplay using unique characters (not existing NBA players).
- Teams live in their home markets during the season and compete in league play each regular-season week at the NBA 2K League Studio Powered by Intel in New York City.
- Weekly regular-season matchups took place on Wednesdays from 6-11 p.m. ET, Thursdays from 6-10 p.m. ET and Fridays from 6-11 p.m. ET.
- For the first time, during the 2019 season two NBA 2K League tournaments were held outside of New York City: THE TURN powered by AT&T at HyperX Esports Arena Las Vegas and THE TICKET powered by AT&T at The Fortress at Full Sail University in Orlando.
2019 NBA 2K League Draft
- The 2019 NBA 2K League Draft took place Tuesday, March 6 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
- Jazz Gaming selected Spencer “Ria” Wyman of Shoreline, Washington, with the No. 1 overall pick.
- Chiquita “Chiquita” Evans was selected 56th overall by Warriors Gaming Squad, becoming the first woman drafted into the NBA 2K League.
- The 198 draft-eligible player pool consisted of 144 new players who were selected by the NBA 2K League after an extensive tryout process, six players from the league’s first APAC Invitational that took place in Hong Kong in February, and 48 unretained players from the inaugural season.
- 126 players competed in the 2019 season, including 52 rookies.
- The NBA 2K League Qualifier: In November 2018, players had to complete an online application and win 100 games in NBA 2K19’s Pro-Am mode or at the Jordan Rec Center, while winning at least 50 percent of their games.
- The NBA 2K League Combine: In December 2018, players who completed the Qualifier were required to complete a minimum of 25 games at one position, all during pre-set time windows.
- The NBA 2K League APAC Invitational, the league’s first-ever international qualifying event, identified several elite players from the Asia-Pacific region who became eligible for the 2019 NBA 2K League Draft.
- NBA 2K League content has generated more than 306 million video views across all NBA and NBA 2K League social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Twitch and YouTube).
- The NBA 2K League and the 23 teams have more than 2.0 million combined followers on social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram).
- During the 2019 season, NBA 2K League partners included Anheuser-Busch, AT&T, Champion Athleticwear, Dell, Facebook, HyperX, Intel, New Era, Raynor Gaming, SCUF Gaming, Snickers, Stance, Tencent, Twitch and YouTube.
- Chiquita and Tim “oLARRY” Anselimo (Cavs Legion GC) were both nominated for a new award at the 2019 ESPYs for “Best Esports Moment”; Chiquita was nominated for becoming the first woman to be drafted into the NBA 2K League, and oLARRY won for his inspirational return to the league following the tragic shooting in Jacksonville in August 2018.
About NBA 2K
- NBA 2K is currently the highest-rated and best-selling sports title of the current console generation among U.S. sports leagues.
- NBA 2K19 has sold nearly 12 million copies worldwide and is the best-selling edition in franchise history.
- In 2018, NBA 2K19 was the #1 selling sports game in the U.S. and the second-best-selling sports game globally with more than 1.7 million daily active users.
- The NBA2K Online Franchise represent the #1 PC sports online game in China with a registered userbase that exceeds 40 million players.
- The global esports audience will reach 453.8 million this year and will generate revenues of $1.1 billion (+26.7% YoY; Source: Newzoo, 2019).
- A number of NBA teams, owners and former players are already looking to the future of the esports industry, investing in esports franchises/holding companies.