NBA 2KL 5v5 Championships Preview - NBA 2K League

NBA 2KL 5v5 Championships Preview

As has been said in the Lizzo song ringing in our heads all summer, “it’s about damn time!” It is time we crown another NBA 2K League 5v5 champion. This field has something special about it. Something about it being our fifth championship feels like there is a little more at stake. The real specialness comes from our 10 competing teams. I feel like I maintain the NBA 2K League history books quite well and I can tell you with confidence that this is the best field of teams we’ve ever had competing for the title. Both #1 seeds are record-breaking tournament winners. Both #2 seeds are NBA 2K League royalty. Our #3 seeds are upstart young teams with incredible talent. Heck, even #4-6 have a real chance at making a run. This is going to be a legendary week, so let’s preview every team on both sides of the league.


1. 76ers GC

This season for 76ers GC should be a sign to all NBA 2K League teams. If you have the chance to acquire a blue-chip star player for a decent price, you need to do that trade 15/10 times. The 630 trade could not have worked out better for Philly so far, they won THE TURN, grabbed the #1 seed in 5v5, and won a good chunk of change in the 3v3 playoffs. Everything is coming up Philly so far, but the Championships are a completely different animal. As successful as they usually are, Philly hasn’t won a 5v5 postseason series since Season 2. Surprising right? Regardless, this is the best team they’ve had since that point and they are playing about as well as any Philly team has coming into the postseason. Dre and 630 will both be put on the spot, with questions around whether they can win when it matters most. This will be a monumental week for this franchise. A win could be the beginning of a potential dynasty. A loss could see this team looking very different next season.

2. Wizards District Gaming

No offense to 76ers GC, but Wizards District Gaming are still the king. TURN Finals be damned, this is still the team to beat in the Eastern Conference. They’ve earned that at least after winning back-to-back titles. But like in Philly, this is a very different team this time around. Sure, four of the five starters are the same, but the point guard is not. Having JBM would’ve been nice for the regular season, but they probably would’ve ended up with a similar outcome. Not having JBM for the playoffs will be where things really get interesting. JBM averaged 35-11 last playoffs, dominating everyone in his path on WDG’s way to an undefeated playoff run. We’ll probably never see anything like that ever again, especially this year. Kapp is a good player and has performed well enough to keep this Wizards DG team elite and in the title conversation. But, the Championships are a different animal. There is no place for a 11-5 game shooting 3/9 from the field. You do that, your team loses that game. Can Kapp find that extra gear and lead the run to the three-peat? We’ll see. If not, at least they have four 2-time champions on the court.

3. Gen.G Tigers of Shanghai

Your guess is as good as mine. That’s what I’ve been telling people when they ask me if Gen.G could win the title. It’s hard to really put into words what this season has been like. They have as much talent as almost any team in the league. Statistically, they are as good as any other team in the league, especially defensively. But, they just don’t have that one defining run or moment that we can all point to and be like, “man, this team is really good.” They’ve just been quietly consistent all year long and have fought their way to the fourth best record in the entire league. I know that the Rookie of the Year race is basically going to come down to the Magic Gaming-Gen.G Tigers matchup this week, but Gallo has been a top 5 point guard all season long and no one has really cared to talk about it. 23-8 on 65% TS makes him easily one of the best statistical players in the entire league, but with a lack of a defining moment, he’s been a bit forgotten this season. Feast is having one of the best defensive seasons for any center in the league, but his lack of 3v3 play time has seen him fall out of the DPOY race. You get the point. The only question now is if their talent will all come together and make a deep run.

4. Knicks Gaming

We’ve seen so little of this Knicks Gaming roster that it’s almost impossible to write a preview for them. All we have is a 3-2 seed week record with losses to both 76ersGC and the Gen.G Tigers. Wins over CLTX and Blazer5 Gaming are nothing to really call home about, however their win over Lakers Gaming to finish off seed weeks is worth watching back. Malik and Radiant combined for 41 points and New York seemed like it would cruise to an easy win, but they allowed 26 points in the 4th quarter and only won by 1 point. So like I said, not much to go on. Knicks Gaming are the true mystery team for the championships. They led the league in defensive rating this season and added Radiant, one of the better defensive point guards in the league. The real question will be whether Radiant and Malik shoot efficiently enough for them to make a run. It’s a fair question and one that Knicks Gaming will need to figure out fast. No team has ever won a title after acquiring a player like Radiant so late in the season.

5. Heat Check Gaming

This Heat Check Gaming team is very easy to talk about. Their defense is going to give them a chance to win every single game, it just comes down to whether or not the team can hit big-time shots. When they do, they look like they did when they made the Final 4 of THE TIPOFF. When they don’t, they look like the team that got first rounded in THE TURN. It’s that simple. Sav and Bsmoove are going to carry most of the offensive load and they’ve gotten better as a duo as the season has gone on. For all the trouble we gave Sav, he ended up with a solid 17-8 line on 58.8 TS%. Smoove is having another Smoove year, again cementing his spot as one of the 3-5 best SGs in league history. But does this team have that extra offensive gear? Do they have the ability to drop 75-80 points on delite competition? That will decide their championship fate. With a first round matchup against Knicks Gaming, they’ll need to figure it out fast.

6. Magic Gaming

We’ve spoken about this team a ton, so I’ll keep it short. This is a solid 5v5 team at this point in the season. The Unguardable-Gen combo is feisty enough that it sets them up for a great run if both of them get hot. If they don’t, this team gets first rounded. It’s really that simple.


1. T-Wolves Gaming

Here we go again. Best record in the league, best offense in the league, arguably the best player in this game mode in the league. Is this the year the T-Wolves Gaming team makes it back to the top of the mountain? This team is better than the one who got first rounded last year. The defense has improved, the shooting somehow got better, and the Bear-Kaii combo has only gotten better. But…it’s hard to trust them. Until this group gets it done in the championships, they will still have that weird vibe hanging over them.

2. Warriors Gaming Squad

WGS is like the suped up version of Knicks Gaming. We know they have the talent on paper, but we just don’t have to film to know how good they truly are heading into the championships. A 4-1 seed week record does inspire some confidence, but their one loss was to T-Wolves Gaming and it was a convincing 10-point rout. So who can know? The Warriors have made it to the Final 4 every year since Season 2 and with this roster, we have no reason to see why they can’t do it again. But, can this team actually win the Finals? With their coaching staff and now Mama Im Dat Man in tow, this is likely their best shot.

3. Bucks Gaming

The big, bad, Bucks. A strong close to the season saw them rise from the #5 to #3 seed. Cooks and Johnny have really come along as the season has progressed, becoming the backcourt pairing that Coach Lance and GM Patrick Glo dreamed about last February. Dawsix and Seese have become one of the best defensive pairings in the league and Dimez has found a perfect role as mess cleaner and vibe guy. It’s a very good team, one that should be taken very seriously. But…franchise history suggests otherwise. This team has never had success this time of year. This is definitely the best team in franchise history, we’ll see if they can cash in this time around.

4. Lakers Gaming

First things first, let’s congratulate Lakers Gaming on their first ever postseason appearance. It’s been an ugly road for them getting to this spot, but they are finally here. The issue however, is that the team might’ve peaked at the wrong time. They were dominant across THE TIPOFF and TURN bracket stages, but have crashed back down to earth during the seed weeks. A 1-4 seed week record is a serious issue. The worst thing you can do heading into the playoffs is get cold. I know we say that the regular season doesn’t matter once you get to this point, but that does have some limitations to it. Whatever has been plaguing Lakers Gaming, they need to figure it fast because our #5 seed will catch them leaning and send them home early.

5. Jazz Gaming

When you have Ria, you have a chance to win any game. No question. Sure, the team around him needs to not be awful, but you get the point. As long as Ria is on the team, they can win any series. Looking broader, their long-term viability will inevitably land at the feet of Duck or whoever his backcourt partner is, so it’s a big spot for the former MIP. Follow and Compete will also have to play their best ball of the season, but counting out seasoned vets in this league is always a bad idea. Lakers Gaming should be considered the favorite, but Jazz Gaming are going to give them a series.

6. Mavs Gaming

We have a team like this in the playoffs every single year. Mavs Gaming are the most average team left in the playoffs. They aren’t particularly good on either side, but they are good enough. They don’t have any mega-stars on their team, but their talent at every position is good enough. If you play terribly, they will beat you. If you play well, they will likely fall. Their first round matchup against Bucks Gaming has plenty of storylines, Dimez and Lance Sesssion’s revenge game the most prominent, but I think Mavs Gaming will play them tough regardless. It may not be a GOOD team, but this certainly isn’t a BAD team.

My pick:

This is the hardest field to predict in 2K League history. So many contenders, so many storylines, so many teams with the title-or-bust concept hanging over their head. Usually, when chaos is afoot like it is here, you should side with the teams that consistently get the job done. I think we get the Warriors Gaming Squad-Wizards District Gaming Finals rematch we’ve been waiting for. I’ll have my final prediction when everything is settled, but WDG vs. WGS is where my head is heading into the week.