PHILADELPHIA - The NBA 2K franchise is the most popular basketball video game on the market. It features ultra-realistic graphics and gameplay, with the depth to keep even the most ardent NBA fan hooked. There are full rosters for you to trade, with all your favorite NBA stars ranked and rated for gameplay purposes.
Sadly, this is where developer Visual Concepts has dropped the ball, at least for fans of the Sixers. Whilst Dexerto suggests the game is the best installment in years, fans here in Philly will be left feeling cheated. Not because the game still hides some of its best features behind a paywall (after you’ve paid $70 for the game), but because it does the Sixers a huge disservice with its player ratings.
Player ratings are subjective across video games; they merely interpret what a development team believes is a fact. Joel Embiid is a great player, but on some days, he is better than Nikola Jokic, Steph Curry, and Kevin Durant, all with the same rating in the game. On other days, he is not. That’s the sport; no player has a fixed rating, making the system about personal choice. Sadly, the personal choices of the development team have once again let Philly down.
The 76ers are a force in the NBA; they’re among the favorites to win the NBA Championship in the latest Coral NBA betting odds, and as such, you’d expect that to be reflected in the player ratings. Of course, Embiid will play a key role in any title push, as will James Harden (89) and Tyrese Maxey (85). Sadly, some other top Sixers have been left feeling a little short-changed regarding NBA 2K ratings.
Tobias Harris, for example, is rated 82 overall. This feels insanely low for a player who contributed 14.6 points and 5.5 rebounds per game during the regular season. He got even better in the playoffs, averaging 17.5 points and 8.6 rebounds per game. He wasn’t a strong option earlier in the year, but he improved sufficiently over the season to justify an 84 rating.
He’s not the only one who has been done a huge disservice. Furkan Korkmaz is rated at a ridiculously low 73, and Georges Niang is the same. Niang might be limited defensively, but he’s a 6ft 7in 230-pounder with a massively underrated pass. Korkmaz might be inconsistent, but he can be a fiery shooter, and surely both players deserve a little more respect in terms of their ratings.
Danuel House Jr. is a mere 72 overall, and he’s probably going to be of more value to the team than Korkmaz and Niang. Remember, this is a player who shot 41.5% from range over 25 tilts with the Utah Jazz, no mean feat and surely worthy of a better rating than 72.
Of course, these ratings are subjective, and with a 96-rated player on the roster, the Sixers will still be a force to be reckoned with, digitally, of course. The big question is whether they can do it on the court rather than on PlayStation. Certainly, if those players so shockingly underrated by the game prove their worth in the real world, we might see the Sixers in their first Championship game since 2001.
CREDIT: Jen Smith, Wells Fargo Center - 2019 OWL Grand Finals, CC BY 3.0