The NBA goes virtual! The National Basketball Association (NBA), and the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) has just announced the first ever “NBA 2K Players Tournament,” an NBA 2K20 video game tournament between 16 current NBA players. Among the participating ballers include Kevin Durant, Trae Young and Demarcus Cousins, as they compete in a single-elimination, NBA player-only tournament on Xbox One beginning Saturday, April 4 at 7:00pm Philippine Time on ESPN.
In addition to being crowned the first-ever NBA 2K20 player tournament champion, the winner will select a charity beneficiary to receive a $100,000 donation from 2K, the NBA and the NBPA in support of ongoing coronavirus relief efforts.
Jason Argent, 2K Senior Vice President of Sports Strategy and Licensing, is thrilled to be working with the NBA and NBPA to help combat the ongoing pandemic as well as aid communities through entertainment:
“Entertainment, especially sports, has the ability to bring communities together – including athletes, fans and families – and we hope that everyone will enjoy the tournament.”
Josh Goodstadt, EVP of Licensing for THINK450, the commercial arm of the NBPA, says he’s looking forward to this unique opportunity of seeing actual NBA players compete in the virtual realm while doing some good in the world:
“This tournament offers a unique opportunity for our players to compete with one another while also supporting their philanthropic efforts and engaging with their fans. We are excited to work with 2K and the NBA to bring this experience to life for the entire NBA community.”
The players’ seeding was determined first by NBA 2K rating, second by tenure. Every player will pre-select eight of today’s NBA teams, prior to the tournament, and will only be to use each team once. If a mirror match is set, the away team is awarded first choice of team. Rounds one and two will be single elimination, with the semifinals and finals running best of three.
*Participating players subject to change.
Tune in and catch your favorite NBA hoopers prove their skills in the virtual arena! Tournament coverage will begin on April 4 at 7:00 a.m. Philippine time on ESPN, with a matchup between Derrick Jones Jr., PF, Miami Heat (16) and Kevin Durant, PF, Brooklyn Nets (1) tipping off at 7:30 a.m. Philippine time. Jones Jr.’s team pool includes Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, Dallas Mavericks, LA Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks and Philadelphia 76ers. Durant’s pool includes the Brooklyn Nets, Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, LA Clippers, Oklahoma City Thunder and Utah Jazz.
Additional matchups will air through until April 12. Every tournament game will debut on either ESPN or ESPN2, while also streaming on the ESPN App and running on NBA.com, the NBA App, and 2K and NBA social channels including Twitter (@NBA2K, @NBA), Twitch (@NBA2K,@NBA), YouTube (@NBA2K, @NBA) and Facebook (@NBA2K, @NBA). Fans can follow NBA 2K, NBA and NBPA for tune-in information, game commentary and game highlights, and they can join the conversation with #NBA2KTourney.
Saturday, April 4: ESPN
Saturday, April 4: ESPN2, 8:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Philippine time
Monday, April 6: ESPN2, 12:00 a.m. – 4:00 a.m. Philippine time
Wednesday, April 8: ESPN2, 7:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. Philippine time
Sunday, April 12: ESPN, Timing to be announced.
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