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Happy Belated 2K Day: A Tale of 2K’s Crowned King, Me

Happy Belated 2K day! This past Friday marked the release of the highly anticipated annual installment of the world’s top basketball simulation franchise. NBA 2K21 looks to lead the charge into a new generation of gaming and an exciting new addition to the 2K history books.

2K Day

Take a moment and think about some of the greatest champions in Greek mythology. Zeus, god of the sky and thunder, the king of all other gods and men. Hercules, son of Zeus and valiant champion and hero. These were all Olympians of mighty strength, celebrated for their countless stories of victory and triumph.

And then there’s me. Not of Greek mythology, but of 2K mythology. A champion among men. A king.

My History with NBA 2K

For this chapter in 2K history, we take it back to the year 2005, when a star was born—or to be more precise—a champion was born. That was the year when I owned my very first copy of 2K, NBA 2K5 (officially ESPN NBA 2K5) for the PlayStation 2. A classic, and to this day, still one of the top three best installments to ever come out of the franchise in my opinion. Nostalgia has a lot to do with that, but also because of the amazing “24/7” mode, which allowed players to create a baller, train his skills, and go up against NBA players in minigames and tournaments for ranking, items, and respect—similar in some ways to what we know now as MyCareer mode, but different enough to be a welcoming blast to the past.

Source: Sega

My ascension to the crown however, didn’t truly begin until NBA 2K9, when I first started to realize my latent potential in my teen years. As the child of prophecy, I would use my divine abilities from that point forward to conquer many warriors and slay even the mightiest of foes. Many contenders were forced to cast their controllers aside and surrender.

I would eventually come to this realization:

The 2K gods chose me.

*MyCareer Hoop Mixtape NBA 2K18

*When I think of NBA 2k9, I will never not think of the song “Pennies” by the Cool Kids.

Eat, Defeat, Repeat (Story Time)

I now take you back to a very specific time in 2018—December 5, at exactly 3:34 am. After receiving a W in a tightly contested game, my opponent quits. It must’ve been one of those times when it was anybody’s game all the way up until the last few minutes when somebody just goes on a late run. I don’t remember the exact details, but I imagine I’m up by six or seven, with two minutes left, so not ideal for the opponent, but still within striking distance with enough time for a comeback, right? But then this happens:

*Steph Curry pulls up from near half-court… SPLASH!!

Courtesy of 2K Sports

The pic says it all. But I had to say more.

Courtesy of PS2 Game Chat

This poor soul opened pandora’s box and questioned the legitimacy of my win because I picked the Warriors (they were a stacked team).

Oh, word? Bet. What followed afterwards is what happens when you disrespect the throne.

But before that, did that dude really call me a turd?! To be fair, being called a “turd” is one of the least toxic comments to receive while gaming. Didn’t matter though. The beast was already provoked. It’s feasting time.

We play. I win by 15. Easy. But wait: “1 more,” he says. In yet another strategically petty tactic, I agree, but not before sending him a screenshot of the games’ box score.

Courtesy of PS2 Game Chat

What ensued next was the epitome of the saying “quit while you are ahead.” 32-point blowout. Twice the beating as before. Second game in the row after being called at.

I let him know it– while friendly reminding him of why I wear the crown, and why I was chosen by the 2K gods– with another screenshot and a simple message: “2x” (two times).

He didn’t reply back.

Source: 2K Sports

In Conclusion

Even a king must relinquish the throne at some point. Now’s the part of the tale where I admit to being on the other end of some pretty ugly losses, just like the ones mentioned above. Over the years, 2K has been the source of much laughter, rage, confusion, joy and almost any other emotion you can think of. But win or lose, one thing remained the same: 2K is more than a game, it’s a lifestyle. NBA 2K has been a staple of the sports gaming landscape for 20+ years now. And while it does have its issues, let us set aside any ill-will we may have and celebrate the release of the newest edition to the family, NBA 2K21. Because without it, we’d be stuck with NBA Live.

Happy {belated} 2K day.

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