MPBA2K’s inaugural NBA 2K18 competition, the JumpOFF Tournament, gave the community its first taste of competitive action with something to play for–$1400 for the champions–in the latest edition of NBA 2K. With most of the top teams from both consoles all playing to win or go home, the tournament garnered thousands of viewers on Twitch.
Most importantly for the players, it caught the eyes of NBA 2K League scouts and carried potential draft implications.
Ricco The 2K Analyst, NBA 2K’s resident Pro-Am expert, caught every second of the action on the PS4 side of things, from the first round of the 16-team competition all the way up to Breakout’s triumph over Throwdown in the finals. He breaks down all the quarterfinal teams and hands out Offensive and Defensive MVP awards to players on every squad.
First round: Win vs. Make It Happen
Quarterfinals: Loss vs. Breakout
This team has the potential to be great. If they can get everyone besides just Moon and Deedz involved on offense, things can start to flow easier for them. The World’s defense also can be better if they stop ball watching and move their feet more. In a few games I saw guys back pedaling underneath the rim and then trying to play defense, which makes it impossible to keep the opposing player from scoring. If they keep working together and find ways to improve their offense they will be a solid team.
Offensive MVP: Official Moon played great on offense in the Make it Happen series, averaging 23 points and 3 assists.
Defensive MVP: Pistol helped a lot on grabbing boards against Make it Happen and Breakout.
First round: Win vs. No Scurries
Quarterfinals: Loss vs. Peerless Proficiency
Vibrancy had a great first round against No Scurries, beating them 2-1 in the series. I liked watching these group of guys play even though CjWill isn’t their permanent center. I would like to see Vibrancy get a consistent five and continue to play in competitive match ups and tournaments.
Offensive MVP: Hype did a good job getting the offense going, averaging 17 points and 8 assists this tournament.
Defensive MVP: CjWill is one of my favorite centers to watch because he knows how to protect the paint and grab boards to disallow second chances for the opposing team.
First round: Win vs. Valid Talent
Quarterfinals: Loss vs. Throwdown
If this team can keep a consistent five on the court and continue to build chemistry, they could be a top-tier team. Against Throwdown they won the first game but couldn’t finish the series, losing the next two games. I felt like they got cocky and unfocused after winning the first game and Throwdown adapted to what HP was doing in the second and third game. I expect Hank and HP to bounce back and be ready to compete in the MPBA2K Classic.
Offensive MVP: HankDaTank is for sure getting better as a point guard and leader for his team. He balled out in the Valid Talent series, averaging 18 points and 17 assists.
Defensive MVP: Clutch_Boy_67 grabbed crazy offensive boards this tournament. He killed the paint with his Athletic Finisher in both series against Valid Talent and Throwdown and I’m excited to see what he does in the next tournament.
First round: Win vs. Team Swish
Quarterfinals: Loss vs. In Our Bag
HG has BP and Radiant–two of the best point guards on PS4–and Colt, who is a top center. If they can get on the same page as a unit they can make noise this year. They switched lineups in the series against In Our Bag and I think that caused miscommunication and confusion on offense and defense early in the series. They performed well in the JumpOFF and I’m looking forward to seeing what they do in the MPBA2K Classic.
Offensive MVP: BP is probably the best ball handler in the community. The way he can break down a defender and hit a shot off of a crazy combo is cool to see, and he did that consistently throughout the tournament
Defensive MVP: What I like about Colt is that he plays tough in the paint, grabs rebounds to eliminate second chances and most importantly moves his feet on defense.
In Our Bag
First round: Win vs. New Lane
Quarterfinals: Win vs. HG
Semifinals: Loss vs. Throwdown
For their first time playing in a competitive tournament together, In Our Bag performed great. Star point guard Richlano averaged 21 points and 13 assists, and if he can work on his vision and tune his IQ on offense and defense, he can become an elite player. TifeWorld is also a great addition to the team, bringing energy and a defensive mindset. He did struggle defensively in the Throwdown series, but I expect him to come out in the MPBA2K Classic well prepared. Caneville352, ReBoKzz_GoD and allstarTJP consistently contributed to the team in the JumpOFF, and they all fit perfectly into the In Our Bag system.
Offensive MVP: Richlano is a scoring machine who can easily drop 25+ points for his team if needed. In one game he dropped an electrifying 38 points on 16/22 shooting from the field and 4/7 shooting from the 3-point line.
Defensive MVP: TifeWorld brought energy and morale for In Our Bag’s defense throughout the tournament. He’s a ballhawk who looks for steals and most importantly disrupts the offense. When he sees a wrap around, screen or backdoor cut, he makes sure to call it out so everyone is on the same page.
First round: Win vs. Drewkerbockers
Quarterfinals: Win vs. Vibrancy Gaming
Semifinals: Loss vs. Breakout
Peerless Proficiency in the first round came out looking good, beating the Drewkerbockers in a 2-1 series, but fell short against Breakout in the semifinals. Peerless Proficiency’s offense looked so generic and predictable throughout the whole series versus Breakout. I was expecting OneThroughFive to switch it up on offense and to look for 3-point plays, but it never happened. The defense during that series looked confused and inconsistent. Hopefully these guys go back and study film on that series and learn from it and install more offensive plays. Overall, though, Peerless Proficiency is a good team.
Offensive MVP: OneThroughFive played great in the tournament. He shocked a lot of people with his performance against Drewkerbockers, averaging 25 points and 9 assists that series. His leadership and his will to win is something that you want from your point guard.
Defensive MVP: Phenom__3 has great IQ and plays the passing lanes well while staying disciplined in his zone. His best games were against Vibrancy Gaming when he dropped 14 points, 6 assists and 3 steals while shooting 6/9 from the field, and the Drewkerbockers series when he dropped 15 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals, shooting 6/10 from the field.
First round: Win vs. They Doubted Us
Quarterfinals: Win vs. Hidden Potential
Semifinals: Win vs. In Our Bag
Finals: Loss vs. Breakout
After Throwdown talked trash on Twitter and Periscope before the finals, I thought they had a plan to back it up. But they didn’t have an answer to stop Dimez at all and I was confused on why they kept leaving the corners open on defense knowing what Wolf and Shotz are capable of. What really killed them–besides Dimez–was missed shots and not getting boards on offense. I even saw Dimez going in the paint grabbing defensive boards over the center. The way Throwdown’s offense looked throughout the series you could tell they were frustrated. They need another defender in one of their archetypes and a build to help them grab boards. I’m sure Throwdown will go back to the basics and figure things out.
Offensive MVP: Dev played great this tournament. His leadership, IQ and ability to get open and score is what really separates him. He averaged 23 points and 8 assists per game throughout the competition. Even though Dev struggled to get things going for the offense in the championship I still think he’s a top guard.
Defensive MVP: iiNsaniTTy is a great all-around player. I liked his aggressiveness and his will to force turnovers throughout the tournament
First round: Win vs. Wetboyz
Quarterfinals: Win vs. The World
Semifinals: Win vs. Peerless Proficiency
Finals: Win vs. Throwdown
Breakout absolutely destroyed teams in this tournament. Dimez is not only a scoring threat but also an assist threat, and his passing vision throughout the tournament was flawless. Players like Wolf and DatBoyShotz showed up big in clutch moments, especially in the championship series against Throwdown. Swizurk and Got Deadeye also played great in the tournament and contribute a lot to the team even though sometimes the numbers don’t show it. Congratulations to Breakout on winning the MPBA2K PS4 JumpOFF Tournament.
Offensive MVP: This man Dimez can do it all and keeps proving why he should be the number one overall pick in the NBA 2K League draft. Dimez’s crossovers and hesitation combos have consistently embarrassed defenses and broken defenders’ ankles one-on-one. He has two gears: beast mode where he drops 30+ points and gets his teammates involved along the way, and another where he can beat the defenses mentally by having them shading too much and giving up the corners, making defenses pay by hitting Wolf or Shotz for an easy 3-pointer or going to Deadeye.
Defensive MVP: Wolf is one of the top lockdowns in Pro-Am with a one-of-a-kind IQ. He is always looking to find a way to get a steal or force a turnover, especially in big time games. If you go back and look at Breakout’s series against Peerless Proficiency and Throwdown, you will see how much Wolf can disrupt an entire offensive game plan.