Week 11 of the NBA 2K League continues with five more matchups on Wednesday night, with playoff positioning and draft positioning at stake.
Blazer5 Gaming (5-6) vs. Cavs Legion GC (4-6)
Blazer5 Gaming made its run during the Turn, advancing past the opening round and taking Warriors Gaming Squad to literally the last shot. Full bar or not, a miss is a miss and Blazer5 Gaming now finds its in win-or-go-home territory. While it’s possible we see one 7-loss team make a playoff appearance via their regular-season record, I don’t envision Portland’s pair of MVP’s being satisfied with having to be reliant on the Ticket. Expect Mama and Walnut to come out firing on all cylinders tonight.
Cavs Legion GC was bounced from the first round of the Turn by Hawks Talon GC. We saw Cleveland opt for a switch at point guard, moving Strainer off-ball with Doza getting the promotion to primary ball-handler As we know, the changes weren’t enough to avoid the tournament sweep. Tonight, they square off with a team that possesses a similar record, but record doesn’t always tell the full story.
Key Matchup: MamaImDatMan vs. Godddof2K
2019’s MVP clashes with 2019’s Defensive Player of the Year award winner in a battle on the perimeter. Mama knows losing this series likely makes Portland a ‘Ticket Hopeful’ team. The same can be said for Cleveland. Elite offense vs. elite defense with playoffs on the line. Desperation, playoff implications, and a possible postgame ‘FreakShow’. What more could you want?
Pacers Gaming (4-10) vs. Knicks Gaming (6-8)
While Pacers Gaming has sunk to the bottom of the standings, it remains one of the most fascinating teams of season three. The constant tinkering the front office has done with the roster hasn’t produced wins, but if Indiana can capture lightning in a bottle just once before the Ticket, that’s all it’ll take for them to make a respectable run as we hit the home stretch. This latest combination of BOHIO at point guard, Swizurk at shooting guard, and Jomar at center has the potential to be a strong trio.
As it stands, the final playoff spot belongs to a team sitting at .500 – which is still a realistic endgame for the season one champions. Knicks Gaming is also still making tweaks to its lineup, hoping to stumble into a five-man roster that can confidently finish their season. Regardless of its decision, New York’s hopes for another deep playoff run will still likely rely on the duo of Duck and Malik.
Key Matchup: Duck vs. Pacers Gaming perimeter defense
The Knicks rookie had a stressful night dealing with the intimidating Kings defense, and while the Pacers’ defense isn’t as airtight, Duck will likely find little room to breath tonight. If Indiana can force the ball out of Duck’s hands and limit the rest of the team from helping Malik on the offensive end, this game may be closer than most expect it to be.
Lakers Gaming (2-11) vs. Heat Check Gaming (4-10)
We’ve spent the majority of this article talking about how each of these matchups may have an effect on the playoff picture. This matchup is more likely to affect 2021’s rookie draft than 2020’s playoff picture.
The good thing is, both rosters in this matchup feature at least one high-quality, entertaining player, so not all is lost. For Lakers Gaming, if there’s anything to take away from their 2020 campaign, it’s that Sav (32.4 points, 7.9 assists per game this season) is undoubtedly their point guard of the future. Sav, paired with Dweq’s resurgence at center, could be in line to steal a win against Heat Check Gaming this evening.
Heat Check Gaming is coming off of a loss to Celtics Crossover Gaming last night. Boston didn’t play their star point guard oFab, yet Miami still found a way to lose. Heat Check opted to move Shiftay (arguably their second-best player) away from his natural lockdown position, but I imagine we see him back there tonight after yesterday’s struggles.
Key Matchup: Dweq vs. Hotshot
Hotshot (15 points, 13 rebounds per game this season) has been the lone consistent bright spot in Miami all season. Tonight, he squares off with Dweq, who hit his stride playing center against one of the league’s best, Goofy, during theTurn.
T-Wolves Gaming (6-6) vs. Hornets Venom GT (7-5)
T-Wolves Gaming lowered the bar ever so slightly last night after dropping a best-of-three to Warriors Gaming in a competitive back-and-forth affair. BearDaBeast made his official regular season return to point guard after familiarizing himself with the position during last week’s tournament. Minnesota is at its best when Big Saint, JMoney and Feast are all producing on the offensive end, and it’ll be interesting to see if JoJo can hit just a few more threes from the corner.
Hornets Venom GT is officially on red alert after falling 2-0 to Hawks Talon GC in a series many believed they would win. Charlotte’s priority should be playing a full four quarters against the defending champions. Against Atlanta, they fell into an early hole and could not rally back despite their best efforts in game one. In game two, a 19-9 third quarter was the difference maker in what turned out to be 10-point loss.
Key Matchup: BearDaBeast vs. Snubby
Both point guards notched impressive performances last night, but both also recorded losses. With tonight’s matchup being crucial in both teams’ push for a playoff spot, the pressure is on Bear and Snubby to give their teams a huge win.
Kings Guard Gaming (10-4) vs. Raptors Uprising GC (13-0)
Kings Guard Gaming pushed Raptors Uprising GC to the absolute brink, nearly preventing Kenny and co. from claiming its second banner. We all know what happened, however, and Toronto remains unscathed in both regular season and tournament play. Last night Kings Guard knocked off Knicks Gaming, likely ending New York’s playoff aspirations while inching closer to clinching a berth of their own. This evening, Sacramento has a chance at redemption against Toronto.
Thirteen wins in 13 chances, double-banner winner, fastest to ever clinch a playoff berth, rostering the first-ever unanimous MVP, etc. Raptors Uprising GC simply has everything going right for them at the moment. Despite being challenged repeatedly during the Turn, this team comes out on top. While the team is slated to face off with one of its greatest threats, tonight is just another opportunity to break another record. Fastest to 14 regular season wins record inbound. Don’t forget about Timelycook facing his former team, either.
Key Matchup: Yusuf vs. SickOne
There’s no denying Yusuf was dominant in his transition back to center—which he hasn’t played since his first days in the league, with none other than the Raptors—recording 26 points and 26 rebounds in one game during tournament play. Last night, Kings Guard opted to keep Yusuf as starting center, with DatBoyShotz hopping on his now-signature Three-Level Playmaker. Tonight, it’s a battle in the trenches between two top tier centers.