CLIPPERS GET DIGITAL IN NBA 2K14

The latest iteration of 2K Sports’ famed NBA video game simulation (NBA 2K14) was released just in time for Media Day around the league. The game, widely played by members of NBA rosters around the league, is arguably one of the most popular sports video-game titles on the market.

And while the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 versions of the game may be soon outdone by a higher resolution and more powerful next generation of consoles, there is still more than a month for 2K14 to stand alone as the only officially licensed NBA game on the market.

This year’s version slots the Clippers as one of the five best teams in the league, partially because of a steep improvement in their defensive rating, something that can only be attributed to the addition of Head Coach Doc Rivers in the offseason. Overall, team ratings in the game are determined by an accumulation of factors, most heavily weighted by the ratings of individual players on each respective team’s roster.

The Clippers have just three players rated 80 or higher (Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and Jamal Crawford), but also have an abundance of guys in the mid-to-high 70s. Player ratings are weighted from 25 to 100 and are used to separate superstars from bench players, Hall of Famers from role players. Depending on the position that player is listed, different aspects of his rating are factored in.

For example, Chris Paul’s overall rating would be determined by his speed, quickness, stealing ability, passing, dribbling, offensive awareness and so on. Each of these categories, much like the overall rating, is given a score 25 to 100. After all is said and done, Paul is a 93 overall. The best point guard in the game. Oddly enough, he is down a point from a year ago, but still placed above the rest.

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Another factor 2K Sports uses to differentiate between players is something called Signature Skills. There are an abundance of them, including closer, floor general, highlight film and scrapper. According to 2K, the signature skills help “ensure each NBA player’s unique abilities are represented in the most authentic way possible.”

To a large extent, they are. Crawford is presented with the “microwave” skill and when he gets it going in the game, he rarely misses a shot. Willie Green is a corner specialist in the game, meaning he’ll be more effective from 3-point range in the corner than elsewhere on the court, which matches his real on-court success from the right corner where he was the No. 1 shooter percentage-wise in the league last season.

Crawford and Green are not avid gamers. However, several members of the Clippers are, or were at one time. J.J. Redick used to play 2K5 online with fellow college player of the year candidate Adam Morrison nearly a decade ago. Darren Collison, Maalik Wayns, Jared Dudley and DeAndre Jordan play the game to this day. Collison even ventured up to the Bay Area, where the 2K Sports studios are located, to get a sneak peek at 2K14 back in August.

Here is a full list of each Clippers player, his overall rating, whether or not it increased or decreased from the previous year and any signature skills:

 

 LAC RATINGS IN 2K14

Chris Paul 93 overall (-1 from 2K13): Floor general, Closer, Dimer, Pick Pocket, Pick and Roll Maestro

Blake Griffin 84 (-2): Highlight Film, Post Playmaker, Finisher, Screen Outlet, Posterizer
Jamal Crawford 80 (+1): Microwave, Ankle Breaker, Closer, Catch and Shoot, Pick Dodger
Darren Collison 79 (+3)
Antawn Jamison 76 (-1)
Matt Barnes 75 (+2): Scrapper, Pick Dodger
J.J. Redick 74 (+2): Catch and Shoot  
DeAndre Jordan 72 (-2): Eraser, Posterizer, Hustle Points
Willie Green 69 (+1): Corner Specialist
Byron Mullens 68 (-1)
Louis Amundson 67 (+2)
Reggie Bullock 64 (rookie)
Maalik Wayns 63 (0)
Ryan Hollins 55 (0)
Jared Dudley 72 (+1)

Compare the graphics of NBA 2K14 with NBA 2K13 and NBA 2K12