Monday, October 4, 2010

NBA 2K11: Where 30th Overall Happens

Take a good look at that folks. Let it soak in for a minute. We've finally accomplished something not many sport franchises get to do. We are the worst team in a basketball video game.

Remember all those unrealistic trades you pulled off? What about the even more unlikely trip to the NBA finals that took place in last year's installment of NBA 2K10 (but only because the online servers were down)? Well now you have the exciting privilege of taking the 30th overall Raptors and turning them into NBA champions. A true rags to riches story.

Ignoring the fact that a 29th defense and a 28th offense somehow equals a 30th overall, let's take a look at the entire Raptors lineup in what is expected to be one of the most bought sports games this year.

75 - Leandro Barbosa (SG)
74 - Andrea Bargnani (C)
72 - Jose Calderon (PG)
69 - Jarrett Jack (PG)
67 - Ed Davis (PF)
64 - Julian Wright (SF)
64 - DeMar DeRozan (SG)
63 - Joey Dorsey (PF)
63 - Reggie Evans (PF)
63 - Amir Johnson (PF)
62 - Marcus Banks (PG)
60 - Sonny Weems (SG)
57 - David Andersen (C)
55 - Linas Kleiza (SF)

I know. It's a bit underwhelming. And you know what? I usually don't care about ratings when it comes to sports game, because more often than not, they don't matter. DeMar DeRozan was one of the best players in NBA 2K10 because of his speed, dunk, and layup rating. Once you were able to learn how to shoot with him, he became one of the most unstoppable forces in the game.

But since you're here, allow me to point out a few things:

- Linas Kleiza - our most significant pickup this off-season - was given a rating of 55. Fifty-five? We're talking about one of the more prolific scorers at this year's FIBA World Championships. The Lithuanian averaged 19 points and 7 rebounds during the entire tournament, and was the focal point of an intense American defense in the semi finals game. Kleiza rates lower than Nuggets' Coby Karl (56), Sixers' Tony Battie (57), and is only 1 point higher than Lakers' mustache man Adam Morrison. Expect perhaps the biggest improvement out of any player in 2k history by the time the last roster update comes out. I'll predict a 76.

- Most Raptors fans are looking forward to the growth of the Young Gunz and the excitement they'll bring. Unfortunately, 2K either felt differently, didn't care, or were blind to it. DeMar DeRozan and Sonny Weems clocked in at a low 64 and 60 respectively. During this year's Summer League, both Raptors swingmen tore it up. By the end of their schedule, the consensus from the media was that the duo were two of the most impressive players amongst their peers. I did some digging, and here are the 2k11 ratings of the top 10 guards and swingmen in terms of scoring averages from the 2010 summer league. Yes, it's just summer league. But what else could they possibly base these stats on when you can argue this entire group are unproven in the NBA?

John Wall - 24 pts, 32 min, 38%FG (81 ovr)
Reggie Williams - 23 pts, 32 min, 41%FG (67 ovr)
DeMar DeRozan - 21 pts, 26 min, 58%FG (64 ovr)
Sam Young - 19 pts, 28 min, 54%FG (65 ovr)
Marcus Thornton - 19 pts, 32 min, 44%FG (69 ovr)
Jermaine Taylor - 18 pts, 29 min, 47%FG (62 ovr)
Nick Young - 18 pts, 28 min, 55%FG (66 ovr)
Sonny Weems - 18 pts, 27 min, 44%FG (60 ovr)
Dominque Jones - 17 pts, 32 min, 42%FG (66 ovr)
Jordan Crawford - 16 pts, 31 min, 42%FG (64 ovr)

And as for Amir Johnson - the athletic Young Gun 4 man fresh off his contract extension? A pathetic 63 overall. That's lower than Josh Powell (64) and the overweight Eddy Curry (64). On top of that, they have Amir listed with a 67 dunk...A 67? Clearly they haven't seen this:

BTW - Reggie Evans has a 68 dunk. And no offense whatsoever to Reggie, but all of Raptors Nation knows that Reggie doesn't dunk.

And what about our prized draft pick Mr. Ed Davis? A 67 isn't that bad at all, but let's compare him to the rest of his draft class.

John Wall - 81
Evan Turner - 76
Derrick Favors - 73
Wesley Johnson - 73
DeMarcus Cousins - 70
Ekpe Udoh - 68
Greg Monroe - 67
Al Farouq-Aminu - 68
Gordon Hayward - 64
Paul George - 71
Cole Aldrich - 64
Ed Davis - 67
Pattrick Patterson - 72

As you can see, the one thing Raps fans can be pleased with the most is 2K's assessment of Ed Davis. Rookies are always overrated in the game, but at least 2K had the presence of mind of clocking Ed in at where many draft experts expected him to go in the draft (7-10)

Lastly, note how the Raps' best player comes in at 75 overall - Leandro Barbosa. Toronto is one of 5 teams (along with Cleveland, LA, Detroit, Minnesota) to not have a player rated over 80. The only player with a legit shot at cracking that by the end of the year is Andrea Bargnani. I'd throw in Kleiza in there as well, but I don't see 2K Sports allowing a 26 point rating increase to happen.

And in case you guys were interested, here are the ratings of a few Ex-Raptors:

Antoine Wright - 64
Marco Belinelli - 66 (Apparently we traded away our two best swings)
Kris Humphries - 62
Chris Bosh - 87

To wrap it up, let's take a quick glimpse (courtesy of Youtube) at how the worst team in the game will play on consoles all over the world.

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