Trying to figure out what will happen during the 2019-20 NBA season is awfully difficult. With how much player movement there was this offseason and how the landscape of the league completely changed, the NBA is in a spot where there’s no clear-cut favorite to win a championship this season, a bit of a welcomed feeling now that we’re no longer in the era of the superteam.
What we do have at our disposal, however, is NBA 2K20, which dropped on Friday. We figured we might as well use the game to try and determine all the award winners, records, and the team that will come out on top during this upcoming season because, well, this seems like a good use of three hours on a Thursday night.
You will notice that I used five teams: the Lakers, Nets, Pacers, Warriors, and Wizards. I promise, I am not the worst sports fan that you have ever met in your entire life — the guy who went to college with you and liked Duke and the Cowboys despite being from northern New Jersey still holds that title — we just wanted to make sure that the five most impactful players who suffered major injuries won’t take the floor. As such, I used the Lakers and Nets and held DeMarcus Cousins and Kevin Durant, respectively, out all year, brought Victor Oladipo back in December, and had Klay Thompson and John Wall take the floor in February. This may not end up happening, but it may be our best approximation of how this all plays out. Also if there is a more efficient way to do this, feel free to tell me for when NBA 2K21 drops.
Some caveats: I declined every trade that popped up for all my teams, which is probably inaccurate, but I am not a general manager, and as such, I cannot be made liable for any of my decisions (also I was not trading Draymond Green and Eric Paschall for Danilo Gallinari and Dennis Schröder, which was a proposed deal, because that doesn’t make sense). Injuries were not turned off, and a few popped up during the season. I think that’s everything. Let’s look at how the year went, shall we?
In terms of where teams end up in both conferences, the game doesn’t expect there to be any super major surprises. All eight playoff teams in the East and the West make sense, even if 2K looks to be a little higher on the Chicago Bulls and Detroit Pistons than you might be. Here’s how things broke down, 1-15, on both sides of the league. First the Western Conference…
…then the Eastern Conference.
Apologies to fans of the Cavs, Wizards, Knicks, Heat, Pacers, Hawks, Hornets, Grizzlies, Thunder, Suns, Mavericks, Timberwolves, and Kings, and all the best as the ping pong balls bounce around and, potentially, bless you with a decade of Cole Anthony as a reward for your virtual suffering. Also, because the virtual NBA and the real NBA are not on the same calendar, the game doles out awards at the end of the regular season. They break down like this:
Your All-NBA squads feature Steph Curry, Russell Westbrook, Giannis Antetokounmpo, LeBron James, and Nikola Jokic on the first-team; James Harden, Damian Lillard, Paul George, Zion Williamson(!!!), and Anthony Davis on the second-team; and Kyrie Irving, Ben Simmons, Luka Doncic, Kristaps Porzingis, and Karl-Anthony Towns on the third-team.