NBA 2K15 evolves beyond a video game

By Jeff Caplan, NBA.com

Reigning NBA MVP Kevin Durant dons the cover of the new “NBA 2K15″ video game that impressively elevates its standard of insanely realistic graphics and now unveils a first-of-its-kind technological breakthrough: a live TV show within the game.

Wrap your brain around that for a minute.

“NBA2K TV” is a live highlight and interview show designed to bind the NBA 2K community like no other video game has or can by delivering game news and community-driven content through a live studio television show. In many ways, says Jeff Thomas, Visual Concept’s executive vice president of development, the game is built around the weekly program that features as its host former Old Dominion star and sports broadcast personality Rachel A. DeMita.

Kevin Durant talks about NBA 2K15 during a media event last month.

Kevin Durant talks about NBA 2K15 during a media event last month.

The real-life DeMita — not an animated replica — will greet you every time you put on the game. She’ll provide a brief update on the latest happenings in the NBA 2K community. She might be back later with highlights of your game and ask you how you did it.

You getting this? In the game’s slickly produced trailer, a mesmerized Durant mutters, “Whoa, man, that’s sick.”

The actual show will be streamed into the game once a week and is planned to last about 15 minutes. It will feature fast-paced segments from highlights of actual NBA 2K games played by users who allow 2K to access their systems through the DVR function, plus highlights of NBA 2K tournaments and other large-scale events and interviews with actual game users and tournament winners and exclusive interviews with NBA players, coaches and experts.

NBA2K will be released on Oct. 7, which is also when the first live show will debut. The game will be released internationally on Oct. 10.

“There’s so many ‘wow’ moments as you play the game, as you’re experiencing things with your buddy,” Thomas said. “It may have come down to a last-second buzzer — we really do try to replicate the real NBA. You know how highlights are, how exciting that can be. Well, we really do try to replicate those moments and for our users and game players to share that with the world is what we’re really trying to capture. That’s one part of the content.”

Additional show content will include game news, behind-the-scenes looks at how NBA 2K was made, interviews with the game’s developers, plus NBA player cameos and basketball lifestyle.

“One of my favorite parts of this is I was a former Division I basketball player and to me the point of playing basketball and the point of playing video games is the same thing: to have a really amazing time competing,” DeMita said. “With the show, we always want to have a good time and show all of the culture and the entertainment value that surrounds the NBA, that surrounds NBA2K and that surrounds our gaming community. Everybody is coming there for essentially the same reason. Being able to bring these guys access to some of the things they couldn’t have access to before, for instance they wouldn’t know necessarily that someone in Maryland is at the top of the leader board, but I’ll be able to let the rest of the community know that.

“At the same time someone may not know that Kevin Durant loves to play NBA 2K, and also likes to play with other NBA players. So when I do interviews with him, the whole community will get to watch that and enjoy in those aspects of the culture.”

It is a brave new world. Game on.


VIDEO: NBA 2K15 cover boy Kevin Durant shows off the NBA2K TV feature

 

Mark Jackson Personally Calls Record Buyers


VIDEO: Strip Promo

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Hand down, song down?

Mark Jackson‘s wife, Desiree, is a gospel recording artist who also goes by the name Kadesh. We’ve seen her sing the National Anthem at Warriors games when Jackson was coaching there, and she recently released a new single called “Strip.” (You can watch the promo video above.)

To help get the word out about the new single, Jackson took to Twitter…

And then, yep, he kept his word…

(via FB)

Kevin Durant Supports The Washington Nationals

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — This hurts me more than you know. After all, I’m a fan of the Atlanta Braves, and I was watching the Braves play the Nationals in Atlanta the other night when the Nationals won, clinching the National League East on the Braves’ own field. The Nationals have now won two of the last three division titles, and their fans are rightfully excited. Fans such as DC-area native Kevin Durant, who goes by the nickname Easy Money Sniper, and who took to Instagram to celebrate the Nationals division title by showing off his own custom Nationals jersey…

James Harden Does The Carlton

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — He won a gold medal in Spain, he called in a beard guru, what’s left for James Harden to do? How about meet Alfonso Ribeiro, a.k.a. Carlton Banks from “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air,” and learn first-hand how to do “The Carlton”?

Are The Spurs The Ultimate Team?

San Antonio Spurs Championship Celebration

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The San Antonio Spurs won last season’s NBA championship, but are they the ultimate team in all of the major North American sports leagues? A new poll from ESPN the Magazine says yes, they are.

According to ESPN, they surveyed over 1,000 fans to form 25 areas of criteria, then polled over 100,000 fans and asked them to rate their hometown teams in each of those categories. From there they created a weighted average and incorporated “bang for the buck” and…well, you can read all the criteria for yourself.

As it turned out, out of the 122 teams considered, the San Antonio Spurs finished first overall. And they weren’t the only NBA team to rate highly: the Memphis Grizzlies finished fourth, the Oklahoma City Thunder finished seventh, and the Dallas Mavericks ninth. If you want to dig deeper, check out the entire poll here.

Throwback Thursday: All-time blocks leaders


VIDEO: Best centers: Hakeem Olajuwon

Welcome to Throwback Thursday here on the All Ball Blog. Each week, we’ll delve into the NBA’s photo archives and uncover a topic and some great images from way back when. Hit us up here if you have suggestions for a future TBT on All Ball.

Today’s Topic: All-Time Blocks Leaders

We continue our Throwback Thursday All-Time Statistical Leaders series today by looking at the Top 10 all-time blocks leaders.

(NOTE: Click the “caption” icon below the photo for details about each moment.)


Gallery: TBT: All-time blocks leaders

Make sure to check out our previous All-Time Statistical Leaders galleries if you missed them!
All-time steals leaders
All-time assists leaders

Which of these players would you most want to make a win-saving block for your squad? Leave your comments below!

Chris Bosh Shows He Can Score On Himself

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — When LeBron James departed Miami for Cleveland, the Heat quickly signed Chris Bosh to a max contract extension, signalling that they expect a big season out of Bosh. He’s played the alpha dog role before, in Toronto, but since arriving in Miami, Bosh was mostly a complementary player, even developing into a stretch center.

But this week on the Ellen show, Bosh made an appearance and showed he can still put the ball in the basket. Especially if it’s a small basket on his own head…


VIDEO: Bosh on Ellen

Dirk Nowitzki Covers David Hasselhoff

ALL BALL NERVE CENTERDirk Nowitzki is a talented dude. He’s a franchise player, an MVP, and as we see below, he does a mean David Hasselhoff cover.

The backstory for this clip below starts nearly a decade ago, when Dirk admitted that to help himself relax at the free throw line, he would sometimes sing to himself. The one song he singled out as a nerve calmer? David Hasselhoff‘s “Looking for Freedom,” which was a hit in Germany in 1989, when Dirk was growing up. The Hoff performed the song at the Berlin Wall as it was being dismantled, and the song stayed at number one in Germany for two months.

So this week, while on a German talk show to promote a documentary about himself, Nowitzki was presented with a guitar and asked to sing along. The Hoff must be proud…


VIDEO: Dirk Freedom

(via TNLP)

James Harden visits the Beard Guru

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Before getting your picture taken or appearing on TV, you get a haircut to make sure you’re presenting your best self. But before having your face scanned to appear in a video game, such as NBA2K15? If you’re James Harden, you call the only man who understands, the Beard Guru.

Harden has one of the world’s great beards, but it apparently doesn’t just grow on its own. It takes some finesse, some cajoling. And apparently, it takes a visit from Fritz, the Beard Guru (with a cameo from Anthony Davis)…


VIDEO: Beard Guru

Catching Up With Nick Young

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — It’s impossible to have too much Nick Young on the All Ball blog. I’m thinking about giving him his own category at this point. In the meantime, he does have his own tag, and you can get your Nick Young fix here.

Or, you can just watch the video below, where Lakers.com caught up with Swaggy P and found out how his summer has gone and various other swaggy tidbits…

VIDEO: Nick Young