Yes, the actual National Basketball Associate is partnering with video game publisher Take-Two Interactive to pave the way for the their yearly basketball sim the NBA 2K series to become a full-fledged esport with the creation of the NBA 2K eLeague.
The league features virtual teams run by real NBA organization that will have five esports competitors each playing with a user created avatar, that will be feature actual player from current NBA lineups.
“We believe we have a unique opportunity to develop something truly special for our fans and the young and growing eSports community,” said NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. “We look forward to combining our best-in-class NBA sports team operators with Take-Two’s competitive gaming expertise to create a brand new league experience.”
Chairman and CEO of Take-Two Strauss Zelnick said, “through the NBA 2K series, which is renowned throughout the world for capturing the authenticity of the NBA and the passion of its fans, we have a proven track record of highly successful collaboration. With this new venture, Take-Two and the NBA aim to fuel the accelerating growth of eSports and take the thrill of competition to exciting new heights.”
The NBA 2K eLeague will feature a full regular and post season with a full slate of teams. So that just like in real life one virtual team has the opportunity to have a 73 win season tarnished after choking away a 3-1 lead in the finals.