The NBA 2K League Draft Is A Full Circle Moment For Gamers

    Wednesday, April 4, The NBA had their inaugural 2018 NBA 2K League Draft. The first of its kind, The NBA 2K League signifies and acknowledges that E-sports and competition can go hand in hand with ease. 

    With NBA Commissioner Adam Silver on hand to announce the first pick of the draft, the fervor and hype thats often reflected in Pro Athletes on their draft day was in full effect, and the E-sports gaming community didnt disappoint in their support of the event at Madison Square Gardens Hulu Theater. 

    According to the League’s release, “The process of selecting gamers for the final player pool began with a qualifier in January that yielded 72,000 players and a combine in February. Following the combine, the NBA 2K League identified the top 250 players and held live, one-on-one interviews with each player. After the interviews, all player information was evaluated by a selection committee and used to determine the 102 players eligible to be drafted.”

    Each of the leagues 17 teams selected six players from this pool of 102 gamers, and the draftees will become the competitive gaming leagues first professionals when the inaugural season tips off in one month.

    Virtual Ballers On Display In NBA 2K League Draft At Madison Square Garden

    They’ll be earning a living thanks to their skills on the the court — that is, the virtual court. CBS2’s Dave Carlin reports.

    Though none will be receiving million dollar signing bonuses for the digital crossover, each NBA E-Sports team will be compensating their draft picks. On a smaller scale lives are changing for the better. 

    Mavs Gaming (Dallas Mavericks) selected point guard Dimez aka Artreyo Boyd as with their No. 1 pick. The Ohio native will be bringing his talent to the Mavs’ facility and will be making $36,000 over six months, room and board included; not too bad for keeping those thumbs active. 

    It can be hard to imagine getting paid to stay on the sticks, but for many in the gaming community its been a long time coming. I remember back to the Modern Warfare 2 days watching OpTic gaming, everybody playing and competing, and I was like, man, why doesn’t 2K do this, Dimez recalled during his post-draft interview.  And years, years later, they finally announced it. I’m just happy to be a part of it.

    Lookout for the inaugural NBA 2K League to kick off sometime in May. For more information about the League, visit NBA2KLeague.com.

    Kyle Harvey is a writer, producer and the current managing editor of The Shadow League. Host of the Points On The Board podcast, and a proudly washed college athlete, Harvey had previous stints at Slant News, The Bleacher Report, NBC News, and theGrio. Originally from Wilmington, DE, Harvey graduated from North Carolina A&T State University.