In the virtual world, Anthony Muraco, the newly named director of gaming operations for the Cavs Legion Gaming Club, uses Twitch to scout gamers his team is considering drafting for the NBA 2K League.
The Cavs and the 16 other NBA clubs who will be competing in the 2K league, which tips off in May, will check out the top esports players at a tryout in February, and then each draft five gamers in March.
To prepare, Muraco – a Mentor native who, prior to his hiring by the Cavs, was the Dallas Mavericks’ esports manager – said he’s been scouting 2K players on Twitch, a streaming platform for gamers that says it has 15 million active users per day.
Northeast Ohio, as we noted when Cavs Legion GC announced its name and logos this week, is “a hotbed for NBA 2K,” according to Muraco.
Jonathan Sumers, who as the Cavs’ senior director of digital partnerships is helping to line up sponsors for the franchise’s NBA 2K team, said getting a local product on the Cavs’ big foray into esports “Would be terrific.”
“We’re not interested in an individual that’s not a team player. If someone has a bad attitude, that’s a team killer.”
In the 2K world, playing defense “Is harder in the game than real life,” Muraco said.
Muraco thinks the NBA 2K League will decide on six-minute quarters, and he said not to expect a bunch of shootouts.
The scores of high-caliber 2K competitions are often in the 50 to 70 range, and matchups between high-scoring teams that don’t play a lot of defense might land in the 80-100 range, Muraco said.