The Chicago Bulls season will not be determined by video game ratings. But good luck convincing some of the league’s best that their standing in the virtual world doesn’t matter in reality.
With gaming expected to become a $320-plus million industry by 2026, per World Economic Forum, it is serious business. For many players, it is a reflection of how their status in the league. And for those players who are less invested in what video game developers – or anyone else for that matter – has to say about them, we always have the fans.
Bulls fans are never ones to disappoint in that regard.
Zach LaVine & DeMar DeRozan’s Ratings
The latest installation, NBA 2K23 does not come out until September 9. But, as usual, we have gotten a steady stream of “leaks” regarding the ratings of various players. For the Bulls’ top stars, LaVine draws an 88 overall while DeRozan is an 89 overall.
The former checks in at the same rating he finished the 2022 campaign with while DeRozan is one point lower.
Neither went over particularly well with Bulls fans.
Others say they are “disappointed in 2K” for dropping LaVine’s rating as well as DeRozan’s who they say should be in the 90s.
“Why are y’all so scared to give this man a 90,” asked one person.
But not everyone was as perturbed by the apparent lack of respect shown to the Bulls’ top stars.
Celtic’s Fans Upset Over Jaylen Brown’s Rating
Some fans were able to rationalize LaVine’s rating with the fact that he is coming off of a knee injury that sapped some of his effectiveness last season. One person wrote that an 88 “feels right” for the two-time All-Star.
Not so much in DeRozan’s case following the campaign that he had.
Another fan said that Brown is “gonna make y’all look ridiculous wtf is this.”
Brown averaged 23.6 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.1 steals while shooting 47.3% from the floor and 35.6% from beyond the arc.
LaVine’s line was 24.4/4.6/4.5 while slashing .476/.389/.853.
Brown offers far more defensive versatility. But LaVine’s offensive prowess appears to have given him the edge over the Celtics wing, especially in a video game. He also has one additional All-Star appearance to his credit.
Expect DeRozan & LaVine’s Ratings to Go Up
There are a couple of important notes about 2K ratings. First, these “leaks” are no mistake. The players chosen and the ratings given are all in an effort to generate buzz ahead of the game’s always highly-anticipated release.
They also serve as a buffer for some of the criticisms about glitches and errors that the game typically receives upon release.
It is also important to note that these ratings will surely change once the season begins.
Barring some serious regression or injury, that means both DeRozan and LaVine should be higher before too long. How high they finish will be determined by their performance on the court which is all that will matter in the end.