NBA Twitter often erupts into madness this time each year as the NBA2K ratings roll out. The wild discourse, the shouting, the fighting, it’s like a crazed kitchen in an episode of The Bear. Chef, chef! Heard!
With fans deprived of hoop content for months, those digits attached to every player are all we have to argue about — to tide us over until the main course arrives in October.
This year, there’s no need for Nets fans to go to war over how many players on their team should earn 90+ ratings or even break into the game’s top ten. With Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and others off the squad, it’s a new team, with new rankings, giving us different kinds battles to fight.
While the NBA2K team continues to slowly release player and team ratings, 2KRatings.com has the inside scoop, publishing all player ratings for the Nets with exception to their rookies Noah Clowney, Dariq Whitehead, and Jalen Wilson.
Here’s how it’s all shaking out thus far.
Highest Rated Brooklyn Nets in NBA2K 24
Mikal Bridges - 87 OVR
As the league’s most associated player with the words “rising star” right now, it’s no surprise to find Mikal Bridges leading the Nets in 2K24. His two-way prowess likely worked into his team-high mark here more than anything else. After shooting 38.2% from deep last year on 5.3 attempts per game, the game also granted him a team-high 86 3-point rating. I’d bet Bridges’ rating soars this year as many expect his game to in this widened role, but at this point, there’s not much to be upset about.
Nic Claxton - 84 OVR
Also pulling weight in the two-way department, Nic Claxton clocks in as Brooklyn’s second highest rated player. The switchable big is tailor made for the modern game and just posted a league-best 70.4 field goal percentage. Clax also averaged 2.5 blocks per game last year, the second most behind DPOY winner Jaren Jackson Jr.
With his high finishing percentage around the rim and after tallying the fourth most dunks in the league last year, I would have liked to see a higher driving dunk rating than 75 for Claxton. Regardless, his leaping abilities and speed should make him a fun play in the game especially on fast break opportunities.
Spencer Dinwiddie - 83 OVR
Even after a rough postseason, the 2K team treated Spender Dinwiddie well this year, moving him just one tick below Claxton. Again, with the playoffs aside, Dinwiddie revved up his game once returning to Brooklyn, averaging would-be career-highs in assists (9.1 APG) and steals (1.1 SPG).
While Dinwiddie’s scoring and shooting efficiency dragged a bit, he fully committed himself to the point guard role — getting downhill, facilitating, and heading the team’s defense at the top of the key. An 83 OVR rating feels justified with all that considered.
Cameron Johnson - 80 OVR
Here we find our first real crime by the NBA2K team, particularly in the 3-point department, where Cam Johnson received an 85 rating. Last year, Johnson shot 40.4 percent from deep on 5.2 attempts per game. This is not to discredit Bridges at all, but Johnson shot it at a far more efficient clip at a nearly identical rate. However, Bridges received a higher rating than him at 86. Where’s the logic in that decision?
Johnson also established himself as one of the game’s better rim wreckers during the playoffs last year, smoking MVP Joel Embiid to the rim. The 2K Team must have missed that though, only giving him a 60 rating in the driving dunk category. Those numbers need a raise, and in consequence, so does his overall score.
Cam Thomas - 78 OVR
With NBA2K being all about a player’s ability and nothing else, Cam Thomas might be the most exciting Net to play with in this year’s game. With the ability to score at all three-levels, gamers should have no problem filling it up with Killa Cam.
Re Thomas, I have some sympathy for the 2K team. When given significant minutes last year, Thomas went ballistic more often than not, including three straight 40+ point games. He clearly possesses the abilities of a star player, but has yet to attain the leash of one, averaging just 16.6 minutes per game.
So even with Thomas possessing all the skills to win you a game, I understand the 2K team simply cannot justify giving him a higher rating than other players who see the floor more often. A 78 OVR rating feels like a fair compromise.
Other Notable Players
Ben Simmons - 76 OVR
No other player on the Nets has a better chance to inflate their rating than Ben Simmons. Last year was rough, hence this rating which is remarkably lower than the one received as a rookie. However, he just turned 27 and is reportedly the healthiest he’s been since his Philly days.
The passing, the defense, the transition game, we know Simmons is capable of raising his score into the high 80s. However, this game judges not for potential but what’s out in front of us, and last year, Simmons averaged just 6.9 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 6.1 assists per game. The 76 OVR rating feels fair and even a bit generous for someone putting up those figures.
Royce O’Neale - 76 OVR
Well established as one of the game’s better glue guys, Royce O’Neale clocks in right beside Simmons at 76 OVR. After shooting it from deep at a 38.9 percent clip last year and having knack for hitting in clutch moments as well I’d like to see his his 3-point rating leap from 70 to around 73. There’s not much else to contest beyond that.
Dennis Smith Jr. - 74 OVR
What story for Dennis Smith Jr. If there were ever a resilience category, this guy deserves a 90+ rating after bouncing around for years until finally establishing himself as a top tier perimeter defender last season and solid slasher.
Smith’s raw offensive game is likely holding him back here, but anyone who knows Smith’s game knows not to pull up from three with him. Instead, you’ll want to attack the rim, where 2K did him right, handing out an 85 driving dunk rating.
Dorian Finney-Smith - 77 OVR
Another glue guy for the Nets means another mid-to-high 70s rating. Finney-Smith averaged 8.3 points, 4.8 boards, and 1.3 assists per game last year. Known for his ability to space the floor as a big, Finney-Smith struggled in that department once coming to Brooklyn though, shooting it at just 30.6 percent from three. (He underwent surgery on the pinkie finger of his shooting hand so maybe he goes higher.)
Still securing a 77 rating in the 3-point shooting department, gamers should still be able to hit from deep with him. He could be an interesting plug at the five in the game as well if your offense is stagnant and you’re looking to go small.
Of course, ALL that can and no doubt will change. That’s the real fun.