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NBA players face-off in first-ever “NBA 2K Players Tournament”, winner to give $100,000 in support of coronavirus relief

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Brooklyn Nets’ Kevin Durant and Atlanta Hawks’ Trae Young among NBA players competing in NBA 2K20 tournament premiering April 3 on ESPN; Winning player to select charity beneficiary to receive $100,000 donation in support of coronavirus relief efforts.

2K, the National Basketball Association (NBA), and the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) today announced the “NBA 2K Players Tournament,” an NBA 2K20 gameplay tournament between 16 current NBA players. Beginning Friday, April 3 on ESPN and ESPN2, players – including top seeds Kevin Durant of the Brooklyn Nets and Trae Young of the Atlanta Hawks – will compete in a single- elimination, player-only tournament on Xbox One. The winner will be crowned the ultimate NBA 2K20 champion and select a charity beneficiary to receive a $100,000 donation from 2K, the NBA and the NBPA in support of ongoing coronavirus relief efforts.

“We’re thrilled to partner with the NBA and NBPA to bring basketball back to fans throughout the world and to help those in need during these uncertain times,” said Jason Argent, 2K Senior Vice President, Sports Strategy and Licensing. “Entertainment, especially sports, has the ability to bring communities together – including athletes, fans and families – and we hope that everyone will enjoy the tournament.”

“We are excited to tip off the first ‘NBA 2K Players Tournament’ in partnership with the NBPA and 2K, continuing an ongoing effort to stay connected with NBA fans around the world, while also giving back in this time of need,” said Matt Holt, NBA SVP of Global Partnerships.

“This tournament offers a unique opportunity for our players to compete with one another while also supporting their philanthropic efforts and engaging with their fans,” said Josh Goodstadt, EVP of Licensing for THINK450, the commercial arm of the NBPA. “We are excited to work with 2K and the NBA to bring this experience to life for the entire NBA community.”

Based on players’ seeding – which is determined first by NBA 2K rating, second by tenure – players will go head- to-head online in NBA 2K20. Prior to the tournament beginning, every player will choose eight of today’s NBA teams, each of which can only be used once. If a mirror match is set, the away team is awarded first choice of team. Rounds one and two will be single elimination, with the semifinals and finals running best of three.

Player Seeding:

  1. Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets (96)
  2. Trae Young, Atlanta Hawks (90)
  3. Hassan Whiteside, Portland Trail Blazers (87)
  4. Donovan Mitchell, Utah Jazz (87)
  5. Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns (86)
  6. Andre Drummond, Cleveland Cavaliers (85)
  7. Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls (85)
  8. Montrezl Harrell, LA Clippers (85)
  9. Domantas Sabonis, Indiana Pacers (85)
  1. Deandre Ayton, Phoenix Suns (85)
  1. DeMarcus Cousins (81)
  1. Michael Porter Jr., Denver Nuggets (81)
  1. Rui Hachimura, Washington Wizards (79)
  1. Patrick Beverley, LA Clippers (78)
  1. Harrison Barnes, Sacramento Kings (78)
  1. Derrick Jones Jr., Miami Heat (78)

*Participating players subject to change.

Tournament coverage begins April 3 at 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN, with a matchup between Jones Jr. (16) and Durant

  1. tipping off at 7:30 p.m. ET. Jones Jr. and Durant will each play as one of their pre-selected teams, with Jones Jr. choosing from the Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, Dallas Mavericks, LA Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks and Philadelphia 76ers, and Durant choosing from the Brooklyn Nets, Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, LA Clippers, Oklahoma City Thunder and Utah Jazz.

Additional matchups will air through April 12. Every tournament game will debut on either ESPN or ESPN2, while also streaming on the ESPN App and running on NBA.com, the NBA App, and 2K and NBA social channels including Twitter (@NBA2K, @NBA), Twitch (@NBA2K, @NBA), YouTube (@NBA2K, @NBA) and Facebook (@NBA2K, @NBA). Fans can follow NBA 2K, NBA and NBPA for tune-in information, game commentary and game highlights, and they can join the conversation with #NBA2KTourney. Tune-In Schedule: Round 1

Friday, April 3: ESPN

  • 7:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. ET: NBA 2K Players Tournament Preview Show
  • 7:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. ET: Derrick Jones Jr. (16) vs. Kevin Durant (1) Friday, April 3: ESPN2, 8:30 p.m. – 11:30 p.m. ET

Sunday, April 5: ESPN2, 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. ET

Quarterfinals

Tuesday, April 7: ESPN2, 7:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. ET

Semifinals & Finals

Saturday, April 11: ESPN, Timing to be announced.

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Nardo Wick recruits Lil Durk, 21 Savage & G Herbo for “Who Want Smoke??”

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Nardo Wick has just dropped the highly-anticipated new version of his smash-hit “Who Want Smoke??” featuring Lil Durk, 21 Savage, & G Herbo. The track includes a show-stopping verse from Durk, displaying the depths of his fiery and confrontational style, a noteworthy inclusion from 21 Savage reminiscent of his earliest days on the mic, and G Herbo delivering the thrilling and seasoned bars he’s renowned for. The song not only capitalizes on the virality of “Who Want Smoke?”, but also serves as a masterclass in collaborating from some of the most prominent artists in the game. Each verse builds on the next, with the superstar additions sticking to theme that Nardo laid out on the original “Who Want Smoke?”, signaling the unwavering faith that Durk, 21, and Herb have in the 19-year old Jacksonville emcee. This collaboration comes on the heels of Durk & Lil Babybringing Nardo to perform the viral record at their tour stop in Orlando, receiving an electrifying response from the Floridan crowd. Though the original song has already amassed a whopping 60 million streams and counting, these carefully curated contributions only further solidify “Who Want Smoke??” as one of the biggest records of the year.

“This next chapter of my career is to give every project I work on my full attention. If I want to be proud of all the videos I work on, then I must never rush the process. I want it to be a great viewing experience every time. The goal is to create timeless quality art that inspires and motivates me, and hopefully it can inspire and motivate those beyond me as well. I view the “Who Want Smoke??” video as the opening page of this new chapter.”
Cole Bennett

Nardo Wick bursted onto the scene in mid-2020 with a string of releases, including “Lolli”, “Slide”, and “Came Up.” Music gave the shy teen an outlet to channel his angst and was accompanied by a fast-following. Though he’s soft-spoken off the mic, when Nardo enters the booth, the raps he produces are dynamic and haunting––a reflection of Jacksonville’s turbulent hip-hop scene. In 2021, Wick transitioned from making buzzing records to inescapable anthems. “Who Want Smoke?” became a widespread hit, achieving over 60 million streams as well as placements on Rap Caviar and Hip Hop Hits. The song reflected a menacing teen with a no-nonsense approach to life and music balancing between being captivating and fearsome. “Who Want Smoke?” is a frequent soundtrack to viral content on social media, with the most recent inclusion being Florida A&M’s marching band, the Marching 100, doing a live-rendition of the hit song during the halftime show for their game against Alabama State University. Hit-producer Cardo Got Wings laced Nardo for a last-minute request to appear on February’s Judas And The Black Messiah: The Inspired Album. That album topped the charts upon release, putting Nardo Wick alongside the biggest stars of Hip-Hop and R&B. Wick followed this with the Nick Mira-produced “Pull Up” in July. In August, Nardo released “I Be Chillin”, an exciting addition to his growing discography. Throughout the run, the budding rapper has received praise from Passion of the Weiss, Lyrical Lemonade, and DJ Booth, who included him in a recent “10 Rappers You Should Know Right Now” list. Recently COMPLEXnamed Nardo among their list of “Best Jacksonville Rappers.”

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