With the retainment period over and the trade window closed, we’re officially onto Draft Season. In attempts to avoid mock drafts and everything that comes with them, I present to you ‘Draft Day Blueprints’. In this series, we’ll talk team-building strategies and discuss different paths each NBA 2K League team could go down with the remainder of their respective offseasons. We’ll start with Lakers Gaming at No. 1 overall and go from there. Let’s get into it.
**********Picks do not reflect player rankings by any means**********
Next up: Gen.G Tigers of Shanghai
Roster: Jmoney (PG), TurnUpDefense (G/F), Feast (F/C)
Picks: No. 3, No. 44, No. 47
Gen.G’s 2020 campaign can be summed up in a few words: hot and cold. Inconsistent. Disappointing. One of the only teams in the NBA 2K League to challenge Raptors Uprising GC early season, Gen.G never quite figured it out completely, finishing with a record of 6-10 and missing the playoffs.
Coach Len went to work this offseason, trading away last year’s lottery selection, ShiftyKaii, in a blockbuster deal to T-Wolves Gaming, landing 2K League champions Feast and Jmoney. The front office wasn’t finished there, going on to complete a couple of shrewd deals to bolster their collection of assets.
Follow me here: Gen.G retains Gen (G), forfeiting a 2021 Fourth-Round selection, after showing next to no interest in bringing back the sharpshooter for a second season. MavsGG sends pick No. 35 to the Tigers for Gen (G), Gen.G then flips pick No. 35 and their own 2022 Third-Round pick to NetsGC in exchange for No. 47 and a 2022 First-Round selection via Brooklyn. Wizardry by the Gen.G front office.
This leaves us with picks No. 3, No. 44, and No. 47 with a lineup of:
Point Guard: Jmoney
Lock: TurnUpDefense (?)
Power Forward: TurnUpDefense (?), Feast (?)
Center: Feast (?)
Gen.G rosters a trio of players who have already experienced the peak of NBA 2K League success. These players also happen to be as versatile as they come, leaving Gen.G in a very unique position at pick No. 3. The organization could go in multiple directions but plenty of people have already tabbed highly-touted sharpshooter prospect, 630, as their next draft pick.
I wanted to make things interesting but NBA 2K League rules won’t allow me. In a perfect world, Gen.G flips pick No. 3 to a point guard needy team such as Pistons GT (No. 4) or Heat Check Gaming (No. 7), picking up additional assets in the process while remaining in the top-half of the lottery.
The motivation for Heat Check Gaming would be obvious: jump Pistons GT to select the point guard of their choice. The motivation for Detroit? Not allowing Miami to do so. Gen.G most likely could have fetched a valuable asset using this leverage, but because they only have one remaining trade asset, any trade involving the Tigers must be a one-for-one swap.
As the hypothetical Gen.G GM, I’m almost forced to sit pat at No. 3, unless a star becomes available in the next three months and a team is willing to trade said star for No. 3 straight up. Seems unlikely, but is definitely a possible scenario.
With No. 3, Gen.G could opt to select Jmoney’s backcourt partner, and if 630 is still on the board, that’s the pick for me. If not, other potential targets could include Fanta, ReeseDaGod, or Lotty. Or, we go in another direction, bolstering the frontcourt before addressing other needs. Top big men prospects, somebody like GloTheReal, TopTierCrown, or Zar will be available. Highly talented unretained bigs like Idris or Spartan will be available, but with No. 3, power forward feels low on the priority list.
I say all of that to say this: we’re taking 630 with the third overall selection and not looking back.
Onto selection No. 44. At this point, our backcourt is solidified between Jmoney and 630, and we roster two additional versatile players in Feast and TurnUpDefense. If Idris is here, it’s a no-brainer selection. Feast, TurnUpDefense and Idris in the same frontcourt is a recipe for success (3 NBA 2K League championships between the three). Gen.G would see immediate improvement on defense, which is much-needed, as the Tigers finished dead last in points per game allowed last season (74.56). Other options could include Legit, Spartan, LavishPhenom, KayAus, xoLebron or Fakiee. A few of those names being available at No. 44 is an absolute pipe dream but weirder things have happened.
With our final selection, pick No. 47, I’d lean towards selecting a pure ball-handler. While I’m excited to see Jmoney get another opportunity to start at point guard in the league, Gen.G should practice caution here. His couple of starts at the position for T-Wolves Gaming last season were inconsistent at best. Obviously, things didn’t work out in Miami when he was handed the keys to the offense. We’re hoping for better results this time around, but selecting a backup point guard with pick No. 47 is the way to go with how this hypothetical roster is built. That leaves us with a potential lineup of:
Point Guard: Jmoney
Secondary: Pick No. 3 (630, Lotty, ReeseDaGod, etc.)
Power Foward: Pick No. 44 (Idris, Legit, xoLebron, etc.)
Sixth Man: Pick No. 47 (Backup Ball-Handler)
Let me know what you think or if you’d do anything differently drafting for the Gen.G Tigers of Shanghai. Feedback is always greatly appreciated. Twitter: @aarontfox