NBA 2K21 represented a dip in form for the best basketball series in gaming – at least where the previous generation was concerned, with its PS4 and Xbox One versions looking handsome yet feeling stale. In contrast, the series’ debut on PS5 and Xbox Series X showed considerable promise, and suggest that a mammoth year is in store for NBA 2K22. What do fans want to see on next-gen, who might be its cover star, and when can you expect the NBA 2K22 release date to fall? All is explained below, in your NBA 2K22 guide.
NBA 2K22 release date: expect a September tip-off
There’s a familiar pattern to release dates of 2K’s beautiful baller. NBA 2K18 hit on September 15, 2018, NBA 2K19 landed on September 7, 2018, while September 5, 2019 and September 4, 2020 were the respective street dates for NBA 2K20 and NBA 2K21. PS5 and XBox Series X versions arrived a little later, in mid-November, but that was only down to the pre-Christmas release of those consoles. Expect synchronicity across all formats and generations to be restored this year, with Friday, September 3, 2021 the most likely NBA 2K22 release date.
June is a massive month in the sports gaming calendar. It’s during this period that publishing behemoth EA usually unveils the first footage of sims such as FIFA 22 and Madden 22 at EA Play Live, and rivals such as Konami (PES 2022) and 2K are therefore wise to utilise summer super-show E3 for their own sporting announcements. For instance, predecessor NBA 2K21 was announced on June 11 last year (by way of a Youtube video), and you can expect a similar time frame for the first NBA 2K22 trailer to emerge. Trust us: the months will fly by…
NBA 2K22 cover: Doncic, Jokic and Beal the main contenders
The tragic death of basketball legend Kobe Bryant at the age of just 41 led 2K to break with convention where the NBA 2K21 cover was concerned. In tribute, it produced a limited ‘Mamba Forever’ edition of the game featuring Bryant on the box, while the standard editions had separate cover stars on each console generation. PS5 and Xbox Series X were fronted by New Orleans Pelicans power forward Zion Williamson, while Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lilliard was made the PS4 and Xbox One focus.