Ranking The Top NBA 2K Covers Of All Time
It must be good to be Paul George. He gets to be be eliminated from the playoffs by Lebron James seemingly every year, his coach has been fired, and now he's being talked about in trade rumors. Of course, this all comes after he shattered his knee in Olympic trials. But nevertheless, PG-13 is on one of the the covers of the brand new NBA2K17 (along with Kobe). Why exactly? We aren't really sure. Perhaps the Splash Brothers, Draymond Green, James Harden, LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook were unavailable.
With George's cover coming out this morning, we figured it was a good time to give our personal top 5 favorite 2K covers of all time. In case you were wondering, no, 2016's Dennis Schroder German alternative cover didn't make the cut.
5) Allen Iverson
Allen Iverson’s 2K3 shot is definitely top 5 material. He sports his classic double arm sleeve, tattooed neck, headband, and everything else that helped make Iverson a first ballot Hall Of Famer (besides everything he actually did on the court). The cover does a great job of depicting who AI was, along with setting a standard cover style that would be used for years to come. Iverson was actually on the cover for the first five 2K games and the 2K3 version was our favorite of the lot.
4) Kobe Bryant
Following an NBA championship over the Orlando Magic, Kobe Bryant on the front of the 2K10 was obvious. Sticking his number 24 and the word Lakers in your face is vintage Kobe. It’s the exact image we think of when we picture Kobe Bryant. Simply put, Kobe was a stone cold competitive killer who never would stop at just winning. No, he needed to talk trash and stare you down after he kicked your ass. After beating the Orlando Magic, Kobe and the Lakers would go on to repeat as champions, defeating the Celtics in seven games. Kobe deserved a cover, just like he deserved to be on this year's (and not as an alternate).
3) Ben Wallace
Brace yourselves... the Ben Wallace cover clearly needed to make the list. There is no other cover in the history of sports gaming like the NBA 2K5 shot of Wallace. He is staring into your soul every time you go to open the game (as we are sure he did when he played as well). Albeit the fact that this picture probably is going haunt your dreams at night, it is most obviously a classic. We're kind of surprised that they never asked Wallace to do a second. You know he was a 4-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, a 4-time All Star and does have his number retired by the Pistons after all. Big Ben deserved some more love after this spectacular cover.
2) Michael Jordan
It’s not often Jordan settles for second,(unless you’re talking about his career as an owner, then he will settle for anything other than last), but on this list that’s where we’ve placed him. Putting the G.O.A.T. on the cover of 2K11 was the franchise's first attempt to go retro. It was a huge hit in the NBA community and it has since sparked multiple legend editions of the cover, including featuring Jordan, Larry Bird, and Magic Johnson the following year. The 2K11 cover wouldn't be distinctive Jordan without his tongue properly out. Despite being retired for years at this point, not having a 2K cover featuring Jordan at some point would seem wrong. The picture chosen, with the colors and the artwork make this easily one of our two favorite covers of all time. But not first. No, first belongs to the man that told us ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE.
1) Kevin Garnett
The number one 2K cover of all time belongs to NBA 2K9, where Kevin Garnett rocks the front. Following the Celtics NBA championship, Garnett is doing his signature beat of the chest while looking into the distance. It is easily the standout cover of the 2K franchise and perhaps one of the most recognizable covers in sports games period. It’s a good thing they didn’t have him looking at the camera for the picture though, otherwise it would be terrifying. We are pretty sure Kevin Garnett would laugh when stealing candy from a baby.
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