NBA 2K Players Tournament Schedule: Which Players Are Taking Part, Where to Watch on TV and Online

Basketball fans, rejoice! Beginning Friday, and for a short time, live basketball will be back on ESPN as some of the league's brightest stars go head-to-head. But the game won't be physical. It'll be virtual.

With the NBA suspended indefinitely because of the coronavirus outbreak and fans and broadcasters struggling to cope with the dearth of live basketball, the league has partnered with video game giant 2K to launch a NBA2K tournament, which will feature 16 NBA players competing against each other.

Two-time NBA Finals MVP Kevin Durant is among the participants along with Atlanta Hawks star Trae Young, two-time All-Star Andre Drummond, 2018 NBA draft first overall pick Deandre Ayton, four-time All-Star DeMarcus Cousins, and Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell, who recently recovered from the novel coronavirus.

The 16-man tournament will begin on Friday and run through to April 11, with games broadcast across ESPN and ESPN2.

"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," Jason Argent, 2K senior vice president, sports strategy and licensing said in a statement on Tuesday.

"Entertainment, especially sports, has the ability to bring communities together — including athletes, fans, and families — and we hope that everyone will enjoy the tournament."

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 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," Matt Holt, NBA Senior Vice President of Global Partnerships said.

Here's all you need to know ahead of the tournament.

Which players are taking part?

The 16 players were seeded based on their overall ranking in NBA 2K20, with players with the same overall rating seeded based on the time they have spent in the league.

  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)
  10. Deandre Ayton, Phoenix Suns (85)
  11. DeMarcus Cousins (81)
  12. Michael Porter Jr., Denver Nuggets (81)
  13. Rui Hachimura, Washington Wizards (79)
  14. Patrick Beverley, LA Clippers (78)
  15. Harrison Barnes, Sacramento Kings (78)
  16. Derrick Jones Jr., Miami Heat (78)

How will the tournament work?

Every player can choose eight of the current NBA teams, each of which can only be used once. Should two players who are scheduled to play each other pick the same teams, the away team will be awarded first choice of team.

The first two rounds will be follow a single elimination format, with the semifinals and finals decided on a best-of-three basis.

.@NBA2K's "Players-Only" tournament will air starting this Friday on @ESPN. Here are the brackets - who do you think is gonna take it all?

— The Boardroom (@boardroom) March 31, 2020

TV coverage (April 3)

  • ESPN, 7 - 8:30 p.m. ET
  • ESPN2, 8:30 - 11:30 p.m. ET

Live stream

All games will be live streamed on the ESPN App and running on, the NBA App, and 2K and NBA social channels including Twitter, Twitch, YouTube, and Facebook.

NBA 2K20
A detailed view of the Spalding basketball on the court during the first half in a game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the New Orleans Pelicans at Staples Center on February 25 in Los Angeles, California. Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty