By JJ Beale
For the third time in franchise history, NetsGC has punched their ticket to the NBA 2K League Playoffs. While Brooklyn’s 2K team has had success in the postseason of seasons prior, this year feels different. NetsGC maintained consistency throughout 3v3 play, reaching the upper bracket finals for the first time in franchise history. The rookie sensation Greens quickly established himself as not only one of the top rookies in the league, but as an elite tier point guard. Expectations were high for the homegrown point guard, yet he still managed to surpass every test. A bump in the road at the start of 5v5 play came as a surprise to almost everyone given the addition of veteran Shotz. This lackluster performance in THE TIPOFF threatened to derail the momentum NetsGC established early in the season as well as put their 5v5 playoff hopes in jeopardy. With their backs against the wall, Brooklyn’s 2K team made the bold decision to switch the positions of their two veteran leaders. Shotz moved from center to power forward while Steez moved from power forward to center. Since then, NetsGC has lost just two games (both in a playoff series to eventual THE TURN champions Hornets Venom GT). NetsGC is in a prime position to make a deep run in the playoffs and bring home the first banner in franchise history. Before the ball is tipped though, let’s look back at the last two times Brooklyn made the postseason.
2020: Hornets Venom GT Sweep NetsGC in Play-In Round
The first chapter in the now illustrious Hornets Venom GT and NetsGC rivalry was written in 2020. NetsGC was a young team that was still searching for their identity in the league. Both games in the series were tightly contested, yet key plays late in the game did not break the way of Brooklyn. NetsGC entered the fourth quarter of game one trailing by one. With a little over a minute left and trailing by one, NetsGC forced a turnover and had possession with the chance to take a lead late in game one. A costly turnover would seal the game for Hornets Venom GT as they took a 1-0 lead in the series. If game one wasn’t tight enough, game two was even closer. The game was tied with 25 seconds left as the Hornets held for the last shot. NetsGC was able to force a miss initially, but a putback by center Type sealed the fate of NetsGC and sent them home. Young point guard Choc could not carry Brooklyn to the promise land, even though he scored a combined 68 points in the two-game series. The Hornets relied on point guard Snubby and center Type, creating a dynamic duo that was too much for the Nets to match.
2021: A Cinderella Run to the ECF
On the heels of an MVP-candidate season from point guard Choc, NetsGC found themselves in the playoff picture once again. This time, Brooklyn had a revamped squad with veteran center Shotz becoming a dynamic 1-2 punch with Choc. NetsGC earned their first playoff win in franchise history beating rival Sixers Gaming. The momentum would roll into yet another postseason matchup with Hornets Venom GT. With a chance to avenge their 2020 loss, Choc and NetsGC stepped up to the challenge. Taking out their frustration from 2020, Brooklyn dominated game one, cruising to a 102-68 win. In game two, it was finally time for NetsGC to catch a break in crunch time. Choc came up with clutch buckets, putting Brooklyn ahead by one with less than a minute to play. Perfect late game execution pushed NetsGC for the two-game sweep and upset the two seed, Hornets Venom GT. In their first ever Eastern Conference Finals appearance, NetsGC ran into a buzzsaw against eventual champion Wizards District Gaming. Wizards DG imposed their will with haste, blowing NetsGC out in both games.