The Friday Five: 5 Players Who Abruptly Left the NBA

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Re: The Friday Five: My Top 5 Unluckiest Basketball Gaming Moments

Postby Andrew on Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:16 pm

October 13th: My Top 5 Unluckiest Basketball Gaming Moments

Another Friday the 13th is upon us, which is bad news for anyone who suffers from paraskevidekatriaphobia. I'm not a particularly superstitious person myself, and no Friday the 13th has given me reason to be wary of the date. In fact, given that one of my weekly features comes out every Friday, it's conveniently provided me with a ready-made topic that can be easily tied into our interests as a community that loves basketball and basketball gaming. I've previously written about some of the unluckiest moments in NBA history, unlucky moments in basketball gaming, and even my favourite players who have worn number thirteen.

For this Friday the 13th, I thought that I'd revisit that second topic with a few personal anecdotes. We've all had our unlucky moments on the virtual hardwood, and since we tend to get somewhat invested in the video games that we play, those moments can certainly be rage-inducing. I feel as though I don't do enough top five countdowns for the Friday Five, so I've decided to rank these moments according to the amount of frustration they caused me, and how unlucky they felt. Without any further ado, these are my top five unluckiest moments in basketball gaming.
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Re: The Friday Five: Ranking the MyCAREER Stories

Postby Andrew on Fri Oct 20, 2017 4:41 pm

October 20th: Ranking the MyCAREER Stories

Through the course of many previous articles and episodes of the NLSC Podcast, I believe that I've made my stance on MyCAREER stories very clear. For those of you who may be unfamiliar with my view on the matter, while I can appreciate the effort that goes into them, I'm not a fan of the concept. To me, it's felt more intrusive and annoying, rather than enhancing the experience. It's obviously not going anywhere, so hopefully the approach can be improved upon in future games. To get an idea of how Visual Concepts may achieve that, it's worth reflecting upon the approach they've taken to previous MyCAREER stories, and determining which has been the best.

We've had five MyCAREER stories in NBA 2K at this point, enough to rate and rank in a Friday Five countdown. In ranking the stories, I'm taking into account the overall quality of the narrative, the likeability of the characters (including the MyPLAYER protagonist), the impact on the gameplay experience, and how well the approach fits with the RPG elements of MyCAREER. As always, please keep in mind that this is just my take, and I certainly invite you to share your rankings in the comments section below. With that being said, let's tip off the countdown with number five.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Basketball Gaming Pet Peeves (I Can't Justify)

Postby Andrew on Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:27 pm

October 27th: 5 Basketball Gaming Pet Peeves (I Can't Justify)

When it comes to basketball gaming, we all have our major and minor complaints. Major complaints encompass issues that significantly affect our enjoyment of a game, and if it's an obvious design flaw, a lot of gamers are probably going to share the same view. Minor complaints, on the other hand, may not be as broad. They tend to be more a matter of personal preference, and there's likely to be more disagreement as to their importance. Beyond that, we have pet peeves, which tend to come across as being far pettier and nitpicky.

That is the nature of pet peeves, of course. They're things that are that non-issues or mild annoyances at worst to most other people, but for whatever reason, greatly bother us personally. To that end, you might suggest that most pet peeves are difficult to justify, even though they can certainly be based upon understandable and logical reasoning. However, the pet peeves that I'm discussing today are tough to justify beyond my own personal preference, and in some cases, I would have to admit that they're largely inconsequential. They do bug me all the same though, so without any further ado, here are five of my pettiest pet peeves in basketball gaming.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Basketball Gaming Pet Peeves (I Can't Justify)

Postby [Q] on Sat Oct 28, 2017 2:24 am

Oh man ordering by team name really irritates me. Obviously because of NBA live, I am very familiar with the alphabetical order of city names. Ordering by team name takes a bit more thought as the team name comes second to the city name.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Basketball Gaming Pet Peeves (I Can't Justify)

Postby Andrew on Sat Oct 28, 2017 2:33 am

Good to know I'm not the only one, then! That's a fair rationale, too.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Players Still Active in Games After Their Careers Ended

Postby Andrew on Fri Nov 03, 2017 8:13 pm

November 3rd: 5 Players Still Active in Games After Their Careers Ended

The rosters in basketball video games are, quite obviously, affected by events that occur in the real NBA. With strange and unfortunate twists of fate, as well as other unusual circumstances, video game rosters can quickly become outdated, or contain other oddities. I discussed the unusual situation with Michael Redd in NBA Live 2003 in last week's Wayback Wednesday, as it was a particularly rare curiosity. A more common phenomenon is the continued appearance of players in the active rosters of basketball games, a year or more after they've played their final game. That's what I'm taking a look at today.

Keep in mind that I'm not talking about players who have simply remained playable in video games after their retirement. With all the historical content in Ultimate Team and MyTEAM, as well as the extensive roster of retro teams in NBA 2K, there are obviously a lot of retired players who are still in the games. I'm also not counting appearances on the previous season's All-Star squads in the default rosters. This is a list of players who, for one reason or another, remained in the active rosters of video games after their careers came to an end in real life. These players facilitated a few "What If?" scenarios, and at times, made maintaining roster updates a little tricky.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Players Still Active in Games After Their Careers Ended

Postby [Q] on Sat Nov 04, 2017 7:28 am

It was a bit eerie to see Jason Collier's face after he had passed. Going back to older games it is a bit sad to see guys like lorenzen Wright who you know are no longer with us
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Players Still Active in Games After Their Careers Ended

Postby Andrew on Sat Nov 04, 2017 10:23 am

I know what you mean. It's kind of like going back and watching old WWE/WWF events. There are some Wrestlemania matches from the early 90s where most or all of the participants are now gone.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Players & Their Forgotten Final Seasons

Postby Andrew on Fri Nov 10, 2017 11:07 pm

November 10th: 5 Players & Their Forgotten Final Seasons

Not all NBA players get a big send-off, or season-long retirement tour. Even if they were big stars at one point, some players end up spending their latter part of their careers in relative obscurity. There are many causes of that phenomenon, from injuries and basketball-related reasons to unfortunate personal problems. Whatever the case may be, for some fallen stars, it's easy to forget the brief stints they had with certain teams towards the end of their careers. Indeed, it sometimes comes as a surprise when you look back and realise how long their careers lasted, or how recently they retired.

You'll often come to those realisations when you fire up old basketball video games. When I cover those older titles for features such as Wayback Wednesday, I'm not only reminded of the experiences I had with those games, but of what the league looked like at the time. Old games serve as a time capsule for seasons gone by, making them effective reminders of the often overlooked later seasons of many players' careers. For this week's Friday Five, I'm taking a look back at the forgotten final seasons of five players who were big names at one point, but became somewhat overlooked as their careers wound down.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Thoughts As Space Jam Turns 21

Postby Andrew on Fri Nov 17, 2017 9:04 pm

November 17th: 5 Thoughts As Space Jam Turns 21

Hey, everyone who grew up in the 90s! Want to feel old? A couple of days ago, it was twenty-one years since Space Jam was released in theatres. Yes, really! Time does indeed keep on slipping into the future. In retrospect, I should've covered Space Jam for this week's Wayback Wednesday, as it fell on the actual anniversary of the film's release, November 15th. However, I completely spaced on that (no pun intended), and I've also wanted to revisit NBA Jam Tournament Edition for a while, so I did end up overlooking an obvious opportunity. As such, I'm making up for that with a bit of additional retro content for this week's Friday Five.

Even if you weren't around in 1996, chances are that you've seen, or at least heard of, Space Jam. The plot basically has some fun with Michael Jordan's stint playing baseball, suggesting that he was inspired to return to the hardwood after helping Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Looney Tunes defeat a group of aliens who had stolen the talent of five NBA players: Charles Barkley, Muggsy Bogues, Larry Johnson, Patrick Ewing, and Shawn Bradley. It's popular and silly, often criticised, and also the highest grossing basketball movie of all-time. It even spawned a video game, which is also worth talking about. So, let's take a look back...way back...in five points.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Little Details Basketball Games Have Nailed

Postby Andrew on Fri Nov 24, 2017 10:09 pm

November 24th: 5 Little Details Basketball Games Have Nailed

It bears repeating that it's alright to criticise basketball games. As I've previously discussed, and will no doubt touch upon again in the future, it's something that gaming communities can easily forget. Any gaming community that censors and discourages criticism is doing a disservice to the games that they're interested in, and ultimately, themselves as consumers. Constructive criticism should always be encouraged over nastiness and abuse, but we must remember that it's OK to point out the things that we dislike, while also discussing the elements that we enjoy.

By the same token, of course, it's also fine to take a break from criticising the aspects of basketball games that we don't like, to marvel at the things we do enjoy about them. In that regard, it's quite often the little things that really make the experience. Basketball games have come a long way, and while improvements to graphics, AI, controls, and so forth are often more readily apparent, there are a lot of concepts and smaller details that are very impressive in their own right. They may be subtle, but often contribute that extra bit of authenticity to the overall experience. Here are five examples of little details that basketball games have really nailed in recent years.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Quietest Additions in Basketball Games

Postby Andrew on Fri Dec 01, 2017 3:25 pm

December 1st: 5 Quietest Additions in Basketball Games

Not all additions to basketball games receive a big announcement and a lot of fanfare, be they a brand new feature, or content pushed through during the season. As demonstrated just last week, new content in particular can be added very quietly. Of course, when it comes to the preview season, both EA Sports and Visual Concepts do tend to go to much greater lengths to inform us about new additions to NBA Live and NBA 2K. It stands to reason, as along with improvements to existing features, any exciting new additions are strong selling points that are likely to move units.

With that being said, even during the preview season, there are additions that seem to fly under the radar. There are a few reasons as to why this may happen. A long time ago, the preview season wasn't as comprehensive and in-depth as it is now. There's also oversight, and underestimation of a feature's appeal. Alternatively, something may be kept under wraps to keep it a surprise, though this runs the risk of wasting a good selling point. Some additions may be kept quiet to avoid potential controversy. Whatever the case may be, there have been several additions to basketball games that have had little to no hype or promotion. Let's look at five of them.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Most Useless Features in Basketball Games

Postby Andrew on Fri Dec 08, 2017 9:50 pm

December 8th: 5 Most Useless Features in Basketball Games

We've come to expect a significant amount of depth in basketball video games, not only in terms of the modes and gameplay, but also features and functionality. Be they big or small, glamorous or mundane, frequently used or just handy to have when we need them, there are numerous features and functions that go a long way in providing a well-rounded basketball gaming experience. And then, there are the features that aren't so useful. Of course, usefulness can be subjective. If you enjoy outfitting your player in different clothing, for example, you'll find that feature a lot more useful than someone who has no interest in that aspect of the career modes.

Taking a look at features of questionable usefulness, some are good ideas that just haven't been executed well, while others are pointless at best. Certain features have seen their usefulness decline over time, either due to neglect or redundancy. Whatever the case may be, sometimes you'll see a feature or function in a basketball video game, and wonder why the developers spent any time implementing it. Other times, you may wish that they spent a little more time on a feature, in order to make it more worthwhile. Without any further ado, here are five features that we've seen in basketball games - past and present - that I would rank among the most useless.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Most Useless Features in Basketball Games

Postby [Q] on Sat Dec 09, 2017 2:26 am

Your talk of promotional videos made me miss the halftime show videos, which I found particularly interesting as a teenager :lol:
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Most Useless Features in Basketball Games

Postby Andrew on Sat Dec 09, 2017 10:47 am

Covered that in Wayback Wednesday some time back. And of course, they are on our YouTube channel. ;)
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Players Who Abruptly Left the NBA

Postby Andrew on Fri Dec 15, 2017 8:06 pm

December 15th: 5 Players Who Abruptly Left the NBA

Not all NBA players receive a big send-off when they call it a career. Farewell tours are generally reserved for future Hall of Famers, and even then, that's something that only happens when a player makes a definitive declaration that the current season will be their last. Even when a player leaves the NBA without a big announcement or much fanfare, it isn't necessarily a surprise. If they're getting on in years and have already enjoyed a lengthy career, there's usually no mystery as to why they've decided to hang it up, and are no longer a fixture after being around for so many years.

And then, there are the players who appear to leave the NBA quite abruptly and without any kind of statement, even when they seem to have several seasons left in them. Some quietly go overseas to play, or officially retire a few years later, but whatever the case, they'll fail to latch on with a team and then that will be the last we'll ever see of them in the NBA. While that's inevitable given the limited amount of roster spots and the constant influx of new talent, we are left wondering what happened when prominent players seemingly just disappear. Here are five such players whose NBA careers came to a rather abrupt halt.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Players Who Abruptly Left the NBA

Postby [Q] on Sat Dec 16, 2017 4:51 am

What about Sprewell? He went from capable nba player to being lowballed by Glen Taylor and needing to feed his family
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Players Who Abruptly Left the NBA

Postby Andrew on Sat Dec 16, 2017 10:59 am

I guess Sprewell didn't really come to mind because his departure from the league is well-documented. I mean, Michael Jordan also left the league quite abruptly in 1993, but there wasn't too much of a mystery to it (persistent conspiracy theories aside). I was more going for players who just sort of abruptly disappeared, rather than those who left with a big announcement or a well-known reason.
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