NBA 2K

2019-20 NBA simulations don't bode well for Kyrie-less Celtics

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2019-20 NBA simulations don't bode well for Kyrie-less Celtics

The Boston Celtics rebounded well from Kyrie Irving's departure by swooping in to sign Kemba Walker as his replacement. It was enough to get C's fans excited for the season that lies ahead, but a couple of computer simulations for the 2019-20 campaign point toward a rude awakening.

Marc Stein of The New York Times documented two separate simulations -- one from the "NBA 2K20" video game and one from the Strat-O-Matic game -- which point to the C's having a wildly mediocre season with Walker taking Irving's place.

Stein writes:

With Kemba Walker in Kyrie’s place, alongside his fellow U.S.A. Basketball teammates Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown and Marcus Smart, Boston somehow finished 41-41 — and out of the playoffs — in both simulations.

Ouch. Not exactly what optimistic C's fans wanted to hear with the regular season only one month away, but these sims can safely be taken with a grain of salt. After all, the NBA 2K one had the New York Knicks finishing as the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Conference.

Other notes from the simulations include the Philadelphia 76ers and Milwaukee Bucks leading the East, LeBron James and Anthony Davis' Los Angeles Lakers winning the NBA championship, and the Houston Rockets' James Harden-Russell Westbrook experiment working out in their favor.

While these computer models may be able to accurately calculate a team's talent level, chemistry is a different story. There's no question there are much better vibes surrounding the Celtics entering the new season with Walker taking Irving's place. The question is whether the C's can overcome the absence of his talent, along with Al Horford's, to make another postseason run.

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Watch Kemba Walker, Jayson Tatum star in 'NBA 2K20' MyCareer trailer

Watch Kemba Walker, Jayson Tatum star in 'NBA 2K20' MyCareer trailer

Kemba Walker and Jayson Tatum have been busy traveling with Team USA for the FIBA World Cup, but it looks like they found time this summer to work on their acting chops.

Both Boston Celtics stars appeared and had lines in the new trailer for the upcoming "NBA 2K20" video game's MyCareer mode. For those out of touch with the video game world, MyCareer is a story mode that allows players to build their own characters and work their way up through the NBA ranks in what essentially is a half-movie, half-gameplay experience.

This year's edition, titled "When The Lights Are The Brightest," was produced by LeBron James and Maverick Carter and features popular names such as Idris Elba and Rosario Dawson.

Watch the trailer below:

Along with the MyCareer trailer, Walker and Tatum also made appearances in the game's "Next Is Now" gameplay trailer earlier this month. Walker boasts an 88 overall rating in the game while Tatum has a rating of 85 he's none too pleased with.

Fans will be able to get their hands on "NBA 2K20" and try the impressive-looking MyCareer mode out for themselves on Sept. 6.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

Kemba Walker rated 17th overall in NBA 2K20, trails 11th-ranked Kyrie Irving

Kemba Walker rated 17th overall in NBA 2K20, trails 11th-ranked Kyrie Irving

Kemba Walker is likely going to be compared to Kyrie Irving during his tenure with the Boston Celtics. Walker will be replacing the mercurial point guard who left the Celtics for greener pastures to team up with Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets in free agency this offseason. And while Boston fans may not exactly be sad to see Irving go, there's no denying that Irving is a talented player.

In fact, Irving is so talented that he almost cracked the top 10 in this year's "NBA 2K20" ratings. The popular video game recently released some of the ratings ahead of the game's launch, and Irving placed 11th overall in the league with a 91 overall rating.

Meanwhile, Walker isn't far behind Irving, as he ranks 17th in overall rating for the game's initial release. He is the Celtics' highest-rated player with a mark of 88 overall.

This isn't much of a surprise, as the league has seemingly viewed Irving as the superior player to Walker throughout their respective careers. And their stat lines from last year would seemingly indicate that as well.

In 2018-19, 23.8 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 6.9 assists last season while shooting 48.7 percent from the field and 40.1 percent from beyond the arc. Meanwhile, Walker scored more points per game (25.6) but had worse rebound (4.4) and assist (5.9) numbers and shot just 43.4 percent from the field and 35.6 percent from 3-point range. So, that's likely why Irving was given a slight advantage in the video game.

Of course, NBA 2K ratings don't take chemistry into account with their overall player ratings, and that seems to be an area that most would give Walker the advantage in. And playing with a better supporting cast could also improve Walker's numbers and demonstrate that he is truly on par with Irving as a player.

But either way, Celtics fans won't care much about which player has the higher 2K rating, especially if Walker can help iron out some of the issues that percolated last season in the Celtics' locker room.

Walker will be holding his introductory Celtics press conference this Wednesday, July 17 at 1:00 p.m. ET. The press conference can be seen on NBC Sports Boston or streamed via the MyTeams App.

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