76ers

76ers Gaming Club announces team name, logo for NBA 2K League

76ers Gaming Club announces team name, logo for NBA 2K League

The 76ers Gaming Club is Philadelphia’s latest professional esports brand. 

Set to compete in the inaugural season of the NBA 2K League, the fresh new esports brand —  which was officially released on Thursday by Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment — maintains the Sixers' classic style, which includes seven stars circling around a bell made up of the numbers seven and six. 

“We are excited to unveil 76ers GC’s new brand identity as we welcome another dynamic sports property to the Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment family,” said Chris Heck, Philadelphia 76ers President of Business Operations. “Working alongside the NBA 2K League, we developed a brand identity that pays homage to the revolutionary origins of this city, speaks to the new Philadelphia fan and exemplifies the edge of the esports audience.”

Aggressive in its pursuit of esports investment opportunities, HBSE, already owners of Team Dignitas, a highly respected competitive esports club, bought into NBA 2K League with 16 other NBA franchises back in May. 

76ers GC joins Kings Guard Gaming (Sacramento Kings), Pistons GT (Detroit Pistons), Pacers Gaming (Indiana Pacers), Mavs Gaming (Dallas Mavericks), Cavs Legion GC (Cleveland Cavaliers), Wizards District Gaming (Washington Wizards), Magic Gaming (Orlando Magic), Jazz Gaming (Utah Jazz), Blazer5 Gaming (Portland Trailblazers) and Celtics Gaming (Boston Celtics). Also included will be the Toronto Raptors, Memphis Grizzlies, Golden State Warriors, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks and New York Knicks.

While 76ers GC was born to participate in NBA 2K League, it should be noted that the name “76ers Gaming Club” is void of any mention or image of basketball or NBA 2K. This leaves open the possibility of 76ers GC adding more competitive games and gamers under its brand in the future.

NBA 2K League is a professional esports league co-founded by the NBA and Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc., the creator of North America’s most popular sports title, NBA 2K. Players will receive a competitive salary and benefits. The league will begin its inaugural season, featuring five-on-five competition in May, following official player tryouts and a live player draft set for March. 

Sixers Talk podcast: Ben Simmons hit a 3 ... now what?

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Sixers Talk podcast: Ben Simmons hit a 3 ... now what?

Danny Pommells and Paul Hudrick discuss Brett Brown's rotation, Marcus Morris getting into it with Joel Embiid, and Ben Simmons making his first career three.

• He did it. He actually did it. Ben Simmons banged a corner three. What now?

• James Ennis and Mike Scott stepped up while Furkan Korkmaz had a night to forget.

• Marcus Morris wants to fight everybody.

• Why is Al Horford struggling so much?

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Brett Brown is teaching 'wild' rookie Matisse Thybulle ... and also learning from him

Brett Brown is teaching 'wild' rookie Matisse Thybulle ... and also learning from him

CAMDEN, N.J. — Ben Simmons talked about wildlife in Australia. Dario Saric discussed the history of conflict between Serbia and Croatia. JJ Redick asked whether we’re all living in a simulation.

The topic for Matisse Thybulle's presentation at the Sixers’ team breakfast Thursday morning shouldn't be surprising for those who know him — photography. 

As Brett Brown began answering a question about Thybulle, he strayed down a familiar, colorful path. He called Thybulle a “stallion that’s wild,” emphasized the need to “polish him up” and said the 22-year-old is “easy to coach.”

Then, over the heads of reporters, he noticed a figure sipping a smoothie.

And he’s over there right now,” Brown said, lighting up. “Can I go off script for a second? We have, and I’ve been doing this for six years, we have team breakfasts. People choose topics and get up and present something. … Today we had Matisse Thybulle do photography and he just blew us out of the water with his interest and his skill, and talking about lenses and cameras. And so I see him over there and I’m giving to give you a long fist bump. Well done. Now I’m going to call you reckless, OK?

Brown went on with his response, praising Thybulle’s character, defensive skills and gradual improvement. Once he’d fulfilled his media obligations and stepped through the scrum, he shared a few more words and a laugh or two with him.

Thybulle is indeed more knowledgeable and skilled a photographer than the average NBA player, as one can see through his secondary Instagram account, @mt4photography.

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Above the rim

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Sunsets have kinda been my thing lately

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Learning a thing or two from the great @erickhercules

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He’s a unique person, and he finds himself in a unique situation with Brown and the Sixers. 

Thybulle had 16 steals in his first five NBA games, but his playing time has been uneven since then. He’s still determining how to balance his gifts for defensive aggression and anticipation with avoiding the kind of mistakes Brown won’t tolerate. Thybulle does have 15 points on 5 for 10 shooting (2 for 2 from three-point range) over the Sixers’ last two games, which could help his cause.

Though Brown embraces what he’s referred to as Thybulle’s “kamikaze spirit,” he said Thursday that his priority is integrating new veteran players like Al Horford and Josh Richardson. He does, however, envision Thybulle contributing in the postseason.

What I always remind myself of is you have to start with the end in mind,” he said. “If the end in mind is the playoffs, I think he can be a playing player in the playoffs. And so there has to be some ecosystem that’s fair. As you’re trying to grow and space and teach and coach new veterans, and then you’ve got a rookie coming in that’s trying to figure out where do I put my thumbprint on this, my tolerance in that environment is less for him. And for the others, it's greater.

"Defensively, that’s where he’s gotta make his statement. Offensively, we hope he can make some shots and finish better at the rim and come to jump stops where he’s not airborne without a plan, and I think he’s getting better. But my priority is to help clean up the world for those veteran players.

Still, Brown clearly likes what he has in his creative, gambling rookie.

“Like I’ve said from Day 1, I’d rather have something that you can polish up instead of wind up,” he said Wednesday. “Nobody questions his energy.”

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More on the Sixers