When NBA 2K11 hits stores on October 5th, the greatest player to ever pick up a basketball, Michael "Air" Jordan, will be the cover athlete. Jordan hasn't appeared in a video game since 2004 and the confirmation of his presence has created quite the stir in the sports gaming community. It is a major coup for 2K Sports as it aims to hold on to its edge over EA Sports' NBA Li...I mean NBA Elite.
Jordan played his last game more than seven years ago but his legacy casts a large shadow. Michael Jordan, currently owner of the Charlotte Bobcats, is excited about returning to the virtual sports landscape:
“It’s an honor to be featured on the cover of NBA 2K11,”... “I have no doubt that NBA 2K11 will be a big hit with gamers and basketball fans alike. I’m looking forward to getting back out on the court, virtually.”
Since his licensing agreement with the league wasn't a part of the group agreement that included all the other players, his appearance in video games wasn't guaranteed. Jason Argent, vice president of marketing for 2K Sports, promised that 2K11 would be the best-selling game in the company's history, thanks to Jordan's involvement:
“We’ve made a lot of progress over the past 10 years, but we know we have the best NBA video game ever made here.
So we thought to ourselves how can we embody that and there was only one person on that list who we wanted to have and that was Michael Jordan. Actually getting this done is the most ridiculous win of all-time.”
NBA 2K11 vs. NBA Elite 11. I was going with 2k before this announcement, like I have for the past 5 years. With Jordan on board, 2K Sports is primed to produce the highest rated and best selling basketball game on the market this fall.
Which will you be purchasing? How does the announcement of Jordan's involvement affect your decision?
NBA 2K11 is scheduled for release in the fourth quarter of 2010, for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii and PC.