The NBA 2K League has announced that an affiliate of the Michael Jordan-owned Charlotte Hornets will be the 22nd team in the league, joining it for its third season in 2020.
“We are excited to welcome Charlotte to the NBA 2K League as the first expansion team for our third season,” said Brendan Donohue, NBA 2K League Managing Director in the announcement.
“Hornets Sports & Entertainment is thrilled to bring the next professional sports league franchise to Charlotte,” said Hornets President & Vice Chairman Fred Whitfield in a statement.
Whitfield added that it would provide them with another opportunity to extend its branding and reach a “highly-coveted” and “hard to reach younger demographic of fans”.
The Charlotte Hornets will be joining the 21 NBA franchises currently competing in the NBA 2K League — of which 17 were onboard for the league’s inaugural season. The Atlanta Hawks, Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Lakers, and Minnesota Timberwolves later joined for the 2019 season and established their respective affiliates: Hawks Talon GC, Nets GC, Lakers Gaming, and T-Wolves Gaming.
The Chicago Bulls, Denver Nuggets, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, New Orleans Pelicans, Oklahoma City Thunder, San Antonio Spurs, and the Phoenix Suns are the remaining NBA franchises that have yet to join the NBA 2K League.
“With North Carolina’s rich basketball history and the Hornets organization’s commitment to innovation and fan engagement, we know they will be a great addition to the NBA 2K League family,” said Donohue.
The second season of the NBA 2K League began yesterday with The Tipoff preseason tournament and will conclude on August 3 with the 2019 NBA 2K League Finals. The 18-week season is comprised of weekly matchups and three in-season tournaments that will culminate with the NBA 2K League Playoffs and Finals. Knicks Gaming became the league’s first-ever champions after they bested Heat Check Gaming in last season’s Finals.
All regular-season games for the 2019 season will be held at the NBA 2K League Studio in Long Island City, New York, and will be livestreamed on the league’s Twitch channel.