The NBA 2K20 tournament that the NBA is organizing won’t be available for betting in Indiana.
That news may be disappointing for some since Indiana’s sportsbooks don’t have a lot of options right now for bettors in the wake of COVID-19 closures.
Even though Hoosiers can’t bet on the event, it’s still some extra entertainment while Indiana is still hunkered down.
All of the tournament’s participants are NBA players.
Guys like Kevin Durant, Trae Young, Devin Booker, and Donovan Mitchell are headlining the group. Indiana Pacers big man Domantas Sabonis will also be joining in.
The tournament will start on April 3, and run over the course of 10 days. ESPN is broadcasting the entire event.
Why can’t you bet on the NBA2K20 tournament?
Not being able to bet on video games doesn’t just apply to NBA 2K tournaments. Hoosiers can’t bet on any esports, regardless of the what game it is or when the event is taking place.
That’s because Indiana’s sports gambling laws specifically forbid it. Sportsbooks can’t take any action related to esports.
In the case of this tournament, it is likely no US sportsbooks will take bets on the action. It basically comes down to a lack of oversight.
Some competitions centered around games like League of Legends have specific rules dedicated to gambling for their league. There are officials and a regulatory body in place monitoring the integrity of the matches. Since this tournament is purely for entertainment, those measurements are not in place and regulated sportsbooks in the US will stay away.
There’s no doubting the popularity of esports. Competitive gaming continues to attract new fans all around the world. Many other states like Nevada are okaying esports gambling right now, but Indiana remains on the outside looking in.
Format for the NBA 2K players tournament
Even though you can’t bet on the tournament in Indiana, NBA fans can still enjoy a brand new type of event featuring some of their favorite players.
The seeding for the tournament is based on the players’ individual ratings in the game.
- Kevin Durant: 96
- Trae Young: 90
- Hassan Whiteside: 87
- Donovan Mitchell: 87
- Devin Booker: 86
- Andre Drummond: 85
- Zach LaVine: 85
- Montrezl Harrell: 85
- Domantas Sabonis: 85
- Deandre Ayton: 85
- DeMarcus Cousins: 81
- Michael Porter Jr.: 81
- Rui Hachimura: 79
- Patrick Beverley: 78
- Harrison Barnes: 78
- Derrick Jones Jr.: 78
Since the seeding is based on those ratings, Kevin Durant will face Derrick Jones Jr. in the first game of the tournament.
However, some of these players have the same rating in the game.
To sort that out, the seeding is also based on the tenure of the players. For example, Patrick Beverly has been in the NBA longer than Derrick Jones Jr. has, so he gets the higher seed in this case.
Each player will pick eight different teams to play with throughout the tournament, however, they can only use each team once.
The first two rounds will be single-elimination, with the finals and the semifinals being played as a best of three games series.
Prize for winning the tournament and how to watch
The winner of the event will select a charity of their choice to receive a $100,000 donation. The NBA, the National Basketball Players Association, and 2K are all putting up the money.
The entire idea for the tournament stems from the NBA’s desire to stay connected with its fans throughout the world.
There’s no way to know yet if the 2019-2020 NBA season will end up being finished down the line. Since things are in limbo, for now, the league sees an event like this as a way to keep fans engaged.
Jason Argent, the senior vice president of 2K, released a statement about the new partnership between the company and the NBA.
“We’re thrilled to partner with the NBA and NBPA to bring basketball back to fans throughout the world and help those in need during these uncertain times. Entertainment, especially sports, has the ability to bring communities together, including athletes, fans and families, and we hope that everyone will enjoy the tournament.”
In addition to the ESPN broadcasts, the event will also be livestreamed on Twitter, Twitch, Facebook, YouTube, and the NBA website.