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How to Become a Better Playmaker in NBA 2K21

Playmaking is an important skill for any guard in NBA 2K21, as it can separate you from the mediocre guards and set your team up for easy wins. In this article we break down the best tips to not only set your teammates up for success, but yourself, too.

  • Max out your Ball Handle and Pass Accuracy: These are the most important stats for becoming a top-tier playmaker, and maxing these out will give you the necessary badge points as well.
  • Equip the right badges: Here’s out list of best playmaking badges. Quick First Step, Handles for Days, and Unpluckable are necessities, but there are a few others that will help you dribble and pass better.
  • Equip the right dribble animations: Here’s out list of the best dribble moves. Quick is the best dribble style, Pro 8 is the best crossover, Pro 3 is the best BTB, and Pro 2 is the best Size-up Escape.
  • Learn how to dribble: Learning how to use the dribble moves, chaining moves, and when to use certain moves is necessary for breaking down defenders. This video breaks it down best , but you’ll only get better at this by practicing these moves in the MyCourt.
  • Notice Passing Lanes: Passing lanes are important on defense and offense. On offense, you want to avoid throwing in crowded passing lanes, so you’ll need to learn them from experience. The Needle Threader badge will also help you make tough passes.
  • Focus on getting your teammates involved: It’s easy to get tunnel vision as the primary ball handler, so you want to place special emphasis on looking for open teammates and making timely passes.

Ultimately, playmaking involves a lot of quick decisions, something that only comes from a lot of practice and playing experience. However, the above tips helped me and others become better primary ball handlers, and we know they will help you as well.

How to Become a Better Slasher in NBA 2K21

Becoming a top-tier slasher is a unique skill in NBA 2K21 when the majority of player simply run at the rim and hold the square button. In this article we will teach you to become a top-tier slasher who can finish almost everything at the rim.

  • Max out your slashing stats: Driving layup and driving dunk are a must, with close shot being up there as well. You don’t necessarily need to be a finishing build to be a good slasher, but it certainly helps beef up those stats to get contact dunks and the such.
  • Equip the right finishing badges: Here are the best finishing badges in NBA 2K21. Contact Finisher and Slithery Finisher are musts, and Giatn Slayer is a must have for smaller guards.
  • Use the Stick to Slash: By using aiming for finishing, you allow yourself to make some crazy layups. The Pro Touch badge is necessary for this, but using aiming provides almost limitless benefits over using timing.
  • Utilize Slithery Finisher: This necessary finishing badge can be activated on contested layups by simply aiming your stick diagonal-up towards the baseline and swinging it to the center area. This mechanism works 3/4 of the time and helps you get some crazy animations and finishes.
  • Be patient: Simple rim-running gets you contact dunks every once-in-a-while, but patient slashing is better. This method involves pump fakes, taking layups instead of forcing dunks, and passing when you don’t have a good shot.

If you follow these tips when playing any game mode, your percentage at the rim will greatly increase. I was able to use this tips to finish ridiculous layups and dunks at the hoop with only 1 finishing badge, so you can imagine how it will be when your player has many more.

How to Play Better Defense in NBA 2K21

Playing good defense is a very important part of being a good NBA 2K21 player, but the learning curve can be pretty steep for a new player. Here are the best tips we’ve found for playing better defense in NBA 2K21.

  • Beef up your defensive stats: If you’re a guard or wing, max out the perimeter defense, lateral quickness, and steal. If you’re a big, max out rebounding, interior defense, block, and lateral quickness.
  • Pick the right badges: Here’s out list of best defensive badges for guards and big men. Picking the right badges is instrumental for playing better defense, as they are meant to help your manual defensive inputs.
  • Learn the passing lanes: The passing lanes are simply where your opponent passes the ball. When playing off-ball defense, you want to close off the areas where your opponent may pass the ball so you can get easy steals. This is only learned by playing the game.
  • On-ball defense: The key to on-ball defense is predicting your opponents’ moves. You won’t always guess correctly, but over time you’ll get better, start getting bumpy on the ball handler, and get the stops you need on the defensive end.
  • Rebounding for Big Men: You’ll need the Rebound Chaser and Box badge, and the most important tips to rebounding are to box out your opponent, guess where the ball will land, and correctly time your jump for the board.

Start Here

Welcome to NBA 2K HQ, your headquarters for NBA 2K21 News and Information. Here are the best resources on this site to get started and improve your play on NBA 2K21:

What Player should I create?

What badges should I equip?

What animations should I equip?

What are the best ways to get better at the game?

The Best Small Forwards in NBA 2K21 MyTeam

Small Forwards play a pivotal role in every game on both ends of the floor, making it necessary to have a good one on your squad. Here are the top 5 SFs in NBA 2K21 MyTeam right now:

  1. Dark Matter Carmelo Anthony (Best Offensive, Next Gen)
  2. Dark Matter Jayson Tatum (Best Offensive, Current Gen)
  3. Pink Diamond Terry Dischinger
  4. Galaxy Opal Andrei Kirilenko (Best Defensive)
  5. Galaxy Opal Paul George
  6. Galaxy Opal Rudy Gay
  7. Galaxy Opal Paul Pierce
  8. Galaxy Opal Lebron James
  9. Galaxy Opal Kevin Durant (97 Overall)
  10. Galaxy Opal Andre Igoudala
  11. Pink Diamond Richard Dumas

Best Budget Small Forwards:

  1. Diamond Justice Winslow
  2. Pink Diamond Andrew Wiggins
  3. Diamond Glen Rice
  4. Ruby Bryon Russell
  5. Ruby Johnathan Isaac

Rise Up

Rise Up is a new badge for NBA 2K21 and increases the likelihood of dunking the ball when standing in the painted area. It replaces Pick & Roller from current generation 2K21.

To unlock Rise Up on gold, you’ll need at least a 69 standing dunk. For Hall of Fame, you’ll need at least an 89 standing dunk.

Recommendation: Rise Up is a top-five finishing badge and will help you dunk the ball more. We recommend it for most builds who finish in the paint a decent amount.


Posterizer is a new badge for NBA 2K21 Next Gen and increases the chances of throwing down a dunk on your defender. It replaces Showtime from 2K21 current generation.

To unlock Posterizer on gold, you’ll need at least a 72 driving dunk or standing dunk. For Hall of Fame, you’ll need at least a 92 Driving Dunk or Standing Dunk.

Recommendation: Posterizer is a must-have badge for players that can dunk. It is a top-three finishing badge on Next Gen and helps you get a great number of contact dunks.

Hook Specialist

Hook Specialist is the name-changed replacement for Deep Hooks from NBA 2K21 current generation to next gen. This badge gives a boost to post hooks from any distance.

To unlock Hook Specialist on Gold, you’ll need at least a 63 Close Shot. For Hall of Fame, you’ll need at least an 81 Close Shot.

Recommendation: This badge is only good for Post Scorers, who should put it on Hall of Fame with no hesitation.

Highlight Film

Highlight Film is a new badge for NBA 2K21 Next Gen and gives a Takeover boost to all your teammates’ takeover progress on fastbreak or stylish dunks performed by your player. It replaces Fastbreak Finisher from NBA 2K21 current generation.

To unlock Highlight Film for next-gen, you’ll need at least a 63 Driving Dunk for Gold and at least 81 driving dunk for Hall of Fame.

Recommendation: With Showtime not in next gen 2K21, this badge is the next best way to boost your teammates’ Takeover. However, the boost is not big enough for us to recommend it for your slashing build.

Heat Seeker

Heat Seeker is a new badge for NBA 2K21 Next Gen and gives a Takeover meter boost for shots taken around the painted area, including dunks and layups. It replaces Cross Key Scorer from current generation 2K21.

To unlock Heat Seeker on your player, you must have a 51 Driving Layup or Close Shot for the badge on gold and an 83 close shot or driving layup for the badge on HOF.

Recommendation: Heat Seeker is a must-have badge for any players that score in the paint at all, as it provides awesome Takeover boosts that help you dominate games even more.