Type, Zae Frontcourt Shows Out Against NBA 2K League’s Top Team

Hornets Venom GT suffered its first loss of the NBA 2K League season on Thursday, May 14, falling 2-1 at home to an undefeated veteran Raptors Uprising GC squad.

Trailing by a manageable 39-32 margin at halftime of Game 1, Raptors Uprising rolled off a 12-0 run in the third, outscored the hosts 22-10 in the frame, and cruised to an 83-65 win. Forward Zaeya ‘Zae’ Ishak notched 21 points, guard Justin ‘Snubby’ Stemerman added 19 points and center Xavier ‘Type’ Vescovi stuffed the statsheet again with 12 points, 14 rebounds, nine assists, four steals and three blocks.

Raptors Uprising guard Kenneth ‘Kenny Got Work’ Hailey – the reigning NBA 2K League Player of the Week – erupted for 32 points on 13-of-16 shooting in Game 1, with center Jerry ‘Sick One’ Knapp (24 points and 14 rebounds) and forward Maurice ‘ReeceMode’ Flowers (12) also scoring in double figures. Guard Eric ‘Timelycook’ Donald swiped 10 steals, which is now the second-highest single-game total in league history.

Hornets Venom GT got off to a much better start in Game 2, building up a 19-point lead by the three-minute mark of the third. Raptors Uprising grabbed some momentum by hitting consecutive threes to close out the frame and rallied to get within five with 15 seconds left. A Timelycook triple followed by a turnover on the Venom inbounds led to an easy layup for Kenny Got Work and a tie game.

On the ensuing possession, Raptors Uprising double-teamed Zae on the other end of the court just inside the right break with seconds winding down. He quickly found fellow rookie Alex ‘Expose’ Whelan, who fired off a three-pointer from the top of the arc that found its way through the basket right as the final horn sounded, leading to a dramatic 70-67 victory.

Zae (24 points; 4-of-7 from three), Type (18 points) and Snubby (17) lead Hornets Venom GT in Game 2 scoring, with the dominant big man also adding 18 points, six assists, four steals and four blocks. Kenny Got Work (24 points), Sick One (19) and Timelycook (18) scored in double figures for Raptors Uprising GC, which lost just its second individual game of the campaign.

Despite Expose’s late-game heroics in the second contest, Raptors Uprising was on a mission in Game 3, racing out to 51-29 lead at the break after Kenny Got Work connected on 7-of-11 threes in route to 33 first-half points. Hornets Venom GT stuck around until the end before ultimately falling 85-68 in the rubber match.

Type had another big performance to close out the series, finishing with 24 points, 16 rebounds, five assists, three steals and two blocks, while Expose and Snubby added 19 and 14 points, respectively. Kenny Got Work ended up with 39 points and nine assists, Sick One had 18 points and ReeceMode chipped in 15 points to help move Raptors Uprising to 4-0 on the year.

Over the course of the three games, Hornets Venom GT shot 51.5 percent from the field, which included a 13-of-26 mark from three-point range (50.0 percent). The long-distance shooting was ultimately the deciding factor in the series as Raptors Uprising GC finished the best-of-three showdown having connected on 34-of-53 attempts from deep (64.2 percent).

Hornets Venom GT will return to the court on Wednesday, May 20 with a road game against Mavs Gaming starting at 7 PM EST. Catch the action on Twitch.TV/NBA2KLeague, YouTube Gaming or ESPN.com.

by Sam Perley