Milwaukee Bucks: Reactions to the NBA 2K22 ratings for leading trio

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JULY 01: (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JULY 01: (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) /

It’s becoming that time of year again in the NBA community, where 2K begins to release the player ratings ahead of their release date on September 10th. There’s always much debate to be had surrounding the player ratings, and they started off things controversially with the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks‘ trio of Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, and Jrue Holiday.

Antetokounmpo, deservedly so, has the highest rating at 96, followed by Middleton at 88, and Holiday rounding it out with an 85 rating. Although the order of highest to lowest rating should come as no surprise, it’s a bit surprising as to what the actual ratings are.

Reactions to the Milwaukee Bucks’ 2K22 ratings for leading trio

Let’s start with a positive. It’s fantastic that Middleton got to an 88 rating. It shows that people are beginning to realize just how good Middleton is, something Bucks fans have known for quite some time. His final rating in 2K21 was an 85, so getting a three overall point bump is awesome to see as a fan.

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I’m definitely a bit surprised that Middleton got that three-point boost, considering he started off last season with an 86 overall rating and generally stayed around that range all year. Starting at 88 means that with a solid season — and reaching some pretty reasonable goals — he could even crack the 90 overall mark.

He’s now also only two points below Jayson Tatum and just one point below Zion Williamson, both solid players that are All NBA caliber, so it’s definitely right around where Middleton should be.

Moving now to Antetokounmpo, who, for some reason, lost an overall point from his starting rating in 2K21. Yes, the Finals MVP started out last season at a 97 overall, finished the year at 96 overall, and will begin this year at a lower starting point than last season.

I understand that things change with the game year-over-year, but it’s a bit confusing that after the championship run that Antetokounmpo had, he loses an overall point and stays the same as he ended 2K21.

The whole narrative around Antetokounmpo was that he couldn’t win in the playoffs, and his game wouldn’t translate to winning in the postseason. Then he has one of the best playoff runs of all time and doesn’t see a boost in his rating? The one redeeming thing is that he’s tied with Kevin Durant and Steph Curry while being one overall point above Nikola Jokic (who lost an overall point from when he ended 2K21), so there’s no one above him yet. LeBron James did not tweet that Giannis should be a 99 like he did for Durant and for Curry, though, so I guess that means he thinks Giannis isn’t as good as them! (I am 100% joking, please don’t take this seriously.)

Finally, we have an 85 overall rating for Holiday. I know it’s only a video game rating, but 85 is definitely low to me. I would have predicted Holiday to be at 87 after the season and playoff run he had, but 2K obviously disagreed.

I understand that defensive stats aren’t weighted as high for players in the game, and Holiday struggled offensively at times in the playoffs, but this is also the guy who averaged 22 points and 10 assists on 37 percent shooting from deep in the Conference Finals. The Bucks don’t win that series without Holiday’s offense.

He also had career-highs in field goal percentage (50.3 percent), 3 point percentage (39.2 percent, 4.8 attempts per game), effective field goal percentage (57.0 percent), and true shooting percentage (59.2 percent) in the regular season. I’m not sure how that constitutes losing an overall point from his final 2K21 rating, but here we are.

It will be interesting to see which players are around Holiday’s rating when the full ratings are released. So far, LaMelo Ball is one point lower than Holiday, which also seems low for the reigning Rookie of the Year, but at least Holiday is ahead.

Next. Milwaukee Bucks Starting 5: Locks, fringe, and break-ins for 2021-22. dark

These ratings are not final, of course, and we could absolutely see the trio move those ratings up as they rank among the best in the league. Holiday went up by as much as four overall points last year. Hopefully we see that kind of bump again.