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NBA 2K21 Beginner Defensive Tips

Every year NBA 2K drops, the ultimate goal of every player is to not get blown out and I’m here to help you with that. While offense may be flashy, we’re going to focus on the defensive side of the ball. So here’s our Top 5 Defensive Tips you must know to succeed on defense in NBA 2K21.

1.  Contest Everything

The goal is to put the ball in the basket.  So on defense, you want to make that as hard as possible for your opponent. Every shot they take, you want to be as close as you can. This means having discipline and not trying to fly around the court jumping at every little hint of a shot you see.  Otherwise, you will quickly notice a lot of your guys end up in foul trouble.

Instead of trying to go for blocks every time up the court, you want to start thinking about contesting shots. You can do this by holding the right stick up, putting your player into “hands-up defense”.  Alternately, you can flick the right stick up when your opponent is further away and just about to shoot. Adopting this type of approach will see the most direct positive results in the paint area, as you’re jumping less, but making the paint a less desirable place to attack.

 2. Quickly Switch To Last Defender

You might think the computer controlling your big man should have everything covered protecting the rim.  But constantly relying on this will have your big rack up fouls in a hurry. I can’t stress enough how important it is to switch to your last line of defense before your opponent goes for a shot, otherwise, they are highly likely to foul.  You can switch defenders by pressing X (PS4) or A(XB1) on your controller.  You can even press R1/L1(PS4) or RB/LB(XB1) which is a button combination dedicated to switching to the closest guy to the rim.

3. Prevent Offensive Rebounds

Getting dominated on the offensive boards is one of the most annoying ways to get beat in 2K. Failure to control the glass often results in games lost. Defense doesn’t stop once you force somebody into a 45% covered shot.  You still have to pull down the board to end the possession.

One of the easiest ways to be terrible at rebounds is attempting to block shots when you are nowhere near the shooter. Only two things can happen when you’re jumping around away from the shot, and both are bad.  Either they make it, or they miss and their guy is in position to rebound because you’re recovering from the jump.

If you have a big who struggles on the boards don’t be shy to throw more guys down low to secure the rebound by hitting right on your d-pad, tapping your left trigger once, and opting to crash the glass. Now, whenever you force a miss, your Fastbreak attack may suffer, but you’re bringing more guys into the paint to actually end the possession.

4. Defensive Communication

Turning on your defensive communication setting is an afterthought to many 2K gamers.  But there is a lot of value in turning this feature on for “Defense Only”. You can change this setting by going to Game plan>Coach Settings>Team Communication. It will be off by default, but you can switch it to your desired setting.

When defensive communication is on, a little indicator will appear above your head assisting you in many things on the defensive side of the ball. From improving your communication with your computer teammates on fast breaks to giving you a heads up when screens are coming.

5. Manual Switch Mechanic

Aided by having defensive communications on is utilizing the Manual Switch Mechanic. Introduced last year, 2K has given you the ability to manually switch assignments on defense. On fast break, you can coordinate with your computer defenders to create a better path for defending long passes by switching assignments. Or if you are beat on defense or have a mismatch, holding A(XB1) and X(PS4) tells your nearest defender to switch with you to limit the damage.

Oh, and one last defensive tip that I swear isn’t cheating at all ?


One of the best big men of the ’90s, David Robinson, wore #50.  Trae Young scored 50 against the Miami Heat when Giannis couldn’t.  LeBron James has looked 50 since he was 18. And what do you know? You can receive a 50 Game Skill Boost to your MyPlayers steal and block categories in NBA 2K21!

All you have to do is buy participating Mobil 1 oil products from Walmart, including eligible items in-store or on their website.  You can text “BLOCK” to 73876 for more info and what the eligible items are) and even from a Mobil 1 motor oil change at a Walmart auto care center.

You will receive the locker code at the time of purchase, enter it in your MyCareer menu, and you’re good to go! Offer expires December 31st of this year, so if you have a car and play 2K why not? Once purchased, the code expires January 31st, 2021.  So mark it on your calendar and head on over today to a Walmart location to receive your 50 game block and steal MyPlayer boost and I’ll see you in 2K Beach!


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