The battle between player image rights and sports video games is not a new thing that happens for the first time with NBA 2K21. It is something that happened since the very beginnings of the industry because there is a lot of money, recognition and interests involved.
In fact, this is an aspect that has become more flexible and has been much better addressed in recent years, since in the 90s and 2000s there were still many sports video games that had to put placeholder names on some players or teams because developers didn’t have their image rights, something that greatly lowered the dose of realism in those titles.
The famous “Jon Dowd” who took the place of Barry Bonds in the games of the extinct MVP Baseball franchise or PiemonteCalcio instead of Juventus in FIFA 21, are just some of the cases in which the image rights have not allowed the appearance of any player or team in a video game.
Charles Barkley, retired NBA superstar who has decided not to appear in any video game after his official retirement, stated about this explaining the reasons why he has made this decision that prohibited fans to relive his glory days in their consoles or PC.
Charles Barkley supports less popular players.
Barkley explained that his decision has to do with his desire to help players who were not as popular as him in order to help them to earn more money for their image rights, since previously in the NBA his salary was very high compared to others players who were not as well-known as him.
In fact, the former Houston Rockets player claims that the salary gap that existed between star players and the other players in the league was even larger than it is today, so he wants to make sure those players can now win the money that they could not earn during their years of activity.
The superstar clarified that 2K Sports calls him year after year to ask if he has changed his mind and wants to appear in the next video game of the franchise, flatly refusing in all the opportunities they tried to convince him.
Barkley concluded by saying that the only way he can appear in an NBA 2K game is if the developers decide to pay all retired players who appear in the game one million dollars for their image rights.
Obviously, with the condition that Barkley demands, it is quite difficult that one day we can see him in NBA 2K21, so it doesn’t matter if you want to buy MyTEAM Coins or if you have millions of these coins, you can’t add this great basketball former star to your team.
NBA 2K21 is now available on PS4, Xbox One, PC and Nintendo Switch, and so are the cheap NBA 2K21 MT coins on MTStacks. The NBA 2K21 release date for next-gen consoles PS5, Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X hasn’t been confirmed yet.