The days of the NBA brawl are long gone. Blame the Malice at the Palace or the fact that every NBA player is too worried about bloodying their manicures and $12,000 short suits, but we will never again see Stan Van clinging to Zo's leg like a tree trunk in a hurricane or Rudy Tomjanovich getting hit by the scoreboard known as Kermit Washington. But don't fret, hockey fans and anger management dropouts, there is still some grit left in the world of basketball...or should we say virtual basketball.
On Wednesday night, while the actual NBA was wrapping its regular season, the NBA 2K League's Hawks Talon GC faced off against Celtics Crossover Gaming in a heated 68-58 win for the Hawks. After the game, the teams lined up to shake hands—apparently something they do in e-sports—and then the unthinkable happened: A real fight broke out at a fake sports event. Shoot this video right into our veins, please.
It all began when a Celtics Crossover players went in for the ol' shoulder bump instead of the handshake, which quickly devolved into a shoving match between a bunch of dudes who have only ever thrown a punch in Tekken. Unsure what to do with this startling new development, the producers immediately cue the walk-off music, cutting away to a graphic of, um, all the participating NBA 2K League teams. Why they thought we'd rather stare at that than watch a bunch of asthmatics hopped up on Code Red pound on each other, we'll never know, but needless to say, it was a big miss.
In the meantime, it will be interesting to see how NBA 2K HQ handles this unprecedented moment in sports history. Obviously, a little tension can be a lot of fun, but it's also a slippery slope. Allow fighting in 2K League, and next thing you know, Overwatch players will be blowing each other away with laser pistols in the locker room after matches, and lord knows we don't need another Gilbert Arenas on our hands.