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Handlez cap perfect group stage in NBA 2K League’s Slam Open

Nov 10, 2018; Syracuse, NY, USA; General view of the 2K Empire Classic logo prior to the game between the Morehead State Eagles and the Syracuse Orange at the Carrier Dome. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Team Handlez completed a perfect run through the NBA 2K League’s Slam Open group stage on Friday, with the community squad becoming the only side to win all six of its preliminary matches.

Handlez edged Magic Gaming 3-2 to finish 6-0 in Group 1.

Joining Handlez for in-person bracket play next week at the NBA 2K League Studio in Indianapolis will be Grizz Gaming, 76ers GC, Knicks Gaming, Hawks Talon GC, Hornets Venom GT, Wizards District Gaming, Celtics Crossover Gaming, Pistons GT, Cavs Legion GC, Pacers Gaming, Lakers Gaming, Bucks Gaming, T-Wolves Gaming, Blazer5 Gaming and DUX Infinitos.

In other Friday action, Kings Guard Gaming topped Glitchy 3-1, Pacers Gaming nipped Lakers Gaming 3-2, Bucks Gaming swept T-Wolves Gaming 3-0, Blazer5 Gaming dumped Intimidators 3-1, and Heat Check Gaming handled Hornets Venom GT 3-1.

DUX Infinitos defeated Jazz Gaming 3-1, Celtics Crossover Gaming slipped past Wizards District Gaming 3-2, Pistons GT pounded Dreamshakers 3-0, and Grizz Gaming got past Gen.G Tigers 3-2.

The 32-team field included all 24 NBA 2K League squads plus eight other teams: amateur trios that advanced through qualifying plus “community” teams featuring 2K social-media influencers.

For remote group play, the field was divided into eight groups that each consist of three NBA 2K League teams and one amateur or community team. The top two teams in each group will advance to the round of 16, the start of bracket play that will run Wednesday through May 14.

Teams opposed every other team in their group twice in best-of-five matches. The round of 16 also will feature best-of-five matches, while the quarterfinals, semifinals and final will be best-of-seven. The winning team will receive $60,000 from the Slam Open’s $150,000 prize pool.

The NBA 2K League season will run through August, with the focus on tournament play and qualifying events for tournaments. The traditional five-on-five tournaments are The Tipoff (season opener), The Turn (midseason) and The Ticket (late season).

The league is also adding a trio of three-on-three tournaments that will lead up to a three-on-three championship featuring a separate prize pool.

NBA 2K League Slam Open group-play standings
Group 1
1. Handlez, 6-0
2. Grizz Gaming, 3-3
3. Gen.G Tigers of Shanghai, 2-4
4. Magic Gaming, 1-5
Group 2
1. 76ers GC, 5-1
2. Knicks Gaming, 3-3
T3. Basketball Godz, 2-4
T3. Raptors Uprising GC, 2-4
Group 3
1. Hawks Talon GC, 5-1
2. Hornets Venom GT, 3-3
T3. Team Smoke, 2-4
T3. Heat Check Gaming, 2-4
Group 4
T1. Wizards District Gaming, 5-1
T1. Celtics Crossover Gaming, 5-1
3. NetsGC, 2-4
4. Dot Squad, 0-6
Group 5
1. Pistons GT, 5-1
2. Cavs Legion GC, 4-2
3. Warriors Gaming Squad, 3-3
4. Dreamshakers, 0-6
Group 6
1. Pacers Gaming, 5-1
2. Lakers Gaming, 4-2
3. Kings Guard Gaming, 2-4
4. Glitchy, 1-5
Group 7
1. Bucks Gaming, 5-1
2. T-Wolves Gaming, 4-2
3. Mavs Gaming, 2-4
4. Triple Threat, 1-5
Group 8
1. Blazer5 Gaming, 5-1
2. DUX Infinitos, 4-2
3. Jazz Gaming, 3-3
4. Intimidators, 0-6

NBA 2K League Slam Open prize pool
1. $60,000
2. $30,000
3-4. $15,000 each
5-8. $7,500 each

–Field Level Media