As the only NBA game in development for major consoles, the pressure for NBA 2K13 to deliver a scintillating basketball simulation was palatable—and the developers at 2K Sports did not disappoint.
With a Metacritic rating of 90 (on a scale of 100), both the critical and user experience for 2K13 has been nothing short of a joy so far. There has even been some talk that this game could compete with Fifa 13 for the best sports release of 2012.
Nevertheless, even the most lauded sports games come with their pitfalls—most notably the ratings. While it's usually a slippery slope to criticize game ratings, sometimes there are such egregious errors that necessitate mentioning.
For that reason, here is a look at the most underrated players in NBA 2K13.
Dirk Nowitzki: 85 OVR
Perhaps it is a product of his poor defensive play, but the Dallas Mavericks star has always been among the game's most frustratingly underrated players.
Even at his peak, it seemed that Nowitzki was always struggling simply to crack the 90 barrier. Perhaps his skill-set, which includes a heavy emphasis on up-fakes and turnaround jumpers, are simply not translatable to video game ratings.
For comparison, a quick look at Tim Duncan's 87 OVR rating should be all the evidence you need to know how underrated Nowitzki is in 2K13.
Though the Big Fundamental is among the NBA's greatest all-time players, it's likely that even Duncan would admit that Nowitzki is more lethal at this point in their careers.
Tyson Chandler: 77 OVR
A year after winning the Defensive Player of the Year and shooting a fantastic 67.9 percent from the field, it stood to reason that Chandler was in line for a rating in the low-to-mid 80s in NBA 2K13.
Well, whatever algorithm the developers use certainly disagreed because the New York Knicks center comes in at an appalling 77 overall.
What's even worse than Chandler's low rating are the players who have equal or higher ratings. Elton Brand (77 OVR), Carlos Boozer (78 OVR) and Brook Lopez (80 OVR) are the most egregious among big men, but there is a cavalcade of other notable examples from other positions.
Unfortunately for Chandler and Knicks fans, it looks like a career-best season and a membership on the United States' gold medal Olympic team in London wasn't good enough to make him better than amnesty candidates.
Tony Parker: 86 OVR
Like Chandler, it seems that the developers decided to ignore Parker's career-best season in 2011-12 as well.
It seems that most people have forgotten that the San Antonio Spurs point guard went through much of last year neck-and-neck with LeBron James for the NBA MVP. Averaging 18.3 points and a career-high 7.7 assists per game, Parker was unquestionably the driving Spurs' 50-16 record.
His playoff struggles may have caused the regular season to get lost in the shuffle, but not enough to be considered a less of a player than Steve Nash, who is frankly a defensive turnstile at this point.
Parker plays hard and plays well at both ends of the floor while serving as the leader to one of the league's best teams. If that is not worthy of a top-tier rating, then I'm not quite sure what is anymore.