Villanova's 2016, 2018 Title Teams to Face Off in Virtual NBA2K Sim for Charity

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMay 4, 2020

ADVANCE FOR WEEKEND EDITIONS, NOV. 5-6 - FILE - In this April 4, 2016, file photo, Villanova players celebrates after Kris Jenkins, center, made the game-winning basket as they defeated North Carolina 77-74 in the championship game of the the NCAA Final Four college tournament in Houston. The Wildcats reign as champions for the first time in three decades. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)
Charlie Neibergall/Associated Press

The debate between which Villanova team was better between the 2016 and 2018 championship squads will finally be decided.

Well, kind of.

As Myron Medcalf of ESPN reported, the two teams will face each other in a customized version of NBA2K on Monday as part of the World Showdown of Esports. It will air on Twitch and YouTube and raise money for the Philadelphia-based charity Philabundance to feed children in need during the coronavirus pandemic.

The 2015-16 team went 35-5 and destroyed Oklahoma by 44 points in the Final Four before defeating North Carolina by three in one of the most memorable national title games in recent history behind a Kris Jenkins buzzer-beater.

That team featured Jenkins, Josh Hart, Jalen Brunson, Ryan Arcidiacono, Mikal Bridges and Donte DiVincenzo, although DiVincenzo, Brunson and Bridges were all freshmen.

"We've had some spirited arguments about which team would win if we went head-to-head," Kevin Rafferty, who was also on that 2015-16 team and organized this event, said. "Now we'll have an answer and help support a great cause in the process."

The 2017-18 team went 36-4 and won every single tournament game by double digits, including its 17-point domination of Michigan in the national title game. DiVincenzo, Brunson and Bridges were the leaders on a squad that also featured Omari Spellman, Eric Paschall and Phil Booth.

Medcalf noted players who were on both teams will choose which side they represent.

As for the player rankings, those on the 2018 champions assigned them to those on the 2016 champions and vice versa.