Strategy Guide
NBA 2K9 Team Up Strategy

If you've played Team Up mode in NBA 2K9 like I have, you’ll see that it can be an awesome experience. If you haven’t because of the online issues in the game, feel free to complain about them until the problems are fixed. If you can play five-on-five right now or plan to when it works, then here are some tips that should make you an ideal teammate on the virtual court.

Know Your Role

So you’re Antonio McDyess, why are you grabbing the inbounds pass and running the ball up the floor? Nobody on your team wants to see that and it’ll make your teammates less likely to pass the ball to you in the long run. Your opponents want your virtual McDyess running and shooting as much as possible but that won’t help your team or your 2K Rating.

Rebounding and shooting are things you can attempt to do with any player, but obviously some players are better at shooting threes than others. Whatever player you’re given, try to make sure you know his strengths and weaknesses. There are plenty of forwards who can knock down a shot, but there are a bunch who can’t. If you know the difference between Darius Miles and Martell Webster you should be all right.


Keep your microphone on as much as you can. You have no idea how much easier a frustrating game can be if you can speak to your teammates. Is Steve Nash being a ball-hog? Let him know then. Is Mehmet Okur sagging on defense? Let him know then. Are you really hungry? That doesn’t sound like a problem your point guard can fix, but it’s worth a shot, so let him know.

You can also use the microphone for things other than complaints. Instead of calling for the ball 15 times while your player looks like he’s trying to work an airport runway, you can tell the ball-handler that you’re wide open under the basket. While everyone else is running down the court like headless chickens, you can calmly tell your point guard that you’re open for three and you’d like to take the shot.

Having a microphone can also help you on defense because you can get the proper help when a single man isn’t enough. Calling plays like the pick and roll are also made possible with communication. A team without communication is at a huge disadvantage against a team where everyone is talking.

Play To Win

In the NBA, it’s all about the little things you can do to ensure a victory. Setting picks, helping on defense, and hitting free throws make the difference between a close loss and a win. Everyone wants to be the star and everyone wants the most points, but realistically that can’t happen. You are unlikely to receive an all-star player every time you play. In other words, having a good time in Team Up mode in NBA 2K9 isn’t always about taking the most shots. It’s important for you as an NBA 2K9 player to know a little about the game and the people you’re playing against. If Joe Johnson is constantly driving to the right side of the basket you have to realize that so you can get in his way to take the charge or get another defender to put a body on him. You having a career night won't always be the key to victory, and you can still definitely be effective as a role player.

The way the system works, there will be nights you’ll be a role player and others you’ll be a superstar. The most important part of the game is being effective in both situations without hurting your team. Whether you have to yell for the ball when playing with a shoot-first point guard or you have to play help defense because you’re stuck using Chris Wilcox, Team Up mode in NBA 2K9 can be enjoyable either way.

Are you still having trouble playing online? Do you get mad when you’re stuck with a below-average player? Are you the guy shooting threes with Erick Dampier? Sound off in the comment box below!

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