NBA 2K19 Controls Guide: (Offense and Defense) for PS4 and Xbox One

Learn how to control your teams and players at both basic and advanced levels.


Source: NBA 2K19

Understanding the controls in any video game is very important. In fact, I usually recommend jumping in to a non-competitive game for just about any video game first to figure out the controls. Learning in the heat of an intense game is never easy.

Offense

Basic Controls

ActionXbox OnePS4
PassAX
Bounce PassBO
Lob PassY
ShootX
Call PlayLeft BumperL1
Icon PassRight BumperR1
Post UpLeft TriggerL2
SprintRight TriggerR2
Move PlayerLeft JoystickLeft Joystick
Pro StickLeft JoystickRight Joystick

These controls are what you need to learn at the most basic level of the game. Even though they are considered basic, there is still some finesse required to use them optimally. Timing when, how long and where to press each button, aim your joysticks and hold each button is something that will come with practice.

I personally try to avoid using the basic pass buttons as much as possible. When it comes to running offensive sets, I am pretty particular about who I pass to at any point in time. As such, I am ready to always use the Icon Pass button before selecting which teammate I fire a pass to. Experienced players know exactly what I mean when I talk about the frustrations of an errant pass to a teammate far away when you clearly wanted to dump the ball to your very close by teammate.

As for shooting, whether that be a layup or 3-point jumper, this will take lots of practice. Players with higher attributes in scoring are usually more forgiving on your shooting bar timing. In general, a bar will appear by your player when you go to shoot. The bar will fill up and you will want to release the shoot button when the bar is at its fullest. Doing so will result in a perfectly timed shot and a higher chance of the ball going in to the hoop. Releasing late or early will lower your odds.

Dunks & Alley-Oops

Alley-oops are another enjoyable way to score. They can give you quite a flashy display, and, if done well, especially in MyCareer mode, you can earn a lot of VC from them. To start an Alley-oop, setting up the alley-oop is the most important. To do this, you need to be somewhat inside the paint, and have yourself off on the side of the basket. You just need to double-tap the Y/△ button, and move your left joystick in a direction to pick the receiver for the pass. if done correctly, you get a very nice poster dunk that you helped to set up.

Don’t trust your teammates enough to alley-oop to them? Then take it into your own hands. Dunking can get you some serious fans, as well as possibly get a few points in. But, dunking can be a bit tricky, as you need to take into consideration your player’s dominant hand. To start a dunk, move towards the basket in a hopefully open lane, and hold down RT/R2 as you move with the Left joystick. As you move, shift the right joystick either right or left. So, if you’re driving on the right side of the basket, it may be more advantageous to move the right joystick to the right so that your dominant right hand can make the basket.

As seen in the above video, the shot is not timed quite right. In the right box at the top of the screen, it shows that the shooter is "open" from coverage. This would lead one to believe the shot should easily go in. However, the early release of the shot makes the shot miss off to the side. This is something to be aware of in open shooting situations.

Off-Ball Controls

ActionXbox OnePS4
Call for BallAX
Set ScreenBO
ReboundY
Tell CPU to ShootX
Post UpLeft BumperL2
SprintRight BumperR2
Move PlayerLeft JoystickLeft Joystick

These controls are more useful in MyPlayer or multiplayer game modes. In standard single player mode, it is not often that you will be playing an off-ball player. Regardless, it is important to learn these controls for when you need them. 

As I generally like to play big men in MyPlayer mode, I am very familiar with the "Set Screen" button. Learning how to use this button optimally will gain you points on your performance grade, as well as set you up for easy points if you can roll to the basket from this position.

Telling the CPU to shoot is another button that you should learn how to use optimally. Get yourself prepared to fetch the rebound and only do this when they are pretty open for a quick response.

As seen in the above video, I use my player to run over and set a screen. From there, you are at the mercy of the ball handler to drive the defender into your body and set up a pick-and-roll offense.

Defense

Basic Controls

ActionXbox OnePS4
Player SwapAX
Take ChargeBO
Block/ReboundY
StealX
Double TeamLeft BumperL1
Icon SwapRight BumperR1
Intense-DLeft TriggerL2
SprintRight TriggerR2
Move PlayerLeft JoystickLeft Joystick

These controls are very important to learn as you will likely need to master them to avoid easy baskets for opponents. The steal and block buttons can be your best friend, or your worst enemy. Spamming these buttons can lead to fouls or easy blow by baskets. Be sure to be selective on when you wish to go for a defensive play, versus simply staying between your man and the basket.

As seen in the above video, I go for a very late timed block on the shot. While I was no where near blocking the shot, I like to think my presence flying past the shooter was enough to throw him off an easy layup. While this is likely not the case, sometimes you just gotta let a baller dream.

Off-Ball Controls

ActionXbox OnePS4
Take ChargeBO
Block/ReboundY
StealX
Post EngageLeft BumperL2
SprintRight BumperR2
Move PlayerLeft JoystickLeft Joystick

These controls are crucial for perfecting help-side defense. If your teammate can't stay in front of their man, you may need to slide over and interrupt the offensive player's easy attempts at scoring. Be careful though, as sliding over to help can lead to an easy dump pass to the guy you were supposed to be guarding. It's often a lose-lose situation, but hedging over just in case can provide you with the opportunity to make plays.

As seen in the video above, I run in to cut off the interior pass and box out my man. While I do not get the rebound, this box out allows my teammate to get the easy rebound over his man.

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