*UPDATED* The Best NBA 2K21 Badges: MyPlayer Builds, Shooting Hotfix, Pogo Stick, Intimidator, Contact Finisher, Fancy Footwork & more

Badges are the building blocks of NBA 2K. We go over which are must-haves for your MyPLAYER builds!

by Brandon Ridgely
NBA 2K21 Badges MyPLAYER Builds

NBA 2K21 has arrived!

Here we break down all the strongest NBA 2K21 badges, from overpowered to powerful, and clue you in on which you should target for your NBA 2K21 MyPLAYER builds.


Latest News – Best MyPLAYER Builds: Paint Beast

The first in our series covering the best NBA 2K21 MyPLAYER Builds and badges covers the popular PF and C build, Paint Beast.

NBA 2K21 Clint Capela
REPRESENTATIVE: Clint Capella is one of the most famous NBA 2K21 Paint Beasts, and puts the build to work with his new team the Atlanta Hawks

If you want to dominate the paint on both sides of the floor in The Park and The Rec alike, this might be the build for you.

The Broken

We classify broken badges as badges that warp NBA 2K gameplay and are absolutely necessary for players that will use them.

READ MORE: NBA 2K21 REVIEW: New features elevate the series to next level

These are the must-include badges for your MyPLAYER in NBA 2K21.

Pogo Stick

When it comes to defending a shot in basketball, timing is everything. Great shooters abuse defenders by getting them off their feet to time their jumpshot and draw fouls. This is especially important in the paint.

NBA 2K21 pogo stick badges MyPLAYER builds
HORROR STORY: Having trouble getting around Rudy Gobert? Add Pogo Stick to the mix and the paint is a no-go

But thanks to Pogo Stick, defenders can feel free to challenge almost every shot opportunity thanks to a very short recovery time to get back into the air and block shots.

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This turns paint defense into spamming a button, which is terrible fundamental game design, but fantastic for anyone contesting shots.

Contact Finisher

This badge is another huge pickup for slasher builds, and allows more contact dunks and layups to be successful.

Contact Finisher NBA 2K21 badges MyPLAYER Builds
FIGHT THROUGH: Contact Finisher lets players fight through physical defense

It makes sense that a badge like this exists in the 2K series because of how many elite finishers make plays happen through contact. The problem is that this badge applies to nearly any finish in the paint, which gives massive power to builds anywhere from 2-Way Slashing point guards to Paint Beast centers.

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In-game however this badge turns into a must-have for anyone driving the ball, and means that even a well-played defensive possession can end in a poster.


The Strong

These badges aren’t inherently broken, but they’re definitely powerful, and should be in most NBA 2K21 MyPLAYER builds that can use them.


While there are plenty of enforcers in the NBA that can make any offense struggle to produce, this badge is very strong, and is a must-include for most NBA 2K21 MyPLAYER builds.

NBA 2K21 badges MyPLAYER builds
DEMO REVEAL: The NBA 2K21 revealed some problematic badges were returning this year

This badge increases the chance that players miss shots and dunks if you’re near them, which is even stronger if you’re tightly guarding them.

READ MORE: NBA 2K21 MyCAREER: Trailer, NCAA College Basketball, Story & more

While this badge being effective when tightly guarding opponents is great since it rewards defensive skill and positioning, making players miss dunks when not making any actual effort to defend is a huge problem. While it was worse in NBA 2K20, this is still a fantastic defensive badge for positions 1-5.

Giant Slayer

Giant Slayer is a badge that boosts layup effectiveness when mismatched against taller defenders.

nba 2k21 badges MyPLAYER Builds
MISMATCH NO MORE: Giant Slayer means mismatches are still workable for drivers

This badge is one of the keys to most slashing builds that dominate The Park, and lets guards freely challenge bigs in the paint.

READ MORE: NBA 2K21 Release Date

Slashers had strong support in NBA 2K20, and while they aren’t quite as strong in NBA 2K21, this is a key badge for any MyPLAYER build looking to drive.

Fancy Footwork

Offensive moves oves like the Euro step have taken over the NBA and innovated how offenses attack the paint from positions 1 to 5.

Fancy Footwork looks to capture this by enhancing player’s ability to beat the defense with similar moves.

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The in-game reality is that Fancy Footwork makes driving animations that are already too powerful even more insufferable for defenders. This makes it a strong badge for your MyPLAYER if you’re looking to drive.

Shooting Hotfix

The NBA 2K21 shooting hotfix is live, and with it comes some sweeping changes to shooting this year.

The good news is that it offers players on both sides of the fence what they want.

NBA 2K21 Shooting Hotfix
EARLY CHANGE: NBA 2K21’s newest update drops a big shooting hotfix

For players that want to experience easier shooting, and easier road to grinding NBA 2K21 badges, most game modes and lower difficulties feature this.

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For players that want to keep more challenging new shooting and shot meter, the highest difficulties and The Neighborhood still feature it.

For players looking to grind out their shooting badges before hitting The Park or The Rec in The Neighborhood, this is a big boost to getting there faster. And the good news for more competitive players dealing with the difficulty, it won’t save these players once they reach The Neighborhood.

Brandon Ridgely

US Editor - Covering all things sports with a bit of everything else. Current favorite games: NBA 2K20, UFC 4, and Madden 21.