NBA 2K6 takes shots September 26

2K Sports' hoopster dribbles onto PS2s and Xboxes in time for coming NBA season; Xbox 360 version coming "Holiday 2005."


2K Sports, a division of Take-Two Interactive, today announced that the PlayStation 2 and Xbox versions of the next installment of NBA 2K6 will hit the court just in time for the beginning of the 2005-2006 NBA season. Virtual ballers will be able to get their hands on the game on September 26, the same date that Take-Two rival Electronic Arts' NBA Live 06 makes it to store shelves. The Xbox 360 version will remain on course for its "Holiday 2005" release.

The move is hardly surprising, as the two competitors jockey for retail advantage. The pressure to ship a product before competitors has slowly inched up the release dates of sports games to more than a month before the sports they represent kick off.

The September releases of NBA Live 06 and NBA 2K6 come almost a month before the opening of the NBA season, which traditionally begins in the latter half of October. By comparison, the 2001 editions were released on the last day of October or early November.

This year's baseball releases also came out of the dugout early. Both 2K Sports' MLB 2K5 and EA's MVP Baseball 2005 were released in late February, while MLB's actual opening day occurred in April.

As early as the NBA games are scheduled to be released, there is a possibility that the game may be released even earlier. EA released MVP Baseball 2005 a week before its announced release date, which 2K Sports countered by releasing MLB 2K5 immediately after.

For more information on NBA 2K6, check out GameSpot's feature preview.

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