Cover Athlete Predictions For Sports Video Games In 2023

Happy New Year.

Sports gamers are looking forward to the next set of annual releases on the calendar. Here’s an educated guess at the cover athletes for the most popular sports video game titles expected to be released this year.

NBA 2K24 – Ja Morant

You could make a serious argument that the Memphis Grizzlies’ Ja Morant is the most exciting player in the NBA today. From an athletic standpoint, you could probably count on one hand the number of guys capable of pulling off some of the mid-air moves Morant executes on a nightly basis.

Morant isn’t just explosive, he’s also a performer of substance.

The 23-year-old superstar has established himself as a legitimate MVP candidate averaging 27 points, 6.2 rebounds and 8.1 assists per game this season. What’s more, Morant’s Grizzlies seem primed for a long postseason run and that usually helps to add consideration. Lastly, Morant’s style connects well with 2K’s primary age demographic.

Why it Might Not Work

Memphis is still a small-market team. Because of that, 2K might look at someone like the Boston Celtics’ Jayson Tatum, with whom they have had a relationship with since he came into the NBA.

MLB The Show 23 – Julio Rodriguez

Sony usually likes to target young, up-and-coming stars as well. Last year’s game had Los Angeles Angels phenom Shohei Ohtani, and the year before that, the San Diego Padres’ Fernando Tatis Jr. was tabbed.

This year could the cover athlete could be Seattle Mariners young star Julio Rodriguez. J-Rod won American League MVP and having just turned 22 years old this week, he’s another young and dynamic fit for the cover athlete duties.

Why it Might Not Work

Rodriguez is still really young and its possible this honor could be a year too premature.

Madden 24 – Justin Jefferson

The Griddy dance has become the NFL’s most popular celebration. EA put it in Madden and it makes sense to put Justin Jefferson, the guy who popularized it in the NFL, on the cover.

Jefferson on the cover would be about more than a dance. The Minnesota Vikings star is closing in on a record-breaking 2022 season. Through Week 16, Jefferson has 1,756 receiving yards which means he is 209 yards short of breaking Calvin Johnson’s record of 1,964 receiving yards in a single season.

Of course, Megatron accomplished the goal in 16 games. Jefferson would need to have a monster performance against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday to get it done.

In any case, he’s having a huge year and it’s the kind of season that could land the 23-year-old on the cover of Madden 24.

Why it Might Not Work

If there is a QB under consideration, primarily the Buffalo Bills’ Josh Allen or the Cincinnati Bengals’ Joe Burrow, Jefferson might get bumped by the sport’s glamour position.

NHL 24 – Cale Makar

When it comes to young stars in the NHL, you’ll be hard-pressed to find one more productive and promising than the Colorado Avalanche’s Cale Makar.

The 24-year-old is averaging more than a point per game in his young NHL career and he’s scored 57 goals. It also doesn’t hurt that he is one of the few really good NHL players under the age of 25 who has been a major part of a Stanley Cup winning team.

The Tampa Bay Lightning’s Mikhail Sergachev has been excellent in the early stages of his career and he helped the Lightning win two Stanley Cups, but cover athlete is not likely to be a big defenseman, so we’ll go with Makar.

Why it Might Not Work

EA could elect to go with a more established star, perhaps even a legend like Sidney Crosby on the cover.

EA FC 24 -Kylian Mbappe

Kylian Mbappe has been the cover athlete since FIFA 21, though he shared the honor with Sam Kerr for FIFA 23. Kerr could return to share the honors with Mbappe, but the PSG star seems like a lock to remain the face of EA’s soccer title.

While France fell short in its attempt to win the World Cup in 2022, Mbappe’s performance in the tournament was legendary.

Punctuated by his three-goal outing in the final against Argentina, Mbappe took home the Golden Boot as the best player of the World Cup. Unless EA is going in an entirely new direction, Mbappe should be the cover athlete for the new game.

Why it Might Not Work

I can’t think of a reason it won’t.

This news is republished from another source. You can check the original article here

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