The "Madden Curse" generated considerable speculation and prominence when it was proposed that the games' cover athletes often faced adversity in the next season, particularly via an injury. The Madden Curse has gained immense notability since, and cover athletes often comment upon the curse by reporters. Tom Brady, the cover athlete on Madden 18, stated that he believes the curse is simply a "myth." The consensus, however, would disagree. Nonetheless, the NBA 2K series, like the Madden series, is beginning to see a trend of "cursing" its cover athletes, but in an unconventional way.

It wasn't until Friday afternoon when the "2K Curse" gained substantial speculation. Eric Fawcett posted a Tweet regarding the curse that has since totaled over 3,200 retweets and counting.

The History

In three of the last four NBA 2K editions, the cover athletes left their team within the same year or in the subsequent year. In NBA 2K14, LeBron James was featured as a Miami Heat, but left in 2014 to return to Cleveland. In NBA 2K15, Kevin Durant was named the cover athlete as an Oklahoma City Thunder, only to leave to join the Warriors in 2016. A trio of players were featured on NBA 2K16, perhaps not qualifying it for the "curse" rule.

Paul George starred as the cover athlete in NBA 2K17, but decided to join the Thunder this offseason.

With recent news regarding that the Cavaliers' Kyrie Irving has requested a trade, the curse may have trickled into NBA 2K18. The 25-year-old point guard reportedly requested a trade recently, potentially making him the fourth 2K cover athlete in the last five years to leave their team within the year of being announced as the cover feature.

Why It's Different

While the 2K Curse is affecting the fact that players are leaving teams, it has yet to interfere with the cover athletes success on the floor, like the Madden Curse did. LeBron James has won an NBA title, been an NBA Finals MVP and has continued his streak of 13 NBA All-Star Game appearances since being named the cover athlete of NBA 2K14.

Likewise, Kevin Durant was an NBA Champion this past season and earned Finals MVP honors since being the cover athlete of NBA 2K15.

In 16 of Madden's 19 editions, noted that the Madden Curse struck, whether the cover athlete was hit with a series of injuries the following season or merely performed poorly. NBA 2K cover athletes, on the contrary, have yet to feel the impacts that Madden's cover athletes did.

Will Irving, or other future cover athletes, ever feel the affects the Madden Curse athletes did?