The NBA has seen some iconic, ankle-breaking crossovers through the years, such as Allen Iverson’s silky smooth fake against Michael Jordan in the '90s or Kyrie Irving’s disrespectful move in the 2013 Rising Stars game. Elite dribblers are able to create a shot at will, which is how many of the greats become unguardable. Stephen Curry, Kyrie Irving, Trae Young, and Damian Lillard are among the best handlers in the game today, both in real life and in NBA 2K22.
NBA 2K22 Gameplay Director Mike Wang and the rest of the team have worked tirelessly to enhance the in-game dribbling package, resulting in some mesmerizing combos for you to experiment with. There are around 50 signature size-ups for you to toy with—but don’t let that number intimidate you because you don’t need to know all 50 to excel. In this dribbling guide, we’ll help you master the basics of crossovers, size-ups, hesitation moves, and signature combos, so you can start snatching ankles and creating a highlight reel of your own.
Getting a defender to bite on an ankle-breaking crossover isn’t going to happen every time, but a simple crossover is an essential piece of any player’s game, regardless of whether you’re a skill player or a towering big. As a facilitator of the offense, your crossovers will be most effective at the perimeter of the three-point line rather than in the paint, since you have more room to operate. Flick the Pro Stick up to perform a crossover; slower flicks will produce a more rhythmic cross, which can lull a defender to sleep, and faster flicks will pound the ball back and forth rapidly. To perform a behind-the-back or between-the-legs maneuver, flick the Pro Stick in the direction of your player’s off-hand (the hand not dribbling the ball). Crossovers are relatively simple, but they’re a fundamental part of setting elite scorers apart. When you’ve perfected them, try combining a crossover with a hesitation move to really confuse the opposition.
SIZE-UPS & HESITATION MOVES
Think of dribbling like dancing: before you can begin attempting acrobatic moves, you have to get a feel for your dance partner. Each time you bring the ball up the court, your goal should be to size up the competition and study their footwork, with the intention of throwing them off-balance. Size-ups are the best way to knock your defender off their game and give you a window of opportunity to attack the basket. Create separation by holding the Sprint Trigger and flicking the Pro Stick in any direction to execute a size-up—just be aware that this drains more energy than your typical dribble move. Fatigue greatly impacts your shot, so use size-ups sparingly. Otherwise, it’ll be tough to slash your way through the heart of the defense.
NBA 2K22 introduces a new option for ball handlers searching to elevate their skillset: Signature Combos. Several players have designated moves that are unique to them and they’re accessible to you in-game. Signature Combos are short-but-effective dribble sequences you can string together by simply flicking up on the Pro Stick while holding the Spring Trigger. Doing so will result in a special move which, if timed properly, will send the crowd into a frenzy and your defender tumbling to the ground. Mixing and matching Signature Combos will leave your competition guessing and unable to anticipate your every move. You can always cancel a Signature Combo by tapping the Sprint Trigger or interrupt it with any other Pro Stick maneuver. Canceling a move midway through can be just as effective if the opposing team is catching on to your tricks.
Polishing your handles is just one aspect of forming a robust skillset, but now you have the fundamentals to get started. Try experimenting with different dribbling combinations during practice and against your friends. When you can dribble circles around the competition, check out our other guides, like how to improve your shot or build a MyPLAYER to fit your style.