Best NBA 2K21 Builds: Complete Builds Breakdown

NBA 2K21 player builds that will help you elevate your game out of the stratosphere

2K21 is back this year with another great upgrade over its predecessor, and that means that it’s time for us at Exputer to give you an in-depth guideline to the best builds you can create right now in order to dominate the at the Park, the Neighborhood or the Pro-Am.

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Builds are important as every unique avatar that you create has distinct parameters due to the massive amounts of customization involved. Regardless if you are an experienced vet hopping on another iteration of the 2K franchise or a beginner who is feeling intimidated by the thousands of ways you can distribute the attribute upgrades, we got you covered with the best 2K21 builds. 

From a playmaking shot-creator to a slasher and even a glass-cleaning center, here are the best NBA 2K21 builds.

Key Takeaways
  • Each build in NBA 2k21 is unique and excels in different kinds of niches in the NBA world.
  • These builds are for players looking for new build ideas that will help them in their gameplay. 
  • Each of these builds serves a different purpose and has its own unique attributes, such as position, skills, physical profile, body parameters, badges, etc.
  • The four best NBA 2k21 builds are as follows:
    • Playmaking Shot Creator: Similar to players like Steph Curry.
    • Slashing Guard: Similar to players like Jordan or Kobe Bryant.
    • Glass Cleaning Finisher: Similar to players like the Greek Freak.
    • Lockdown Defender: Similar to players like Jrue Holiday.

Best 2K21 Builds

Builds are a special feature of the 2K franchise, allowing anyone to develop a completely personalized avatar. This tweakable character is based on four major skills. These are Finishing color-coded blue, Shooting represented by green, Playmaking highlighted in yellow, and Def/Reb in red.

The challenge of creating a build arises from picking the right blend of these skills for your player. So, if this is a struggle for you in NBA 2K21, we are here to run down the best builds available.

Complete build stats: 

Build NamePositionSkillsPhysical ProfileAttribute Upgrade DistributionBody ParametersBadges
Playmaking Shot CreatorPoint Guard-Shooting
Focus on:
- Speed
- Acceleration
- Shooting: Maxed Out
- Playmaking: Maxed Out
- Mid Range Shot: 85 - 90
- 3 Point Shot: 85 - 90
- Free Throw: 85 - 90
- Pass Accuracy: 85 - 90
- Body Shape: Your own choice
- Height: 6’2″ to 6’5″
- Wingspan: Reduce as much
as you can
20 Badges for both
playmaking and shooting
Slashing GuardPoint Guard-FinishingFocus on:
- Speed
- Acceleration
- Finishing: Maxed Out
- Close Shot: 80 - 85
- Driving Layups: 80 - 85
- Driving Dunks: 80 - 85
- Potential: 85
- Body Shape: Your own choice
- Height: 6’3" - 6’5″
- Weight: 175 lb
- Wingspan: 85"
Finishing: 18 badges
Shooting: 15 badges
Playmaking: 15 badges
Glass Cleaning FinisherPower Forward-Finishing
Focus on:
- Verticle
- Agility
- All Defensive Stats: High 80s
- Finishing: 80+
- Body Shape: Burly
- Height: 6’8″ to 6’10”
- Weight: 190 - 196 lbs
- Wingspan: Maxed Out
Finishing: 15 badges
Defense/Rebound: All the rest
Lockdown DefenderPoint Guard-Shooting
Focus On:
- Agility
- Verticle
- Steals: 85+
- Lateral Quickness: 85+
- Perimeter Defense: 85+
- Shooting Stats: 80
- Height: 6’5″ or 6’6″
- Weight: 187 lb to 190 lb
- Wingspan: Maxed Out
Defense/Shooting: 20 badges
Playmaking: 10 badges

Playmaking Shot Creator

Best 2K21 Builds
Playmaking Shot Creator

If you like watching Chef Curry cook players on the court, then jump on this versatile build and start sinking shots right into your opponent’s face. This build boasts the best speed and acceleration which allows you to get open with minimal effort. Let’s now dive into how to create one of these absolute beasts.

When creating a build, the first screen you are presented with is a simple form where you would have to fill out your player name, number and specify his dominant hand. All of these are purely individual preference-based and hold no actual influence over your player’s performance. The position, however, is of importance and for this build, point guard fits the best.

Skill Breakdown

Moving on to the skill breakdown pie chart, we need excellent shooting and playmaking for this build. As the name “Playmaking Shot Creator” suggests, the above two skills are the most coveted in this setup. This will also allow you to attain hall of fame playmaking and shooting badges which you can distribute according to your style of play.

Best 2K21 Builds
Skill Breakdown for Playmaking Shot Creator

Physical Profile

After selecting the skill breakdown, you will have to pick your player’s physical attributes. The physical profile is composed of three sections: Agility (purple), Strength (light blue), and Verticle (pink). Speed and acceleration are the primary focus of this section. These two will allow you to move faster around the court and create separation with ease. 

Best 2K21 Builds
Physical profile for Playmaking Shot Creator

Attribute Upgrade Distribution

After both the pie charts are cleared, it’s time to customize your attributes. In NBA 2K21, you will receive 409 attribute upgrades which you will have to appoint according to what you want your player to focus on. It goes without saying, that shooting and playmaking are supposed to be maxed out. You will want that mid-range shot, 3-point shot, free throw, pass accuracy, and ball handle to be between 85-90. The rest of the distributions are up to you and will allow you to make your build truly unique.

Best 2K21 Builds
Attribute Upgrades
Best 2K21 Builds
Example of attribute distribution


You should aim for roughly 20 badges in both playmaking and shooting for this type of build to be completely untouchable. 

Body Parameters

The next page is the body shape, height, weight, and wingspan customization. For the body shape, go wild and pick whatever you want, with no restrictions! The height should, however, be between 6’2″ to 6’5″ for best speed and acceleration stats. Since a shifty and quick player is what we are trying to achieve, the weight should also be minimum. Finally, to add that extra boost for shooting, reduce the wingspan as much as you can to develop your build into the most lethal shooter possible. On the next screen, add the Spot Up Shooter takeover badge, and your Playmaking Shot Creator is complete.

Slashing Guard

Best 2K21 Builds
Best build resembling Kobe

A slasher is essentially a guard that closely resembles the game of Jordan or Kobe. This build will have an overall better finishing than the previous one and will allow you to wreck your opponents in transition through layups and dunks. This one is without a doubt one of the best nba 2K21 builds out there.

Skill Breakdown & Physical Profile

Similar to the previous build, choose a point guard on the initial screen and go towards the skill pie chart. In this type of player, we have an increased emphasis on finishing. This means that the majority of our pie chart is going to be dominated by blue.

Best 2K21 Builds
Skill distribution for a slasher

This higher finishing ability will allow you to have posterized dunks due to much stronger athleticism than other guard builds. It’s as simple as taking Russel Westbrook’s athleticism and finishing while choosing a better shooting ability. Going onto the physical profile, we will once again go to an agility-dominated build, similar to a playmaking shot-creator, as we need that speed and acceleration to blow by your defenders without them being able to react.

Attribute Upgrade Distribution

Moving on to the upgrade attribute distribution, as you might have guessed finishing is our top priority. So, close shot, driving layup, and driving dunks are all supposed to be 80-85. Shooting is a secondary concern, but post fadeaways need that upgrade to truly resemble the image of the GOAT. The playmaking section has ball handling, and this is another mark of a slasher and should be roughly 85 in potential.

Now the rest of the upgrades are somewhat tweakable but having a good midrange, pass accuracy and steals are a huge advantage in this particular NBA 2K21 build. As for the badges, you should aim for roughly 18 in finishing, 15 in shooting, and 15 in playmaking.

Best 2K21 Builds
Attribute upgrade example for a slasher

Body Parameters 

The Body shape for this build is once again completely up to you. The height similar to the other guard build is going to be 6’3″-6’5″. Of course, if you want to build MJ, you would need to play around with the height to get better parameters but 6’4″ is the recommended height. With all the height, you would need a slightly more substantial weight, so we recommend you proceed with 175 lb, and a wingspan of roughly 85″ in order to get the most out of this build.

Now, just add a slasher takeover badge or even a spot-up shooter one and one of the most overpowered builds in the game is complete. With this setup, you can easily go iso on any other player on the court, and even dash out assists to wide-open teammates for that corner 3.

Glass Cleaning Finisher

Best 2K21 Builds
Glass cleaning finisher

We all witnessed that legendary block that The Greek Freak pulled off in this year’s playoff finals, keeping that in mind wouldn’t you just love to humiliate your opposition in the park with something just as good. If that is the case, this is the build for you.

Skill Breakdown

For this beast of character, we will need to go power forward on the initial screen and jump straight into the skill pie chart where you have to select the all red pie chart for the exaggerated defensive skill. While a good amount of these builds go to an even split between finishing and defense, it is better to get that immense defensive presence with these builds and tweak the attributes later.

Best 2K21 Builds
Skill breakdown for a glass cleaning finisher

Physical Profile

The physical profile of this specific version of a glass cleaning finisher is a little different. While most builds of this kind focus on strength, our setup will rock a verticle and agility-dominated profile. This makes our build a little more unique and versatile as compared to the rest.

Best 2K21 Builds
Glass cleaning finisher physical profile

Attribute Upgrade Distribution

For this particular avatar, we need to bump up the defensive stats all the way to high 80s in every section. Keep finishing as a secondary focus if you went with our recommended skill pie chart. For the most common pie chart mentioned above, finishing is of greater importance so simply switch your attribute upgrades to the blue section.

Best 2K21 Builds
Example of attribute upgrade distribution for glass cleaning finisher

Looking for your badge distribution, it is quite obvious that the majority of them will be in the def/reb section, and about 15 in finishing.

Body Parameters

The glass cleaning finisher is a great 2K21 build and as a C/PF type player, we need to pick burly for the body shape. The height is somewhat debatable but anything between 6’8″ to 6’10” will get the job done nicely. The weight is 190 lb for a 6’8″ build and 198 lb for a 6’10” build with anything in between being roughly 195 lb. As for the wingspan given the role we want this setup to play max wingspan is advised.

As the name suggests, we will go with the glass cleaner take-over badge, and your own version of the greek freak is born.

Lockdown Defender

Best 2K21 Builds
Lockdown defender

These builds aren’t flashy like the rest can be, but lockdown defenders such as Jrue Holiday can most of the time be instrumental especially if you are playing Pro Am. These defenders are usually extremely effective in games and could be considered one of the best defensive builds in 2K21.

Skill Breakdown

Since the majority of lockdown defenders excel on perimeter defense, this character will be a point guard with an even split between shooting and defending which would allow you to obtain hall of fame badges in both blue and red sections.

Best 2K21 Builds
Skill Breakdown for a lockdown defender

Physical Profile

Like most of the guard builds discussed in this article, agility is the most highly regarded parameter. This couldn’t be more true for a perimeter defender as they require ridiculous levels of lateral mobility. This paired with the secondary verticle attribute makes for a great shot blocker and a steal machine.

Best 2K21 Builds
Physical profile for Lockdown defender

Attribute Upgrade Distribution

With our primary focus lying in defensive prowess, we need to have all the perimeter attributes especially high. Steals, lateral quickness, and perimeter defense should all be 85+, and the shooting stats should be around 80 to make sure you can take jumpers when open. And of course, no guard build would be complete without some ball handles upgrades.

Best 2K21 Builds
Example for attribute upgrade distribution for a lockdown defender

The badge distribution would be around 20 for each defense and shooting and 10 for playmaking for this 2K21 build.

Body Parameters

For this guard build, height is important so we recommend you to go with 6’5″ or 6’6″ in order to be able to squat shots away with ease while tracking your defender. For weight, we need the build to be quick enough to follow shifty guards, but not so light that stronger ball handlers can just drive right through you. With this in mind, anything between 187 lb to 190 lb is acceptable. Finally, for any lockdown build, we need max wingspan to elevate your chance for steals and blocks even more. Choose the lockdown overtake badge, and enjoy watching even the best offensive builds struggle to pass you on the perimeter.

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Sarim is a Finance major, fantasy writer, creative consultant, and professional developmental and line editor. When not writing, Sarim is dreaming about storytelling and gaming. He has worked with Xbox and S&P Global, providing creative consultancy and business development.

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