Here are a few easy common sense NBA 2K14 (and NBA 2K15) tips and methods to rack up your steals in MyCAREER or any game mode. Also it always helps to use a player that has the Pick Pocket, Interceptor, or Active Hands signature skills.
The Regular On-Ball Steal
You reach I teach? Nah, not necessarily if you time it right. A big part of on-ball defense – especially getting steals – is anticipation. Instead of spamming the steal button and risk getting burned or called for the foul, it’s more effective to pick your spots on when to reach. Wait for the ball to be vulnerable before going for the steal, experimenting with different angles as well as straight on. A good method is to shade the ball handler from the side the ball is on, and get steals from the side angle. For your my player, equip the Pick Pocket signature skill to increase the success rate of on-ball steals.
Play the Passing Lanes / Intercept the Pass
This tactic alone is why playing on-ball defense 100% of the time isn’t always the best way to play defense. Sometimes it’s more fun and effective to sit in the passing lanes, like a Richard Sherman or Troy Polamalu, and wait for the offense to make a mistake on a pass. If you’re playing vs a human opponent, try bluffing the double team towards the ball handler in hopes that he’ll rush a pass to the man you’re guarding – for the easy tipped pass or steal. For your my player, equip the Interceptor signature skill to increase the success rate of pass steals, lunge distance, better foot planting, and ability to catch the ball.
Poke the Ball from Behind
When trailing the ball handler, poke the ball loose from behind. Crafty players like Chris Paul have made a living getting a lot of steals this way.
Deny the Point Guard the Ball
This tip is most effective vs the CPU. Because many CPU plays are run through the point guard, it’s a smart strategy to deny ball on the PG and anticipate stealing the pass from other players on the court.
Vs Big Man Steal
This steal method is particularly effective under the hoop – where PF’s and C’s usually like to hang out. The kryptonite for the “big-man-camping-under-hoop-for-easy-standing-dunk-all-day” is the poor ball handling ratings of most bigs. So instead of trying to block a posterizing center who has a high low post and dunk rating, it’s easier and more successful to go for the steal instead. For your my player, equip the Active Hands signature skill to increase the success rate of poking the ball loose under the hoop.
The Double Team Trap
The double team is always an effective method to get steals, whether it’s on-ball or playing the passing lanes. Versus the CPU, you could call a half court trap and wait for the ball handler to pass the ball, or you could be one of the double teamers and try to pry the ball loose. Make sure to use the trap strategically, during times when there are enough defenders back and in position to rotate to the open man.
Pay Attention to Left Stick Direction When Attempting a Steal
This tip is more subtle and less known, but it makes a huge difference! When attempting a steal, you want to point the Left Stick going away from the direction you are stealing from (on absolute controller settings). If you notice your player is sliding around a lot when you go for steals, leaving you out of position, it usually has to do with the direction you are pointing the Left Stick. So experiment with pointing it different directions to get the hang of it.
Let us know in the comments how these worked for you and also check out the video tutorial on stealing the ball in NBA 2K14!