INDIANAPOLIS - The Indiana Pacers are among 17 NBA teams participating in the inaugural NBA 2K esports league, which will debut in 2018. The NBA says the professional competitive gaming league will bring together the best basketball gamers in the world.

The NBA and Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. (Nasdaq: TTWO) announced plans for the league in February. The NBA says more announcements regarding participating players, team branding, league structure and business updates will be made "in the coming months."

"We’re very proud to be one of the 17 teams to partner with our league and participate in this new, fascinating venture," said Pacers President and Chief Executive Officer Rick Fuson. "We are thrilled to be part of this league that is going to take Indiana’s game – one that most of us grew up with shooting hoops in the driveway, on the side of a barn or at the playgrounds - to a whole new level. We’ll be able to build a new fan base that without esports, might never have become real fans of basketball."

The other 16 teams involved in the league include:

  • Boston Celtics
  • Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Dallas Mavericks
  • Detroit Pistons
  • Golden State Warriors
  • Memphis Grizzlies
  • Miami Heat
  • Milwaukee Bucks
  • New York Knicks
  • Orlando Magic
  • Philadelphia 76ers
  • Portland Trail Blazers
  • Sacramento Kings
  • Toronto Raptors
  • Utah Jazz
  • Washington Wizards

"This is the first step in what promises to be an extraordinary league, bringing together the world's best gamers and showcasing elite competition on an international stage," said NBA 2K esports league Managing Director Brendan Donohue. "Our teams have expressed tremendous enthusiasm for esports, and we are looking forward to forming something truly unique for basketball and gaming fans around the globe."