Along with the current season's teams and players, previous games in the series have featured NBA teams from past eras, such as the 1995–96 Chicago Bulls and the 1985–86 Boston Celtics. NBA 2K18 adds sixteen more such teams, including the 2007–08 Denver Nuggets and the 1998–99 New York Knicks, as well as 'All-Time Teams', teams for each franchise consisting of the greatest players in the respective franchise's history.
NBA 2K18 was officially confirmed in January 2017 and is set for release on September 19, 2017; players who pre-order the game receive it on September 15, 2017. It will be the first game in the series to be released for the Nintendo Switch it will also be released for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Microsoft Windows. Kyrie Irving of the Cleveland Cavaliers is the cover athlete. The special edition versions of the game, which include various physical and digital extras, feature Shaquille O'Neal as the cover athlete.