NBA Live 09 continues EA's impressive run of sports titles for 2008, making you believe that the prolific publisher really is trying to improve its quality. The new features aren't exactly earth shattering for this year's installment, but the game is fun to play and a noticeable improvement over NBA Live 08. Things to work on include improving the ball physics and rebounding game, smoothing out some of the animations, incorporating a more skill-based free throw system, and including more diverse play modes.
Basketball fans that have skipped this series in favor of NBA 2K should take another look, as they might be surprised at NBA Live 09's overall quality. Competition is a good thing.