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Everything 2016 Appreciation

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  • #31


    • #32
      This was a wild ride guys. I've been watching since it all started and for decades I could only dream about having a team to cheer for at this level. I'm very thankful for the show that these men put on this year and I am very optimistic about the future of this team. I've only been able to say that once or twice in the past.


      • #33
        First season that didn't end with a bitter taste in my mouth.

        Most memorable (off the top of my head) is CoJo game winner in reg season and JV feasting on Pacers.
        Heir, Prince of Cambridge

        If you see KeonClark in the wasteland, please share your food and water with him.


        • #34
          It's been a great year to cheer 4 tha Raptors!!
          LeBron appreciating raps fans after game 6 was cooool
          No new friends (c)


          • #35
            Axel wrote: View Post
            First season that didn't end with a bitter taste in my mouth.

            Most memorable (off the top of my head) is CoJo game winner in reg season and JV feasting on Pacers.
            Same here.

            I've also watched the Cojo game winner countless times.


            • #36
              KeonClark wrote: View Post
              Watching jv develop with touches in the playoffs

              The development of norman Powell and IMO bebe

              The awesome heart and soul additions of cojo Bismack Powell etc

              The fans. Always the fans.

              Last but not least

              Kyle lowry evolving the last few years from good point guard, to really good point guard, to great point guard, to one of the top 10 or 15 basketball players on planet earth.

              Thanks for the memories boys. Now don't make them memories. Make them momentum.
              Great roundup that pretty much echoes my own feelings. Always looking to the future so the evolution of JV's game in the playoffs, even showing that 15 footer once again, and Powell's declaration after losing the 6th game to the Cav's that he is going to see if the gym is open today so he can get some shots up. I am looking for big things from both these guys.


              • #37
                Thanks for a great season boys. Looking forward to talking offseason and draft with you guys


                • #38
                  What a blast! After 21 years of following this team closely it was so much fun and very surreal.

                  Ive always liked the blue collar 110% leave it all on the floor types and Ujiri managed to make the entire team out of guys like that. Its no wonder they succeeded. Good group of guys to cheer for. It was fun sharing it all with my son. I had to work last night and told my son Id get off early and we could watch the second half when I called him I was surprised he wasnt watching the game - he was at the schoolyard ballin in the dark at 10:00pm from the time he got out of school at 330. Its kids like that the raptors have inspired thanks for that.

                  The Biyombo sequence was my favourite. Electric.


                  • #39
                    unlucky fan wrote: View Post
                    Let’s go Raptors! Let’s go Raptors! Let’s go… wait, have we stopped chanting yet? Oh man, that was fun (last year, a slightly different sentiment). Yes, our point differential in the ECF was something like -9,182 or so, but we were in the final f*ing four in the NBA playoffs! The playoffs – a place that for years would induce wetness around the groin area of both our fans and players. Home court in the playoffs for the Raps used to mean extra pressure, sweaty palms and mom’s spaghetti. Game 1 against Indiana definitely felt like the trend would continue. And yet, something else happened. On the back of the role-players at first, this team graduated to the next level.

                    I grew up watching European football (err… soccer) where a home field advantage meant a home field advantage. The ACC has become as close to European football crowds (in a good way) as I’ve ever seen in North American non-MLS sports. On the back of that, a massive shout out is due to the Raptors fans. From the arena itself, to the thousands in Jurassic park, to the bar in Calgary that had to turn my group away because it was completely full of Raptors fans 60 minutes before tip off. We the North have made our mark on the NBA. We didn’t need LeBron confirming that postgame, but it was still nice to hear.

                    So here we were, just a year removed from an embarrassing first round sweep, 2 games away from the unthinkable, the NBA finals. It wasn’t a perfect or a pretty playoff run, filled with record setting blowout losses. But what it was infinitely more magical. We won with grit, showing resilience at every turn. And how else would we win, our team a collection of good but imperfect players with precious little shooting. And isn’t shooting what the NBA is built on nowadays? The blowouts showed us the talent gaps in the roster, but the wins showed us character. Resilience. Unflappability. This is what we have been waiting for all these years, guys who would refuse to stay down when punched, guys who wouldn’t back down from the high-velocity tank that is LeBron James, but rather knock him to the ground instead.

                    I don’t know what it’s like to cheer for a perfect collection of players led by the smoothest shooter of all time like Golden State. I don’t know what it’s like to root for a team that has one of the best all around players in history, receiving the benefit of both his skill and the referee’s whistle. What do their fans feel when they sweep the Pistons in the first round? And the Hawks in the second? Uncontrollable joy and wonder are probably far from it. What is it like sitting down at a bar to watch a conference final game, knowing in your mind, backed by the opinion of every legitimate pundit available, that your team will most likely win the game? Where’s the fun in that?

                    Instead, we were treated to a playoff run where you never knew how a given game would end. We could count on only one thing – that in the games that mattered most, our boys would claw, scratch, block and bully their way to a chance at a win. And yes, a Ross assist to an opponent’s fast break, or a Demar dribble off his foot (and into Dragic’s deserving face) would make us pull our hair out. But then we’d get a Biyombo finger wag or an intercontinental-hang-time dunk by Stormin’ Norm that would send us out of our seats (and our beers onto underserving friends).

                    And isn’t that what sports fandom is all about? To be up against the odds, not knowing what will happen, watching your boys give it their absolute best?

                    People can/will/have said that Raps were the 2nd seed, that they were the favorites in the first two rounds, that their wins were only meeting expectations. But let’s be real here, forget the fickle media. Let’s look within ourselves, Raps fans – who among us, following the game 1 loss against the Pacers, didn’t replay in their minds every single playoff disappointment from the last decade? What about at the end of the 3rd quarter in game 5, did no one feel that yet again, it was going to slip away? And in the dying minutes of game 7 that round, when we forgot every fundamental tenet of the game of basketball on offense and invited Indiana to nearly steal it, did no one have the little I-told-you-so Raptor sitting on their shoulder? I know I did. We all had a reason to have those thoughts. Did home court advantage save us against Carter’s Nets? Or Pierce’s Nets? Or the Wizards? Whether the media says we’re the underdog is irrelevant, because deep within our well-conditioned psyche, the Raptors are always the underdogs when it comes to the playoffs. That’s probably how Casey felt too, hence those ‘make sure the bear is dead’ comments and ‘us against the world’ mantra. Guys, he’s one of us.

                    And so, a few thanks are in order.

                    Mr. Lowry – the shot wasn’t there for long stretches to start each round, but your willingness to put your body on the line and contribute in so many other ways was on full display. For being the unquestionable leader of the best team in franchise history, thank you.

                    Mr. DeRozan – At times, a full-fledged member of the Spartan 300. Other times, the Persian foot soldiers crashing ineffectively against them again, and again, and again. To your credit, you were willing to take an inordinate amount of shots in crucial games, knowing that a loss in such a game would reflect on you. That takes cohones. Thank you.

                    Mr. Carroll – Your body needs rest. Injuries to various body parts and games every 2nd day in playoff intensity took their toll. Knowing full well you hadn’t played for months prior to that, you had to guard the best player in the world at the end of this stretch. You helped us in the first two rounds and gave it your all. Thank you.

                    Mr. Scola – Man, we could have used your calming presence and Lowry-whispering last season for sure. Thank you.

                    Mr. Valanciunas – Showed up to ball from the first tip off of the playoffs. Incredible leap forward. It was tragic, really, that an injury slowed you down at the zenith of your young career. Thank you, and can’t wait to see more next year!

                    Mr. Joseph – Your steady handed guided us in crucial stretches of round 1 especially. Can’t wait to see what you do with an added three point shot. I wonder what goes through your head when you hear the crowd sing ‘Oh Canada’ before these massive games – that’s got to be something. Thank you.

                    Mr. Biyombo – Oh my god. I mean… Oh my Bismack. Absolutely love what you brought to the team this season. You knew it was possibly your last chance in the league, and you pounced like a lion you claim to fear (ain’t no lion stupid enough to mess with you). I know you may not be back, and it’ll be heartbreaking to see you do the finger wag to Lowry in a different uniform next year. But for this season, thank you.

                    Mr. Patterson – Your effort and defensive IQ is unquestionable. Poor shooting aside, you were a rock to lean on all year. Maybe with some reinforcements your workload can be reduced, improving said shooting. But for giving it everything you had in extended minutes, for covering for the mistakes of some of our guards, and for sticking by your boys in little playoff scuffles, thank you.

                    Mr. Johnson – You stepped in and played your role in sporadic assignments when called upon. And hey, nice stroke on the 3-pointers in that last series. Thank you.

                    Mr. Powell – My man Norm. I remember watching summer league, seeing you there for the first time. Don’t tell my girlfriend, but it was love at first sight. You had that aura about you, that ice cold killer instinct in your eye. Extremely proud of your contributions in the playoffs as a rookie. In what world has a Raptors fan ever said that? That moment in game 5 in the 4th against the Pacers will be on highlight reels for years to come. Thank you.

                    Mr. Ross – I don’t know, man. Losing hope here, I must say. Please, please prove me wrong. You had some nice games in the second round though, and for that, thank you.

                    Mr. Casey – Man, I was hard on you last year. And the one before that. And probably the one before that, too. Last season I said a coach’s job is to maximize his assets. Well, this whole season, that’s exactly what you did. Your calm, consistent demeanor remained intact all year, as you guided our boys farther than they’ve ever been before. You made adjustments between games, and even some in games. I take my hat off to you sir. Thank you coach.

                    Mr. Ujiri – The architect. Your offseason moves were exactly what Dr. Casey ordered, and helped us in what we could not do last year – win games while struggling offensively. The jury is still out on the Demarre Carroll contract, but here’s to hoping he’ll come back healthy and rested next season. Folks, our team is in good hands. How awesome does it feel to say that?

                    The fans – I’m so proud to be a part of the absolute loudest, most passionate and dedicated fan base in the NBA. Thank you.

                    To the Toronto Raptors organization – thank you for an unforgettable season.
                    i don't think JV is anywhere close to the zenith of his career.


                    • #40
                      The 67 pt combined game in game 4 for the win with the cavs charging back hard. Kyles regular season game against the cavs.
                      Our competitive loss to the spurs while resting our best players.


                      • #41
                        but was it as good as the 93-94 bulls season?


                        awesome season. obviously the most recent highlight would be this team making lebron afraid.


                        • #42
                          Awesome GIF.


                          • #43

                            Every season since I taken interest in watching NBA and cheering for Raptors (about 1st Rudy Gay Trade, so 4 years) you guys improved and I hope next one won't be an exception.

                            So proud of this team, fans and everything that surrounds them.


                            • #44
                              Does losing in 6 to the champs that won in 7 change anyone's view point on the raptors? Are we still treadmilling or does this put how close we are to title contention more to the forefronts of your respective minds?

                              Sent from my HUAWEI TAG-TL00 using Tapatalk


                              • #45
                                Miekenstien wrote: View Post
                                Does losing in 6 to the champs that won in 7 change anyone's view point on the raptors? Are we still treadmilling or does this put how close we are to title contention more to the forefronts of your respective minds?

                                Sent from my HUAWEI TAG-TL00 using Tapatalk
                                What I saw in this series is that I'm even more convinced that the guys around your stars aren't nearly as important as who your stars are.

                                Think about how many awful basketball players who wouldn't have been rotation guys on our team played significant minutes in the NBA Finals, because they had Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, LeBron James and Kyrie Irving on those teams.