I needed some time before I could bear myself to do this. The Toronto Raptors season is finished. It’s time to accept it, and what a season it was. 48 wins, Atlantic crown, player growth, playoffs – nobody can really say that the Raps let them down this year. It’s been a helluva season – look at what the Raps have accomplished. There are plenty of memorable moments, so please leave a comment if you can think of any we missed.
Raptors Bring in Ujiri
How important was this? Pretty damn important. Not to say that Bryan Colangelo didn’t do a good job, because in all honesty he had an elite eye for talent. The thing with Ujiri is, he has an elite eye for talent and he just gets it. He gets the culture that needs to be set, the type of players that need to be brought in, and the importance of chemistry.
Raptors Bring in Drake
This led to OVO branding, Drake night, etc. No matter how much you hate Drake and claim that he’s a crappy rapper and all, the guy brings a lot to the team. He puts Toronto on the map, and now puts the Raptors on the map as well. Hell, the OVO shoes he gave away sold for 100K on eBay. And, a lint roller sold for 50K. So yeah, the man is magical.
Raptors Get All-Star Game
This is another huge one. Tim Leiweke is on a mission to transform the culture of this team, and as you learn in business school, change comes from the top. This is going to be a pivotal part of growing the Raps and NBA in Canada. That picture is also priceless.
Rudy Gay Trade
Unfortunately, I had to say goodbye to my favorite Raptor of all time. You are still missed, Aaron ‘Air’ Gray. In all seriousness, what a trade. Two out of the four acquired players are likely core pieces moving forward, and really sparked the turnaround.
This was just a surreal victory. Fresh off the Gay deal, the Raps were poised to tank. Then they beat the Dallas Mavericks. Then they gave the Oklahoma CIty Thunder their first loss at home. This was definitely the turning point of the season.
Three Raptors involved in all-star weekend? Well, four if you count Drake. Count me in. Big congrats to DeMar DeRozan for achieving that well-earned All-Star game nod, to Jonas Valanciunas for being selected to the rising stars game, and to Terrence Ross for dunking again.
Raptors Steal Show in Brooklyn
The scorching hot Nets were feeling pretty good about themselves. That is, until Patrick Patterson basically took a piss on the floor of the Barclay’s Center. I hate the Nets.
Ross Scores 51, Ties Franchise Record for Points
Ok T. Terrence Ross was pretty bananas this game. I mean, where did this come from?
This googley-eyed mofo made me laugh everytime he stepped on the court. He seriously looked like he wanted to kill someone. Him and Brett Lawrie of the Jays would probably get along quite well.
This was from one of the regular season match-ups against the Nets. Pretty hilarious.
Ross Destroys Faried
Goodnight, Manimal. Seriously, geez. This has to be up there for one of the best dunks of all time by a Raptor. Like, what.
Raptors Bring Back Purple
The Raptors announced next year they will bring back the purple. It also looks like they will bring back Vince Carter if all works out.
DeRozan Destroys Singler
Such an underrated slam. I thought this was pretty damn deadly, but didn’t even make top 10 dunks of the year on NBA.com
Just overall, the resurrection of Lowry was awesome. And basically, if the Raps don’t re-sign this guy, it’s back to square one. MVP.
Durant Destroys Raptors
As a basketball fan, this was incredible to watch. As a Raptors fan, not so much.
While drinking and driving is absolutely no joke, we can safely laugh off the matter at this point because Jonas is fine. Hopefully he learned from the incident – I can’t remember the last time a Raptor got into legal trouble.
Raising the Banner
This was awesome. I mean, how many people predicted this?
Masai says F— Brooklyn
Epic. And to those of you that haven’t realized it yet, this was a calculated move to create even more league-wide buzz, hype up Toronto, and take some of the attention off the inexperienced Raps players.
Lowry puts on incredible show, scores 36
50 Cent loves the Raps
This showed everyone that Toronto really does care.
Casey rides Subway to game 7
The backstory behind this is that he didn’t anticipate the traffic, so he opted for a Subway ride. He was taking up two seats obviously because he didn’t want to be bothered, however said in a later interview that there was plenty of space on the train.
Raptors fans, give it up for yourselves. That was incredible.
The Raptors fans have been loud and enthusiastic inside and outside of the arena!
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) May 1, 2014
Toronto is the East's version of Golden State. Unreal fan support regardless of team success. This scene outside the arena is amazing.
— Steve Kerr (@SteveKerr) April 19, 2014
Raps fans troll Brooklyn
We may have lost the series, but Raps fans, we definitely won the trash talk battle. Newspapers and all. I can smell a rivalry brewing. Actually, probably not because the Nets are going to suck after this season.
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) May 1, 2014
Lowry & DeRozan’s kids steal show at presser
This must have helped take away from the burn a little bit, after the devastating game 7 loss.
Raptors Re-sign Casey & Say Goodbye
Casey will be back, Masai talked about how important continuity would be (meaning he’s going to really try to bring everyone back and keep this thing going), and the Raps said thank you.
Overall, it has been a pleasantly surprising year. The Raps’ success made our jobs a lot more enjoyable, and we thank you for reading. We have a lot more content coming for you in coming weeks, so don’t go anywhere.