JESSICA LAWS: Don't let a win overshadow decency

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The excitement surrounding the Toronto Raptors is almost palpable, we are so close we can almost taste the victory.

The craze and hysteria is contagious coast to coast, young or old, new or extreme, fans are cheering for an NBA team that has continued to be under estimated… until now.

“We the North” camaraderie has changed into a war cry slogan of “North Over Everything,” especially as we play for the chance to win the NBA championship.

We actually have a chance to break the curse, the Raptors have been the better team over the Golden State Warriors over the past five games but there is still an opening for the Warriors to take away our chances if we don’t play smart.

After more than 25 years of waiting for another Toronto sports team to bring home any title there is no doubt the possibility of complete and utter madness in the downtown core of Toronto.

All five of the previous games have seen thousands of people taking to the streets after a win so a championship win will be nothing short of what Toronto saw after the 1992 Blue Jays win.


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Years past have seen several cities party after sweeping victories while maintaining a cordial celebratory attitude.

But because it’s been so long for Toronto fans there is a fear that a win will mean a boil-over of complete mania and destruction of property, which is completely uncalled for and unnecessary.

Honk your horns, scream, yell, cry but don’t let the euphoria of a win override human decency.

Raptors fans come in such a wide variety of ages, races, and denominations its hard to pinpoint what will happen if we win, but the hope is for us to be leaders and role models and show a level of class to the world that, after years of drought, being knocked out and having to get back up again a win has finally come home to Toronto.

However, Raptors fans have given the Warriors enough ammunition to come out and play an aggressive Game 6.

Reports, videos and posts on Twitter show the heckling of Stephen Curry’s parents both in the crowd and when they arrived at their hotel and, if that wasn’t bad enough, Toronto fans applauded and cheered when Kevin Durant went down in the second quarter of Game 5.

Durant, who will not be returning to Game 6, was taken out with an Achilles heal injury and has already underwent surgery.

That type of negativity is what gives some sports fans a really bad reputation for being over the top, belligerent (sometimes drunk) idiots.

One-hundred per cent cheer for your team, your favourite player… but do not bring that type of negative vibe and energy into any arena.


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I personally expect more from Torontonians and Canadians to show a level of class regardless of how long it has been since we have been this close to a win.

And, let’s face it, it isn’t just Raptors fans that have gone overboard, American fans have done and said things that were just as bad, and on a more global scale athletes have had to deal with more than heckling.

As much as these people represent your favourite sport you have to realize  they are human beings that are playing out of love of the game and not just representing a rival city or team.

I have complete faith in Raptors fans to turn over a new leaf and act with a level class expected from a city that has seen nothing but losses for the past 27 years.

If not then it won’t be a win worthy of the fans just a win for those of the players that lay it on the line for us to watch.

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