Title: THE RAPTORS NEVER TAKE THE EASY PATH
Date: April 28, 2017
Original Source: Vice
Synopsis: For my latest at Vice, I wrote about the Raptors’ Game 6 win over the Bucks and why they always make things harder for themselves.
There is something to be said for reliability. For predictability. For staying on-brand. Those traits are generally considered to be comfortable, to reduce anxieties with certainty, to be a mark of maturity, even. When it comes to the Toronto Raptors, though, the inevitability with which they’ve long operated is anything but assuaging.
No, the Raptors’ particular brand of reliability flips the idea of certainty on its head, because the only certainty is that wherever the Raptors wind up, they’re going to take the most arduous, circuitous, and stressful path to reach that end.
Naturally, then, the Raptors couldn’t just close out their series with the Milwaukee Bucks in smooth fashion. It just wouldn’t fit. The Raptors had already stayed true to their history of dropping Game 1s at home, after all, and correcting mistakes from earlier in the series with the consistent application of adjustments would be too procedural. For the Raptors to truly turn the page from the Bucks toward the Cleveland Cavaliers, they needed to trip just one more time. The Raptors didn’t enter the game with the specter of impending nervousness hanging over Game 6, because that cloud is just the ecosystem within which they exist.