Title: Every step counts: NBA championship validates Raptors’ arduous path to the top
Date: June 13, 2019
Original Source: The Athletic
Synopsis: In my latest for The Athletic Toronto, I wrote about the Toronto Raptors winning the NBA Championship.
A lengthy review allowed a moment to process.
The Toronto Raptors were up by one with under one second to play, the NBA Finals hanging in the balance as officials tried to determine what had just happened. What happened was that on a loose ball – after an unlikely Steph Curry miss, after a bizarre closing sequence where the Golden State Warriors tried desperately to force an even unlikelier Game 7 – Draymond Green called a timeout the Warriors didn’t have.
There would be another review, too, dragging out the second that each Raptor has waited a lifetime for into a veritable lifetime of its own. The emotion was obvious, though nobody would show it outwardly as they awaited the final call. Eventually, Kawhi Leonard stepped to the free-throw line to ice the game.
And of course it was Leonard. In that dragged-out, forever of a moment, everything came into focus. All of the how, and especially all of the why. The Toronto Raptors are NBA champions, validating everything that came before.