It was a rough night for Toronto sports fans who spent thousands upon thousands of dollars in the hopes of seeing one of their teams win a championship for the first time in more than 25 years.
Not only did Raptors fans helplessly sit and watch the Golden State Warriors storm back for a huge win in Game 5 of the NBA Finals, but the people of Toronto were soundly criticized for how they handled one of the game’s major focal points: Kevin Durant’s injury.
The Warriors star tried to gut it out and play on an injured calf/Achilles and actually looked good in the process. Durant scored 11 points in just under 12 minutes before re-injuring his leg. The swingman felt something go in his leg, causing him to turn over the ball before going down in pain.
As Durant writhed in pain, Raptors fans took the low road and cheered the injury. It was so bad, in fact, that Toronto players actually felt the need to try and settle down the crowd.
Warriors big man DeMarcus Cousins ripped the fans after the game.
“Trash, so trash,” Cousins told reporters after the Warriors’ dramatic, series-saving win. “Like I said, we’re idolized as superstar athletes, not human beings. It’s always about what we can do between those lines. That’s it. That’s all that ever matters. Once we lash out and do human-type things, then we’re considered bad guys.”
Steph Curry, who lived in Toronto when his dad played a couple of seasons for the Raptors, had a more diplomatic yet disappointed tone.
“I was very confused around that reaction,” he said in his postgame press conference. “It’s not my experience with the people of this city, and I commend Danny Green and Kyle Lowry, especially. I think they were the ones kind of saying to the crowd, “Let’s check ourselves a little bit” and understand this is about an individual, a human being and not ‘Oh, shoot, he’s out, he’s hurt, we won the championship.’ That was probably their initial thought. You hate to see that when a guy is going through pain like that. That’s not my experience with this city, and I just hope that ugliness doesn’t show itself again as we go forward in this series.”
The Warriors believe Durant suffered a torn Achilles, obviously ending his season and putting him in a tough spot as he gets set to enter free agency this summer. Meanwhile, the Warriors staved off elimination with the win and now head home for another do-or-die Game 6 at Oracle Arena. If the Warriors can win that game, they’ll earn a chance to return to Toronto where they could win the title in front of these same Raptors fans.
Thumbnail photo via Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports Images