I went to the Raptors game against the New Jersey Nets tonight, my third Raptor game this season. In the first game, the Raptors led 2-0, then Atlanta tied it up and went ahead, and never lost the lead again. In the second game, they had a 2-point lead around 24-22 or so, but then lost the lead and never got it back again. So when the Raptors had a five point lead early in the game, I was pumped. Sure it was only 10-5 maybe 2 minutes in, and sure, this is basketball, where a 10-point lead can vanish within a minute, but still. I was kind of right – the Raps had 12-14 point leads several times, and almost every time, the Nets clawed back to within 1 or 2; they even tied it up at least once. The Raptors persevered (even without CB4), and came out on top, 90-78. Their defence was much better in this game than in the previous two, and I thought (being the basketball novice that I am) that T.J. Ford played really well.
Ex-Raptor Vince Carter was booed every time he touched the ball, and whenever he took a shot and missed, the cheers were louder than when the Raptors scored. One time, Vince even attempted a three-pointer and missed the net, rim, and backboard entirely; the crowd went nuts. Vince — an air ball? Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Vince ended up with a positively mediocre 12 points. Fans were yelling “Carter sucks”, and a couple of years ago, I would have been right there with them, but tonight I just didn’t feel the hate. He’s no longer the slimy bastard who admitted that he gave less than his all for the last year or so of his stay in Toronto, now he’s just a guy who used to play here. It’s not like he’s Roger Clemens or anything. Oh, and Alonzo Mourning, who was traded to the Raptors as part of the Carter deal but told them he would not play, and forced them to buy him out for $10 million, is still a scum-sucking dirtbag.
This was the third major sporting event that I’ve been to where something exciting happened to the person next to me:
- A bunch of years ago, I was sitting in the 500-level of SkyDome during a Jays game with Gail and another couple we knew, Mark and Kathy. We were way out (and I mean way the fuck out) in right field, just inside the foul pole. Mark jokingly mentioned the remote possibility of someone hitting a ball to us and I swear to God, the next batter hit a long foul ball that landed in the empty seat in front of Mark, who grabbed the ball.
- At a Rock game a few years ago, my buddy Jeff (with whom I went to the Raptors game tonight) was sitting next to me, and caught a t-shirt thrown from the field.
- At every Raptors game (and every Leafs and Rock game too), they pick two fans at random from the upper section and move them down to the front row (it’s the “Move of the Game”, sponsored by a moving company). Tonight, the chosen two people were sitting right next to me. Man, that would have been suh-weet.