Toronto Raptors first logo
Toronto Raptors logo

Toronto Raptors HISTORY

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Quick facts:

Founded:                  1995  
Arena:                    Air Canada Center
Division Championships:   6(2007, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)        
NBA Titles:               0
Playoffs                  9
Best Record:              59-23   2017-18
Worst Record:             16-66   1997-98

NBA's return to the Great North:
The Raptors are the second team to be in Toronto and one of 3 all-time to be in Canada. The first Toronto based team was the Toronto Huskies who played the first ever NBA game where they lost to the Knicks. The Huskies lasted only one season and the NBA would not return to Canada for another half-century. The city of Toronto was awarded a franchise in 1993, and months later the city of Vancouver was also awarded a franchise. With the Grizzlies relocation to Memphis, the Raptors are the only NBA team in Canada.

What's in the name?
When the NBA awarded the franchise to Toronto the original idea was to revive the Huskies name from the original NBA team, much like what the Denver Nuggets did when they changed their name from the Denver Rockets. There was one problem however, they could not come up with a logo design that would not look too much like the logo of the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Not wanting to plagiarize the Wolves logo, the team held a nation wide competition to name the new team.

The success of the move Jurassic Park and one of the films main antagonist, the velociraptors, lead to the naming of the new team to being Raptors. But much like the movies, the Raptors in the Toronto logo is not the velociraptor, but rather both are the much bigger and much more vicious utahraptor. The velociraptor was the size of a chicken, while the utahraptor was about 2 meters tall and looked much more like the dinosaurs in the film and in the Raptors logo.

All-star!
In February 2015 Toronto became the first non US city t host an NBA all-star weekend. The weekend was a smashing success with the highlight being the Dunk Contest showdown between Zach Lavine and Aaron Gordon.

The All-star game itself was a classic with the west coming just 3 points shy of scoring 200 points in a game. Paul George almost broke Wilt Chamberlain's record for most points in an all-star game (42) when he scored 41 points. and Russell Westbrook became the first player since Bob Pettit to win back-to-back all-star MVP awards.

Toronto Huskies logo
Toronto's first NBA team, the Huskies.

Toronto Raptors guard Kyle Lowry

 

NBA History