Toronto Raptors

Basketball is a popular sport in Canada which continues to attract a large number of followers both in the professional and amateur levels of the game. With the aim of increasing the level of competition in the league, the basketball association decided to include teams from Canada. Initially, a team each from Toronto and Vancouver took part in the league. Currently, only one team; the Toronto Raptors, represents Canada in the National Basketball League (NBA) after the second Canadian team Vancouver Grizzlies shifted to Memphis.

The Toronto Raptors

The Raptors are a Canadian professional team that plays in the Eastern Conference Atalanta division of the National Basket Ball League. The team was founded in 1995 as one of the league’s expansion teams and is based in Toronto, Ontario with the home games being played at Scotiabank Arena. The Raptors started their early days in the season on a slow pace.

However, after the acquisition by Vince Carter in 1998 on deadline day, the team tremendously improved setting league attendance records and making it to the NBA playoffs for three consecutive years in the 2000,2001 and 2002 seasons. The team has won four divisional titles since being founded and has registered their most successful season in 2018.

Toronto Raptors’ rivaries

Rivalries are a common aspect of any competitive sport especially if the teams are participating in the same league or if they come from the same geographical region. The NBA league has seen the rise of rivalries between teams and it’s usually exciting watching matches where the teams are rivals as each tries to have the last laugh. For sports bettors betting on the Raptors as an NBA team, it is easy to place bets online with companies such as LeoVegas where you will find many NBA league markets. The Raptors have rivalries with two league teams: the New York Knicks and the Brooklyn Nets.

  • New York Knicks

The rivalry between the Raptors and the New York Knicks can be traced back in the 1999-2000 season when the Raptors made it to their first playoff where they were beaten 3-0 by the Knicks in the first round. In the following season 2000-2001, the two teams met again in the playoffs where the Raptors swept the Knicks 3-2 which ended the New York Knicks’ perennial NBA championship contention which had started in the early 1990s.

  • New Jersey/Brooklyn Nets

In the beginning, the rivalry between the Raptors and the Brooklyn Nets was just a minor one which started after the Raptors sold their star player Vince Carter to the Nets during the 2004-05 season. The rivalry began to shape up after the teams met during the start of the 2007 playoffs with the Nets winning the series of six games by 98-97 against the Raptors.

The 2013-14 season rekindled the rivalry between the teams when they both battled for the Atlantic Division title with the Raptors emerging victorious. However, the Raptors joy was shortlived as the two teams faced each other in the 2014 NBA playoffs and the Nets emerged winners of a seven-game series winning by 104-103.

Fan Base

Toronto is the most populous city in Canada and the main reason why the NBA decided to include the team in the league. The team set NBA attendance records when they made it to the playoffs in 2000, 2001and 2002 seasons.