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Recreation 7s are an enormous a part of Raptors historical past

On Wednesday night time, the Toronto Raptors saved their NBA title defence alive with a 125-122 double-overtime win over Boston. That gutsy/inspiring/thrilling victory compelled a extremely anticipated Recreation 7 tonight at 9 p.m. ET within the Disney bubble.

Like everybody else in sports activities, the Raptors have combined leads to Recreation 7s (they’re mainly, nearly by definition, coin flips). The franchise’s all-time document in them is 3-2.

Two of these video games ended with one of the vital memorable moments in group historical past — for higher or worse. Each occurred within the second spherical vs. Philadelphia. This is a glance again at them:

2001: The Vince Carter commencement recreation

One of many nice turning factors in NBA historical past. The results of this recreation, and the response to it, modified the course of each a franchise and certainly one of basketball’s greatest stars.

Within the spring of 2001, Toronto was nonetheless firmly within the grip of Vinsanity. Carter had turn into the Raptors’ first true famous person by successful the Rookie of the Yr Award for 1998-99 after which placing on the best show in the history of the Slam Dunk Contest in 2000. Within the ’01 playoffs, he rallied the Raps to their first-ever playoff collection win with back-to-back clutch elimination-game performances vs. New York within the best-of-five opening spherical.

Now Carter was going toe-to-toe with the nice Allen Iverson, the 2000-01 scoring champion and MVP. Vince answered The Reply’s 54 factors in Recreation 2 with 50 of his personal in Recreation 3. With the Raptors dealing with elimination in Recreation 6, Carter got here by means of with 39.

However then, Vince made an uncommon transfer. On the day of Recreation 7, he flew to North Carolina to attend his college commencement ceremony. At this time, this is able to most likely be extra warmly obtained (Schooling first! Is not that what we’re all the time telling our youngsters?). However again then, the sports-radio ghouls have been able to pounce when Carter missed the potential series-winning shot on the buzzer and the Raptors misplaced by one. They accused him of being “delicate” and “not caring sufficient” — conveniently ignoring that he performed all 48 minutes that night time and had a strong 20 factors in an 88-87 slugfest typical of that hard-nosed period.

It will develop into Carter’s final playoff recreation as a Raptor. A knee harm induced him to overlook Toronto’s transient look within the 2002 playoffs, and his relationship with the group and its followers continued to bitter till he requested for a commerce and was despatched to New Jersey in December 2004. The Raptors would not make it again to the playoffs till 2007, they usually would not win one other collection till 2016 — a decade and a half after Carter led them previous the Knicks.

2019: The Kawhi Leonard Shot

Whereas Vince was the Raptors’ first true famous person, Kawhi is one of the best participant ever to placed on a Raptors uniform. When he arrived in Toronto, he already had a Finals MVP, two Defensive Participant of the Yr Awards and a pair of top-three finishes in MVP voting below his belt from his time in San Antonio. However he’d by no means really led a group to a title.

After all, Leonard ended up doing precisely that in his lone season in Toronto, delivering the town its first NBA championship and incomes his second Finals MVP award. However he and the Raptors got here near being bounced within the second spherical by an enormous Philly group that backed them right into a rockfight of a Recreation 7 in Toronto.

The sport was tied 90-90 with lower than 5 seconds left when Toronto inbounded the ball to Kawhi and Philly’s powerful defence funnelled him to the nook, forcing him into an extremely tough fallaway try over 7-footer Joel Embiid. The shot, as you already know, bounced 4 instances off the rim earlier than dropping in to provide Kawhi 41 factors and the NBA’s first-ever Recreation 7-winning buzzer beater. The remainder is historical past.

So these are the 2 extremes. Will tonight’s Recreation 7 be extra Kawhi or Carter? As normal, it is a tossup. Read about how the possibility of more Game 7 magic has reinvigorated Raptors fans in this piece by CBC Sports’ Devin Heroux.

Kawhi Leonard poured in 41 factors, together with a dramatic game-winner because the Toronto Raptors beat the Philadelphia 76ers 92-90 to advance to the Jap Convention Finals. 1:23

Serena Williams missed a golden probability to match the Grand Slam document

She’ll stay one shy of Margaret Courtroom’s all-time mark of 24 singles titles in the intervening time (at the least) after dropping to Victoria Azarenka within the U.S. Open semifinals final night time. Williams took the primary set 6-1 however then pale as her lower-ranked opponent rallied to win the subsequent two units 6-Three to take the match. Read more about it and watch highlights here.

Serena continues to be one of many higher gamers on this planet, however her window is closing. She turns 39 quickly and is having increasingly more hassle maintaining with one of the best youthful gamers. Her final Grand Slam title got here greater than 3½ years in the past and he or she’s 0-Four in finals since then. This U.S. Open was an amazing alternative for her as a result of 5 of the seven gamers above her on this planet rankings determined to skip the match, and the 2 that did present up each received bounced earlier than the quarter-finals.

However the title is now Naomi Osaka’s to lose. The 22-year-old from Japan is favoured to win her first Slam since she took the U.S. and Australian Opens back-to-back in late 2018 and early ’19, which pushed her to No. 1 on this planet. She got here into this match ranked ninth — one spot behind Serena. Azarenka, 31, can be a former world No. 1 with two Slam titles. The Belarusian received back-to-back Aussies in 2012 and ’13. She was ranked 27th heading into the U.S. Open. The ultimate is Saturday at Four p.m. ET.

The boys’s semifinals have been simply getting began at our publish time. It is No. 5 seed Alexander Zverev vs. No. 20 Pablo Carreno Busta, and No. 2 Dominic Thiem vs. No. Three Daniil Medvedev. The winners meet within the last on Sunday at Four p.m. ET. Regardless of who takes it, it’s going to be his first Grand Slam singles title.

Rapidly…

Brooke Henderson is within the hunt on the second ladies’s golf main of the yr. The Canadian star celebrated her 23rd birthday yesterday by capturing a 4-under that put her in a tie for fourth place after the opening spherical of the ANA Inspiration in California. She tees off at 4:27 p.m. ET at the moment. The one different Canadian within the discipline, Alena Sharp, completed her second spherical at the moment at 2-over. That is near the lower line, however she was projected to make it at our publish time. See an updated leaderboard here.

The favourites face obstacles within the NHL’s convention finals. Vegas has appeared like the higher group within the Western last. However that is hockey, so after all Dallas leads the collection 2-1 after Alexander Radulov scored 31 seconds into OT last night. Recreation Four is Saturday night time. Tonight, Tampa Bay can go up 3-Zero on the Islanders within the Jap last. However the Lightning could possibly be with out Conn Smythe Trophy candidate Brayden Level, who left Recreation 2 after falling into the boards. They usually’ll undoubtedly be with out less-important ahead Alex Killorn, who received a one-game suspension for hitting Brock Nelson into the glass from behind. Plus, captain Steven Stamkos has but to play because the NHL returned from its pause. Read more about the challenges facing Tampa here.

Kia Nurse reached a milestone. The Canadian national-team standout surpassed 1,000 factors for her WNBA profession by scoring 18 final night time in New York’s loss to Indiana. It has been a tricky season for the third-year professional and her group. The Liberty are an terrible 2-18 and Nurse is capturing solely 26 per cent from the sector (down from 39 per cent final yr). But it surely’ll be over quickly. The WNBA common season ends Sunday and New York has already been eradicated from playoff rivalry. Read more about last night’s WNBA games here.

This weekend on CBC Sports activities

Canadian Premier League soccer: The CPL’s championship match is all the way down to the ultimate 4 groups, who’re taking part in a spherical robin to resolve who advances to the title match subsequent weekend. On Saturday, Forge FC faces Pacific FC at 1 p.m. ET, and Cavalry FC meets HFX Wanderers FC at Three p.m. ET. You may watch each matches dwell on the CBC TV community or stream them dwell on CBCSports.ca, the CBC Sports activities app and CBC Gem. Read about how some former Canadian university players are proving themselves in the CPL here.

Seaside volleyball: The King of the Courtroom tournaments within the Netherlands function an fascinating twist: at the least three groups are concerned in each match. In an effort to rating some extent, it’s important to be taking part in from the “King’s” (or “Queen’s”) aspect of the courtroom. If the opposite group on the courtroom wins the rally, they take over the King’s/Queen’s aspect. Both means, dropping a rally means you get got rid of the courtroom in favour of the subsequent group in line. Read more about how these matches work and watch them live here. The boys’s and girls’s semifinals are Saturday from 5:30 a.m. ET to 1 p.m. ET, and the finals are Sunday from 1:30-5 p.m. ET.

These are the highlights, however you may get CBC Sports’ full broadcast and streaming schedule here.

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