"Started from the bottom, now we here" - Raptors win 2019 NBA championship

By Mare Haimona-Riki

The Raptors made history today as they defeated the Warriors 114 - 110, making them the first non-American franchise ever to win the coveted NBA title.

The Scotia Bank Arena and the Jurassic Park Outdoor Arena erupted as the final buzzer went off to conclude the NBA Finals for 2019.  That final whistle marked 24 years since the Canadian franchise have been fighting for the 'Larry O'Brien' championship trophy.

The mentality of the Raptors was right where it needed to be. This was evident in the way that they began the game, relentlessly attacking the basket led by starting point guard, Kyle Lowry, who scored the team's first 11 points. 

The two teams played with heart and determination on both ends of the court, resulting in 14 lead changes by the half time break.

A hard fall  six minutes into the third quarter saw Klay Thompson on his way to the locker room, not returning for the rest of the game.

The scoring for the Raptors was evenly spread, with four players scoring at least 20 points, including Siakam and Lowry who finished with 26 each.

Although he was relatively quiet tonight, Kawhi Leonard may have solidified his position as the finals MVP, due to his leadership and execution all throughout the post season.

At the beginning of this year's NBA season, it would've been hard to believe that the Raptors would even be in the running to make the conference finals, let alone beating the Warriors in six games.

This was largely due to a coaching change and trading their star player, Demar Derozan for Kawhi Leonard.  A decision which, in hindsight, is arguably the best the franchise has ever made in the history of their existence. 

Prior to this game, the closest the Raptors had ever gotten to winning the championship was making it to the Eastern Conference finals in 2016, when they lost in six games to LeBron and the Cavs.

As for now, the Raptors 'finals record', stands at 1-0.