Are Raptors fans getting too caught up in the hype of the NBA Finals for their own good? Toronto is one win away from its first-ever NBA Championship title, so crowds of ecstatic basketball fans in Jurassic Park are to be expected. But they are hard to control and mob mentality behaviour can bring out the worst in people.
It's clear by now that some Raptors fans are capable of losing their cool after an intense game. A disturbing video of two Golden State Warriors fans being assaulted outside of Scotiabank Arena made its rounds online on Tuesday morning.
Toronto Police have launched an investigation into the matter, despite the fact that no formal complaints were filed. “We are aware of the video and we would encourage the individual to come forward and speak to police,” Const. Jenifferjit Sidhu tells 680 NEWS.
Toronto Police also launched a separate criminal investigation back in May after a group of Raptors fans took their celebrations way too far. Investigators asked the public for help in identifying seven suspects who were captured on video jumping onto a police cruiser and threatening an officer.
Two men have since been arrested in connection to the crime, which occurred on May 25th, the night the Raptors won the Eastern Conference Finals.
Violent playoff mentality behaviour is not new to Canada. Vancouver was thrown into a state of chaos back in 2011 after the Canucks lost the Stanley Cup Finals to Boston Bruins on June 15th. According to CBC, 140 people were injured and one person was critically injured during the riots. It was reported that 4 people were stabbed, 9 police officers were hurt, and 101 people were arrested.
Toronto-based law firm Diamond and Diamond Lawyers has received reports of injuries in and around Jurassic Park after recent playoff games. The firm warns that more fan injuries are expected as the Finals continue.
Here is a list of precautions that the firm recommends every fan should follow:
Drink alcohol responsibly. Drinking too much can lead to violence and irrational decision making.
Do not climb onto cars or poles; both are considered private property.
Wear brightly coloured clothing to ensure you are easily visible to motorists.
Never go alone; make sure to bring a friend and your phone with you in case of an emergency.
Contact police if you see any violent or destructive behaviour taking place.
Always keep a safe distance between you and those around you.
Do not get into arguments with intoxicated people.
Do not throw any sort of projectile.
Police Chief Mark Saunders announced on Monday that police would be ramping up their presence in the city's downtown core during Finals games.