The Toronto Raptors are just one win away from becoming the first Canadian team in NBA history to win the championship. Will the Raptors win it all and if they do, how will they celebrate? Their victory will bring a lot of exciting firsts to Canada, specifically about how the team will give NBA championship traditions a Canadian twist. Will they celebrate their win by visiting President Trump in the White House?
It’s a tradition for NBA champions to visit the White House so that their athletic achievements can be honoured by the US President. The Warriors turned down their offer to visit the presidential homestead after becoming champs back in 2018, due to their objection to President Trump’s policies. However, CBC reports that since the Raptors aren’t an American team, it isn’t a given that they will be extended the same invitation.
According to CBC, Canada is prepared to celebrate the team in their own way. Matt Pascuzzo, who currently serves as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s press secretary, wrote an email to the media outlet saying that Parliament Hill would be happy to host the Raptors if they win the title.
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"All Canadians are behind the Toronto Raptors, and we are cheering them on every step of the way. The team has already made history, and we would absolutely be honoured to invite them to Parliament,” Pascuzzo wrote.
Toronto’s Mayor John Tory revealed earlier this week that the city has a “special file” on plans for the Raptors if they ever won the NBA championship. The "file" likely includes details on how to prepare for a championship parade.
Another NBA winning team tradition is the championship parade. It is a tradition for NBA teams to throw celebratory parades in their city after winning. During the celebrations, teams travel around their city via bus or limo with the champion trophy and make frequent stops to interact with fans. The parades get a huge turnout - millions of Oakland fans showed up to their parade to celebrate the Warriors back in 2018.
The Raptors face off against the Warriors in Oakland tonight for Game 6 of the NBA Finals.