Sask. man camps out in rain in Toronto for hotly-anticipated Game 5 of the NBA finals

A Saskatoon man has joined Raptors fans at Toronto's Jurassic Park, who are camping out in anticipation for Game 5 of the NBA finals. Meanwhile, Regina and Saskatoon will be hosting their own Jurassic Parks for tonight's game.

The Toronto Raptors lead the series 3-1 against the Golden State Warriors

Fans turned out in the hundreds last Friday to cheer on Canada's only NBA team. (Bryan Eneas/CBC News)

A Saskatoon man has joined Raptors fans at Jurassic Park who are camping out to watch Game 5 of the NBA finals in Toronto. 

Max Heise left for Toronto from Saskatchewan yesterday to take in the highly-anticipated game in which the Raptors will host the Golden State Warriors. He said he got a hotel room and decided to check out Jurassic Park once he got to the city.

He realized people were already camped out to watch the game, in which the Raptors seek to finish their historic run at the NBA finals. The team is currently leading the series, 3 - 1. 

"We weren't planning on lining up until the next morning," Heise said, "We realized we should come the night before too."

That's when he decided to camp out too. He didn't have a lot prepared and only had garbage bags for protection, when it rained most of the night.

"Sleeping on pavement is still sleeping on pavement. It doesn't get much easier," Heise said.

Thousand of fans have been cheering on the Toronto Raptors in Jurassic Park, a viewing area outside of the city's arena. (CBC)

Jurassic Park across Canada

The Jurassic Park concept is spreading across Canada, including here in Saskatchewan.

The Saskatchewan Rattlers hosted a viewing party for Game 4 at Saskatoon's city hall, and will do so again tonight for Game 5.

Raul Garcia, spokesperson for the Saskatchewan Rattlers, said there were issues during Game 4 with the screen, due to sunlight interfering with the projection. 

"This time, we're going with an LED screen so it's completely visible regardless of how much light there is during the daytime," he said.

There will be food trucks along 23rd Street for the event and a DJ will perform from 6 p.m. CST until tip-off an hour later. People who are planning on going are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs or blankets to sit on during the event.

"Everyone is excited to support Canada's team," Garcia said.

Jurassic Park at Mosaic Stadium

The City of Regina held a viewing party for Game 4 in Victoria's City Square Plaza on June 7. While Game 5 was scheduled to be shown at the same location, the event has since been moved to Mosaic Stadium.

Geoff Glasspell was one of the first fans in line to get into a viewing party at Mosaic Stadium in Regina on June 10, 2019. He said he's been watching the Toronto Raptors since he was a child and still has a deep connection to the sport. (CBC News)

Fans were already lining up outside of the stadium on Monday afternoon.

The first in line, Geoff Glasspell, said he's always loved basketball and has been supporting the Raptors since he was a child. 

"I played University basketball here as well, so I just loved that and then I coach a bunch of club teams and we're actually called the Regina Raptors," he said. 

Asked what he thinks the outcome of the game is going to be, he said he thinks Toronto is going to take the series in Game 5.
Jurassic Park in Regina was held in the City Square Plaza on Friday night, but will move to Mosaic Stadium on Monday evening for Game 5. (Bryan Eneas/CBC News)

Sabeen Ahmad, spokesperson for the Regina Exhibition Association Limited (REAL) that runs Mosaic Stadium, noted there is a Saskatchewan Roughrider game on Thursday, which coincides with the timing of the next planned game. 

"We're hoping it doesn't have to continue and they win in Game 5," Ahmad said, "But if they don't win, we will show Game 6 at Mosaic Stadium."

Ahmad said the event will be treated like any other event at Mosaic Stadium, which means no outside food or drinks will be permitted. There will be the regular concession and drink stands open for the event.

She says it will be stands seating only and no viewers will be allowed to sit or stand on the football field.


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