Toronto

6ix in Six: Raptors fans elated after history-making NBA championship in Game 6

Raptors fans across the country and abroad geared up for a big night of basketball as the team took a second shot at winning its first NBA Finals title — and they weren't disappointed. 

Toronto Raptors captured 1st crown in thrilling 114-110 win over Golden State Warriors

For Toronto fans specifically, the hope was that their team could bring home the championship with a Game 6 win, giving new significance to their city's moniker, "The 6ix." And they did. (Albert Leung/CBC)

Raptors fans across the country and abroad geared up for a big night of basketball as the team took a second shot at winning its first NBA Finals title — and they weren't disappointed. 

For Toronto fans specifically, the hope was that their team could bring home the championship with a Game 6 win, giving new significance to their city's moniker, "The 6ix."

And they did. Toronto beat the two-time defending champion Golden State Warriors 114-110 in Game 6 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night at Oracle Arena in Oakland, Calif.

These fans arrived just before midnight and rigged up a makeshift tent — "a MacGyver-type scheme" as they call it — to try to stay dry:

They were definitely not alone in their excitement. Officials in Toronto closed several busy downtown streets around Jurassic Park in anticipation of an overflow crowd. Even Toronto Mayor John Tory busted out his lucky jacket for the day:

More fans arrived from across Ontario and Canada throughout the day, including the Morsette clan from Calgary.

This Calgary mom and her sons travelled to Toronto hoping to witness a Raptors championship victory from Jurassic Park 1:16

And Daniel Zhang from Markham, Ont., decided to miss a big event in order to witness history.

Raptors fan Daniel Zhang from Markham, Ont., braved a soggy day Thursday to secure his space in Jurassic Park outside Scotiabank Arena. (Justin Irwin/CBC)

Winnipeg, Edmonton and Halifax were among a host of other cities and towns across Canada hosting their own Jurassic Park spinoffs. 

Meanwhile, Raptors fans at Canadian government missions around the world cheered for the team in their respective cities.

The Raptors have now cemented their place in Canadian sports lore. 

"This has been a process — the journey that we've taken to get where we are today. It is happening. We are going to dethrone the Warriors," said superfan Sean Kamin-Patterson.

Kamin-Patterson, a PhD student at Queen's University in Kingston, Ont., won an all-expenses paid trip to Oakland and tickets to Game 6 in a contest. While they're deeply outnumbered, he said fellow fans who made their way to the Bay Area for the game are ready to represent the Raps in an arena full of Warriors fans.

"I am ready for us to claw our way to an NBA championship, the first for the city. It means so much, not just to Toronto, but to all the fans that have followed them," Kamin-Patterson said from his hotel in San Francisco.

"The energy that I'm seeing — everyone is ready. It's Toronto's time. We are all so stoked and excited."

The Raps needed big performances from their shooters and bench personnel. Darnell VanVleet, elder brother of Raptors point guard Fred VanVleet, told CBC News Network that his sibling was "locked in" for tonight.

"I think the team is ready," he said. "We let two games get away from us that I think we had.

"I think the guys are ready to celebrate in Oracle [Arena] tonight."

Darnell VanVleet, Fred Vanvleet's big brother, reflects on what it's like watching the guard shine as the Raptors go for Toronto's first NBA title. 5:58

VanVleet's hometown  of Rockford, Ill., cheered along with his family tonight. It's the only American city with its own version of Jurassic Park. 

Boris Siakam, eldest sibling of Raps power forward Pascal Siakam, said his brother was ready for the pressure of trying to beat the Warriors on their home turf.

"Nothing really fazes him. He wants to be a champion and actually believes he will be," Boris said in an interview from Bowling Green, Ky.

Boris Siakam says his brother's ready to go ahead of Game 6 of the NBA Finals. "He's blessed and honored to be where he is now and to be able to play this game at this level," he said. 6:25

Boris said Pascal wanted to win for their dad, who was killed in a vehicle collision in 2014.

"My dad always had a dream that one of his children would play in the NBA, and Pascal made that come true."

The stakes had never been higher for the Warriors. After 47 seasons, tonight's game was the last in the team's storied arena in Oakland. 

For some Golden State supporters, Game 6 was a grudge match. Raptors fans made headlines earlier this week after some cheered when Warriors superstar Kevin Durant went down with an injury. There's also the video of people heckling Stephen Curry's parents at their Toronto hotel.

Follow along as Raptors fans gather around Canada, and beyond, to cheer on Toronto in Game 6 ⁠— making history with Canada's first NBA championship title.

With files from The Canadian Press

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