It was as crazy a scene as anyone connected with the team has ever seen as the Raptors prepared for the biggest game in the franchise’s history.
Fans were lined up along the south end of the Scotiabank Arena, up Bay Street east along to Front Street and west from there to past York Street more than three hours before tipoff of Game 6 of the NBA’s Eastern Conference final.
The stakes were huge: With a win over the Milwaukee Bucks at the Scotiabank Arena, Toronto would advance to the NBA Finals for the first time in the 24 years of the team’s existence. The Raptors led the best-of-seven series 3-2 and Game 7, if necessary, will be Monday in Milwaukee.
The Raptors have never had a game with as much on the line as tonight; they were 2-2 against Cleveland in the conference final in 2016 but lost soundly in the final two games.
The series winner will meet the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals that begin Thursday in either Toronto or Milwaukee.