By Arnie Leshin
What you can expect in Oakland Thursday night. What you can’t expect.
You can expect an avalanche of ovations as GoldenState comes out for its game six pre-game warm-up for the final time at Onacle Arena. Next, a repeat of the same when the Warriors return to shoot around before the buzzer sounds and they gather around head coach Steve Kerr.
You can’t expect Kevin Duran to hobble to bench in his uniform. You can’t expect Kevin Durant to be there.
You can expect to see game 6 of the NBA championship finals.
You can expect these Oakland faithful to root for a game 7 back in Toronto, knowing it would still be their team for one more time before riding the Golden State Bridge to their new arena in San Francisco next season.
If they lose, their fans will let forth with a sad ovation as the teams swap high fives, hugs, and the Oakland crowd covers its eyes as the Raptors celebrate their first NBA championship and dethrone the 3-time champions.
What to expect at our northern Canadian neighbors Back in Toronto Thursday night, well the ready to celebrate at home fans on Monday were still disappointed as they took to the streets for those party-like standing room only sites like Jurassic Park. TV, who needs TV when these people have huge screens at every site.
The Raptors need one more win, the Warriors two. It appeared to some that Toronto’s 6-point lead behind 10-straight points from its star, Kwahi Leonard, with 31/2 minutes left, had given it the momentum.
But back came Golden State on back-to-back 3s from Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry, a steal and layup by Drayman Green, and now the home team was down by two with 1:20 left. The deficit than became seven before the Raptors cut it to one, and with the ball with time running down.
Toronto called a time out, and the play was probably set up for Leonard. But he couldn’t get away from two defenders, fired the ball to Lowery in the far corner, and his final fling was way off the mark as time expired.