Raptors fans apologize for cheering Kevin Durant's injury with charity donations
Canadians aren't the type to celebrate someone getting hurt, regardless of how much a threat that person poses to our chances of winning an NBA championship — but that's not what the world saw on Monday night during Game 5 in Toronto.
Back on the court for the first time in over a month for Game 5, Golden State Warriors star and two-time NBA Finals MVP Kevin Durant suffered an apparent Achilles injury during the second quarter of Monday's intense matchup against the Toronto Raptors.
Dozens of Raptors fans were in turn seen cheering in the stands of Toronto's Scotiabank Arena, some of them going so far as to dramatically wave "goodbye" at Durant, who, at that point, was sitting on the court, clutching his leg.
A close up on your Canadian nice Raptors fans as there cheer and wave goodbye to Kevin Durant as he suffers a serious injury pic.twitter.com/UEDo2X9Lhi— Pros and Joes (@ProsAndJoesPod) June 11, 2019
And it wasn't just in the stadium — fans were seen in video footage cheering in bars and at viewing parties all over the city.
Their behaviour was panned widely as "classless," "ridiculous," and evidence of Raptors fans being "gigantic *ssholes."
Raptors stars Kyle Lowry, Serge Ibaka and Danny Green did their best to encourage the crowd to stop cheering, prompting fans to start chanting "KD" instead as the Warriors star limped to the sidelines.
It was too late, however. Footage of fans cheering over Durant's injury (and his assumed inability to play the rest of the game) spread like wildfire on Twitter.
Here's how #Raptors fans reacted after Kevin Durant went down with an Achilles injury: pic.twitter.com/TqjK4TQrtX— Miami Herald Sports (@HeraldSports) June 11, 2019
It was a bad, bad look for Toronto sports fans — some of whom are now trying to redeem the city with good deeds, despite having nothing to do with the viral ugliness.
"On behalf of the level-headed and true fans of Raptor Nation - from Toronto to Vancouver to Iqaluit to St. John's, and any fans living outside Canada: we wanted to say 'sorry'," reads the description of a brand new Go Fund Me campaign in support of the Kevin Durant Charity Foundation.
Great initiative to consider supporting! Way to go @hamzahmoin! 🏀🙌🏻https://t.co/3hQwBYDwUF— Kanwal (@Kanwal_MSH) June 12, 2019
"We're sorry that some fans of Raptor Nation at the Scotiabank arena, Jurassic Park, and in some bars/restaurants showing the game, displayed an ugly side of fandom when they cheered on the injury of Kevin Durant," the description continues.
"Join me in sending our well-wishes to KD as he recovers.... Let's give back to something he's passionate about — helping to enrich the lives of at-risk youth from low-income backgrounds through educational, athletic and social programs."
Since the campaign's inception yesterday, roughly 155 people have donated $3,934 toward an eventual goal of $25,000. A similar fundraising campaign on Facebook has raised less, but is based on the same principle.
"I hereby apologize on behalf of Canada -- prayers for recovery."— Jessica Kleinschmidt (@KleinschmidtJD) June 12, 2019
A fan sent flowers to the Warriors apologizing for Canada's Kevin Durant cheers.
(photo via Warriors Offices)https://t.co/leFg16Sv8l pic.twitter.com/ULAxIjcCO7
In another sweet concilliatory gesture, one fan is said to have sent flowers to the Warriors in hopes of lifting Durant's spirits.
"Dear KD and Warriors," reads a note sent with the flowers. "I can't even believe those dumbass Raptors fans cheered when they saw you were injured."
"I was watching the game and felt horrible, it was a total disgrace," the letter continued. "I hereby apolize on behalf of Canada. Prayers for recovery."
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