The time when Vin­san­ity changed it all

Drake-pro­duced doc­u­men­tary traces a line from Vince Carter to rise of bas­ket­ball in Canada

Midtown Post - - 2017 Private Education Guide - Ron John­son

I was at a cottage in Muskoka. It was Vic­to­ria Day week­end in May, and the fam­ily was crowded around a mea­gre-look­ing tele­vi­sion. Vin­san­ity was in full ef­fect through­out the Toronto area and across the coun­try as the Rap­tors roared through the open­ing round of the play­offs with a re­sound­ing win over the New York Knicks.

But as it hap­pens in sports, it had all come to one mo­ment. With just two sec­onds left on the clock, Vince Carter caught the in­bound’s pass, pump faked and went up for a jump shot at the buzzer. It clanked hor­rif­i­cally off the rim be­fore the op­pos­ing team cel­e­brated win­ning the se­ries and even­tu­ally an op­por­tu­nity to play in the NBA Fi­nals.

Al­though the Rap­tors never made it over the moun­tain to win an NBA ti­tle, the Vince Carter era from 1998 to 2004 will be re­mem­bered as the time when bas­ket­ball took over.

Yes, there was his in­suf­fer­able mother. Yes, it seemed like most games would have him on the floor winc­ing in phantom pain. Yes, he was one of those trade-de­mand­ing play­ers that turned his back on the town where it all be­gan. But time heals all wounds, and the nick­name “Air Canada” will never be for­got­ten be­cause of the ex­cite­ment he gen­er­ated and the fans he cre­ated that stick with the team to this day.

From that day for­ward, kids would grab bas­ket­balls en masse and head to the courts at the school, leav­ing piles of hockey sticks scat­tered in sub­ur­ban base­ments through­out the land as mere trin­kets of a by­gone era.

Kids like Cory Joseph, Tris­tan Thomp­son, An­drew Wig­gins, Ja­mal Mur­ray and Nik Stauskas and many more would be­gin to re­al­ize that they could be next, and set about putting in the work that would even­tu­ally see them hit the NBA and see Canada emerge as a bas­ket­ball su­per­power.

This phe­nom­e­non is called the Carter Ef­fect, and it is the name of a new Drake-pro­duced doc­u­men­tary on Vince Carter pre­mier­ing at this month’s Toronto In­ter­na­tional Film Fes­ti­val. We all have our own Carter mo­ments, but it will be fun to see how many we share in com­mon. —

For­mer Toronto Rap­tors great Vince Carter is one of the best dunkers in the his­tory of the NBA and was elec­tric dur­ing his time with the team

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