The experience of the Blue Jays, Raptors, and Toronto FC in the playoffs has lifted the citizens of Toronto to their feet. One only hopes the Maple Leafs will be able to do the same.
There seems to be an us against the world kind of mentality. The thinking being no one wants to see us (us being Toronto) win, we’re the underdogs, it will be an easy series for the team that faces any team from Toronto. The Blue Jays and Raptors have used that as motivation in their playoff run.
To use the us against the world theory, it takes more than being hated. You have to be disrespected, have no fans outside your circle, and have every excuse as to why you are not good enough hurled at you. In short, you are an outlier. Welcome to Toronto.
For a team that has to deal with adversity the way the Blue Jays and Raptors have makes them true underdogs. Especially for the Raptors where despite being having no “star” players have made it past the halfway point of the NBA post-season. There was no talk about Kyle Lowry or Demar DeRosan, it was about how Paul George or Dwayne Wade were going to carry their respective teams into the next round. No one gave the Raptors a shot at winning it all. Yet, they are still in it. Hopes of a Toronto team’s demise will have to wait at least another 4 games and it could take longer than that.
The Blue Jays playoff run was even more incredible. The Texas Rangers had a 2-0 lead in the ALDS and had everything going their way yet the Blue Jays battled back to win the series and move on to the ALCS. No one gave them a hope of going as far as they did. Only Jose Bautista and company did.
To say the entire world is against us is an understatement. Not even Canadians like Toronto. They have shown they will cheer for the opponent (American, Russian, et al) and do it without hesitation. I know of a Habs fan that hates Toronto so much that he rooted for the Rangers in the ALDS. He also claims to be in the anti-Trump camp so take it for what it is. There is also a hit piece in the Montreal Gazette that says Bautista instigated the fight with Rougned Odor in Arlington. He believes Bautista got what he deserved because of the bat flip. But what the author ignored was the fact that the Rangers decided to plunk Bautista in his last at-bat in the final head-to-head game between the Blue Jays and Rangers. I suppose being gutless in this case is OK.
I, for one, have been alive long enough to experience this for over 3 decades. It is getting tiring to continue to hear all this nonsense but it goes with the territory. I have stated a number of times that hockey fans hate the Toronto Maple Leafs more than they do their own team. You can now extend that to the Blue Jays and Raptors. They are going to hate us no matter what. So let’s give them a reason.