Kyle Lowry’s Players’ Tribune piece will get Raptors fans emotional

BOSTON, MA - MARCH 04: Kyle Lowry #7 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo against Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - MARCH 04: Kyle Lowry #7 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo against Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /

The Toronto Raptors are working their way back to the postseason in 2021-22, and they’re doing so without the services of future Hall of Fame point guard Kyle Lowry. After nearly a decade up north, Lowry decided to leave for a Miami Heat team that has a slightly better chance of winning a championship.

After missing some time due to a personal matter earlier in the season, Lowry will officially make his first appearance in Scotiabank Arena as a visiting player on Sunday. He may have left the Raptors, but the respect and admiration Lowry has for Masai Ujiri and Toronto’s collection of stars is palpable.

In a Players’ Tribune piece, Lowry detailed a long phone call with Ujiri when he made up his mind about going to Miami. Lowry, who called Ujiri “big bro” in the piece, said that his relationship with the Raptors’ mastermind is much bigger than basketball. The love he feels for Ujiri, the organization, and the fans will be on display on Sunday.

Lowry talked about how excited he is to be back in Toronto after 26 months. With Fred VanVleet and Pascal Siakam now becoming stars after years of studying under Lowry, the Raptors legend is excited to go head-to-head with them and see what they’ve learned.

Kyle Lowry is excited to play in front of Toronto Raptors fans again.

“I also think it might just be a normal night in some ways,” Lowry said. “Because regardless of the jersey I’m wearing, a lot still hasn’t changed, and won’t ever change.” No matter what jersey he wears in the twilight years of his career, he will be thought of first and foremost as a Raptor.

The move seems to have worked out for both parties. While letting No. 7 go allowed the Raptors to lean on Scottie Barnes and acquire Precious Achiuwa, Lowry is averaging 13.2 points and 7.5 assists per game for a Heat team that currently owns the No. 1 seed in the East.

Will the master return to teach his pupils a thing or two? Will the collection of young players Lowry mentored take over and steal a win?

It’s a shame that Lowry’s last season in Toronto had to be thousands of miles away in Tampa amid constant losing and trade rumors. After helping turn the Raptors from another also-ran into a consistent winner and eventual champion, Lowry deserved to go out with more bombast.

Based on how this article sounded, it doesn’t seem like either side has any hard feelings for the other.

The atmosphere in Scotiabank Arena is going to be electric. It might be the most intense feel for an April regular season game that Scotiabank has seen in years. The things Lowry did for this franchise will never be forgotten, and fans will have the opportunity to show their reverence for him when he makes his return.

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