Current Miami Heat guard and Toronto Raptors legend Kyle Lowry is the latest individual to come to the defence of Toronto in light of comments made by Fox Sports analyst Chris Broussard, in which he claimed the city is a “different situation” for African-Americans.
In a recent episode of “The VC Show,” Lowry, 36, talked about what his time living in Toronto was like. The NBA champion gushed over the city he spent eight years with, adding that any turmoil that ever arose was purely situational and never had anything to do with the demographic of Toronto.
“I’m a black African American from 20th and Lehigh in North Philadelphia [and] I absolutely love Toronto,” Lowry said.
“I spent eight years of my career [there], yes there were times where I was like, ‘man I need to go somewhere else,’ but it wasn’t because of being black — it was because of the situation.”
Broussard left all of Canada incredulous back in early July after stating that Toronto presents a “different situation than African Americans are used to being in.” This was his reasoning as to why superstar Kevin Durant, who requested a trade out of Brooklyn, would not want to play for the Raptors.
“I don’t think KD will want to go to Toronto,” Broussard said on First Things First. “Great city, but it’s not America and you feel it when you’re there, I’m telling you, especially as an African American. It’s a different situation than African Americans are used to being in. And I’ve talked to people in that organization pre [Masai] Ujiri about, can they keep African-American superstars there? Tracy McGrady left. Vince Carter left. Chris Bosh left."
Lowry went on to praise Toronto for its incredible celebration of Caribbean culture and how it is a paragon of multiculturalism, serving as Canada’s melting pot.
“I lived in North York [and] I’ve seen Black people all the time,” Lowry explained. “The Caribbean culture in Canada alone is ridiculous. I appreciate how [Toronto] is kind of the melting pot of Canada. You can find any race, any nationality mixed with any nationality in Canada — it’s unbelievable.
“I love Toronto and I can go back there literally whenever I want and feel very comfortable. Not even being who I am, but being a Black man.”
The six-time All-Star took a humble approach in repudiating Broussard’s comments. The show’s host — and fellow Raptors legend — Vince Carter was more brazen in his response. In an episode that aired about a month earlier, Carter called the pundit's remarks “disappointing,” while giving a visibly consternated response.
“I’ve had my ups and downs with Toronto for whatever reasons, being traded and all that, but one thing Toronto is not is an awkward city for an African American,” Carter said.
“I re-upped there. There [are] other players who re-upped there. There [are] players that are dying to get to Toronto, saying that Toronto was one of the best-kept secrets — which I'm well documented saying that 20 years ago. It's just disappointing to hear that. Where do you get that information from? What players have you quoted? Is that your personal opinion?”
Suffice to say, star players who have actually lived in and experienced the city first hand are not buying whatever Broussard was selling.
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