________________ CM . . . . Volume XXI Number 26. . . .March 13, 2015


The Story of the Toronto Raptors. (The NBA: A History of Hoops).

Nate Frisch.
Mankato, MN: Creative Paperbacks (Distributed in Canada by Raincoast Books), 2015.
48 pp., pbk., $11.99.
ISBN 978-1-62832-035-0.

Subject Heading:
Toronto Raptors (Basketball team)-History-Juvenile literature.

Grades 5-8 / Ages 10-13.

Review by Val Ken Lem.

*** /4



By trading [Antonio] Davis, the Raptors were also able to provide more playing time for the team’s first-round pick from the 2003 NBA Draft, forward Chris Bosh. Drafted after only one year at the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech), the 6-foot-10 and 230-pound Bosh needed playing time to develop his considerable skills and gain the strength needed to battle the league’s big men. While Bosh performed admirably as a rookie, averaging 11.5 points and 7.4 boards per game, the Raptors fell apart after the All-Star break, posting an 8-24 record down the stretch to finish 33-49. [Coach Kevin] O’Neill was then fired, and Sam Mitchell, a former assistant with the Milwaukee Bucks, was brought in to coach the team.


The Story of the Raptors is a concise history of the only Canadian–based team in the National Basketball Association. As one of thirty volumes, the book naturally follows the style of others in the series including the exclusive use of imperial rather than metric measurements. For basketball fans, the intended audience, these measurements will be familiar and normal.

     The entire history of the team from its announcement in 1993 and initial season in 1995 to early 2014 is told in five brief chapters. Using the style of sports journalism, Frisch includes lots of data, including seasonal win-loss records and terminology that requires an understanding of the game for full appreciation. More interesting to this reader are the six “courtside stories” that explore historical developments, including the Canadian origins of the sport, the homes (Sky Dome and then Air Canada Centre) of the team, and Vince Carter’s astounding 51 point game on February 27, 2000. Informative and enjoyable reading is found in the six brief profiles of star players and one coach presented under the heading “introducing.” The star players are Damon Stoudamire, Doug Christie, Tracy McGrady, Vince Carter, and Chris Bosh. Sam Mitchell is the one coach featured in a profile.

     Full-colour, action packed photographs, including some double-page images, are a central part of the book. Players and some coaches are photographed up-close, emotive, and often airborne. An index and table of contents complete the volume.


Val Ken Lem is a librarian at Ryerson University in Toronto, ON, where the Raptors are currently the city’s only professional sports team worthy of their loyal fan support.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.

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