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HISTORY - TIMELINE

APRIL 23, 1993: The National Basketball Association announces it has received a formal application for expansion from Professional Basketball Franchise (Canada), Inc. (PBF), comprised of John I. Bitove of Bitove Investments, Inc., Allan Slaight of Standard Broadcasting Limited, Borden Osmak of The Bank of Nova Scotia, Phil Granovsky of Atlantic Packaging, Ltd., and former Ontario Premier David Peterson, who serves as the group's Chairperson.

JULY 29, 1993: Members of the NBA's expansion committee visit Toronto to meet with representatives of PBF.

SEPTEMBER 30, 1993: The NBA expansion committee announces its recommendation that PBF be awarded an expansion franchise for the 1995-96 season, to become the 28th team in the NBA and the first expansion franchise outside of the United States.

NOVEMBER 4, 1993: The NBA Board of Governors officially grants Toronto an NBA expansion franchise under the ownership of PBF, with John I. Bitove as team president.

MAY 15, 1994: The Toronto Raptors Basketball Club Inc. officially begins the 18-month countdown to its first tip-off in November 1995 by unveiling its name, logo and colours (Raptor Red, purple, black and Naismith Silver).

MAY 24, 1994: Isiah Thomas is introduced as Vice President, Basketball of Toronto Raptors.

DECEMBER 21, 1994: Franchise receives 50 per cent deposits on 15,127 season tickets for 1995-96 season at SkyDome.

DECEMBER 21, 1994: Plans are unveiled for a 22,500-seat stadium at 40 Bay Street site in downtown Toronto; letter of intent signed with Canada Post, owners of lakeshore-fronting property.

DECEMBER 23, 1994: Raptors Foundation helps Toronto Star Santa Fund reach $900,000 goal with $51,000 donation the first official community contribution by NBA team's charitable fund-raising umbrella.

FEBRUARY 1, 1995: Toronto Raptors unveil official uniforms at BCE Place in Toronto, with international launch February 3 at the "Super Show" in Atlanta.

FEBRUARY 24, 1995: Toronto Raptors announce naming of new home as "Air Canada Centre". Billed as one of the most significant partnerships of a Canadian sporting enterprise, the arena will be completed in early 1999.

MAY 16, 1995: Raptors sign closing documents to make the team members in full of the NBA.

MAY 26-28, 1995: Raptors hold first free-agent training camp at Seneca College, Toronto.

JUNE 2, 1995: Raptors name Brendan Malone, a veteran of 26 years in the coaching profession including nine years in the NBA, as the first head coach.

JUNE 16, 1995: Following a coin toss held at the NBA office in New York with representatives of the Toronto Raptors and Vancouver Grizzlies on hand, Raptors will pick seventh in the 1995 NBA Draft and first in the 1995 NBA Expansion Draft.

JUNE 24, 1995: B.J. Armstrong of the Chicago Bulls headlines a roster of 14 players selected by the Toronto Raptors in the 1995 NBA Expansion Draft.

JUNE 28, 1995: Raptors pick 5-foot-10 point guard Damon Stoudamire of the University of Arizona seventh in the 1995 NBA Draft first round, followed by Jimmy King of the University of Michigan in the second round. Staged at SkyDome, this is the first time the draft was held outside of the United States and drew a record crowd of 21,168.

OCTOBER 6-12, 1995: Toronto Raptors hold their first-ever training camp at Copps Coliseum in Hamilton.

OCTOBER 14, 1995: The Raptors play their first preseason game at the Halifax Metro Centre, defeating the Philadelphia 76ers, 120-107. Toronto will play all eight of its preseason contests in Canada, four in Toronto as well as Saint John, NB, Saskatoon, and in Winnipeg, versus the Vancouver Grizzlies in the first Naismith Cup.

NOVEMBER 1995: The team officially establishes the Raptors Foundation, a charitable organization dedicated to working with registered charities for the betterment of youth.

NOVEMBER 2, 1995: Toronto Raptors announce their 12-man active roster that will open their inaugural season. The opening day lineup includes Victor Alexander, Willie Anderson, Acie Earl, Jimmy King, Oliver Miller, Tracy Murray, Ed Pinckney, Alvin Robertson, Carlos Rogers, John Salley, Damon Stoudamire and Zan Tabak.

NOVEMBER 3, 1995: The NBA makes its historic return to Canada as the Toronto Raptors defeat the New Jersey Nets, 94-79, before a record crowd of 33,306 gathered at the SkyDome in Toronto.

FEBRUARY 10, 1996: Damon Stoudamire receives the MVP award for the Schick Rookie Game at the All-Star Weekend in San Antonio.

MARCH 24, 1996: The NBA season-high for attendance takes place at SkyDome as 36,131 witness the Raptors defeat the first place Chicago Bulls, 109-108.

APRIL 22, 1996: One day after the first season ends, with the Raptors posting a 21-61 record, Darrell Walker is named the new head coach of the Raptors as Brendan Malone steps down from his position due to philosophical differences with the team.

MAY 15, 1996: Damon Stoudamire receives the 1995-96 Schick Rookie of the Year Award.

NOVEMBER 1, 1996: The Toronto Raptors begin their second NBA season hosting the New York Knicks, 50 years to the day the Toronto Huskies hosted the Knicks in the first-ever game in NBA history. New York won both times, prevailing 107-99 this year.

NOVEMBER 15, 1996: Slaight Investments, Inc. takes majority control of the Toronto Raptors Basketball Club Inc. after buying out Bitove Investments, Inc.

NOVEMBER 22, 1996: The Raptors appoint Richard Peddie as new team president and chief operating officer.

MARCH 12, 1997: Raptors officially break ground at Air Canada Centre site at 40 Bay St.

APRIL 28, 1997: The first concrete is poured for Air Canada Centre’s foundation.

NOVEMBER 20, 1997: The team announces that Isiah Thomas, Executive Vice President, Basketball has resigned his position with the club and will sell his nine percent ownership stake to majority owner Allan Slaight. Glen Grunwald is promoted to General Manager.

FEBRUARY 12, 1998: Maple Leaf Gardens, Ltd. announces its purchase of the Toronto Raptors Basketball Club Inc. and the Air Canada Centre.

FEBRUARY 13, 1998: The Raptors announce a six-player deal with the Portland Trail Blazers at the same time that head coach Darrell Walker steps down from his position to be replaced by Butch Carter on an interim basis.

FEBRUARY 18, 1998: Toronto announces the largest trade in club history, a seven-player deal with Boston.

MARCH 10, 1998: The Board of Directors of Maple Leaf Gardens, Ltd. names Richard Peddie as President and CEO of the transition team that will oversee the construction of the Air Canada Centre and the management of the Raptors and Maple Leafs. The post is made permanent on October 6.

MARCH 27, 1998: The NBA unanimously approves the sale of the Raptors to Maple Leaf Gardens, Ltd.

APRIL 22, 1998: Maple Leaf Gardens, Ltd. announces the company’s purchase of the Raptors and Air Canada Centre has been completed.

JULY 1, 1998: Maple Leaf Gardens, Ltd. is renamed Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Ltd., the parent company of the Raptors, the Toronto Maple Leafs of the NHL, Air Canada Centre and Maple Leaf Gardens.

JANUARY 21, 1999: The Raptors hold training camp at Air Canada Centre for the first time.

FEBRUARY 21, 1999: The Raptors play their first game at Air Canada Centre, defeating the Vancouver Grizzlies, 102-87, in front of a sellout crowd of 19,800.

MAY 26, 1999: Vince Carter is named the Schick NBA Rookie of the Year.

SEPTEMBER 30, 1999: The team unveils its new uniforms for the start of the 1999-2000 season.

OCTOBER 5, 1999: The Raptors begin training camp for their first full season at Air Canada Centre.

FEBRUARY 13, 2000: Vince Carter becomes the first Raptor to start and play in the All-Star Game as he accumulates more votes than any other player. The day before he won the Slam Dunk Contest.

APRIL 12, 2000: The Raptors qualify for the NBA playoffs for the first time in club history.

APRIL 30, 2000: The Raptors host their first-ever playoff game, falling 87-80 to the Knicks, ending the series in three games.

JUNE 21, 2000: Lenny Wilkens, the winningest coach in NBA history, is named the new head coach of the Raptors.

JANUARY 16, 2001: Raptors tie an NBA record with only three turnovers in a 114-99 loss to the Houston Rockets.

JANUARY 19, 2001: Lenny Wilkens records his 1,200th NBA win with a 101-79 victory over the visiting Washington Wizards.

JANUARY 27, 2001: For the second consecutive year, Vince Carter receives the most fan votes for the NBA All-Star Game (1,717,687).

FEBRUARY 10, 2001: Morris Peterson becomes the third Raptor to play in the Schick NBA Rookie Challenge during All-Star Weekend in Washington D.C.

FEBRUARY 11, 2001: Vince Carter and Antonio Davis start for the Eastern Conference at the NBA All-Star Game in Washington, D.C.

FEBRUARY 20, 2001: Mark Jackson records his 9,062nd career assist vs. Golden State to surpass Isiah Thomas for fourth on the NBA all-time assists chart.

FEBRUARY 28, 2001: Charles Oakley becomes the Raptors’ all-time leading rebounder pulling down 11 boards at Atlanta, surpassing Doug Christie’s mark of 1,448.

MARCH 2, 2001: Vince Carter becomes the Raptors’ all-time leading scorer surpassing Doug Christie (4,448).

MARCH 4, 2001: Vince Carter is named NBA Player of the Week averaging 31.8 points, 6.5 rebounds and 4.8 assists leading the Raptors to four consecutive victories.

MARCH 23, 2001: The Raptors set an NBA record for most blocks in a game with 23 vs. Atlanta.

APRIL 3, 2001: The Raptors defeat the Sixers 100-85 to secure their second consecutive trip to the post-season.

APRIL 17, 2001: The Raptors play their last home game in front of a franchise-best 27th sellout.

APRIL 18, 2001: Toronto defeats Washington 98-92 to set a franchise record for wins in a season at 47.

APRIL 26, 2001: Toronto records first playoff win defeating the New York Knicks 94-74 at Madison Square Garden.

MAY 4, 2001: Toronto wins first playoff series with a 93-89 win in Game Five at Madison Square Garden.

MAY 18, 2001: The Raptors defeated Philadelphia 101-89 to tie the Eastern Conference Semifinal at 3-3 in front of an overcapacity crowd of 20,499 - the largest attendance for a sporting event at Air Canada Centre.

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