October 2005: Toronto Raptors 103 Maccabi Tel Aviv 105
Playing on your home court with 15,000 people cheering for the other team.
Being the first NBA team to lose to a European club team in 27 years.
Losing despite playing your starters for most of the game.
Not seeming to care when your ass got beat: "They played this game like it was their championship game." -- Jalen Rose
Having your interior defense summed up by this statement: "Maccabi looked better in the 3rd quarter with Maceo Baston, Nikola Vujcic, and Yaniv Green doing whatever they wanted under their opponents' rim." -- 24sec.net
Getting beat with the Boss of Bosses in attendance: "The consular general for Israel in Toronto slapped hands and joined the team in the celebration as NBA commissioner David Stern hurriedly walked off the court." -- ESPN.com
I should know, I was there that miserable October afternoon. I was one of the few wearing Raptor gear and by the end I was hoping one of the Maccabi fans would lend me their flags so I could cover up my shame and pretend that I cheered for a champion.
And no, the 76ers losing in Barcelona doesn't make the Raptors loss less embarassing in retrospect. This was a game in Toronto, played by NBA rules with NBA refs. It was Maccabi who was barnstorming across North America and playing in a different time zone. In a close game the Raptors folded like cheap tents, which pretty much foretold the fact that the Raptors were the worst close game team in the NBA last season. The only thing that could have been worse was Nate Huffman making a surprise return for Maccabi and dominating in a Maceo Baston-like fashion.
Oh wait, it CAN get worse.