Stripes has been called up to The Show.
After an exhaustive search that failed to turn up the Raptors’ new mascot, the club turned to an in-house solution.
In The Raptor’s house, as it turned out.
Stripes is The Raptor’s young cousin. His mom still calls him Velociraptor, especially when he is in trouble, but his unique markings led to his nickname when Stripes was just a kid about, oh, 200 million years ago.
The Raptor suffered a potentially season-ending injury early in the exhibition season. A true gamer, The Raptor has braved injuries and evolution to carve out a career as the best mascot in the NBA, if not in the entire sports world, but a panel of dinosaur veterinarians (try finding one of those on a weekend) prescribed rest.
Unless you count Drake, Stripes is The Raptor’s biggest fan. He lives in The Raptor’s basement, surrounded by all the Raptors paraphernalia he can eat.
Even though he had season tickets in the purples, Stripes preferred a discreet vantage point in the rafters where he could enjoy the spectacle of every Raptor game from a distance which is important when your eyes are 18 inches apart.
Between games, Stripes and The Raptor reviewed game tapes of The Raptor’s favorite bits: the mid-court break dance, the referee mock and the sideline popcorn grab which requires precise timing when your fingers are eight inches in diameter and your claws could shred Kevlar.
After interviewing some of the top names in the mascot community, The Raptor and Coach Dwane Casey determined the best candidate had been right there under The Raptor’s snout all the time.
All you need to know about Stripes.
Favourite foods: Hawks, Hornets, Bulls and the occasional Wizard. Herbivores with just a pinch of salt.
Favourite television show: The Flintstones.
Favourite actor: Rex from Toy Story.
Favourite character from literature: The fire-breathing dragon in The Paper Bag Princess.
Favourite non-basketball activity: Watching Jurassic Park marathons in The Raptor’s basement.
Favourite sports after basketball: Football but the laces keep getting stuck between his teeth.
Least favourite things: Meteors, line dancing.
Role models who inspire him: 1. The Raptor. 2. Godzilla. 3. Barney.