When Raonic, Shapovalov & Felix Celebrated The Raptors' NBA Title At Wimbledon

Canadians show national pride before beginning play at The Championships

Editor's Note: But for the COVID-19 pandemic, Wimbledon would now be underway. During the next two weeks ATPTour.com will look back on memorable matches and happenings at the grass-court Grand Slam. This story was originally published on 30 June 2019.

There’s at least one tennis player who wanted Kawhi Leonard to stay with the Toronto Raptors in the 2019-20 season. 

#NextGenATP Canadian Denis Shapovalov made his plea to the NBA superstar at 2019 Wimbledon before beginning his campaign at the grass-court major.

“Kawhi, please stay with us. Please don’t leave!” Shapovalov said. “Huge respect for him for coming, giving all he had every single game in the season. It’s unbelievable. He’s going to be a hero in Toronto and in Canada for the rest of his life.”

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Shapovalov and his countrymen, Felix Auger-Aliassime and Milos Raonic, gathered for a photo opportunity with 2019 Raptors championship gear in London, celebrating the team’s NBA Finals victory. It was a proud moment for the Canadians, as the Raptors were the first Canadian team to win an NBA title.

“It’s unbelievable, I think, for the city and the country. Just what they did, it goes beyond basketball. They brought the whole country together watching as one. It’s unbelievable for Toronto, I’m super happy,” Shapovalov said. “I want to say congrats to all the guys. They put in a lot of work over the years, a lot of effort.”