‘Kawhi’ is trending in Canada. Why? Raptors fans have some hot takes as Clippers go down 0-2


“No way Kawhi left Toronto for this.”

“Kawhi should’ve stayed in Toronto man.”

Call them petty or passionate, Toronto Raptors fans are always on the pulse when it comes to watching Kawhi Leonard take another L.

Losing 127-121 against the Dallas Mavericks Tuesday evening, the L.A. Clippers are now down 0-2 in their first round playoff series.

As of Wednesday morning “Kawhi” made the top ten trending list on Twitter, over the Leafs who are up in their playoff series against the Habs. There have been tens of thousands of tweets and retweets since the Clippers’ loss Tuesday, Twitter stats show.

So far in the 2021 post-season, there have been 2.8 times more mentions of Kawhi on Canadian Twitter compared to the regular season. Kawhi is also the one of the top five most-mentioned pro athletes by Canadians since the first post-season game. The other athletes include Lakers’ LeBron James, golfer Phil Mickelson, and Canadian NHL stars Connor McDavid and John Tavares.

“These spikes in Canadian traffic on Twitter feels like an extension of NBA free agency from two summers ago,” said Conor Clarance, head of sports, Twitter Canada. “With no Raptors in the post-season, we’re seeing attention from Canadian hoop fans turn to ex-Raptors plus local born players like Dillon Brooks and RJ Barrett. The Canadian #NBATwitter conversation is always hot this time of year but whenever there are any Kawhi angles to react to, tweet volumes go to the next level.”

A similar trend happened after Game 1 last Saturday when the Clippers went down 113-103 to Luka Doncic and the Mavericks.

“Toronto mans are really the best hypemen, they hyped Kawhi so much he actually thought he could win without Lowry or Siakam,” another Twitter user said.

It’s been two full seasons since the “Fun Guy” left Toronto to join Paul George and the Clippers — taking with him a Raptors championship ring. Last year, Kawhi and the Clippers fell to the Denver Nuggets in the NBA bubble. This year, the Clippers were once again expected to contend, but now their season is on the line early on.

Toronto also had some words for former Raptors big man Serge Ibaka who left to join Kawhi in Los Angeles during the off-season.

“Serge Ibaka, come back to Toronto bro we’d never disrespect you like this,” a Twitter user chirped.

See some more of the Tweets here:



With files from Richie Assaly


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