The Toronto Raptors will host their training camp for the new NBA season in Quebec City. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Raptors unveil 25th anniversary plans with Two Five logo and ‘95 Rewind’ nights

Raptors unveil ‘two-five’ campaign

Coming off the success of the Toronto Raptors’ “We The North” brand campaign, the pressure was on the organization to deliver for the 25th anniversary of the NBA franchise.

The marketing bosses with the team’s parent company Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment are confident that “Raptors Two Five” will do just that.

“It’s one thing to be relevant but relevancy is continually renewing,” said MLSE senior marketing director Jerry Ferguson. “There’s no complacency because you continually have to refresh and do something different.”

The “Two Five” image features a right hand with two fingers making a victory sign and a left hand with all five digits extended.

“For us the logo becomes an opportunity for fans to participate and it doesn’t have to be rigid,” Ferguson said. “It’s more flexible and it’s more participatory. That’s why we think it’s cool.”

It’s part of wide-ranging promotional plans released Thursday night that will celebrate the Raptors’ history. An 18-foot “Two Five” installation will be unveiled Saturday during the city’s all-night Nuit Blanche art festival, which begins Friday evening.

The regular-season opener Oct. 22 against the visiting New Orleans Pelicans will be devoted to the ring ceremony and unfurling of the championship banner.

READ MORE: Toronto Raptors and their diverse team celebrated worldwide

The next game at Scotiabank Arena, on Oct. 28 against the Orlando Magic, will be the first of six ”95 Rewind” nights. The Raptors will wear white and purple dinosaur jerseys and play on a 1995-style hardcourt.

With the Grizzlies also celebrating their 25th anniversary, the teams will wear throwbacks in Memphis on March 28 and on the return date in Toronto on March 30.

Other ”95 Rewind” games are set for Dec. 11 against Kawhi Leonard and the L.A. Clippers, the Jan. 28 and April 10 games against Vince Carter and the Atlanta Hawks and the Feb. 25 game against the Milwaukee Bucks.

“We’re thinking of these nights as like a time machine or a stepback jumper through different ages,” Ferguson said. “We’ll be having a lot of fun remixing music, fashion, moments from the past to make that in-game experience really fun.”

A promotional graphic featuring the ”Two Five” gesture combines a wide variety of hands from young to old with different ethnicities. Shannon Hosford, the chief marketing officer at MLSE, said authenticity was key for the promotional effort.

“We’re talking about the Raptors brand but also the game, where the game has come and how it’s representing Toronto and Canada now,” she said. “To do the right things and not just to do them because we want to be different, but do it in a way that we’re relevant and culturally relevant.”

A tagline for the promotion references the Raptors’ early years when they played home games at SkyDome, the venue now called Rogers Centre that’s home to Major League Baseball’s Toronto Blue Jays.

“Twenty-five years ago we were a basketball team, playing in a baseball stadium, in a hockey town,” it reads. “Today we’re world champs.”

An estimated two million supporters were on hand for the Raptors’ parade and celebration last June. The team defeated the Golden State Warriors in a six-game final to win the NBA championship for the first time.

“Our challenge is not to convince people that we are a serious contender anymore,” Ferguson said. “We’re here and we’ve arrived. We’ve proven everyone wrong and now we’re opening up the next chapter.”

Gregory Strong, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Chilliwack junior roller derby team celebrates long-awaited win over Seattle

NWO Junior Roller Derby hosted two games on the weekend against the Seattle Derby Brats

Violin meets piano in The Red Violin at the Chilliwack Cultural Centre

Jasper Wood joins the Bergmann Duo for an intimate morning concert in Chilliwack

Bold and brazen singer Begonia brings colourful show to Tractorgrease in Chilliwack

The musician from Winnipeg is equally comfortable singing lullabies, headbangers and ballads

PHOTOS: Home, Leisure and Outdoor Living Expo runs all weekend in Chilliwack

There are more than 250 vendors set up for the annual home show at Chilliwack Heritage Park

Second earthquake in two days strikes near Agassiz

A 2.6-magnitude recorded Saturday morning

VIDEO: Find Me My Furever Home – Henderson at the Chilliwack SPCA

Henderson, also known as Biggy, has FIV, a virus similar to HIV in humans

Kobe Bryant killed in California helicopter crash: reports

NBA star was reportedly in his private helicopter at the time of the crash

Investigation launched after six dead puppies dumped in Richmond hotel parking lot

RAPS reminds people they can always give up puppies they can’t take care of

Risk of coronavirus low in B.C. as first case emerges in Toronto: officials

There have been no confirmed cases of the virus in B.C.

‘Presumptive case’ of coronavirus in Canada confirmed by Ontario doctors

Man in his 50s felt ill on his return to Canada from Wuhan, China

People knowingly take fentanyl so make policy changes to reduce harm: B.C. study

Dr. Jane Buxton, an epidemiologist at the centre, says drug users need more resources,

‘My heart is going to bleed’: Bodies brought back to Canada following Iran plane crash

Remains of Sahar Haghjoo, 37, and her eight-year-old daughter, Elsa Jadidi, were identified last weekend

Surrey tells Uber to cease operations in city, but company ‘respectfully’ declines

Ridesharing company told to stop operating within the city by 9 p.m. Jan. 24

Most Read