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Vince Carter is thankful these days, thankful for a long career and for his role in Raptors history

ATLANTA—It is a complicated history that exists between Vince Carter, the Raptors and their fans. But as the greatest moment in franchise history unfolded in Oakland last June, the sense of pride he felt was real and the sense of history and his place in it were undeniable.

He was part of it, an outsider at the time but an integral part of the journey that ended with a wild championship celebration on the court at the Oracle Arena. Carter was on the floor that night, at the game, and when he found his way to the court to offer congratulations to those he knew best, those who know what he meant to the team sought him out.