million people in Oakland celebrate NBA champion Warriors
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[June 20, 2015]
By Emmett Berg
OAKLAND, Calif. (Reuters) - A crowd
estimated at 1 million people in Oakland celebrated the NBA champion
Golden State Warriors at a parade and rally on Friday, where league MVP
Stephen Curry remarked on how things have changed since he went
unrecognized in the city.
The street party came three days after the Warriors won the National
Basketball Association title four games to two over LeBron James and
the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The Warriors, who are NBA champions for the first time since 1975,
along with team executives and invited guests rode through downtown
Oakland streets before onlookers 25 rows deep, many of whom had
staked out positions the previous evening.
The crowd, which enjoyed a bright and cloudless day, was estimated
at 1 million people, said Oakland police spokeswoman Officer Johnna
The procession wound to Lake Merritt, a small expanse of water
adjoining Oakland's downtown, where team members addressed the crowd
clustered along a plaza and the lake's shoreline.
"I remember six years ago when I was drafted, I lived right here on
Lake Merritt and I could walk around and not be recognized," Curry,
a Warriors guard who was voted this year's league Most Valuable
Player, told the crowd.
"Now we’re world champs. I’m so excited to be a part of this group."
More than two hours after the celebration began, a shooting erupted
just outside a zone that had been secured for the parade and rally,
Responding officers found three men with gunshot wounds, she said.
Two were critically injured and the third was in stable condition,
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It appears the men had an argument with another party before the
shooting, Watson said. The shooter was still at large.
The streets near the rally, many of them blocked off by Oakland
police, overflowed with revelers and vendors hawking T-shirts, caps
James Penn, a 34-year-old resident of Sacramento, said fans and the
team deserved the victory, especially after many disappointing
"This year the feeling is different," Penn said. "They're looking
out for each other. They give us something to root for.”
(Reporting by Emmett Berg; Editing by Alex Dobuzinskis and Eric
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