MERIDIAN
MERIDIAN

If you’re letting your kids stay up to watch the Toronto Raptors’ historic quest to win the NBA championship, cross your fingers for no overtime.

Parenting expert Alyson Schafer says routines around sleep are important, but parents should also allow exceptions to rules for memory- and history-making events.

“I think it’s way more valuable for kids to cheer on their team with their parents and have a family bonding moment, because we have not enough opportunities for that anymore in family life.”

The weeknight games against the Golden State Warriors are all starting at 9 p.m. ET. meaning regular time ends at 11:30 p.m. or later. Don’t think that you can pack the kids off to bed should the game go into overtime, says Schafer.

You’ll ruin the memory and they likely won’t sleep anyway.

The late game times aren’t just happening because Toronto is playing a California team. Late playoff game times in playoffs exist across most pro sports and are driven by ad revenue for broadcasters. A 9 p.m. ET tipoff ensures that the game is played in prime time across the continent.

None of that concerns Tim Music. The father of three young Raptors fans says there is no sleeping for anyone on game night in his house.

“There’s lots of screaming, lots and lots of cheering. It’s a loud game in our house when they’re playing,” he said, wearing a We the North hat and watching his kids play some pick-up hoops in Toronto decked out in their own team gear.

Bedtimes are out the window right now, says Music.

“Our house is a full-on Raptors house, so we’re going to watch the game probably to the end,” he said of the team’s 109-104 loss to the Golden State Warriors in Game 2. “We’ll see what happens in the morning.”

There are plenty of tired kids showing up to school these days, so Schafer says to remind them they got to do something special.

“Parents can say to their kids, ‘This is the exception to the rule, so I’m really hoping tomorrow you’ll give it an extra go and pull yourself together and keep your mood happy.”

-with files from CTV News Toronto