Jan. 25 (UPI) -- Fans of the NBA's Philadelphia 76ers have begun sharing photos of themselves lifting their cats into the air to celebrate the team's victories.
The basketball team began the celebratory tradition after one fan was inspired by injured rookie Ben Simmons' posts about his two "F2 Savannah" cats on social media.
"Simmons has a very rare-looking cat that climbs his shoulders and head all the time, so I was thinking about how there's no way my cat could do that," 76ers fan Dennis Grove told the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Grove celebrated the team's Jan. 13 win by sharing a photo of himself lifting his 20-pound cat, Izzy, over his head with the hashtag #RaiseTheCat.
Other fans quickly adopted the idea, deciding to lift their cats into the air following Sixers wins, and it eventually found its way back to Simmons.
"Someone tell me how raise the cat started," Simmons tweeted out on Sept. 21.
He followed up the request by sharing a black and white photo with his two cats raised in the air alongside the hashtag.
Grove's idea has even spawned merchandise bearing the slogan, with all profits benefitting local animal welfare group PhillyPAWS, according to The Newcastle Herald.
"It's amazing how this has grown," Grove said. "Sixers Twitter is something special."