Raptors send two more packing

STEVE BUFFERY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:46 AM ET

PORTLAND -- The last of the hot-shot training camp invitees have gone the way of the gas lantern.

Yesterday, the Raptors released centre Toree Morris and guard Corey Williams. Both were signed as free agents on Oct. 3.

Williams averaged 4.0 points and 1.0 assists in four pre-season games. Morris appeared in five contests and totalled six points along with six rebounds.

The roster stands at 14 players, one under the limit, as the team prepares to open the 2005-06 regular season on Wednesday at Air Canada Centre against the Washington Wizards. Tip-off is 7 p.m.

General manager Rob Babcock has said that he is on the lookout for a quality centre, perhaps a castoff from another NBA team.

THE KIDS ARE OKAY

The Raptors coaching staff and veteran players have not only been impressed with the way first-round picks Charlie Villanueva and Joey Graham have played, but the way they act. Neither is carrying a chip on his shoulder.

"They understand when to talk and when to listen," veteran swingman Jalen Rose said. "They understand there's a process to be a player. And when you understand that, you don't come in with a Me-First attitude.

"I feel like the No.1 thing about those guys is they listen and they work hard and they're definitely going to be players."

The Raptors have completed only the pre-season schedule, but Rose is convinced that the pair are in the NBA to stay.

"If they keep working, they're going to be productive players for a long time in this league," he said. "That's what it's all about. Everybody is not going to be a Kevin Garnett, Tim Duncan or a LeBron James in the draft. I don't think they're those kind of players, but I think they'll be good players in this league."

OPEN PRACTICE

As the Raptors embark upon the regular season, fans of the team will get a special opportunity to watch them prepare for Wednesday's season-opener against the Wizards.

Fan Fest will be held Sunday, beginning at noon on the main court of the ACC. The first 5,000 fans will receive a Raptors poster while several prizes including Raptors jerseys, mini-basketballs and Sprite T-shirts will be given away throughout the event. The Raptor, Dance Pak and Four-Corner Sound Crew will be on-hand to entertain fans throughout the event.


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