Veterans come forward

STEVE BUFFERY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:05 AM ET

A number of Raptor veterans are concerned about the lack of effort shown at times during the team's first three games.

Veteran point guard Alvin Williams, for instance, said that the Raptors simply "packed it in" after slow starts against New Jersey and Detroit.

Jalen Rose, who is tied with Morris Peterson for the team lead in points per game (17.7), added that the rookies have to understand how much of an effort you have to bring to the court every night when you're in the NBA, as compared to college ball.

"Anytime you're young. your energy should be dictated by how fast you run, how high you jump, how excited you are about playing the game. It's just like being a kid at Christmas," he said. "And while I think players are out there on the court feeling like they're competing hard, it's just in the NBA you have to take it up a level."

(OLD) GUARD CHANGED

The Raptors placed veteran forward Eric Williams on the active list for tonight's game against Cleveland at the Air Canada Centre and put point guard Alvin Williams on the inactive list.

Alvin Williams missed all of last season after undergoing microfracture surgery on his right knee, but has been practicing and has played this season. Head coach Sam Mitchell, however, believes that that he needs more time to work on his game, adding that this latest move is not a setback to the knee.

"The thing I talked to Alvin about, he came a long way back and I would hate for him to hurt himself after he's come this far," the coach said.

Eric Williams has yet to see action this season because of a sore knee.

RAPTOR NOTES

Veteran Jalen Rose said the worse thing about being on a struggling team is the way opponents around the league "hug you and act like they're coming to your funeral" when the games are over ... Mitchell came to this reality during his team's 117-84 loss to the Detroit Pistons on Saturday: "I look down the court, and size-wise, it was brutal," he said. "All (Detroit players) have 6-8 years in league, all know how to play, they're quicker than your guys and have a mean streak.


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