Mixed news for Alvin

STEVE BUFFERY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:21 AM ET

PHILADELPHIA -- Raptors guard Alvin Williams joined the team on Monday night after returning from Birmingham, where he met with knee specialist Dr. James Andrews.

And the news is, well, good and bad.

The good news is, Williams' right knee continues to recover as a result of microfracture surgery last November. The joint is strong, as are the muscles around it.

However, Andrews diagnosed a bone spur on the same knee. And while that isn't all that serious, it does mean that Williams will continue to play in pain and that surgery to remove the spur will have to be performed eventually.

When that is, Williams wouldn't say. The nine-year Raptor is going to see how many minutes per game he can play, although, as of last night, he was still on the inactive list.

"I'm ready to play, but it's the best interest of the coaching staff, I guess, to wait a while and try to get me to be closer to 100% (before they play me)," Williams said. "I'm ready to go out there and start playing. But I'll do whatever the coach or doctors suggest."

Williams said that he could play 6-10 minutes a night, but would like to get to the point where he could increase that to 25-30 minutes a game.

He brushed aside suggestions yesterday that he is the answer to all of the 0-6 team's problems.

"I'm not the saviour," Williams said.

"We've had more losing seasons since I've been here than probably winning seasons, so I'm not the saviour. But I'm somebody who's going to work hard and help. I'm not going to hurt the team."

TRYING SAM'S PATIENCE

Head coach Sam Mitchell became irritated yesterday when asked when forward Eric Williams will be ready to play. Williams has missed the last three games with a sore right knee.

"What do I know? I'm no doctor. Ask the trainer," Mitchell said.

"I didn't get a medical degree at Mercer University (his alma mater)."


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