HAWTHORN star Jack Gunston has advised new Demon Jake Lever to be prepared for the "haters" when he meets his old side Adelaide next season.

Gunston was a particularly interested observer as Lever sought to move from the Crows to Melbourne during the recent NAB AFL Trade Period, having been in the same situation in 2011.

Having put together a promising first couple of seasons at the Crows after being drafted at No.29 in 2009, Gunston asked for a return home to Victoria.

He ended up at Hawthorn, but not before Adelaide stripped him of the Mark Bickley Award, given to the best first- or second-year player.

The acrimony surrounding that situation was very similar to that of Lever, who was chided by Crows captain Taylor Walker of picking "money over success" in leaving the grand finalists for the Demons, a side that has not made finals since 2006.

Gunston told News Corp he watched on keenly as the Lever deal went down.

"I did see a lot of it to be honest," he said.

"I guess those things always do get a little bit messy, but in saying that, I did have a little chuckle when I saw it all going down."

It has been a good move for the Hawk, considering he was a key part of the side that won flags in 2013-15, and he had some advice for the young Demon.

"Footy is a passionate game and it has passionate supporters and players and people. No-one wants to see you leave their club," Gunston said.

"You're always going to have the haters who are going to say things and it's just a matter of handling it, moving on and going about your own business and playing your best footy at your new club.

"You've got to enjoy the ride and remember that you made the decision for a reason."

Gunston, who will represent Australia in the Virgin Australia International Rules series, expected the vitriol from Crows fans to stop when Lever made the trip back to South Australia to face his former side in round 19. 

"Probably when you play Adelaide for the first time over there, that's the full stop on it," he said.

"You get that under your belt and you expect it for a few more years after that, but look, it's footy and you want the supporters to be passionate.

"Your own fans cheer you and the others will jeer you."


First Test: Adelaide Oval, Sunday, November 12
Second Test: Domain Stadium, Saturday, November 18