Bargnani's return presents challenge

The Sports Xchange

Now it comes time to see how the Raptors are at assimilating a relatively new player into the rotation.

And all eyes will be focused on DeMar DeRozan and how he reacts.

The return of Andrea Bargnani, who has missed the last 20 games with a strained left calf, will give the Raptors their leading scorer (he was averaging 23.5 points per game when he was hurt) but it's going to cut into the offensive load being carried by DeRozan.

DeRozan has had 20 or more points in seven of his last nine games as the focal point of the offense but will now have to cede some of that responsibility -- if not all -- to Bargnani.

"We're not going to stop calling DeMar's number," said coach Dwane Casey. "I only see it as a plus with another offensive guy and, not only that, one of our long shot blockers, one of our best (defensive) pick-and-roll guys coming back."

Bargnani does give the Raptors a full team for the first time since late January and allows Casey to share some of the scoring workload on a team that has had difficulty scoring points.

After being blown out by the Pistons 105-86 on Saturday, the Raptors return home Sunday to host the Bucks.

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