Rasho relishing new role

STEVE BUFFERY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:06 AM ET

Rasho Nesterovic is a big man, in every way.

The seven-foot centre will come off the bench after being primarily a starter throughout his nine-year NBA career, and is embracing his new role.

Raptors head coach Sam Mitchell has said that Andrea Bargnani will be the club's starting centre, at least with Chris Bosh in the lineup.

That means that Nesterovic, who started in 73 of the 80 games he played for the Raptors last season, will be regulated to bench duty.

"It's okay," Nesterovic said. "It's probably the point in my career when I can do more from the bench than as a starter. You just have to adjust (to the new role) and give everything you have."

Mitchell replaced Nesterovic, 31, with Bargnani in the final three games of the opening-round playoff series against New Jersey last season and the rookie responded well. That prompted Mitchell to announce that the starting centre job this season was Bargnani's to lose.

Nesterovic knows as well as anyone that the 21-year-old Bargnani has a huge upside as a starter, and said he will do what he can to help his teammate develop his game. But he said the biggest adjustment Bargnani will have to make is being ready to face the opponent's top unit, game in and game out.


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