Bargnani hard at work

FRANK ZICARELLI -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:27 AM ET

The expectations are high and given his draft slot post-season prowess, the basketball bar has justifiably been raised higher for Andrea Bargnani.

Sam Mitchell acknowledges it, just as the Raptors head coach is quick to point out that his sophomore shooter is working hard to expand his game at a time when opponent's are locking into last year's first-overall draft pick.

"We need Andrea back to where he was and he's working to get there," Mitchell said yesterday. "He's learning to adjust, fighting through these tough times."

Bargnani has been fighting the dreaded sophomore jinx, a hyper-extended knee and an inconsistency that sees him step up one night and disappear the next.

Mitchell liked Bargnani's defence on Wednesday, a sign that perhaps he is turning the all-important corner.

KRIS CROSSES HIS FINGERS

His minutes have been inconsistent and as a result, so has his impact on games.

As well as Kris Humphries played against the Dallas Mavericks, he knows that he might get buried to the bench for tonight's game against the Indiana Pacers.

"In a perfect world, it wouldn't be that way" Humphries said of his inconsistent playing time.

"You get pulled for a reason. No one is perfect."

THREE IN THE KEY

Two-time all-star Chris Bosh ranks third among forwards in the East, according to the first all-star voting results.

Bosh, barring injury, is a lock to appear in the showcase game scheduled for New Orleans.

DELIGHTFUL DEFENCE

In three successive wins, the Raptors have held their opponents to an average of 81.3 points after yielding an average of 124.0 points in back-to-back losses to Boston and Phoenix.


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