Turkolglu joins lineup

Chris Bosh (right) jokes around with Hedo Turkoglu during a photo shoot last month. (Sun Media/Stan...

Chris Bosh (right) jokes around with Hedo Turkoglu during a photo shoot last month. (Sun Media/Stan Behal)

MIKE GANTER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:24 AM ET

And now for your actual 2009/2010 Raptors.

Halfway through the pre-season, the Raptors are poised for the first time to play a game with all five of their projected starters in the lineup.

Hedo Turkoglu joins the recently returned Chris Bosh to the lineup giving coach Jay Triano his first look at a starting five that also includes Jose Calderon, Andrea Bargnani and, for now, DeMar DeRozan.

If, or how long DeRozan remains a member of the first unit, remains to be seen.

And it all goes down in Hartford with the Boston Celtics providing the opposition.

Turkolglu declared himself rested and ready to begin his tenure with the Raptors yesterday and Triano will waste no time in getting him in there.

"Does he deserve to start because of the amount he has practised? No," said Triano answering his own question. "But we only have four more pre-season games and I need to put him on the floor with guys he is going to play with for the majority of the time. I don't know how many minutes he will be able to go but I'm planning on starting him with Jose, Chris, Andrea and probably DeMar."

But don't expect to see the Raptors running their bread-and-butter, screen-and-roll offence.

That will come later.

"If we get into screen and roll right now, it's two guys playing and making reads," Triano explained. "We need to have everybody involved right now because ... I think that will expedite how fast these guys can learn about each other rather than have three guys watch two guys play."

Turkoglu sees the logic in that and, not that he was consulted or anything, wouldn't have it any other way at this point.

As much as he has learned watching his new teammates in practice and in four pre-season games, he has to be on the floor with them to get a real feel for their game.

"Just playing with them I will see what they do, where they like to get the ball and that will make my job easier," Turkolglu said. "When we do start playing pick and roll I will know he will be there and all I have to do is get him the basketball."

The emphasis now, though, has to be on getting acclimated with his new teammates.

If he is concerned about having only two weeks to learn his new teammates, Turkoglu was doing a fine job yesterday of disguising it.

"I don't think it will take too long because I‚ve been watching them and following the practices," Turkolglu said. "We have two weeks. It should be enough."

Chris Bosh, who is easing back into the lineup himself after missing the first two pre-season games, has a pretty good grasp of what to expect with Turkoglu on the floor.

"He is one of those guys who can bust out on the dribble and bring it up the floor and start the fast break," Bosh said. "Everybody knows if he's on the floor I have to run because if I'm open he's going to feed it to me. It's going to make guys run that much harder and you have to be ready because when he's going to the basket he‚s going to be looking at how he can pick the defence apart."

Being ready at any and all moments is key to playing with Turkoglu.

"You have to because if you don't you're probably going to get hit in the head with the ball," Bosh said chuckling.


Videos

Photos