The World Championships in Beijing are starting in a couple of weeks. What is your favourite track and field event? “The sprints fascinate me the most, not just the event itself, but also the stars lining up at the start line.” So what is your 100m PB? “The last time I ran a timed 100m was probably back at school,” he laughs. “In training we normally focus on 40m sprints, but now that you mention it, I’d be intrigued to see how fast I could run a 100m these days.” Well, there’s only one way to find out. We’re more than happy to arrange a race. Who is your favourite track and field athlete? “I have to admit I haven’t got a favourite athlete as such, but it always makes me happy to see an athlete like Robert Harting winning awards such as Athlete of the Year in Germany. It shows how popular the sport is.” What do you think of Usain Bolt’s 100m 9.58 world record? “The time will always be synonymous with his name unless he manages to go even faster, of course. To me that is what every sports person’s goal should be: to have their performance remembered. “I believe his 9.58 will stand in the record books for quite a while until at some point in the very distant future that one-in-a-million guy will come along and beat it.” How important is running in your physical preparation? “Running obviously plays a vital part in my daily training routine more so in pre-season than during the season. It improves your stamina, you can recover quicker between two sprints, and you’re less likely to suffer from injury. “We have a lot of technically equally strong clubs in the Premier League, so it’s always beneficial to have that extra bit of horsepower in the final minutes to rely on.”
freedom of movement Total range of motion around a joint is highly specific and varies from one joint to another (hip, trunk, shoulder), as well as from one individual to another. Muscular flexibility relates primarily to genetic factors and to physical activity. Beyond that, factors such as joint structure, ligaments, tendons, muscles, skin, tissue injury, fat, body temperature, age and sex influence range of motion around a joint. The range of motion about a given joint depends mostly on the structure of that joint. Greater range of motion, however, can be attained through plastic and elastic elongation. Plastic elongation is the permanent lengthening of soft tissue. This is best attained through slow, sustained stretching exercises. Joint capsules, ligaments and tendons are non-elastic. However, they can undergo plastic elongation. Elastic elongation is the temporary lengthening of soft tissue. Muscle tissue has elastic properties and respond to stretching exercises by undergoing elastic or temporary lengthening, thus increasing the extensibility of the muscles. Changes in muscle temperature can increase or decrease flexibility. Properly warmed individuals have better flexibility. Cool temperature has the opposite effect, impeding range of motion. The amount of adipose tissue (fat) around joints and muscle tissues will increase resistance to movement, and the added bulk also hampers joint mobility because of the contact between body surfaces. On average, women have more flexibility than men and seem to retain this advantage throughout life. The two most significant contributors to lower flexibility levels are sedentary lifestyles and lack of physical activity. Factors Affecting Flexibility Flexibility is defined as the ability of a joint to move freely through its full range of motion. Health-care professionals and practitioners generally have underestimated and overlooked the contribution of good muscular flexibility to overall fitness and preventative health care. Most people who exercise do not take the time to stretch, and those who do stretch don’t always do it properly. Many muscular/skeletal problems and injuries experienced by individuals today are related to a lack of flexibility. In daily life, we often have to make rapid or strenuous movements we are not accustomed to making. A tight muscle that is abruptly forced beyond its normal range of motion often leads to injuries. A decline in flexibility can cause poor posture and subsequent aches and pain that leads to limited and painful joint movement. According to a recent article, approximately 80 per cent of all low back problems stem from improper alignment of the vertebral column and pelvic girdle, which is a direct result of inflexible and weak muscle. Improving and maintaining good range of motion in the joints enhances the quality of life. Good flexibility promotes healthy muscles and joints. Improving elasticity of muscles and connective tissues around joints enhances freedom of movement and the individual ability to participate in all types of activities. Taking part in a regular stretching programme also increases resistance to muscle injury and soreness, prevents low back and other spinal column problems, improves and maintains good postural alignment, promotes proper and graceful body movement, improves personal appearance and self-image and helps to develop and maintain motor skills throughout life. In addition, flexibility exercises have been used successfully to treat dysmenorrheal (painful menstruation) and general neuromuscular tension (stress). Regular stretching helps decrease the aches and pains caused by psychological stress and contributes to a decrease in anxiety, blood pressure and breathing rate. Furthermore, stretching exercises, in conjunction with calisthenics, are helpful in warm-up routines to prepare for vigorous aerobics or strength-training exercises, as well as in cool-down routines following exercise to facilitate the return to a normal resting state. Fatigue muscles tend to contract to a shorter-than-average resting length and stretching exercises help fatigue muscles re-establish their normal resting length. Similar to muscular strength, good range of motion is critical in older life. Because of decreased flexibility, older adults lose mobility and are unable to perform simple daily task such as bending forward or turning. Many older adults do not turn their head or rotate their trunk to look over their shoulder but, rather, must step around 90 to 180 degrees to see behind them. Physical activity and exercise can also be hampered severely by lack of good range of motion. Because of the pain during physical activity, older people who have tight hip flexor muscles cannot jog or walk very far. This condition usually worsens with further inactivity. A simple stretching programme can alleviate or prevent this problem.
LOVETTA JONES LOVETTA JONES MIRACLE RECOVERY LOVETTA JONESRUNNER RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER RUNNERSORRENTINO’S STAR SORRENTINO’S STAR MESMERIZE PERFECT ASSETPRINCESS TABOKIE NATASHADONTPLAY HOLIDAY WEEKEND NATASHADONTPLAYSTERRI’S CHOICE #STERRI’S CHOICE DOOLAHIN STERRI’S CHOICELIGHT BRIGADE LIGHT BRIGADE #LIGHT BRIGADE TOKICOSOUND OF MIRACLE STAN ROY SOUND OF MIRACLE STAN ROY#PAPER N LACE OH MY GRAND PA GLORIOUS CAUSE #GLORIOUS CAUSEBASIC INSTINCT EXPRESS TRUCK BASIC INSTINCT ROMAN SPYREGALLY BOLD #REGALLY BOLD #REGALLY BOLD #REGALLY BOLD#MISS JUANITA CLASSY PROSPECT CLASSY PROSPECT CLASSY PROSPECTLOVETTA JONES ROLEX MIRACLE RECOVERY MIRACLE RECOVERYRUNNER RUNNER #RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER#SORRENTINO’S STAR SORRENTINO’S STAR #SORRENTINO’S STAR #SORRENTINO’S STARPRINCESS TABOKIE NO MONEY FRIEND NATASHADONTPLAY NATASHADONTPLAYDOOLAHIN STERRI’S CHOICE STERRI’S CHOICE DAYTON AFFAIRLIGHT BRIGADE PRINCESS SALLEMA LIGHT BRIGADE TOKICOSTAN ROY EXPLOSIVE PRINCESS EXPLOSIVE PRINCESS SOUND OF MIRACLEOH MY GRAND PA WINIT GLORIOUS CAUSE #GLORIOUS CAUSEMIRACLE TRAIN #BASIC INSTINCT BASIC INSTINCT TURBO MACHINE#REGALLY BOLD REGALLY BOLD #REGALLY BOLD REGALLY BOLDFORCE DE JOUR CLASSY PROSPECT CLASSY PROSPECT CLASSY PROSPECTLOVETTA JONES LOVETTA JONES MIRACLE RECOVERY LOVETTA JONESAWESOME ROCKET RUNNER RUNNER #RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER RUNNER#SORRENTINO’S STAR SORRENTINO’S STAR #SORRENTINO’S STAR SORRENTINO’S STARNATASHADONTPLAY NATASHADONTPLAY NATASHADONTPLAY NATASHADONTPLAYDAYTON AFFAIR STERRI’S CHOICE DOOLAHIN DOOLAHINTOKICO LIGHT BRIGADE LIGHT BRIGADE LIGHT BRIGADESOUND OF MIRACLE #GOOD LIFE GOOD LIFE #MARIA’S GLORYWINIT GLORIOUS CAUSE GLORIOUS CAUSE GLORIOUS CAUSETURBO MACHINE #BASIC INSTINCT MISTY MIRACLE TRAIN#REGALLY BOLD REGALLY BOLD REGALLY BOLD REGALLY BOLDMISS JUANITA CLASSY PROSPECT MISS JUANITA #SPARKLING MICHAELALOVETTA JONES MIRACLE RECOVERYRUNNER RUNNER #TEISHA’S DREAM#SORRENTINO’S STAR SORRENTINO’S STARNATASHADONTPLAY HOLIDAY WEEKENDDOOLAHIN DASH BOARDLIGHT BRIGADE YES WE WILLSOUND OF MIRACLE GOOD LIFE#OH MY GRAND PA OH MY GRAND PABASIC INSTINCT ROMAN SPYREGALLY BOLD #REGALLY BOLDMISS JUANITA CLASSY PROSPECT
ARSENAL (4-2-3-1)OSPINA,BELLERIN, KOSCIELNY, GABRIEL, MONREAL,ELNENEY, COQUELIN,IWOBI, OZIL, SANCHEZ,WELBECKDEENEY, IGHALO,BEHRAMI, CAPOUE, SUAREZ, JURADO,AKE, BRITOS, CATHCART, NYOM,GOMESWATFORD (4-4-2)Since beating Barclays League leaders Leicester City in mid-February, Arsenal have won just once in the league in four games, the 2-0 victory at Everton last time out.That poor run leaves the Gunners 11 points behind Leicester and six behind Tottenham Hotspur, who are second.Watford have kept only two clean sheets in their last 13 Premier League games but on March 13 they won 2-1 at the Emirates in the FA Cup quarter-finals to set up a Wembley semi-final against Crystal Palace.That was Watford’s first win at Arsenal since 1988, when they won 1-0 at Highbury in the old First Division.Since then, Arsenal have won five out of five in the league against the Hornets, most recently the 3-0 victory at Vicarage Road in October, with goals from Alexis Sanchez, Olivier Giroud and Aaron Ramsey.Watford arrive on the back of three straight defeats, a run which has seen them drop to 14th in the Premier League and just 11 points clear of the relegation zone. One more victory should assure Watford of their Premier League place but they have won only five times away from home in the league, most recently at Crystal Palace in February.Arsenal are still without Santi Cazorla, Ramsey, Tomas Rosicky and Jack Wilshere. There is a chance that goalkeeper Petr Cech can return after a five-match absence caused by a calf injury. Mathieu Flamini is another to have to go undergo a test.Watford, meanwhile, are still missing Joel Ekstrand, Rene Gilmartin and Tommy Hoban.
LONDON (AP) – Louis van Gaal delivered Manchester United’s first trophy since Alex Ferguson retired three years ago with a 2-1 victory over Crystal Palace after the 135th FA Cup final went to extra time yesterday. With Ferguson watching at Wembley Stadium, Jesse Lingard, an academy graduate thrust into the first team by Van Gaal, completed United’s comeback by volleying in the winner in the 110th minute. United’s record-equalling 12th triumph in world football’s oldest cup competition comes at the end of a lacklustre second season under Van Gaal. The manager’s United future has seemed precarious for more than six months, and failure to qualify for the Champions League has only added to the uncertainty. But United showed the fighting spirit often lacking under Van Gaal to provide a winning end to the campaign. “We’ve had a tough end to the season but I thought we worked very hard today — our determination got us through this so I’m delighted,” United captain Wayne Rooney said. “It’s been a (while). It’s not always great of course. “Winning trophies lifts football clubs and lifts supporters. The fans have had a tough few years. Hopefully they enjoy tonight.” Alan Pardew won’t. The Palace manager produced a giddy jig on the touchline after Jason Puncheon put the London club ahead in the 78th minute, but Juan Mata equalised within three minutes to force extra time. Even being reduced to 10 men, when Chris Smalling was sent off in the 105th, did not dampen United’s resolve. Lingard, who replaced Mata at the end of regular time, produced the winner five minutes later to deny Palace a first major trophy. It is the first time United have won the FA Cup since 2004 — one of 38 major trophies Ferguson won as manager from 1986 to 2013. Ferguson’s immediate successor, David Moyes, was fired after less than a year in charge. Van Gaal has managed to end the club’s rare trophy drought, and the Dutchman has titles in four countries in management. “Not many managers can say that,” the former Ajax, Barcelona and Bayern Munich coach said.
A million excuses can be found just like they are being found now, not to believe in or invest in our young players. It has been going on for years. This process has damaged, demoralised and destroyed the confidence of the average young Jamaican footballer, who will struggle to recover from the psychological scars left by these subliminal messages. A clear index of this was expressed by outstanding young talent Alex Marshall who, at the end of a brilliant run last season, took the decision not to even attempt to play Premier League football, but instead indicated that he wanted to concentrate on his schoolwork and becoming a physiotherapist. It is a sad, but clear, indication of the damage that has been dealt to the psyche of the young Jamaican football players. The myopia and lack of vision is killing our youth. We are, once again, at the proverbial crossroads in our football. Let us take the opportunity and venture down a totally different road. DISCOURAGING REMARKS Recent discussions and debates regarding issues of local football have emphatically confirmed the suspicions that Jamaica’s development as a country and our advancement as a people continue to be severely hampered by endemic myopia, lack of vision and foresight, and effective leadership and forward thinking. It has been nothing short of shocking to see and hear the short-sightedness that continues to dominate the narrative. A simple fundamental such as the investment in youth as the vehicle for development, has been met with such fervent and widespread resistance, followed by the most imbecilic and nonsensical excuses. EXCUSES Our young players are not good enough. They must get overseas contracts. They are not consistent enough. Who will these young players replace in the current team? They need to develop some more. They need to go to the gym. They are not ready. These are but some of the disparaging and discouraging remarks repeatedly thrown at the nation’s best young football talent, all in response to recommendations that we invest more in our best young players. By glaring contrast to other countries – blessed with not some semblance of vision and foresight as well as simple common sense – Italy, for example, just gave a 17-year-old goalkeeper, Gianluigi Donnarumma, his international debut. Nineteen-year-old Brazilian striker Gabriel Jesus scored twice in a recent World Cup qualifier against Ecuador. Portugal’s 18-year-old midfielder, Renato Sanches, was a star performer in their recent European title-winning team. A 17-year-old named Christian Pulisic became the United States of America’s youngest-ever goalscorer in World Cup qualifying, when he netted against St Vincent and the Grenadines two weeks ago. Just to name a few. The shallow and predictable response of ‘group myopia’ will be that these players from these countries are playing top-flight club football, while our young players are not. It matters not to the wider principle. The salient fact of the matter is that these countries are investing in and exposing their young players, while we are attacking, condemning, and waging psychological war on ours, drilling it into their subconscious that they are not good, too young, and not ready, and are thus inferior to their counterparts. There is a conspicuous and crippling inability to visualise and conceptualise the nuance of projected development and that it is for future rewards that we must invest in our young players and not for the immediacy of now, especially in a context where our senior team is filled with mediocre journeymen, who continue to be embarrassingly ineffective. Identifying genuine and select talent at 18, 19, 20 or younger and believing and investing in that talent consistently by systematically exposing them alongside the senior pros to international football, giving them meaningful playing time over a one- or two-year period, can only mean the improvement of these young players for the future, ensuring that some short- to medium-term continuity within the context of our imperfect football structure.
Montego Bay’s Catherine Hall Stadium and Kingston’s Sabina Park will form the stages as the blockbuster ISSA/Flow Super Cup heads into the quarter-final stage, with the island’s top teams looking to get one step closer to the prestigious title. Wolmer’s Boys and Kingston College (KC) is perhaps the game which will pull most eyes with the 7:00 p.m Sabina Park contest pitting two of the most hyped squads against each other in what is sure to be a spirited clash. Before those two take the field, Manning Cup hopefuls Excelsior and daCosta Cup heavyweights Clarendon College will flex muscles at 5 p.m., with the western double-header seeing defending rural area champions St Elizabeth Technical (STETHS) facing Bridgeport (5:00pm) before the western derby between Cornwall College and Rusea’s at 7:00 p.m. FULL OF CONFIDENCE Vassel Reynolds, the Wolmer’s Boys’ coach, says his charges will line up full of confidence and are ready to beat a highly touted KC team, especially after their recent Walker Cup loss against their opponents. “I think our chance to win the Super Cup is as good as any other team. I am very confident that we can challenge them. I didn’t think that we had our best game against them in the Walker Cup, and we still tied 2-2, so I think if we have an improved game from that performance we can come out with a very positive result,” said Reynolds. Wolmer’s are competing for the Super Cup, Manning Cup and Olivier Shield, while KC are unbeaten, and playing for four titles, including the Walker Cup. According to Reynolds, his team is fit and will not be allowing KC much space to play. “I think we have to dictate the game for long periods. I think that we gave the KC team too much room and space to play in the Walker Cup. “We can’t allow them time and space to play,” stressed Reynolds. Meanwhile, KC’s coach, Ludlow Bernard, is expecting Wolmer’s to throw everything at his team. “It’s a very big game. Wolmer’s must be chomping at their bits for the game. We expect them to be very revengeful,” he pointed out. Bernard’s charges are yet to record a loss under their belt, amid what all Purples fans hope will be a long-awaited title winning season. “The vibes in our camp is high among the players. We knocked Wolmer’s out of the Walker Cup by the penalty shoot-out decider. We have prepared mentally and physically for another tough challenge from Wolmer’s… and this is the Super Cup, so spectators are excited,” added Bernard. – S.F. TODAY’S GAMES Excelsior High vs Clarendon College 5:00 p.m. @ Sabina Park Wolmer’s Boys vs Kingston College 7:00 p.m @ Sabina Park STETHS vs Bridgeport High 5:00 p.m. @ Catherine Hall, Montego Bay Cornwall College vs Ruseas High 7:00 p.m. @ Catherine Hall
The last two had done decent stints on the 4×400 relays for St Jago and STETHS respectively. That’s great because the 800m man needs to be more than a plodder. Arthur Wint, who won Olympic silver in 1948 and 1952, and 1960 bronze medal winner George Kerr, both were brilliant at the 400m. Wint, in fact, was Olympic champion in the 400 in 1948. In addition, Clive Terrelonge readied himself to win the 1995 World Indoor Championship title with many solid runs in the 4×400 relay. It’s probably too much to expect that Farquharson to run his way into a Calabar 4×400 squad that has the like of Christopher Taylor and his 2016 World Under 20 bronze medal teammate Anthony Carpenter. That’s a matter for later. For now, Farquharson and his solo record run present cause for hope. In time, if the slow paced of progress accelerates, his performance may be seen recognised as the moment when Jamaica turned the corner to glory in the two-lap event. – Hubert Lawrence has been attending Champs since 1980. The more we succeed in sprinting, the harder it becomes to remember that Jamaica has three Olympic medals and a World Indoor Champion in the men’s 800m. There’s just so much evidence that we are a sprint powerhouse that no one would probably care. Happily, a turning point is approaching. In successive years, Kingston College, Calabar, STETHS and St Jago High School have run faster and faster in the 4x800m relay. This year, at the Gibson-McCook Relays, the Monk Street boys lowered the Jamaican high school record to 7:32.76 seconds. It may be a signal that these school teams are encouraging progress in the middle distances. Another sign appeared on day two of this week’s staging of the ISSA Grace/Kennedy Boys and Girls’ Championships (Champs). In the heats of the Boys’ Class 2 800m, Kimar Farquharson erased the 20 year old record owned by Olympian Aldwyn Sappleton. Farquharson, a slightly built Calabar boy, cut a full second off Sappleton’s mark to leave it at 1:51.26 seconds. That’s not far from the best Class 1 time of the year 1:51.11 seconds. Farquharson ran alone in a record attempt orchestrated by coach Michael Clarke. As Calabar boys have done before in the heats of the 200 and 400, the strategy attacks the record books when the athlete is rested and when the traditional South-North National breeze is still. The performance had the knowledgeable audience applauding warmly. Calabar will reasonably expect him to win the final on Champs Saturday and the fans will hope he will go even faster. Whatever he does in his remaining races this week, his record run adds to a growing sense that fast times are slowly coming back to the 800 metres. Tyrese Reid, the Spot Valley High School runner who ran 1:51.11 to beat Farquharson in the under-18 section of the recent Carifta Trials, Akeen Colley of Ruseas, who beat Reid the following week and the members of those progressive Kingston College, Calabar, STETHS and St Jago High teams represent real hope for the future of the 800m. Amongst them are 2015 World Under-18 finalist Leon ‘Rudisha’ Clarke and gifted Javauney James. DECENT STINTS
LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Korea Open gold confidence-booster for Lopez ahead of SEA Games 2 nabbed in Bicol drug stings Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:39PH’s Josie Gabuco boxing light flyweight final (HIGHLIGHTS)01:52Phivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite Vilma Santos, Luis Manzano warn public of fake account posing as her CONTRIBUTED PHOTOBIÑAN, Laguna—Host Philippines absorbed a 25-23, 25-20, 25-19 beating in the hands of Kazakhstan, which remained undefeated in the Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship Friday at Alonte Sports Arena here.The Kazakhs topped Pool A with a 2-0 record while the Filipinos settled for 1-1, but both teams will advance to the quarterfinals.ADVERTISEMENT Albay to send off disaster response team to Batangas MOST READ Alyssa Valdez and Jaja Santiago were once again the Philippines’ leading scorers putting up 14 and 13 points respectively, the same marks they had in the Hong Kong win.Katerina Tatko had a game-high 20 points to lead Kazakhstan.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano Teen gunned down in Masbate Jaja Santiago had the unfortunate mishap of ending the match when her final hoorah straight went to the net awarding the Kazakhs an unblemished slate.Despite the loss, Philippine head coach Francis Vicente was still pleased with the fight his squad brought against the Kazakhs.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’“I can say that I’m still proud of them and they really played with heart,” said Vicente in Filipino. “Of course there were lapses but that can’t be helped. The Kazakhs are really tall players, what we could’ve done was just to keep moving.”The Kazakhs have an average height of 181 centimeters, seven more than the Filipinos’ mean standing of 174 cm., and that distinct disparity worked wonders in the blocking department as the visitors scored on 17 of its blocks. 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano Ai-Ai delas Alas on Jiro Manio: ‘Sana pinahalagahan niya ang naitulong ko’ End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend Marcosian mode: Duterte threatens to arrest water execs ‘one night’ View comments
No, James is not through. Neither are the reigning champs if they have their way.They all understand the entire league has upped its game to chase these two heavyweights from their respective conferences.“That’s the beauty of competition at the highest level, other teams make us better and vice versa. Cleveland made us better,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “They beat us two years ago, they made us better last year. We’re doing the same thing for them. They’re retooling a little bit, they’ve got some great talent. Every team is trying to get where we are and that pushes us. We push them. That’s what makes the game better.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’SPORTSFederer blasts lack of communication on Australian Open smogThe Warriors and new-look Cavs will be tested in their openers: Golden State hosts Houston on Tuesday night in Chris Paul’s Rockets debut, while Cleveland plays Boston at home with Kyrie Irving in a Celtics jersey following that blockbuster August trade that transformed the Eastern Conference rivals.After losing to Golden State in a Game 5 clincher in Oakland, the Cavs spent the summer rebuilding a roster that now features new stars like Derrick Rose, Dwyane Wade and Isaiah Thomas. Woods cleared for golf activities with no restrictions Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James, center, drives between Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green, top, and guard Stephen Curry (30) during the first half of Game 1 of basketball’s NBA Finals in Oakland, Calif., Thursday, June 1, 2017. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)OAKLAND, Calif. — Minutes after LeBron James lost the NBA Finals to the Golden State Warriors four months ago, he vowed to return to the gym right away with plans to get back to the big stage. To win another ring.Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant heard it yet already knew it — and everybody on the defending champs and King James’ Cleveland Cavaliers realizes these teams could be destined for another championship showdown at the end of this season.ADVERTISEMENT Jo Koy: My brain always wants to think funny Judy Ann’s 1st project for 2020 is giving her a ‘stomachache’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. 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Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ LATEST STORIES MOST READ View comments Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ The Warriors are almost the same team, with Finals MVP Durant far more comfortable his second time around with Golden State — the scrutiny of leaving Oklahoma City long behind him.“I expect us to pick up with a full head of steam on Tuesday,” Curry said.There will be the fanfare of the Warriors receiving their championship rings in a pregame ceremony.Yet Golden State still remembers its flop on opening night a year ago, following a loss in the 2016 Finals to Cleveland after its record-setting 73-win regular season. The Warriors lost at home to San Antonio 129-100 in Durant’s debut.This time, they’re beginning the daunting quest of trying to repeat — something the franchise couldn’t do after the 2015 title against James and Co. as Cleveland won last year.“Your swag level is through the roof, as it should be,” Durant said. “You’re the best team in the league and you go out there and beat a bunch of teams to win a championship, of course your swag is going to be through the roof. You hear about swag, you hear about guys deserving stuff or stories that they might have coming up into this year, all this fairytale stuff, it’s cool stories, it’s cool feel-good stories but you’ve still got to go out there and play the game, you’ve still got to lock in every possession if you want to win.”NOTES: James is nursing a sprained left ankle and his status for Tuesday remained unclear. He was injured Sept. 27 in practice. … Key reserve Andre Iguodala is questionable for the Warriors’ opener because of his troublesome back and Omri Casspi also could be out because of a right ankle injury, Kerr said.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Despite dealing Irving to its closest competitor in the East, Cleveland is deeper with more versatility and talent than at any time James has been on the roster.And with close friend Wade back by his side, James is not only happy but is teammates with a player who brings out the best in him. Throw in former league MVP Rose, motivated to show he’s still one of the game’s elite guards, along with Thomas, Kevin Love, J.R. Smith, Jae Crowder, Jeff Green, Kyle Korver and Tristan Thompson, and it’s easy to see why Cleveland seems to be on a collision course with the Warriors again.The key being health and how quickly the Cavs can assemble all the pieces.“Don’t think we’ll be the team we want to be in a week. It’s going to be for the whole season,” James said. “We’re going to have changes, we’re going to make changes, we’re going to become a better team as the games go on so the team opening night will not be the team that we know we can be.”James can become a free agent next summer, but has not backed off his intent to end his career with Cleveland.“I think when you get to a certain level you don’t need another team to motivate you. We want to win a championship, they want to win a championship,” Golden State’s Draymond Green said. “We know what it’s like, we know the feeling, we love the feeling. They know the feeling, they love the feeling.”ADVERTISEMENT