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Cavs’ Owner Sees Intense Season

January 9, 1999

CLEVELAND (AP) _ The front-office of the Cleveland Cavaliers expects the post-lockout season to be intense.

``Because of the shortened season, all the games will have more intensity than normal,″ Cavs owner Gordon Gund said Friday in sizing up the upcoming season.

NBA commissioner David Stern has said the league hopes to start the season Feb. 5, with each team playing 50 games. Each team will play two exhibition games _ one home and one away.

Players can start using team facilities beginning Monday, although coaches will be prohibited from working with them until a collective bargaining agreement is put into writing and signed by both sides.

Coach Mike Fratello said teams with a lot of players who know their coaches and system should have the advantage early in the season.

``Because we haven’t really seen them now for all these months, it’s hard to say what type of condition the team will come back in. We hope they’ve paid attention to their bodies along the way and will come back in shape and ready to go,″ Fratello said. ``We have to determine how many practices we are cut short before the first regular game in order to determine how far behind we’re going to be.″

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