It's easy to recognize that David Lee has lowered his body-fat percentage lost 8 pounds added lean muscle and boosted the quickness and explosion of his movements this preseason.

Warriors head coach Mark Jackson also sees something a little less tangible - and maybe more important - in his power forward.

"There's just a look in his eyes. He really sets the tone for us" Jackson said. "He's an All-Star power forward. He's had a great career and he continues to build on it. He's not satisfied. I'm just happy that he's still here and with the way he's leading us."

Lee was the only player in the league to average at least 18 points 11 rebounds and three assists last season and he led the NBA with 56 double-doubles and 31 games of at least 20 points and at least 10 rebounds. He was selected to the All-Star Game snapping thelongest drought for any NBA team which dated to Latrell Sprewell in 1997.

Following Lee's consistency the Warriors won 47 games last season - their second-best mark and second playoff trip since 1993-94.

He had waited 577 regular-season games to make his first playoff appearance but he tore his right hip flexor in Game 1 of the Warriors' first-round series with Denver. Remarkably he managed to drag his leg through gutsy sequences in five more playoff games that didn't produce his usual double-doubles but did produce a lift for his teammates.

After offseason surgery Lee got back to work - refusing to settle for a repeat of what might have been the best season of his career.

"He understands just how special it is right now" Jackson said. "You look around and you see the talent. This is a different place and this is a different time. He's worked his tail off in the offseason. ... I expect him to have a great year."

That seems to be a safe expectation. Lee appears to have more energy more lateral quickness on defense and more explosiveness when attacking the rim on offense.