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MONTREAL - "The Rock" summed it up best. "It feels like I havent left," said Tim Raines, the former long-time Expo, current Blue Jays roving instructor and should-be Hall-of-Famer, just moments after stepping onto the turf at Olympic Stadium. While Raines was referring to the memories that came flooding back, he may have meant it literally. Nothing much has changed about the Big O. Its the same ride to the Pie IX stop on the famous Montreal Metro. The walk from the station to the stadiums dimly lit concourse is no different. Then, you emerge through one of the section corridors into a time capsule. The yellow seats, so often empty in the Expos final years, serve as a reminder of days gone by when fans would rap them up and down to make a clanging sound. The scoreboard, which still sits above the centerfield batters eye, hasnt been updated. Its not high definition or LCD or anything else that resembles what fans enjoy in the stadia of today. The players are different. Well, for the most part, if you consider that Blue Jays utility infielder Maicer Izturis made his major league debut in a Montreal uniform on August 27, 2004. Everything else is the same. "I was joking if they wanted me to do any fan mail," said Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos, a Montreal native whose internship with the Expos, which included the responsibility of answering fan mail, launched his career in baseball. "I was getting ready to go." There was little chatter around the stadium of the 1994 players strike, which happened at a time when the Expos were 74-40, good enough for the National Leagues best record. The resurgent New York Yankees were the talk of the American League that year. What a contrast, those two organizations, in the two decades since. The Expos are gone, the proverbial stick of dynamite given to that 94 team by an uncommitted ownership, the 1995 club a shell of its former self. The Yankees have missed the playoffs only twice since. It took 10 years after the strike for the Expos, which experienced a kind of walking dead status once the likes of Larry Walker, Pedro Martinez, Moises Alou and others left town, to die off. The fans, descendants of the people who watched Jackie Robinson play in their city before he broke Major League Baseballs colour barrier in 1947, were subjected to annual speculation about their franchises relocation. Finally it happened in 2005 with the city of Washington, D.C. receiving a third crack at getting baseball right (the Minnesota Twins and Texas Rangers each descend from failed Washington Senators clubs.) "I think the issues were, and its no knock against the stadium, but the location of the stadium, the fact it wasnt a retractable roof," said Anthopoulos. "Growing up in this city, like you would in Toronto but its a lot colder here in the winter, the winters are long and any bit of summer you can get you want to be outdoors. Its a tough sell to go all the way to the east end and be indoors for a ballgame." This is a 48-hour period for the Blue Jays and Mets to work out the final kinks before the start of the regular season. Just as importantly, its a chance for Montrealers to experience what once was and to pay a posthumous tribute to their beloved Gary Carter, which they did on Friday night. On Saturday, its the 94 Expos turn to feel the love. Larry Walker, Moises Alou and future Hall-of-Famer Pedro Martinez will be among those on hand. One can only hope this weekend serves to exorcise the demon just a little bit. Luis Rivera, the Blue Jays third base coach who played his first three big league seasons with the Expos from 1986-88, doesnt forget. "The crowds, they were loud and there was a lot of whistling, which I do a lot," he said. "It was about sometimes 20-thousand, 30-thousand, 40-thousand. I remember when Pasqual Perez used to pitch it was a packed house." Tim Raines, The Rock, he remembers too. "Its a very good baseball town," said Raines. "My first 10 years here we averaged two million fans a year. They dont just leave. I think ownership back in the day, right at the tail end, played a big part of the lack of success that they had here." Warren Cromartie, the former Expos great, has said the exhibition weekend is the first step toward the return of Major League Baseball to Montreal. Maybe hes right and one day well be able to say, "Les Expos sont la!" Maybe hes wrong and this is nothing more than a pipe dream. For the moment, its just nice to be back at Olympic Stadium. Roberto Luongo Jersey . Ferrer was unable to find his rhythm in losing 6-4, 6-2 to Teymuraz Gabashvili in his opening match while Nadal struggled past fellow Spanish player Albert Ramos 7-6 (2), 6-4. Nadal eventually overcame his 103rd-ranked opponent to reach the third round, rebounding from a surprise loss to Ferrer in the Monte Carlo Masters quarterfinals. Radim Vrbata Jersey .B. -- Canadas Rachel Homan opened the Ford Womens World Curling Championship with a 7-5 win over Russia on Saturday. http://www.authenticpanthersshopnhl.com ... ey-jersey/. - Ronda Rousey realizes shes finishing up one of the biggest years for any fighter in the young history of mixed martial arts at UFC 168, and the UFCs bantamweight champion intends to go out on top. Green Panthers Jerseys . Last year, Matt Kuchar closed with a 4-under 68 to beat Kevin Chappell by two strokes for his second win of the 2013 season and sixth of his career. Jamie McGinn Jersey . -- Andrew Wiggins is from Canada, Wayne Selden from Massachusetts and Joel Embiid from the African nation of Cameroon. OKLAHOMA CITY -- Oklahoma City defensive specialist Serge Ibaka is expected to miss the rest of the NBA playoffs because of a left calf injury. The 6-foot-10 forward had an MRI on Friday, a day after the Thunder eliminated the Los Angeles Clippers and advanced to the Western Conference finals against the Spurs. Game 1 is Monday night in San Antonio. Thunder general manager Sam Presti called it a Grade 2 strain of the plantaris, which takes time to heal and strengthen because of a high re-injury rate. Ibaka was injured during the third quarter Thursday night. "I just want to express our disappointment for Serge, who, as we all know, is an elite competitor and someone that has proven to be a tremendous teammate," Presti said. "He was playing great basketball throughout the season. Hes had a huge impact on our season to date." Last year, All-Star point guard Russell Westbrook was knocked out of the playoffs with a torn ACL in the first round against Houston. The Thunder rallied to win that series before losing to Memphis in the next round. Presti believes the Thunder can rally and be ready for the Spurs. "We have had tthis group together for a while, and theyve been through some ups and downs, and this is just another one that hopefully is only going to make us better," Presti said.dddddddddddd Ibakas athletic ability and mid-range jumper have been keys for the Thunder. He averaged 12.2 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.2 blocks in 13 post-season games. During the 2013-14 regular season, he had career highs with averages of 15.1 points and 8.8 rebounds while leading the league in total blocks for the fourth consecutive season with 219. During his emotional MVP acceptance speech, Kevin Durant singled out Ibaka for stepping up and erasing many of the teams mistakes while Westbrook recovered from his most recent knee surgery. While Westbrook was out, the Thunder went 20-7, and Ibakas numbers jumped to 15.7 points, 8.5 rebounds and 2.8 blocks with 57 per cent shooting from the field. 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