MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 09: Steven Motlop of the Cats celebrates winning the 2nd AFL Qualifying Final match between the Geelong Cats and the Hawthorn Hawks at Melbourne Cricket Ground on September 9, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Steven Motlop has returned in far better shape than he did last pre-season, as he looks to put a disappointing year behind him.

The enigmatic star returned to pre-season training last year visibly overweight and it subsequently resulted in an up and down season for the 25-year-old, which culminated in being put on the trade table by the Cats.

However, new part-time forwards coach, Brad Johnson, says he has been impressed with Motlop after just a few sessions down at the Cattery, with the forward  “ready to sink his teeth into a big pre-season”.

“I actually saw him in Darwin last week ... and he (Motlop) was at the Michael Long learning centre where they’ve got the big facility up there which is just first-class and he utilised that (to train) through his entire break, which is good to hear and great to see because we know the impact a Steve Motlop can have, especially when he’s fit and firing and in the right space," Johnson said.

The Bulldogs' legend also said a number of younger Cats are ready have break seasons.

“From the guys that I’ll work with I think Nakia Cockatoo is really developing into his body really well. He looks really fit at the moment — I know there’s a long way to go before the season starts — but he’s one that’s hit the ground running,” Johnson said.

“And then all the other guys (are looking pretty good), look I’ve done a couple of sessions so far ... Jordan Murdoch’s moving pretty well, so there’s a few guys that are in pretty good form.”

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