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Cubs have Cup fever as Blackhawks reach Final

CHICAGO -- The Cubs have been rooting for the Blackhawks in the NHL playoffs, and many will be at Wednesday's Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Bruins. The Blackhawks advanced with a double-overtime win on Saturday against the Kings.

"It's nice to have a championship in the city," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said Sunday. "A lot of us are into it and we're hockey fans. It was the big talk this morning. It's something, when you're involved in that before, in championships -- and people who witness that who haven't been part of championships -- it kind of gives you goosebumps to understand the reality of it. That's the emotions you get when you're in those situations.

"I don't know how quiet [the United Center] got when they were nine seconds away from going to the Stanley Cup [when the Kings tied it]. I've been there and know how loud it is."

It's been fun to watch some of the players and coaches who haven't been exposed to hockey very much get involved in the game. Coach Franklin Font, who is from Venezuela, went to his first game this year.

"He said, 'This is the greatest sport ever,'" Sveum said of Font.

Sveum used to have season tickets to the Phoenix Coyotes, but stopped when the NHL team moved out west to Glendale, Ariz.

"I've always been a Blackhawks fan anyway," he said.

He would take his son, Rustin, to Coyotes games.

"He lost his first couple teeth at hockey games," Sveum said. "He wanted to wait and pull them out at the hockey game. He said, 'I'm not taking them out until we get to the game' and he pulled them out himself."

Sveum knows his football allegiance has been questioned.

"Some people don't like that I'm a Packers fan," he said. "But when you adopt teams, it's not that you're a Bears hater. My true blood is I'm a Raiders fan. I do despise the 49ers. Maybe not 'despise' -- they're not my favorite team."

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat.
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