PHOTO: Keep your equipment out of the Blackhawks' soccer area

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Before every NHL game in the bowels every arena you can always find a handful of players kicking a soccer ball around to loosen up and relax before the puck drops.

It's a routine, and hockey players, like all professional athletes, are creatures of habit.

The Stanley Cup Final is no time to change that routine.

That's why the Chicago Blackhawks have to take extra steps to keep their soccer area clear with hundreds of media descending on the United Center for Game 1 on Wednesday night.

When it comes to other somewhat comical photos leading up to the Stanley Cup Final, the lions at the the Art Institute of Chicago are getting the Dark Helmet treatment. (s/t Backhand Shelf).

Hockey is the best.

CBS Sports Writer

Adam Gretz has been writing about the NHL and taking an analytical approach to the game since the start of the 2008 season. A member of the PHWA since 2015, he has spent more than three years covering... Full Bio

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