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Ten Questions with Phil Pritchard, the Keeper of The Stanley Cup

For 28 years, Phil Pritchard, the Keeper of The Stanley Cup, has squired the coolest trophy in sports around the world, from war zones to the bottom of Mario Lemieux's pool. Oh, the stories this duo could tell. Since the Cup can't talk, we asked Pritchard to spill some of Stanley's secrets.

Sometime between now and June 15, Phil Pritchard will walk the Stanley Cup out on the postgame red carpet and present it, with his gleaming white gloves, to either the Pittsburgh Penguins or San Jose Sharks. "I never get tired of seeing the reaction the Cup gets," says Pritchard, the Cup's official keeper since 1988. "There's pure exhaustion, joy ... every emotion possible. And they get to see it on the ice in front of 20,000 people." After the official presentation, the real fun begins, as each member of the winning team gets quality time with the Cup -- and Pritchard will be along for the ride to serve as chaperone, sounding board and, sometimes, taste tester. Here, in his own words, are some of his favorite memories of being the Cup's companion.

The Cup's curfew is ...


I clean the Cup every ...


"Flying from Paris to Stockholm once, [the airline] wouldn't allow it on the flight because of its size," Pritchard says. "Finally, we took the Cup out of the case and placed it on the table, and two tourists from Minnesota who just happened to be walking by started freaking out and taking photos. I think the airline folks finally realized it was something important. France is traditionally not a hockey country."

My favorite fact about the Cup is ...


When I'm not with the Cup I'm ...


The weirdest thing anyone has put in the Cup was ...


Tomas Kopecky took the Cup to Slovakia to ...


After Tomas Kopecky won the Stanley Cup with the Blackhawks in 2010, he brought it back to Bratislava and slurped some traditional Slovakian soup out of its bowl -- then shared some with Pritchard.

The worst Cup-related mishap to happen on my watch was ...


The best place I've visited with the Cup was ...


The Cup has visited 24 different countries on three different continents -- including high atop Vancouver Island's Mount Waddington with the Kings' Willie Mitchell in 2012. But it has never been south of the equator.

One place I wish I could take the Cup is ...


Of the 27 finals I've covered, the one that stands out was ...


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