Hockey Hall of Fame - Stanley Cup Journals: 2010, 27

Adam Burish brought the Stanley Cup to the Kohl Center. (Howie Borrow/Hockey Hall of Fame)
On Tuesday, August 17, the Stanley Cup travelled to Madison, Wisconsin, ready for a day with Adam Burish. Greeted at 9:30 that morning by the Burish family — Dad Mark, mother Helen and sister Nikki - a stretch SUV limo took the gang to the Eagle's Nest Arena. Peter Johnson, son of the legendary 'Badger' Bob Johnson, is the manager of the rink.

After leaving the Eagle's Nest, the Cup visited Mark Burish's law office, which in some weird, twisted way, preceded a stop at the sheriff's office. Adam was tossed into a jail cell with the Cup (for a photo opportunity, folks! Nothing more!).

The Burish family sharing a moment with Lord Stanley. (Mike Bolt/Hockey Hall of Fame)
The University of Wisconsin-Madison is very special to the Burish family. Adam spent four years there, starring as a winger with the Badgers of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (2002-03 to 2005-06). And Nikki attended Wisconsin, too. The Badgers made history in 2006 when both the men's a women's hockey teams were NCAA Division 1 National champions. It was the first time a Division 1 school took both the men's and women's titles the same year, and the Burishes were integral parts of the championships.

Adam and Nikki took the Stanley Cup to their alma mater, where a Division 1 football practice was underway. Adam was invited to speak to the team, and his motivational talk spoke of the teamwork that great teams require to achieve the pinnacle, like he and the Blackhawks did in June. He used a war metaphor, explaining that brothers that go to battle together have each others' backs, and will run through walls for their teammates. The words inspired and fired-up the football squad, which then practically reduced a tackling dummy to sawdust.

Adam Burish and Stanley Cup visited the
Wisconsin Badgers football team.
(Mike Bolt/Hockey Hall of Fame)
The Cup was taken to the condo where Adam's parents live, and while it sat in the lobby, residents were able to study the engravings like Egyptian hieroglyphics while they spoke with Adam.

Adam sat on the patio of a Greek restaurant with the Stanley Cup, and while he was being unobtrusive, passers-by spun their heads like Linda Blair in The Exorcist when they caught a glimpse of hockey's most revered silverware. A City of Madison firetruck did an entire lap of the block to confirm that yes, indeed, that was the Stanley Cup sitting their on the patio. The firefighters stopped and got pictures with Adam and the Cup.

Adam Burish and some of his former teammates at the University of Wisconsin pose for a photo with the Stanley Cup and the NCAA Championship trophy they won in 2006. (Mike Bolt/Hockey Hall of Fame)

Adam returned to the university, taking the Stanley Cup to The Union Terrace, arguably the university pub with the most sensational view. From the large pub you get an outstanding view of the lake. On a good day, it's the glue that holds alumni together, but when it's the site of a reunion with you, the Stanley Cup and some of your best friends, it's even more amazing. Adam greeted many of his Badger teammates, including Ottawa Senators' netminder Brian Elliott.

Next up was an excursion to Wando's Bar. If, like Adam, you think bacon is the candy of meats, you'll love Wando's because every Tuesday, you get free bacon with your drinks! Now THAT's a promotion! The place was rockin', and Burish took the Stanley Cup up to the third floor where he and his friends ended the night by drinking Fish Bowls, a Madison tradition, out of the Cup.

Helen, Adam, Nikki and Mark Burish sharing a moment at their lake house with the Stanley Cup and the NCAA Championship trophies from 2006. (Mike Bolt/Hockey Hall of Fame)
The next day, Adam went back to the Kohl Center where he had enjoyed so much success as a Badger. Former NHLers Mike Eaves and Mark Johnson coach this year's men's and women's teams respectively. Blake Geoffrion, the 2010 recipient of the Hobey Baker Award as the top collegiate hockey player, dropped by with his award. Geoffrion is an interesting study. The former Badger is doing his best to become the first fourth generation NHL player. His father is Dan Geoffrion, his grandfather is Bernie 'Boom Boom' Geoffrion and his great-grandfather is Howie Morenz! Quite a bloodline!

At the Kohl Center, Adam had invited fans to come down, meet him and get a photo with the Stanley Cup. More than 500 took him up on his offer, and Burish signed for over two hours.

His hand cramped from signing and his mouth etched in a perma-grin, Adam took the Cup to his family's gorgeous lake house, where 200 friends, including many of his teammates on the 2006 Wisconsin championship team, partied with him and the Cup. Much to Adam's delight (and surprise!), the University of Wisconsin Marching Band showed up and put on their usual sterling performance.

Adam Burish brought the Stanley Cup to Kollege Klub. (Mike Bolt/Hockey Hall of Fame)
The parties hadn't ended yet for Adam Burish. The forward, who'll spend the upcoming season with the Dallas Stars, stopped next at another of his favourite haunts -- Fitz's on the Lake in neighbouring Lodi, Wisconsin. Then, the final stop on the Tour de Burish was at the Kollege Klub, a favourite of the Badger athletes, a fitting way to toast a wonderful season and an indelible memory.

* * *

Next up, it's off to Jersey and a day with three-time Stanley Cup champion, John Madden, and you'll read all about his celebration on Friday in the Stanley Cup Journal.

Kevin Shea is the Editor of Publications and Online Features for the Hockey Hall of Fame.

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