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From the June 14, 2003 issue of The New York Times

Fans Salute Stanley Cup Champion Devils
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

December 10, 2001 -- Piscopo is not your average Joe

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- Outside the arena where the New Jersey Devils won their third Stanley Cup, thousands of fans celebrated the new champions with a rousing tailgate party.

Comedian and New Jersey native Joe Piscopo hosted the event, which honored the Devils in the Continental Airlines Arena parking lot for winning the Cup in seven games over the Anaheim Mighty Ducks earlier this week.

``This may be a parking lot, but it's the only parking lot that's got the Stanley Cup,'' Piscopo said.

The loudest cheers were reserved for the Devils, who were each introduced to the fans. Defenseman Scott Stevens and goaltender Martin Brodeur were favorites.

Fans chanted ``MVP, MVP, MVP!'' as Brodeur stepped on stage. Moments later, the Cup was unveiled under bursts of red, white and blue confetti.

Gov. James E. McGreevey declared Saturday ``Devils Day'' but drew a chorus of boos from the crowd that drowned out his remarks.

No matter. Dignitaries and speeches weren't why fans flocked to the low-key tribute, the third that has taken place on the Meadowlands blacktop.

``Everybody talks about how they don't have a parade. This is better. Everybody just hangs out and parties,'' said Peter Sasso, who brought his son, Peter Jr.

One of the biggest fans in the crowd was Nancy Roepke. A hat topped with Stanley Cup replicas with the years 1995, 2000 and 2003 was perched on her head.

``Soon as they won, I started working on it,'' Roepke said. ``The night they won, we stayed until 3:30 in the morning until they came out. They brought out the Cup. We touched the Cup.''

The celebration could be fans' last at Continental Airlines Arena. The Devils and Nets are part of the YankeeNets conglomerate, which has been trying for several years to reach a deal to construct a new professional sports arena in downtown Newark.