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Devils get their pre-game kicks with soccer ball


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Ask Patrik Elias about the reasons for his scoring surge in the last 15 games (11 goals, 16 assists) and he begins with the obvious answers: the switch to playing with Dainius Zubrus and Brian Gionta and getting the added responsiblity of playing against opponent's top lines.

His reason's after that are a little more interesting, though.

One was his wife's cooking and the Christmas cookies she's been baking already.

The other was the soccer.

Mottau said Elias is the best soccer player on the team "by far."

Of Holik, he said, "He's more of a bruiser. Even in soccer."

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Thats pretty cool. Good for team chemistry. I remember when they should Elias playing soccer during his trip with unicef. He looked pretty good at soccer during that video.

Apparently, Brian Gionta starred in the youth levels of soccer, before he had to make a choice of playing soccer or hockey. He obviously chose the sport he was better at...

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Soccer would be fun before a game. Lately I've been playing hackeysack before games and I find it helpful. Definitely gets your body ready, hand-eye coordination and your juices flowing.

In fact, the first time I played before a game, I ended up scoring the only goal for my team by directing it in with my skate (no distinct kicking motion though)

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