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Gooding times

Jerry Magurie star, other celebrities catch Ducks fever

Posted: Friday June 8, 2007 5:09PM; Updated: Friday June 8, 2007 5:09PM
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Cuba Gooding
Cuba Gooding Jr. celebrates the Ducks Stanley Cup with Shawn Thornton.
Harry How/Getty Images
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Cuba Gooding Jr. might not get his name etched into the Stanley Cup, but he partied just as hard as any Duck after Anaheim won the Cup this week. Gooding Jr., who attended Games 1, 2 and the series-clinching 5, sprayed champagne in the locker room with the players after the game.

"This is intense," he said. "It doesn't get any better than this. This is awesome. I predicted they'd win in five games and they did."

While the Academy Award winner has played hockey in a league in El Segundo since 1992, he admits that he's a "huge Kings fan," whose allegiance switched to the Ducks once the playoffs began. "I love that the Cup is here," he said. "I love that the Cup is in California."

Before and after every Ducks game during the Stanley Cup Final, Gooding Jr. partied with other celebrities in the Ducks' VIP party tent just outside of the Honda Center. Before the first game of the Finals, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NBC Sports Chairman Dick Ebersol were brushed aside by security in the tent to make way for Arnold Schwarzenegger.

"Thanks for coming," Bettman told the California Governor. "It's great to have you out here."

"Thank you," said Schwarzenegger. "I try to go to as many sporting events as I can. I'm excited to be here."

Some of the other celebrities who frequented the tent during the Finals included Adam Brody, Jerry Bruckheimer, Kevin James, Masi Oka, Sasha Cohen, Stephen Stills, Snoop Dogg, Ray Liotta, James Caan, Josh Lucas, Benjamin McKenzie and Jerry O'Connell.

"This is amazing," said O'Connell. "I know this is going to make me sound like I have awful loyalty but in Southern California you can't really be a Kings fan anymore. You have to cheer for the Ducks. They're the most exciting team in hockey and there's nothing like watching a championship team."

New School v. Old School

The sprawling views of downtown from the backyard of the Tower Grove Villa, a $25 million hidden oasis in Beverly Hills, were almost enough of a distraction to draw attention away from the power summit that was congregating around the fire pit next to the pool. Although not even a postcard perfect sunset on the beach could make one turn away from Jessica Alba, who was sitting around the fire, sharing stories with her boyfriend Cash Warren, Baron Davis, Kim Kardashian, Kevin Connoly and others.

They were congregating in the neon lit backyard filled for an invite-only DJ Battle prior to the MTV Movie Awards. While the DJ battlegrounds were drawn between new school and old school it was easy to see which side the Bay Area's favorite athletes took.

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