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Bolts’ Jon Cooper crashes Chicago as actor Vaughn picks up dinner check

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The Tampa Bay Lightning didn’t win Wednesday night, but at least they ate free.

Just call Jon Cooper a Wedding Crasher.

Cooper was with a party of 20 at a restaurant called Chicago Cut when he spotted Vince Vaughn, an actor he likes. Because Cooper had had a dinner check taken care of by NBA analyst Charles Barkley, Cooper tried to pick up Vaughn’s check. Vaughn wouldn’t hear of it.

“This is Chicago,” he saId. “That’s not how we roll. This is how we treat people.”

It’s enough to make you want to watch Old School all over again, isn’t it?

Vaughn, a huge Chicago Blackhawks’ fan who was in attendance on Wednesday night, was heavily criticized for the move, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. Some readers referred to the Lightning ticket policy in their protests, saying “Vaughn picks up his check while they keep us out of their building.” However, there was no word on how many of the 22,000 seats in Chicago’s United Center went to Lightning fans.

The Lightning’s Mark Barberio told nhl.com that Cooper asks that his team follow two rules from Vaughn’s movie  Wedding Crashers: No excuses, play like a champion (rule No. 76) and don’t look for opportunities, make them (rule No. 113).

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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