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SALT LAKE CITY -- Thirty-eight years ago, Utah celebrated its first major professional sports championship when the Utah Stars won the ABA Championship.
That 1971 win had been the only major sports championship the state ever enjoyed, until Sunday night when Real Salt Lake completed their totally unreal rally from out of the playoffs to MLS Cup champions.
On Thursday, RSL left Utah, headed for Seattle as heavy underdogs. But Monday they returned home as champions.
After the MLS Cup thriller, the team got to experience something that very few people in this world get to experience: a championship locker room celebration.
"To come here and bring the first, you know, trophy back to Real Salt Lake; it's something special to me," said goalie Nick Rimando. "This team knew that we were capable of being champions. We knew if we got to the playoffs that we really had a shot."
"I still haven't really realized what happened," said forward Robbie Findley. "It was something we've been working hard on all year. We've been through our ups and downs, and we were able to overcome and take the whole thing."
The team plans to celebrate the win Tuesday with their fans. After a parade down State Street, the team will celebrate with the public beginning at 5:45 p.m. at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy.