Odd Man Rush: A Harvard Kid’s Hockey Odyssey from Central Park to Somewhere in Sweden—with Stops along the Way

 
9781613218174: Odd Man Rush: A Harvard Kid’s Hockey Odyssey from Central Park to Somewhere in Sweden—with Stops along the Way
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In his hilarious, gritty, and touching debut, Bill Keenan a hockey star once on the fast-track to the NHL tells of how he overcame multiple obstacles to find fulfillment and redemption in the strange world of European minor-league professional hockey.

Keenan’s hockey obsession begins as a five-year-old on Lasker Rink in New York’s Central Park love at first stride,” as he calls it. He then becomes the youngest, and skinniest, player on the New York Bobcats, a Junior B hockey team. Later, after his hockey career at Harvard doesn’t end as planned with a fat NHL contract Keenan decides to play in the minor leagues in Europe, where the glamour of professional sports is decidedly lacking.

Part fish-out-of-water travelogue, part coming-of-age memoir, Odd Man Rush will capture the interest of not just hockey fans, but also fans of good writing. Throughout, Keenan’s deep affection for the game shines through, even as he describes fans who steal players’ clothes from the locker room or toss empty beer cans onto the rink after games. Abusive fans, cold showers, long bus rides nothing diminishes his love for the sport. Because that’s the way it works with me and hockey. Even when it’s horrible, it’s wonderful.”

Skyhorse Publishing, as well as our Sports Publishing imprint, are proud to publish a broad range of books for readers interested in sports books about baseball, pro football, college football, pro and college basketball, hockey, or soccer, we have a book about your sport or your team.

Whether you are a New York Yankees fan or hail from Red Sox nation; whether you are a die-hard Green Bay Packers or Dallas Cowboys fan; whether you root for the Kentucky Wildcats, Louisville Cardinals, UCLA Bruins, or Kansas Jayhawks; whether you route for the Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens, or Los Angeles Kings; we have a book for you. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to publishing books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked by other publishers and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.

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About the Author:

Bill Keenan played hockey at Harvard University from 2005 to 2008 and professionally in Europe from 2009 to 2012. He no longer plays the game but still has hockey hair. He is currently pursuing his MBA at Columbia Business School and lives in New York City.

Review:

"In this uproarious new memoir, a New York-raised hockey phenom high-sticks his way from youth camps to the Ivy League to the frozen purgatory of Europe's minor leagues, rubbing shoulder pads with All-Stars, has-beens, and a horde of hostile Germans along the way." -Vanity Fair   It would be one thing had Keenan made it as an NHLer. That he did not makes “Odd Man Rush" a unique item on the bookshelf. Keenan puts a name, face, and voice to the majority — the grinders who, despite their singular passion for the sport, do not advance to its highest level...Keenan understands the culture and captures it well.
- The Boston Globe    "A bawdy, often comical chronicle of hockey and survival in far-flung places...the international version of the movie 'Slap Shot.'
- The New York Post
‘Ball Four’ meets hockey; slap shots abound -The Buffalo News

"Last time I saw Billy, he stepped on a puck at Harvard practice and almost took my head off with his stick when he fell. His writing won't hurt you, but it will make you laugh." -Alex Killorn, forward, Tampa Bay Lightning

"Giving us more than a hockey book, Bill Keenan fills an arena with wit, passion, and good old story-telling. Both exotic and at the same time homespun and heartfelt, Keenan's story captures the fear and awkwardness of a stranger in a strange land. This guy has been there and the details are just right." -Bill Gaston, author of six short-story collections, five books including Midnight Hockey, and winner of the CBC Canadian Literary Award, the National Magazine award, the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize, and the Victoria Book Prize

"From the prestige of Harvard NCAA to the humbling European minor leagues, an honest and often hilarious look at a side of the hockey world that is not very well known and rarely written about." -Neil Smith, President and G.M. of the 1994 Stanley Cup Champion New York Rangers, and current NHL analyst for Rogers Sportsnet

"This might be Bill Keenan's first book--but it won't be his last. His bang-on descriptions of the characters he played with and the coaches he toiled under will literally have you laughing out loud. Even if you've never been to the leafy Ivy League, or tried to score on (or off!) the ice in Sweden, he has you skating right along with him. One of the best hockey memoirs out there--Keenan definitely scores on this Odd Man Rush." -Deb Placey, NHL Network and MSG Network hockey host

"Keenan's life story proves a journeyman's journey makes for one great read. . . He was a minor-leaguer, but his storytelling is major league."
-Sal Barry, The Hockey News

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