The Game

The Game

Book - 2013
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From his humble beginnings playing hockey with his brother in the backyard rink his dad built, Ken Dryden quickly became one of the greatest NHL goalies, winning six Stanley Cups for the Montreal Canadiens during a legendary period in that franchise's history.

Widely acknowledged as the best hockey book ever written, The Game is a rare and revealing day-by-day account of a week in one NHL goalie's life, during his very last season playing professional hockey. Ken Dryden gives us special access to a world few have witnessed firsthand. Taking us into the Canadiens' dressing room, Dryden lets us experience the crackle of nerves before a game and laugh at the practical jokes teammates play on one another. We're with Dryden on and off the ice, we meet the icons who were his hockey family--Guy Lafleur, Larry Robinson, Guy Lapointe, Jean Béliveau, Serge Savard, and coach Scotty Bowman--and we even keep them company on the road. Thirty years later, the immediacy of The Game makes it feel as true and fresh as when it was first published, and Dryden's insights about Canada's favorite sport, the thrills and inconveniences of celebrity, the role of violence in the NHL, and the pleasures and challenges of teamwork still resonate today.

For this updated commemorative edition, Dryden has added a moving new chapter about his day with the Stanley Cup--a privilege that players on winning teams have enjoyed only since 1995. As Dryden travels from a small Manitoba town full of passionate hockey fans to the backyard rink of his childhood, the Cup brings Dryden's friends, family, and former teammates together for a long-overdue celebration.

And still the game goes on.

Publisher: Toronto :, Collins,, 2013, ©2013.
Edition: 30th anniversary edition.
ISBN: 9781443427920
Branch Call Number: 796. 962092 DRY D 2013
Characteristics: xvi, 318 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (some colour), portraits (some colour) ; 23 cm.


From Library Staff

List - Hockey Week
Phil_R Oct 25, 2017

Considered one of the best sports books of all time, any other book about hockey is inevitably compared to this one.

List - From Eh? to Zed
Erik_K Jun 29, 2015

A classic. Ken Dryden is a very thoughtful and insightful individual and it results in one of the greatest sports books of all time.

From the critics

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rb3221 Jan 30, 2016

Ken Dryden's "The Game" is a reflective, thoughtful and at times insightful look into 'the game' and some of the memorable players on his team. It is also about the very nature of hockey, its history and how it changed over the years especially with the Soviet Summit series of 1972 and the emergence of Gretzky.
He treats his teammates as people and not just hockey players; there are some very good and occasional humorous insider locker room stories of stars like Robinson, Lafleur, Lapointe and Bowman, their brilliant but somewhat unusual coach. I especially enjoyed the explanation of why he often stood with his chin leaning on his extended stick after a goal (an interesting psychological gamesmanship ploy).
This is a story about the life of a hockey player on typical game days, off-days, about the team, about himself, his thoughts and emotions. It is possibly the best hockey book ever written and well worth the read.


Mar 11, 2013

Would Dryden been hailed as much if Robinson , Savard and Lapointe not played for Montreal ? I'm inclined to think that Rogie Vachon would have brought Montreal just as many Cup's had Ken never came along.....

Jul 18, 2012

I haven't watched a hockey game in 40 years, but Dryden's book is quite fascinating, not only for it's insight in the game of hockey and how it's changed over the years, for better or worse, but his ability to capture the personalities of the players he writes about. I was enthralled from the start to the end.

Feb 25, 2012

If anyone's interested, the Crowsnest Library has an older copy of this in it's non-fiction section! I saw it there on Thursday, while I was shelving some books!.....Actually there are 12 older versions available in various if you want it now....just search and scroll down a bit!

Aug 31, 2009

One of the best hockey books ever written.

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