For the Love of Hockey…
If you are an ice hockey fan you may be looking forward to the Winter Classic, a regular season hockey game played outdoors, this year on January 2nd at Fenway Park – the Bruins hosting the Pittsburgh Penguins. You may be a loyal fan to your hometown team or a fair weather fan who supports the winners or the underdogs. You may have been born into a family who loves the game and has season tickets, so hockey becomes a big part of your life. That is the case for my husband, and through osmosis I became a fan 30 years ago.
My husband, Eric grew up a passionate hockey fan and attending many games at the Nassau Coliseum with his season ticket holding parents and brother. He was in the stands when Bryan Trottier and the NY Islanders won that first Stanley Cup and enjoyed multiple playoff games during that special run in the 70s and 80s. When we started dating in the early 90s I caught the hockey bug and we enjoyed those season tickets at the Coliseum. We also traveled to away games in Montreal, Boston, DC, San Jose, New Jersey and when we moved to Connecticut we attended the Islanders AHL affiliate Bridgeport Sound Tigers games.
The crowd cheering can be thunderous but the most incredible atmosphere was in Long Island where the magic in the Coliseum was palpable and the history of that winning team was embodied in the loyal and spirited fans who helped to keep the momentum going. One game we went to when we were young, back in the 90s honored coach Al Arbor, and face masks with his likeness were distributed to the fans. My teddy bear that sat on our bed in our New York City apartment wore that Al Arbor face during the hockey season and our 2 large sofa pillows were dressed in our NY Islanders home and away jerseys we received for a wedding gift.
If you have any connection to the sport of hockey, All Roads Home by Bryan Trottier is for you! The prologue had me sobbing; Trottier shares his experience winning the cup at the Coliseum, the incredible building that held the magic of historical wins for so many years. In the book he talks about having native blood and his life in Canada, his teammates and his experiences on and off the ice as a young boy, player and coach. He touches on depression, divorce, family and drive, and you can tell, Trottier is a kind, nice person along with being an incredible competitor and skilled player. With honesty and emotion he shares his life story and I highly recommend his memoir, All Roads Home for all hockey fans!
About the Author
In 2017, BRYAN TROTTIER was voted one of the “100 Greatest NHL Players” in history. He was born in Val Marie, Saskatchewan, and went on to win seven Stanley Cups (four with the New York Islanders, two with the Pittsburgh Penguins, and one as an assistant coach with the Colorado Avalanche). He lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.