Hockey authors face off with fans in Edwards Thursday | VailDaily.com

Hockey authors face off with fans in Edwards Thursday

Leigh Horton
Special to the Daily
Terry Frei.
Special to the Daily |

If you go ...

What: Author presentation and book signing with Terry Frei and Adrian Dater, authors of “Save by Roy.”

Where: Bookworm of Edwards.

When: 6 p.m. Thursday.

Cost: $10, includes appetizers.

More information: Call 970-926-READ.

EDWARDS — The face-off, the charging, the decking, the shoves, the audience that wants to see a punch. The feeding, the flat pass, the flip pass, the punch, the ref who pulls two players off the ice. The moment when the home team makes a goal. The time when all the fans shout “Save by Roy!”

There’s no business like hockey. And in the new book “Save by Roy,” Terry Frei and Adrian Dater get to the bottom of how former goalkeeper Patrick Roy has pulled the Colorado Avalanche together into a formidable team.

Avalanche fans are no stranger to Roy, who played many successful years with the Montreal Canadiens, winning four Stanley Cups and three Conn Smythe Trophies. Many fans questioned his mid-season transfer to the Avalanche in 1996, but they have only to look at his track record to realize he was a miracle player.

After proving himself through several poor seasons Roy rose through the ranks and finished his career as one of the most famous goalkeepers in the NHL. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2006, and he eventually became the Colorado Avalanche coach in 2013.

This auspicious career was not without challenges, often self-inflicted. His propensity to inciting on-ice fighting and his tense relationships with coaches and players ensured a series of suspensions and fines.

Through those difficult periods, he never lost sight of one of his most unique characteristics: superstition, which allowed him to focus on the game and feel confident he was fully prepared. One of his most endearing habits was writing the names of his three children on his stick. He was also frequently seen talking to the goalposts to gain energy and courage for his games.

During his tenure as the Avalanche coach, Roy’s experience and talent have been tempered by a desire to unify the team. Now a highly respected coach in the NHL, Roy is proving that he is just as efficient and ruthless off the ice as he was on it.

STORIES FROM BEHIND THE SCENES

Sports journalists Frei and Dater have taken this incredibly diverse career and synthesized it into an enjoyable book. Even lukewarm fans of hockey and Roy will enjoy the honest and clear presentation of one of the most important moves in recent NHL history.

These Denver Post writers have used their inside passes to lead hockey fans on a tour of the resurrection of the Avalanche. Detailing the controversy surrounding hiring a rookie coach (despite his successful goalkeeping history, he was still an unpopular coach), the techniques Roy uses to motivate his team and the personal lives of key players, Frei and Dater create a unique look on the inner-workings of the 2013-14 Avalanche season.

They recap season-changing plays and games, using their vast experience to describe exactly how specific shots determined a game. Interspersing their analysis with humorous and refreshing excerpts from their game journals, Frei and Dater allow readers a glimpse into the on-the-spot world of sports journalists during a game.

Told with equal parts honesty, humor, and accurate analysis, Frei and Dater craft an amazing story of an underdog hockey team uniting under a legendary player. On Thursday, The Bookworm of Edwards welcomes them to the Vail Valley to share their experiences, their unfiltered opinions of the future of the Avalanche and Roy, and stories from behind the scenes.

Leigh Horton is an environmental engineer, math tutor and bookseller at The Bookworm of Edwards.




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