272 pages, 9.27 × 6.22 × 0.98 in
June 27, 2011
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 0307397297
ISBN - 13: 9780307397294
Read from the Book
Chapter OneThe Next One It is the same story. It is a different story. Small town, working folks, genius sprung straight from the land, honed on frozen slough or backyard rink. Twenty years on, the shinny creation myth hadn't really changed so much, even if so much else had. A new setting now, and Brantford wasn't Parry Sound. Not the near north, the cottager's idea of wilderness, not a prairie crossroads, a backwoods outpost, but the kind of place where most Canadians really lived. It was a city of modest proportions, industrial and gritty, the town that Massey Ferguson built, the country's capital of combine harvesters. The Grand River split it in two, but on Varadi Avenue most of the skating was done on dad-made ice. Walter Gretzky was a driven man, a hard man, who never made more than twenty-five grand working for the Bell (Alexander Graham had lived in Brantford too). He grew up on a farm, never drove a new car, and counted every nickel. He was a tough little guy who once cracked his skull in an accident on the job, was in a coma for awhile, was off work for eighteen months while the family struggled to live on disability payments. When he recovered, he was left deaf in one ear and his head hurt all the time. There was nothing golden or glamorous about Wally. He didn't like the night life or want to charm the ladies or walk with the ex-athlete's swagger, though he certainly didn't mind a bit of attention. He had a big schnozz, a face right from the old country, and his k
Table of Contents
1. The Next One
2. The Prodigy Business
3. A Golden Age of Hustlers
4. Hockey Hollywood
5. Bruce's Big Idea
6. The Last Perfect Moment (I) May 26, 1988
7. A Star in Star-Ville
8. The Art of the Deal
9. Gretzky's Tears
10. Breach of Faith
11. The Miracles of Los Angeles
12. A Long Goodbye
13. The Last Perfect Moment (II) May 9, 1993
From the Publisher
Renowned sportswriter Stephen Brunt reveals how “the Great One,” who was bought and sold more than once, decided that the comfortable Canadian city where hockey ruled couldn’t compete with the slushy ice of a California franchise.
Bobby Orr’s career ended prematurely, with tears. Wayne Gretzky’s tears, unlike Orr’s, announced not an ending but another beginning. Gretzky’s Edmonton Oilers had four Stanley Cup victories, but Gretzky may then have had other goals in mind.
Beginning with his dad, Walter, and continuing with Nelson Skalbania, Peter Pocklington, Bruce McNall, Jerry Buss — and with the CBC’s Peter Gzowski as chronicler for the eager masses — the enormity of Gretzky’s talent attracted all sorts of people who were after a variety of vicarious thrills.
From the Jacket
Praise for the #1 National bestseller Searching for Bobby Orr:
“[N]ot only one of the best hockey books ever, but a book that transcends hockey.”
— Edmonton Journal
About the Author
Stephen Brunt is Canada’s premier sportswriter and commentator. In addition to Searching for Bobby Orr, he is also the author of Facing Ali: The Opposition Weighs In, and of The Way It Looks from Here: Contemporary Canadian Writing on Sports. He lives in Hamilton, Ontario, and in Winterhouse Brook, Newfoundland.
"Brunt captures the feelings of shock and betrayal set off by The Trade better than anything I've ever read. Long the consensus pick as Canada's best sportswriter, Brunt has probably earned the right to be called one of our best writers, period."
— The Gazette
"Gretzky's Tears is as penetrating a book, and as sure in its navigation of hockey's cultural currents, [as Searching for Bobby Orr]."
— The Globe and Mail
"If there's a more interesting and committed sports writer in Canada than Stephen Brunt, I don't know them."
— Dave Bidini, National Post