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So Your Son Wants to Play in the NHL Hardcover – October, 1998

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--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“This is the best hockey advice since ‘Don’t rile Gordie Howe!’”
–Jay Greenberg, The Hockey News

“Dan Bylsma is a role model for every kid who’s been told he’ll never make it.”
–Larry Robinson, Coach, Los Angeles Kings --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From the Inside Flap

This book is about one young athlete?s road to the NHL. It is told in two voices. First by Jay Bylsma, the father who flooded the backyard rink, and who encouraged all of his five children to make the most of their talents.

The second voice telling the story is Dan Bylsma, the son. A gifted athlete, he chose to leave home in Michigan to play Junior ?B? hockey for St. Marys in Ontario. He then took the academic route, graduating from Bowling Green State University in 1992.

The next four years Dan, backed by his father and the rest of the family, never gave up on his NHL dream. He played for several minor league teams, attended several NHL camps, and won a contract with the L.A. Kings. Along the way, he, like his father, learned a great deal about hockey and about life. In this book they pass it on. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Sleeping Bear Software (October 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1886947392
  • ISBN-13: 978-1886947399
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #532,014 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By 2Kopperb@emi.com on June 14, 1999
Format: Hardcover
It's not easy raising a successful athlete, and it is even more difficult raising a successful adult. Your Son Wants to Be in the NHL shows us a young adult who seems to have become both. It tells the tale of how Dan Bylsma grew from childhood success to success in the NHL. More importantly, it shows us how a boy can grow into manhood and become a person you would like to have as a neighbor.
OK, the first few chapters, when the never ending succuesses of the Bylsma boys in athletics became almost as difficult to read as the phone book are a bit numbing after a while. Once parental pride calmed down the book turned into a compelling look at how difficult it is for a parent to find balance in their children's lives, to teach life lessons as well as sports techniques and to turn out a good person who also happens to be an NHL player.
The struggles Dan had after leaving home at such a young age are dealt with forthrightly, which multiplies the shock you feel at stories of sexual abuse and the physical sacrifice players at the lower minor level make to reach the NHL. That shock is no stronger than when the reader learns that Dan and his wife lost their first child just as he was establishing himself in the NHL.
This book gives the parent of an athlete much to think about. In a society where it seems more and more boys go through life without their fathers this book shows you that those boys lose something that may be irreplaceable.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 15, 1999
Format: Hardcover
We have several hundred books in our hockey library. Ken Dryden's "The Game" was at the top of my list until I read Dan & Jay Bylsma's book. My son and I play on 4 roller hockey teams year round, play ice hockey during the summer, go to Kings games, watch the Ice Dogs and college hockey on TV, and are devout readers of "The Hockey News". Without a doubt, "So Your Son Wants to Play in the NHL" is the single best publication I've read as a hockey parent and amateur adult player.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 4, 1998
Format: Hardcover
I had a chance to review the galleys before it went to press, it is a wonderful book that shows how values, character and sportsmanship can take you to the highest levels of life. It is a preparation for success in life. A father son team, where the player Dan Bylsma is a great young player, but when he hits college and pros, he has to be a smarter, harder working player.
Bylsma is a true role model, especially in today's world.
Jay Greenberg of the NY Post writes, "THE BEST ADVICE SINCE DON'T RILE GORDIE HOWE!"
For all sports, for kids and parents alike. Inspiration, motivational, I couldn't put it down
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 15, 1999
Format: Hardcover
We have several hundred books in our hockey library. Ken Dryden's "The Game" was at the top of my list until I read Dan & Jay Bylsma's book. My son and I play on 4 roller hockey teams year round, play ice hockey during the summer, go to Kings games, watch the Ice Dogs and college hockey on TV, and are devout readers of "The Hockey News". Without a doubt, "So Your Son Wants to Play in the NHL" is the single best publication I've read as a hockey parent and amateur adult player.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 14, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I have a son and two daughters who lettered several times in high school sports. I got caught up in not only the book but in thinking about the opportunities I missed to use sports to teach about life. My kids were home for Christmas and I found myself reading and sharing from this book. I wish I could have read it 20 years ago because I would have been less tied into what the kids were doing for me, and more in tune to struggles my kids were going through. I got choked by the story and was unprepared for the epilogue. The structure of the book was very good. Jay the parent's discription of what was happening did not always match what Dan was experiencing. Reading about the samething throug two view points added to the value of the book. Dan and Jay speak less to the potential pro than to every son or daughter who has suited up. The message of love the kid no matter what happens in a game is a powerful one. The "how to directions" are on the money and help to give structure that parents need. I did not expect to have any emotional reaction to this book. I was wrong and glad of it. Wayne Van Zomeren
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 8, 1998
Format: Hardcover
This is a book about the road to the highest levels of professional sports by the athlete and his family. It goes against the common wisdom prevelant in amateur sports. I laughed, I cried, I was forced to re-examine my goals as a parent. This is a must read for anyone with aspirations for their children.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 12, 1998
Format: Hardcover
From beginning to end, this book is a must read for any parent with children in hockey or any amateur sports. I especially liked the two perspectives, one from the LA Kings (NHL) player and the other from his father. A very good read with some valuable insights.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mark Harris on September 10, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Since reading "So your son..." nearly two years ago, through various routes, my son and I have become good friends with both Dan and Jay Bylsma and the rest of the Bylsma family. I can honestly say that these guys really do "walk the talk" by putting into practice what the book says. It's a great read if you're a hockey fan but its not just about how one of kid made it to becomming a professional sportsman - their emphasis on a moral compass, sound family values and good educaton really can be used as a practical guide to parenting. Kids don't come with an instruction manual and most of us parents need all the help we can get! I would suggest to anyone wanting a "how do you do it" guide to practical, commonsense, no nonesense child rearing "GET THIS BOOK!" and read it. Great stuff!
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