December 12, 2008

Dominant Dany Heatley

December 2nd, 2008 was a big day for Dany Heatley. Not only was his current team, the Ottawa Senators, taking on his old team, the Atlanta Thrashers, but he was unveiling his new book.

Hockey Canada, Fenn Publishing, and McAlpine Sports Management combined to produce Dominant Dany Heatley. The book is authored by Heatley himself, with the help of noted author Lorna Schultz Nicholson.

This group has done this before, also featuring Martin Brodeur in 2008 and Cassie Campbell, Jarome Iginla and Sidney Crosby in previous years. These books, all priced in the $10-$15 range, are inspirational stories aimed at young readers.

Written in the first person, Heatley takes readers through a personal and heartfelt story about one of the best players in all of Canada today. He talks about his youth, the importance of education, his love of scoring goals and playing hockey and his love of Team Canada.

He does brush by his tragic car accident that killed his best friend, Thrashers teammate Dan Snyder, offering only a couple of paragraphs to what has to be his most significant moment in life. Remember, this is a book aimed at youth. So it is understandable that the project leaders chose not to dwell on the accident. But I have to wonder if Heatley and Shultz-Nicholson missed an great opportunity to show others how to deal with such tragedy, and continue moving forward in life.

The 80-page autobiography features many in action color photographs and a foreword by none other than Wayne Gretzky.

"Over the years, I have had the honour of working with Dany on Team Canada and I have been really impressed with the way he carries himself on and off the ice," said Gretzky. "His actions and dedication tell me that he plays hockey for the love of the game. And to me, that means a lot."

This cleaned up autobiography is a solid choice for any young fan of Heatley, the Ottawa Senators or Team Canada. But hopefully the Heatley story is not yet complete. Health permitting, he is guaranteed to be key figure for Canada at the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver.


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