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Before the Lights Go Out: A Season Inside a Game on the Brink

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  44 ratings  ·  7 reviews
A love letter to a sport that's losing itself, from one of Canada's best sports writers.

Canadian hockey is approaching a state of crisis. It's become more expensive, more exclusive, and effectively off-limits to huge swaths of the potential sports-loving population. Youth registration numbers are stagnant; efforts to appeal to new Canadians are often grim at best; the
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Hardcover, 304 pages
Published October 1st 2019 by McClelland & Stewart
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Average rating 4.05  · 
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Erica
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I grew up just outside Peterborough (albeit, a number of years ago ;) ) & still have family in the area so I can appreciate the accuracy of Mr. Fitz-Gerald's observations. My dad had season tickets for years & is part of the senior's cohort that is now often the majority at games. I had noticed the declining fortunes of the team but now, thanks to the author's investigations & explanations, I better understand why.

My son played his first year of hockey on a GTA house league team in
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Mike Mackley
Jan 11, 2020 rated it it was ok
It has its interesting moments. But overall pretty disappointed. The author constantly complains about hockey being an elitist sport where parents are forced to go broke for their kids to find even moderate success. The interesting points come when he writes about the trials and tribulations of the OHL team, as it's a behind the scenes look at the day-to-day operations. I found his chapters on intergrating new canadians to hockey via Peterborough Pete's games to be a tough read. An the stories ...more
Lori
Oct 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: canadian, non-fiction
Becoming a somebody in Canada's game is getting priced out for the average kid and being a hockey fan is being priced out for the average person. That's sad, really.

Fitz-Gerald has written a surprisingly warm and funny book about the game, its roots and its future.
The anecdotes are heart-warming - the guy who had his first date at a Pete's game, he held her hand - that's a story every Canadian kid can relate to, or could when arenas were more like community centers.

Hockey may just be moving
...more
Bryan Day
Nov 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A true and honest account of the state of hockey in Canada today. Told from the perspective of not only a sports journalist, but also as a hockey parent. The introspective of the Petes and their current struggles, outlines the reality of hockey today in Canada. Once a powerhouse franchise, now an organization looking for ways to win on and off the ice. The same can be said for the national teams as well. Sean has done a wonderful job telling the story that needs to be told, there is no quick and ...more
Kyle
Jan 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Fitz-Gerald outlines some crucial areas where the development (and enjoyment) of Canadian youth in hockey are falling behind while bringing the reader along on an OHL team's journey through the regular season.

Fans of hockey in Canada, or parents concerned about their child's participation in the sport, should read this book. As a fan of Canadian hockey, I hope this book finds its hands into the homes of many Canadians and into the hands of the people who possess the power necessary to right the
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Tyler  Hughes
Nov 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Fitz-Gerald beautifully captures Peterborough’s culture in this book. He also makes some valid observations about the state of minor hockey within Canada. Hockey Canada, hockey parents and the country need to reflect on why hockey has become so intertwined with our identity as a nation. The pursuit of fun doesn’t seem to be top priority anymore. This book is a must-read for hockey fans, especially those who have ever cheered for the mighty maroon and white.
Marc
Dec 07, 2019 rated it it was ok
With the stock similes, workmanlike narrative and wistful, lamenting tenor, this is standard sports-book fare; two “mehs”
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