Book Review – Guest Blogger Rick Buker

// November 12th, 2011 // Filed under Book Reviews, Press Box

Rick Buker –

For anyone who’s ever fancied himself as a closet general manager, Behind the Moves: NHL General Managers Tell How Winners Are Built is an absolute must read.

Frankly, I was floored by the depth and sheer volume of information packed into this brilliant, one-of-a-kind work. Nestled within its 252 crisply designed pages are five main parts: The Modern Era GMs who Built Stanley Cup Winners; The Challenges of being a GM; The GM Godfathers; Other GMs who Shaped the Game; and The all-time NHL GM Roster.

Author Jason Farris gets up close and personal with a bevy of NHL GMs past and present, from legendary flesh-peddlers like Cliff Fletcher, Emile “the Cat” Francis, and Harry Sinden to new-breed helmsmen such as Brian Burke, Lou Lamoriello, and Ray Shero. Mr. Farris picks their brains on literally every facet of running a big-league club, providing the reader with an intimate, behind-the-scenes look into the art of scouting and drafting, negotiating free-agent deals, and swinging the big, blockbuster trade.

Behind the Moves also features entertaining and informative biographies on every NHL GM who served from 1926-27 up through the 2010-11 season, as well as scores of archival photos.

Being a stats junkie at heart, I especially enjoyed the Appendix. Mr. Farris ranks the performance of the top 100 GMs in categories such as games, wins, and win percentage, for both regular season and post-season play. In addition, he provides a fascinating demographics analysis, based on place of birth and playing background.

Hats off to Mr. Farris for creating a masterpiece. I give Behind the Moves an enthusiastic two-thumbs up.

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