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- Dawson City's Stanley Cup Challenge and How a Nation Fell in Love with Hockey
- Narrated by: Matthew Josdal
- Length: 12 hrs and 34 mins
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For fans of The Boys in the Boat and Against All Odds
Join a ragtag group of misfits from Dawson City as they scrap to become the 1905 Stanley Cup champions and cement hockey as Canada's national pastime.
An underdog hockey team traveled for three and a half weeks from Dawson City to Ottawa to play for the Stanley Cup in 1905. The Klondikers' eagerness to make the journey, and the public's enthusiastic response, revealed just how deeply, and how quickly, Canadians had fallen in love with hockey. After Governor General Stanley donated a championship trophy in 1893, new rinks appeared in big cities and small towns, leading to more players, teams, and leagues. And more fans. When Montreal challenged Winnipeg for the Cup in December 1896, supporters in both cities followed the play-by-play via telegraph updates. As the country escaped the Victorian era and entered a promising new century, a different nation was emerging. Canadians fell for hockey amid industrialization, urbanization, and shifting social and cultural attitudes. Class and race-based British ideals of amateurism attempted to fend off a more egalitarian professionalism. Ottawa star Weldy Young moved to the Yukon in 1899, and within a year was talking about a Cup challenge. With the help of Klondike businessman Joe Boyle, it finally happened six years later. Ottawa pounded the exhausted visitors, with "One-Eyed" Frank McGee scoring an astonishing 14 goals in one game. But there was no doubt hockey was now the national pastime.
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you don't need to be a sports fan to love it
I am not a sports nut, and do not know much about hockey, so this may not seem like the right book for me. However, I love true, inspirational stories that combine aspects of sport alongside the wider history and social events of the time. And this book does all of that beautifully.
Focusing on a group of men living in Dawson City, playing hockey out of a passion for the sport, and living under the harsh conditions of the Yukon. The book combines insightful observations about the gold rush and outlines the country's newfound obsession with the sport. I found myself totally engaged in the lives of these people, and anxious to see where they went in life. I turned to wikipedia on numerous occasions just to learn even more.
It is impossible to read about this small team of athletes and their efforts to compete for the Stanley Cup without admiration. Just the journey to arrive in Ottawa is mind-blowing and I don't want to spoil a moment of it.