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The Devil and Bobby Hull: How Hockey's Original Million-Dollar Man Became the Game's Lost Legend Hardcover – Sep 13 2011

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1st Edition edition (Sept. 13 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118065735
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118065730
  • Product Dimensions: 23.8 x 16.1 x 2.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 590 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #118,619 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Gordon Friedrich on Nov. 1 2011
Format: Hardcover
A very dark and foreboding account of one of the premier NHL players of all time.
A justifiably resentful Bobby Hull, screwed over by the 1960's Chicago Blackhawks owned by the miserly Wirtz family, as did most players of his time where hockey teams virtually held sway over the lives of their players before the advent of the NHL Players Association, disullisioned with the lack of respect and monetary compensation that was deserved for such a star player, jumped to the fledgling World Hockey Association.

An eye-opening account for the hockey fan who lived during the WHA era as one feels both sympathy for Hull, who tried to make the best of a situation where he never received the credit he deserved, and antipathy for the negative publicity he drew for his off-ice and somewhat arrogant demeanour.

A sad end for one of the greatest players in the game.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Neil on Feb. 2 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Growing up in the 60's and 70's Bobby Hull was the man ..... he was my boyhood idol .... I followed this man's career to the end and this book helped fill in a few areas that I was unaware of. It is written brutally honest and accurate .... even though there are a few typo errors in the book it is a overall must read for any Bobby Hull fan ! Every Professional hockey player that has played after Bobby Hull, should pay their dues for what he accomplished, he was indeed the Micky Mantle of hockey!

Neil Abday
Williams Lake, BC
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Rory on April 2 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I anticipated a book which documented the struggles of a legend in hockey who fell from grace, and his attemps at redemption. Mr Hull who is a Canadian sports icon, obviously has had his share of struggles, but the author spent more time recounting games, highlights and his foray into the WHA. There really was very little about his troubles, the title is misleading. The colorful antics of pro sports stars are things not shown on tv, i can watch old Chicago games on NHL classic tv, i dont need a recap of his 1960 playoff games.
I was dissapointed in this obviously unauthorized bio. Most likely why the author touched so little on Bobby Hull's life. Boring read for an interesting sports figure.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 6 reviews
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Skating without a Zamboni July 14 2013
By Pugwash - Published on
Format: Paperback
With the utmost respect, please consider this review to be a dissenting opinion from some of the previous written reviews of this book.

I grew up in Chicago following all the sports teams in the late 1960's and 1970's, and although the Cubs sported a host of future Hall of Famers, the Bears had Gale Sayers and Dick Butkus and the White Sox had Luis Aparicio and Hoyt Wilhelm, Bobby Hull was the most charismatic of all. He was the show.

And, true to the book, he was an ambassador. When my Dad took me to a game when I was still in single digits, sitting behind the penalty box, Bobby Hull skated right up, without being asked, grabbed a pen and asked for my program. He was larger than life.

This book plumbs through Bobby's career and his life. Like the life of any real life hero, it is flawed. He has acted venal at times. He has skeletons in his closet. He has abused and been abused. It is not always comfortable to read.

If one reads a thorough biography of FDR, one sees his warts, his pettiness at times, his lapses of character and misguided decisions that go hand in hand with his greatness and triumphs. So it is with Bobby Hull. Arguably the greatest player of his generation, almost certainly the most influential and the most courageous, today, from the distance of 40 years, it looks like the NHL has abandoned its' greatest leader.

For a simple farmer without a college education, Hull tried to be a businessman. He did well for awhile, and fell on hard times. So have many people with MBA's.

He had foresight in seeing the talent of the European hockey players and bringing them to North America, where they changed the complexion of hockey. He personally took it upon himself to promote the WHA, and will the league to succeed.

His divorce brought scandal upon himself, a measure of depression, and damage to his reputation. It is part of his story. Less the scandal, millions who have undergone divorce have felt the same debilitation.

I found this to be a highly readable, interesting and worthwhile account of one of my boyhood heroes. Does it diminish his legacy for me? Not at all. Maybe his flaws, like his hockey career, are larger than life. So be it. I would highly recommend this book.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Misleading Title Sept. 17 2012
By Rory - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I must admit, having grown up when Bobby Hull was still playing in the NHL and WHA leagues, I was intrigued by the title. I also have met Bobby Hull personally and my impression of him is that he is genuine individual, with a love for the game, but also a human being with failings and flaws. The book hinges on Hull and his ascent as the first millionaire face of the WHA (World Hockey Association) just following its inception. The first few chapters are a historical look at his playing life in the early '60s with the Black Hawks, without much relevance to the "Devil" in his life as referred to in the title. I am not sure why the author has spent so much time in giving readers a play by play of specific games in Hull's early career, I expected that this book would have delved into his personal struggles and the demons that plagued him during and after his playing life. I found that this was not really a book about this, but rather a historical version of the ups and downs in his career.
Unfortunately, I think the title is misleading, and personally I didn't find it to be an engaging read. I had difficulty in staying motivated to finish it, as it was heavily directed at educating the reader about the World Hockey Association, and the effect that Hull had on joining it. He had a much similar impact as Wayne Gretzky or Gordie Howe on joining the WHA, so other than the fact he signed a million dollar contract, this was a story that could have been told about other high profile players. If you are expecting a juicy read about a man who took advantage of the excesses available to professional athletes, you won't find it in this book. It was very evident the author was picking his words carefully, as well as writing a significant amount of filler, much of which can be found in many accounts of Hull's playing career.
Too bad.
13 of 22 people found the following review helpful
too hard on a hockey legend Dec 7 2011
By gardien25 - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This book unfairly punishes Bobby for the break-up of his marriage and for all of the problems that he had with the Blackhawks' management. Every pro-hockey player should thank Bobby Hull for all of his efforts in promoting the WHA and enabling NHL hockey players to make salaries comparable to pro athletes in other sports.
I knew Bobby Hull briefly during my college hockey days when Bobby was again living in the Chicago area.
Regardless of his personal problems, Bobby Hull will always leave with me and my teammates many fond memories of his generosity and warmth that he displayed to all of those who met him.
(I believe whatever transpired in his personal life is not our business).
5 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Brilliant! Jan. 10 2012
By Scott - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm a very big fan of Gare Joyce and his writing style, ever since I read "Future Greats and Heartbreaks," in addition to his draft articles on This book was written beautifully, flowed perfectly, and was extremely interesting to read. Unfortunately, it does seem to portray Bobby Hull in a bit of a dark light, but, like any book, if you read with a bit of skepticism and question certain pieces of it, you really can get a lot out of it. I got some interesting tidbits out of this book, and would recommend it to any hockey fan that have a love of the game. It is not quite a five-star book, but once again, it is still extremely interesting and worthwhile to pick up.
12 of 21 people found the following review helpful
What's the Point? Dec 3 2011
By B. Brown - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I grew up in the Chicago area during the 60's and idolized Robert Marvin Hull like everybody else. This book is perplexing to me. I don't know why it was written. The author does not paint a pretty picture of Bobby. Maybe a pretty picture could not be painted. But, again, why was the book written. Bobby never killed anybody so I don't understand why someone would take the time to write such a negative book about a guy who retired 30 years ago. This book is anything but flattering to Bobby. If you like him don't buy the book. It seemed to me the author went out of his way to criticize Bobby at every turn. You get a sense when reading books as to whether the author is trying to be fair and when he is simply trying to make every event conform to the authors biased opinions. This book is not fair and is downright nasty. I was very displeased with this book. Don't buy it.

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