From Library Journal
Playing for a Manhattan-based franchise is synonymous with riding a roller coaster; one moment adulation, the next boos and hisses. Sports fans can't help but feel sorry for the Rangers: after 54 years without a Stanley Cup championship, they finally won it all in 1994. Then, when they failed to repeat in 1995, they find a book written about their demise. Losing the Edge is not a cynical title, however. Award-winning New York Daily News reporter Meisel chronicles the 1995 season, revealing the untold story of the rise and fall of the Rangers. His study shows the business side of hockey, wherein players are pawns and winning is the only objective. Meisel's work is a provocative examination of the issues behind the decline. Knowledgeable readers and armchair enthusiasts will enjoy this insightful publication. A worthwhile purchase for regional and large sports collections.
Larry Little, Penticton P.L., B.C.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
The National Hockey League's New York Rangers ended a 54-year drought when they won the league championship in 1994. But even as the final series was being played, the team was coming apart. Head coach Mike Keenan, upset with the owners, was negotiating with other teams, and when management was a day late in getting the coach his bonus money, the paranoid little Napoleon claimed breach of contract and moved on. Meisel, who covers hockey for the New York Daily News, primarily focuses on the championship year, but hockey fans will see the story in terms of what happened later. As Meisel tells it, Keenan wins through the application of constant pressure on his players to perform and on management to acquire players who will buy into his style. This is a fascinating look at a not-particularly-likable man whose charismatic style proves mesmerizing. Though Keenan is the center of the storm, Meisel also provides anecdotes and profiles of all the other key characters in this two-year soap opera. Hockey-fan heaven. Wes Lukowsky