Eddie Olczyk
Eddie Olczyk

Eddie Olczyk

Beating the Odds in Hockey and in Life
By Eddie Olczyk, By Perry Lefko


336 Pages, 6 x 9

Formats: Trade Paper

Trade Paper, $16.95 (US $16.95) (CA $22.95)

ISBN 9781629378411

Rights: WOR

Triumph Books (Nov 2020)

Price: $16.95
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A moving memoir from one of the country's most beloved sports commentators and most recognizable names in American hockey
When Eddie Olczyk looks at his life, he can't believe how many times he's beaten the odds. At age sixteen, he was selected for the 1984 U.S. Olympic hockey team, and four months after the competition ended he was drafted in the first round by his hometown Chicago Blackhawks. He played alongside Mario Lemieux and Mark Messier and saw his name engraved on the Stanley Cup. He's brought hockey into American homes as one of the most recognizable voices of the sport, and he's even become a respected analyst in the world of horse racing, thanks to his talent as a bettor—Olczyk once won more than $500,000 picking the winners of six consecutive races while wagering only $168. But perhaps there is no greater example of Eddie O. beating the odds than in 2018 when he went into remission eight months after being diagnosed with Stage 3 colon cancer. He will readily admit that this was the greatest victory of his life. This memoir is an honest and emotional account of everything Olczyk has experienced: the sacrifices his parents made so he could pursue a career in the NHL, the joy of playing for the Hawks, the mental and physical stress involved in the life of a professional athlete, the incredible moments he's called from the broadcast booth, and the profound lessons learned while battling cancer.


"Olczyk, with Toronto Sun journalist Lefko, presents a gripping account of his remarkable life, from his selection for the 1984 U.S. Olympic Hockey team through his remarkable battle with colon cancer. Olczyk, now a sportscaster for NHL and NBC, takes readers through his life and career with insights from coaches, teammates, and family members (after being traded to the Winnipeg Jets in 1999, his mother said in frustration, "You're just a piece of meat"). Without being self-aggrandizing or boastful, Olcyzk draws readers through the ins and outs of professional sports, from the anxiety of trades to the complexities of victory: in recounting his journey of the 1994 Stanley Cup champion New York Rangers, he notes that he was able to celebrate "a dream that every player has from the time they begin to play the game" while combatting a personal decline that "tested my resolve." While Olczyk discusses the joys of his post-playing career nimbly, it's his unflinching account of his battle with cancer that truly stands out (in the afterword, his children tell their stories about living with their father through these hard times). Though an obvious must-read for hockey fans, this inspired account of a man battling cancer will appeal to a wider audience, as well." —Publishers Weekly

Author Biography

Eddie Olczyk is an Emmy Award-winning television commentator for the NHL and horse racing. Perry Lefko is an award-winning Canadian journalist and bestselling author.

Book Signings

Past Events

Eddie Olczyk's "Beating the Odds in Hockey and in Life" ›
Chicago, IL
Author Eddie Olczyk will be doing a virtual event for his book, "Beating the Odds in Hockey and in Life," hosted by Barbara's Bookstore. Eddie will be joined by co-author Perry Lefko.