Sean Pronger’s Journeyman, The Life of a 4th Liner
Unfortunately I’ve been a little under the weather lately and it doesn’t seem to be letting up; hence the lack of posts. However, while not being able to be feeling up to par to manage some interesting pieces, it’s given me the chance to do a lot of reading. So I figured hey, why not a book review.
I first heard of this book about 8 months ago. I had just gotten out of surgery and was bedridden for a long time with pretty much nothing to do. I had gotten into the habit of tuning into Jay Onrait and Dan O’toole’s weekly podcast and one week the “special” guest happened to be Sean Pronger.
Pronger, (the lesser known Pronger at that), was promoting his new book, “Journeyman – The Guy Who’s Seen Everything In Hockey“. He was recalling a couple of stories in it; how he was traded to the New York Rangers and got to be on a line with Gretzky during his last year. (There’s a huge and hilarious story behind it. It’s not on a line you would think.) and how Ray Ferraro thought Steve Duschesne was everything that was wrong with the Los Angeles Kings in the late 1990’s.
So motivatied with this information, I finally got around to picking it up last week. Now, I do a lot of reading, no joke. Most of it is either biographies or serial killer dramas and most biographies are hockey related. I must say that this is one of the BEST hockey books I have read in such a long time.
Of course it’s about Pronger’s life of being the dreaded 4th liner and journeyman of the NHL. For those of you who don’t know what a journeyman is, it’s constantly being sent up and down between leagues, being traded (he played 29 games in an NHL season between 3 team. Yeah.) and all the ins and outs and frustrations tied with it.
Nobody ever thinks of the 4th line. What’s always going through their minds. Are they gonna be sent down today? Will do good enough to get a promotion on the squad? Will they be considered a healthy scratch? Should they start packing their bags? Everything that runs through a player’s head in these circumstances are covered in this book and that’s what makes it great to read. It’s about the other guys.
Pronger is very humourous and pokes a lot of fun at himself which makes it very great to read. The book flows at an even pace but after every chapter, you’re always captivated to read more and find out which team (or league….shoutout East Coast…) he got sent to next.
If you’re not a reader but at least a hockey fan, do yourself a favour and pick this up. It gives you a lot more respect for the grinders on our favourite teams.