Thursday, December 22, 2011

Santa's picks to click for Christmas Day

Tick, tock, tick, tock, Santa's on the clock.

With Christmas Day and the unwrapping of gifts but days away, a few last minute options for the hockey fan on your last minute shopping list.

As always, the book industry continues to rely on hockey to provide for a press run or two, with a number of interesting items out there for the hockey fan this gift giving season.

Ron MacLean, Don Cherry's faithful consort has cobbled together a few of his observations and such with Cornered, a project co-written with Kristie McLellan Day, it marks MacLean's first time into the writing pool.

Roy MacGregor, one of Canada's most gifted of writer's is back with another addition to his vast library of work, this one Wayne Gretzky's Ghost: And Other Tales from a Lifetime in Hockey, which features a collection of his writing over the course of his 40 year career.

The Devil and Bobby Hull: How Hockey's Original Million Dollar Man became the Game's Lost Legend, is the latest offering from Gare Joyce, examining the lengthy career of the Golden Jet with all the highlights and low lights of that career outlined in a narrative fashion that sheds much light on the events that shaped Hull's career and post career life.

Joyce double dips at the bookstore this year, with another offering this one looking at the World Junior Championships, a topic he has written on many times int he past.  In Thirty Years of the Game at its Best,   Joyce recounts the history of the World Junior Hockey Championships, a holiday rite of passage for many Canadians and a tournament that has provided much excitement and drama over the years.

Winnipeg Jets fans on your list could find a special offering under the tree this year, with Back in the Bigs: How Winnipeg Won, Lost and Regained its place in the NHL. Randy Turner recounts the dark days of the Jets departure for the desert and the joyous repatriation of an NHL team, when Atlanta's Thrashers migrated north.

Of course, not everyone has the patience for a good read these days, for them the visuals are the thing and they aren't left out this Christmas either.

One option for the hockey fan on your list is the DVD section, where HBO has released season one of its 24/7 series, last years lead up to the Winter Classic where the Penguins and Capitals met on the outdoor pond in Pittsburgh.  in NHL 24/7 Penguins/Capitals: Road to the NHL Winter Classic you  can relive the curses of Bruce Boudreau, where perhaps we can see glimpses into the trouble that would come his way this season. Beyond the bluer than blue language hockey fans can play CSI workers, with the one scene that Gary Bettman might wish had been edited out, the hit on Sidney Crosby, which of course was the start of his ongoing health concerns.

And for those that like to play the game, all be it on the electronic ice, the annual release of the NHL video games have arrived.

NHL 12 is available for the PlayStation platform, all the thrills of NHL action without those nasty concussions, NHL games are also available for Wii and X-Box platforms.  Once you turn on the screen, the hours will fly by, overtime a guarantee with nary a shoot out in sight.

Hurry off now is search of those bargains, the clock she be ticking without much more warning!

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