Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyGoldman ( Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid ; Marathon Man ) and New York Daily News sportswriter Lupica have written one of the oddest sports books in memory: a look at a completely bad year in New York City sports. Although they track every sports franchise in the city, except hockey, they concentrate heavily on the 1986 World Champion New York Mets as the team prepares for the title defense in the spring of 1987. The season begins to go bad as star pitcher ``Doc'' Gooden fails his drug test and goes into rehab for cocaine abuse. The authors give us glimpses of the famous Mets with special emphasis concentrated on their warts: there's captain Keith Hernandez, Machiavellian ``Prince of Darkness''; moody slugger Darryl Strawberry; and Davey Johnson, the confused, lost manager. Also covered extensively are the Yankees and their petulant owner George Steinbrenner; the Giants and Jets and their strike-torn NFL seasons; and the revitalized Knicks. There are some good looks inside major league clubhouses and at how newspaper reporters do their jobsno matter whose feelings may be hurt. What stands out in this book is the constant, almost page-by-page, mean, holier-than-thou attacks on Gooden for his cocaine addiction. You may not like many of New York's star athletes, but the authors don't come off any better. (Dec.)
Library JournalThe New York area's 1987 sports scene is replayed by incisive reporter Lupica and Goldman, screenwriter, novelist ( Marathon Man), and zany sports fan. With intimate reporting and diverting asides, they trace the downfall of 1986's champion Mets and Giants, the early winning Yankees, the downtrodden Knicks and Nets, and the Jets. For good measure there's a concerned look at Columbia's football team, piling up a losing streak that only ended this October. Comparing the talents of the Celtic's Larry Bird and Danny Ainge, appraising sports broadcasters good and bad, and looking for better times in 1988 all add to the appeal of this bittersweet reading for Big Apple fans. Lots of fun for outsiders, too.Morey Berger, Monmouth Cty. Lib., Manalapan, N.J.
- Random House Publishing Group
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