Sports Books

Check out these sports books!  They all have a story to tell!!

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Butterfly : from refugee to Olympian, my story of rescue, hope, and triumph 
Yusra Mardini

The inspiring story of how one woman saved fellow refugees from drowning―and how she went on to become an Olympic swimmer.

When young Syrian refugee Yusra Mardini realized her boat’s engine shut down as she was traveling from Syria to Greece with other refugees, there was no hesitation: she dove into the water. Surfacing, she heard desperate prayers and sobbing from the passengers in the sinking boat above her. Between the waves, her elder sister Sarah screamed at her to get back on the boat. But Mardini was determined. She was not going to let Sarah do this alone. Grabbing the rope with one hand, she began kicking up the black water, inching the boat towards the distant shore.

This bold act of bravery saved the lives of a boatload of refugees heading to Turkey from Syria. After her arrival in Greece, Mardini, focused and undeterred, worked toward a lifelong goal: to compete in the Olympics. She succeeded, and competed in 2016 on the Refugee Olympic Team in Rio de Janeiro.

Butterfly tells her story, from Syria to the Olympics to her current work with the UN as a Goodwill Ambassador. Mardini is eager to tell her story in the hopes that readers will remember that refugees are ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances, chased from their homes by a devastating war. In today’s political climate, this story is guaranteed to inspire and educate readers from every background.

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The soul of basketball : the epic showdown between LeBron, Kobe, Doc, and Dirk that saved the NBA
Ian Thomsen

The Soul of Basketball tells the story of an NBA prodigy, his league and their sport in the throes of crisis during the pivotal 2010-11 season. It began with The Decision, that infamous televised moment when uber-star LeBron James revealed that he was leaving the Cleveland Cavaliers – thereby distancing himself from his role model Michael Jordan – to pursue his first championship with his former opponents on the Miami Heat.

To the great fortune of LeBron, the NBA and basketball itself, the mission didn’t work out as planned. In the cultural tradition of Moneyball and Friday Night Lights, veteran NBA writer Ian Thomsen portrays the NBA as a self-correcting society in which young LeBron is forced to absorb hard truths inflicted by his rivals Kobe Bryant, Doc Rivers and Dirk Nowitzki, in addition to lessons set forth by Pat Riley, Gregg Popovich, Larry Bird, David Stern, Joey Crawford and many more.

This is about the making of a champion. Brimming with inside access, The Soul of Basketball tells the inspiring story of LeBron’s loneliest year, insecure and uncertain, when his ultimate foe was an unlikely immigrant who renewed the American game’s ideals. From Miami to Boston, Los Angeles to Dallas, Germany to the NBA’s Manhattan headquarters, the biggest names in basketball are driven by something more valuable than money and fame  – a quest that will pave the way for Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and future generations to thrive.

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Let your mind run : a memoir of thinking my way to victory
Deena Kastor

Deena Kastor was a star youth runner with tremendous promise, yet her career almost ended after college, when her competitive method—run as hard as possible, for fear of losing—fostered a frustration and negativity and brought her to the brink of burnout. On the verge of quitting, she took a chance and moved to the high altitudes of Alamosa, Colorado, where legendary coach Joe Vigil had started the first professional distance-running team. There she encountered the idea that would transform her running career: the notion that changing her thinking—shaping her mind to be more encouraging, kind, and resilient—could make her faster than she’d ever imagined possible. Building a mind so strong would take years of effort and discipline, but it would propel Kastor to the pinnacle of running—to American records in every distance from the 5K to the marathon—and to the accomplishment of earning America’s first Olympic medal in the marathon in twenty years.

Let Your Mind Run is a fascinating intimate look inside the mind of an elite athlete, a remarkable story of achievement, and an insightful primer on how the small steps of cultivating positivity can give anyone a competitive edge.

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The pursuit of endurance : harnessing the record-breaking power of strength and resilience
Jennifer Pharr Davis.

Jennifer Pharr Davis, a record holder of the FKT (fastest known time) on the Appalachian Trail, reveals the secrets and habits behind endurance as she chronicles her incredible accomplishments in the world of endurance hiking, backpacking, and trail running. With a storyteller’s ear for fascinating detail and description, Davis takes readers along as she trains and sets her record, analyzing and trail-testing the theories and methodologies espoused by her star-studded roster of mentors. She distills complex rituals and histories into easy-to-understand tips and action items that will help you take perseverance to the next level. The Pursuit of Endurance empowers readers to unlock phenomenal endurance and leverage newfound grit to achieve personal bests in everything from sports and family to the boardroom.

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Hang time : my life in basketball

Elgin Baylor with Alan Eisenstock.

People think of Elgin Baylor as one of the greatest basketball players in the history of the game—and one of the NBA’s first black superstars—but the full extent of his legacy stretches beyond his spectacular, game-changing shots and dunks. With startling symmetry, Baylor recounts his story: flying back and forth between the U.S. Army and the Lakers, his time as a central figure in the great Celtics-Lakers rivalry and how he helped break down color barriers in the sport, his 1964 All-Star game boycott, his early years as an executive for the New Orleans Jazz, and twenty-two years as general manager for the notorious L.A. Clippers and Donald Sterling, spent fighting to draft and sign young, black phenoms—only to be hamstrung by his boss at every turn.

No one has seen the league change, and has worked to bring change, more than Baylor. Year after year, he continued to fight and persevere against racism. At the beginning of his career, he was forced to stay in separate hotel rooms. From those days to today’s superstardom, he has had a front-row view of the game’s elevation to one of America’s favorite sports. For the first time, Elgin Baylor tells his full story. He’s played with the legends, lived with them, and knows more about the NBA than anyone living, and is finally ready to set the record straight.

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From the outside : my journey through life and the game I love
Ray Allen with Michael Arkush

Playing in the NBA for eighteen years, Ray Allen won championships with the Boston Celtics and the Miami Heat and entered the record books as the original king of the three-point shot. Known as one of the hardest-working and highest-achieving players in NBA history, this most dedicated competitor was legendary for his sharp shooting.From the Outside, complete with a foreword by Spike Lee, is his story in his words: a no-holds-barred look at his life and career, filled with behind-the-scenes stories and surprising revelations about the game he has always cherished.

Allen talks openly about his fellow players, coaches, owners, and friends, including LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, and Kevin Garnett. He reveals how, as a kid growing up in a military family, he learned about responsibility and respect—the key to making those perfect free throws and critical three-point shots.

From the Outside is the portrait of a gifted athlete and a serious man with a strongly defined philosophy about the game and the right way it should be played—a philosophy that, at times, set him apart from colleagues and coaches, while inspiring so many others, and lead to the most pivotal shot of his career: the unforgettable 3-pointer in the final seconds of Game 6 of the 2013 NBA finals against the San Antonio Spurs. Throughout, Allen makes clear that success in basketball is as much about what happens off the court as on, that devotion and commitment are the true essence of the game—and of life itself.

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Ninety percent mental : an all-star player turned mental skills coach reveals the hidden game of baseball
Bob Tewksbury and Scott Miller

In Ninety Percent Mental, Bob Tewksbury shows readers a side of the game only he can provide, given his singular background as both a longtime MLB pitcher and a mental skills coach for two of the sport’s most fabled franchises, the Boston Red Sox and San Francisco Giants. Fans watching the game on television or even at the stadium don’t have access to the mind games a pitcher must play in order to get through an at-bat, an inning, a game. Tewksbury explores the fascinating psychology behind baseball, such as how players use techniques of imagery, self-awareness, and strategic thinking to maximize performance, and how a pitcher’s strategy changes throughout a game. He also offers an in-depth look into some of baseball’s most monumental moments and intimate anecdotes from a “who’s who” of the game, including legendary players who Tewksbury played with and against (such as Mark McGwire, Craig Biggio, and Greg Maddux), game-changing managers and executives (Joe Torre, Bruce Bochy, Brian Sabean), and current star players (Jon Lester, Anthony Rizzo, Andrew Miller, Rich Hill).

With Tewksbury’s esoteric knowledge as a thinking-fan’s player and his expertise as a “baseball whisperer”, this entertaining book is perfect for any fan who wants to see the game in a way he or she has never seen it before. Ninety Percent Mental will deliver an unprecedented look at the mound games and mind games of Major League Baseball.