My Life on the Edge

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    Penguin Canada
About Dreamer:

An outspoken, inspirational memoir from a charismatic athlete in the spotlight, Dreamer is the moving story of the first Muslim hockey player to win the Stanley Cup, and the impossible dreams he made a reality.

No one who knows the game is unfamiliar with the story of the NHL’s first Muslim Stanley Cup winner, Nazem Kadri, nor does anyone doubt his warmth and openness in front of a microphone, or his eagerness to challenge the next generation of Muslim athletes. He is a league All-Star, a highlight-reel player, and someone who has been called upon to be the face of his community from the moment he put on skates.

Nazem Kadri was a top-ten draft pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs, chosen not only for his elite skills but because he would reflect Toronto’s immense diversity and huge Muslim population. And he was soon a fan favourite, not only with a new generation of diverse fans, but with traditionalists too, who admired his willingness to play the game with old-school toughness.

In the end, he was traded to Colorado as management sought to shake up the team. But it was the Avalanche, not the Leafs, who benefitted most, and Toronto fans missed him. When Colorado won the Stanley Cup in 2022, Kadri (by then a fan favourite in Denver) was a clutch player in high-pressure games. Today he is a veteran leader with the Calgary Flames, and still making the highlight reels.

But the core of Kadri’s story is what happened off the ice—both shocking and heartwarming. Kadri faced brutal anti-Muslim harassment during Colorado’s Cup run from Blues fans and received incredible support from Denver fans. When a controversy arose about an uncalled penalty on the championship-winning goal, this founding member of the league’s Hockey Diversity Alliance used the opportunity to make humorous t-shirts, which raised over $250,000 for the Kadri Foundation.

And when he had his traditional day with the Stanley Cup, he took it to the mosque in his hometown of London, Ontario, along with the message that the highest success, not just in hockey but in life, is a destiny any of us can choose.

About the Author(s):

NAZEM KADRI, an NHL player for the Calgary Flames, is the first Muslim hockey player to win the Stanley Cup, which he raised as a member of the Colorado Avalanche in 2022. A first-round draft pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs and an NHL All-Star, Kadri is from London, Ontario.

DAN ROBSON is a senior enterprise writer for The Athletic. He is the author of the national bestseller Quinn: The Life of a Hockey LegendBower: A Legendary Life, and Measuring Up: A Memoir of Fathers and Sons. He co-authored no. 1 national bestsellers Crossroads with Kaleb Dahlgren and Killer with Doug Gilmouras well as The Crazy Game with Clint Malarchuk, Change Up with Buck Martinez, and Ignite with Andre De Grasse.