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You Can't Make This Up: Miracles, Memories, and the Perfect Marriage of Sports and Television

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In this highly entertaining and insightful memoir, one of television’s most respected broadcasters interweaves the story of his life and career with lively firsthand tales of some of the most thrilling events and fascinating figures in modern sports. No sportscaster has covered more major sporting events than Al Michaels. Over the course of his forty-plus year career, he ha In this highly entertaining and insightful memoir, one of television’s most respected broadcasters interweaves the story of his life and career with lively firsthand tales of some of the most thrilling events and fascinating figures in modern sports. No sportscaster has covered more major sporting events than Al Michaels. Over the course of his forty-plus year career, he has logged more hours on live network television than any other broadcaster in history, and is the only play-by-play commentator to have covered all four major sports championships: the Super Bowl, World Series, NBA Finals, and the Stanley Cup Final. He has also witnessed first-hand some of the most memorable events in modern sports, and in this highly personal and revealing account, brings them vividly to life. Michaels shares never-before-told stories from his early years and his rise to the top, covering some of the greatest moments of the past half century—from the “Miracle on Ice”—the historic 1980 Olympic hockey finals—to the earthquake that rocked the 1989 World Series. Some of the greatest names on and off the field are here—Michael Jordan, Bill Walton, Pete Rose, Bill Walsh, Peyton and Eli Manning, Brett Favre, John Madden, Howard Cosell, Cris Collinsworth, and many, many more. Forthright and down-to-earth, Michaels tells the truth as he sees it, giving readers unique insight into the high drama, the colorful players, and the heroes and occasional villains of an industry that has become a vital part of modern culture.


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In this highly entertaining and insightful memoir, one of television’s most respected broadcasters interweaves the story of his life and career with lively firsthand tales of some of the most thrilling events and fascinating figures in modern sports. No sportscaster has covered more major sporting events than Al Michaels. Over the course of his forty-plus year career, he ha In this highly entertaining and insightful memoir, one of television’s most respected broadcasters interweaves the story of his life and career with lively firsthand tales of some of the most thrilling events and fascinating figures in modern sports. No sportscaster has covered more major sporting events than Al Michaels. Over the course of his forty-plus year career, he has logged more hours on live network television than any other broadcaster in history, and is the only play-by-play commentator to have covered all four major sports championships: the Super Bowl, World Series, NBA Finals, and the Stanley Cup Final. He has also witnessed first-hand some of the most memorable events in modern sports, and in this highly personal and revealing account, brings them vividly to life. Michaels shares never-before-told stories from his early years and his rise to the top, covering some of the greatest moments of the past half century—from the “Miracle on Ice”—the historic 1980 Olympic hockey finals—to the earthquake that rocked the 1989 World Series. Some of the greatest names on and off the field are here—Michael Jordan, Bill Walton, Pete Rose, Bill Walsh, Peyton and Eli Manning, Brett Favre, John Madden, Howard Cosell, Cris Collinsworth, and many, many more. Forthright and down-to-earth, Michaels tells the truth as he sees it, giving readers unique insight into the high drama, the colorful players, and the heroes and occasional villains of an industry that has become a vital part of modern culture.

30 review for You Can't Make This Up: Miracles, Memories, and the Perfect Marriage of Sports and Television

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sealove

    Great stories, well told! What a class act!!! Thanks Al... Aloha!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Joyce

    Great look at the history of American sports and sports broadcasting from about the 1950s on from one of the top broadcasters ever. Having grown up listening to sports and following it on tv (though there was less on then), I loved all the name dropping--players in all kinds of sports, Olympians, baseball players, football players and more--and the trip down memory lane. He is, of course, the man who ad-libbed one of the most famous lines in sports broadcasting: "Do you believe in miracles? Yes! Great look at the history of American sports and sports broadcasting from about the 1950s on from one of the top broadcasters ever. Having grown up listening to sports and following it on tv (though there was less on then), I loved all the name dropping--players in all kinds of sports, Olympians, baseball players, football players and more--and the trip down memory lane. He is, of course, the man who ad-libbed one of the most famous lines in sports broadcasting: "Do you believe in miracles? Yes!" at the 1980 Winter Olympics after the young US team beat the favored Russian team. Lots of great moments remembered. Also interesting because he covers the history of sports broadcasting from the 60s on, the impact of tv and then cable. And drops names there from John Madden to Howard Cosell who, he says, was a pain in the ass at the end of his career. A genial raconteur and a smart, informative memoir/history.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Nick Devlin

    More a recitation of dates and names than a deep-digging memoir. The Miracle on Ice chapter is outstanding, and it's funny how much resentment he still carries over his work on Baseketball. The lack of anything approaching self-criticism, however, makes it less compelling than his typical broadcast.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Justin

    I recently saw a clip of Al Michaels on Jimmy Kimmel's show which found him regaling the audience with a story about Howard Cosell that was so meandering and pace-less, nobody seemed to know when it was over, even Kimmel. That's kind of how Michaels' book is throughout, but it's still an enjoyable read if you're a fan of sports and sports history. Reading his stories of rising through the broadcast ranks, from calling baseball games on student radio at the University of Arizona to announcing the I recently saw a clip of Al Michaels on Jimmy Kimmel's show which found him regaling the audience with a story about Howard Cosell that was so meandering and pace-less, nobody seemed to know when it was over, even Kimmel. That's kind of how Michaels' book is throughout, but it's still an enjoyable read if you're a fan of sports and sports history. Reading his stories of rising through the broadcast ranks, from calling baseball games on student radio at the University of Arizona to announcing the Super Bowl the last several years running, is the book equivalent of listening to your uncle's tales at the family reunion -- you're having fun listening to them, but not nearly as much fun as he is telling them. Still, Michaels is probably the most famous sports broadcaster alive next to Bob Costas, and that means he's lead an interesting life. He's called World Series, boxing matches, Monday Night Football, and the Olympics. His call of the "Miracle on Ice" game at the 1980 Olympics remains one of the great moments in sports and sports announcing, and is probably the moment Michaels became a star. I revisited the broadcast on YouTube after reading the book, and the drama and power of those closing moments still makes my spine tingle. Michaels' and his cowriter L. Jon Wertheim's framing device, spelled out in the title, is unnecessary and enhances the old guy yammering to whoever'll listen quality of the book (really, Uncle Michaels? you worked with Howard Cosell while he was acting like an asshole? you're right -- you really "CAN'T make this up!") But it's interesting revisiting some great sports moments from the perspective of the broadcast booth, and for people like myself who are interested in the career of broadcasting in general, Michaels is surprisingly forthcoming about how he built a career for himself and what it took to rise through the ranks (hint: you have to be really, really committed.)

  5. 4 out of 5

    Phil Clymer

    Just about any sports fan will want to read this book. The work is solid and recounts the many highlights (and a few low-lights) of a remarkable career. The athletes and coaches Mr. Michaels crossed paths with is a virtual Who's Who of modern sports. I highly recommend this book.

  6. 4 out of 5

    John

    I learned a lot about the people and connections within sports. I never knew Howard Cosell was a lawyer. Easy read.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jim Beatty

    Never become jaded.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Matthew

    If, like me, you remember exactly where you were when the 1980 U.S. Mens Olympic Hockey team defeated the mighty Russians in Lake Placid to advance to the gold medal round, you likely remember it was Al Michaels of ABC Sports who narrated that incredible event. As fate would have it, Michaels would play a key role in so many other indelible sports moments over the next four decades, including the earthquake-marred World Series of 1989 between San Francisco and Oakland, for which Michaels’ work w If, like me, you remember exactly where you were when the 1980 U.S. Mens Olympic Hockey team defeated the mighty Russians in Lake Placid to advance to the gold medal round, you likely remember it was Al Michaels of ABC Sports who narrated that incredible event. As fate would have it, Michaels would play a key role in so many other indelible sports moments over the next four decades, including the earthquake-marred World Series of 1989 between San Francisco and Oakland, for which Michaels’ work was later nominated for an Emmy. Even the O.J. Simpson drama of 1994 put Michaels in the spotlight, since they were longtime friends and tennis partners, but as with the earthquake series, hearsay quickly took on a life of its own, offering Michaels the chance to show us a higher journalistic road and separate rumors from reality. No wonder he’s survived all the various incarnations of Monday Night Football over the years, whether with Dennis Miller as the booth sidekick or the incomparable John Madden, to land squarely on his feet in prime time, on NBC’s Sunday Night Football and broadcasting our latest Super Bowl with the highest ratings ever. Incidentally, for you Cincinnati fans out there, Michaels offers nothing but flattering comments about our fair city during his time broadcasting here from 1972-74 (although he remembers Columbia Parkway as “the most dangerous highway in America”). He has fond memories of the Big Red Machine and knew he was missing something special to leave them just as they were peaking, to take a job in San Francisco with the Giants, but they offered to triple his salary, and many TV opportunities awaited him in the Bay area. Michaels offers kind words of insight into the troubling character of Peter Edward Rose, with whom he went out gambling all day the first time they met in spring training. Unfortunately, Boomer Esiason does not come off so well later in the book, but Michaels showers Cris Collinsworth with praise for being a terrific guy and a great analyst who can break down complex football concepts and make them easy for any fan to understand.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Nick

    I was honestly close to giving this five stars. It really is a fantastic read. It flies by, and is a great example of what I would call "breezy" writing. Super easy to read. I can't very well plunk down five stars though for a sports memoir, with a co-writer nonetheless! Or can I... No!! Close, but not quite. So I picked this one up while looking for a free e-book from the library, and I recommend anyone else do the same if given the chance. If you have even a cursory interest in sports, this will I was honestly close to giving this five stars. It really is a fantastic read. It flies by, and is a great example of what I would call "breezy" writing. Super easy to read. I can't very well plunk down five stars though for a sports memoir, with a co-writer nonetheless! Or can I... No!! Close, but not quite. So I picked this one up while looking for a free e-book from the library, and I recommend anyone else do the same if given the chance. If you have even a cursory interest in sports, this will serve you quite well. I always thought Bob Costas was notorious for being at every major sports event that ever took place, but Al Michaels may take the crown after all. To top it off, he comes across as a guy who is as genuine and down-to-earth as you could ever ask for. Just a matter-of-fact, decent guy who remains quite well centered after building one of the most impressive broadcasting resumes ever. It is deceiving almost the trail he blazes in the book. You could read it quickly and think that anyone with a passing interest in broadcasting could simply start at point A and a few years later wind up at Point Z atop the heap, with all points in between just painless baby-steps. He makes it sound so easy, but you know behind it all must have been a huge amount of hard work. And most of it pre-internet too! Stats and trivia are cornerstones of the internet, but a few years back they were an awful lot harder to come by without Google. I particularly liked the 1980 Olympics section, as I'm sure a lot of folks did. The "OJ" section was great, though I thought it ended a bit abruptly. I wouldn't mind hearing a bit more from Al on his thoughts today about it all. I also had no idea how close he actually was to OJ and the circles that OJ was in (thought I do recall Al being on the air during the chase!) The Monday Night Football section was great. Fascinating to see how all of that stuff unfolded. In summary, a very enjoyable read. By the end of it, you wish you could be best friends with Al Michaels. A professional of the highest order.

  10. 5 out of 5

    E

    Curt Gowdy once warned Al Michaels, "Don't get jaded." This memoir is proof that Michaels took the advice to heart. He clearly has joy in his work. Sure there is a lot of name-dropping and humble-bragging, but how can you tell the story of such a great life without doing such things? The strengths of the work are descriptions of men Michaels has worked with, and great stories he has covered/experienced. He describes his ascension as the best play-by-play man in America (ESWP's own words) well, wi Curt Gowdy once warned Al Michaels, "Don't get jaded." This memoir is proof that Michaels took the advice to heart. He clearly has joy in his work. Sure there is a lot of name-dropping and humble-bragging, but how can you tell the story of such a great life without doing such things? The strengths of the work are descriptions of men Michaels has worked with, and great stories he has covered/experienced. He describes his ascension as the best play-by-play man in America (ESWP's own words) well, with stops in Hawaii, Cincinnati, San Fran, ABC, and now NBC. He has warm, laudatory things to say about Madden and Collinsworth, especially (and rightfully so!). I won't mention who comes in for some criticism, but Michaels does not rub it in or linger on those less than stellar booth partners. I only wish he had taken us into the nuts and bolts of calling a game. He mentions some of the prep, very briefly, but I feel like the best game-caller in America could have taken us inside his mind, inside the booth, inside the game a lot more. Perhaps that would have been a totally different book, but it's a book I would have enjoyed as much as this one.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Anup Sinha

    This is an excellent read for a sentimental sports fan like myself who not only respects Al Michaels but has intersected with him many times through the silver screen. I am a huge sports fan and he was front and center at countless events that meant a lot to me. Few if any have his perspective and perhaps nobody can put it into words like him. He says that his mentor, the legendary announcer Curt Gowdy, advised him early to never get jaded. Well, his enthusiasm and passion for sports comes throu This is an excellent read for a sentimental sports fan like myself who not only respects Al Michaels but has intersected with him many times through the silver screen. I am a huge sports fan and he was front and center at countless events that meant a lot to me. Few if any have his perspective and perhaps nobody can put it into words like him. He says that his mentor, the legendary announcer Curt Gowdy, advised him early to never get jaded. Well, his enthusiasm and passion for sports comes through in this book like no other. I zoomed through this book in a weekend. World Series, Super Bowls, Olympics, basketball, hockey, boxing, you name it, it is in there as well as his insights on personalities like Howard Cosell, Pete Rose, and O.J. Simpson.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Edgar Yu

    It’s perhaps silly but for sure amazing; Al Michaels has lived my dream life. In the past 45 years he has been up-close and personal to so many defining and history making sporting events. As the anecdotes came one by one I was instantly flushed with vivid recollections and remember my amazement and disbelief. It is very gratifying to have Al Michaels provide the inside scoop and the behind scenes. At times you think the author is egocentric with so much namedropping and personal lambasting going It’s perhaps silly but for sure amazing; Al Michaels has lived my dream life. In the past 45 years he has been up-close and personal to so many defining and history making sporting events. As the anecdotes came one by one I was instantly flushed with vivid recollections and remember my amazement and disbelief. It is very gratifying to have Al Michaels provide the inside scoop and the behind scenes. At times you think the author is egocentric with so much namedropping and personal lambasting going on, but when you research his history, his resume you do not find many people calling him out. Quite the contrary it would seem like he was a true gentleman and scholar of the broadcast booth. For the true sports and overall athletic fan this is definitely a joy to read.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Barb

    I love sports and have always admired Al Michaels throughout his career especially when he did Wide World of Sports. We all listened to his book on our weekend road trip, really well done and loved his imitations of Howard Cosell. I recommend it.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Mr. Harry Grose

    Really good story about the life of a broadcaster and the history that he witnessed in sports. A lot of these events from the book I remember them happening, so it was enjoyable to look back on things from say 5-10-20 years ago.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Antonella

    Well told stories and an easy read. You have to be a sports fan to read this one.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Ron Barker

    Al is much more humble than I anticipated. Good story teller with some interesting facts about some of the sporting events he has covered.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Will Herman

    This is a life history of Al Michaels told through anecdotes nicely woven together. Michaels is a true sports fan and is indicative of the small group of people who are successful in sports as a result of taking some natural talent and working their asses off to create a success in the business. Michaels gives us a peek into the effort it takes to be successful, some of the risks that have to be taken to put oneself at the right place at the right time and some of the mishaps and out-of-the-blue This is a life history of Al Michaels told through anecdotes nicely woven together. Michaels is a true sports fan and is indicative of the small group of people who are successful in sports as a result of taking some natural talent and working their asses off to create a success in the business. Michaels gives us a peek into the effort it takes to be successful, some of the risks that have to be taken to put oneself at the right place at the right time and some of the mishaps and out-of-the-blue opportunities that happen when one is working towards a goal. In his career, Michaels was often associated with particular teams. Calling games either as an employee of the team or semi-dedicated to the team, but working for someone else. In the book, he refers to himself in a manner that clearly puts him in the same class as the athletes in his broadcasts. I know nothing about the business and, perhaps, this is how it's generally done, but still, it seems strange to me. Would the athletes consider broadcasters as one of them? Michaels doesn't make a big deal of it, but it comes up frequently and it caught my attention every time. Again, what do I know? As a sports fan, I've heard and seen Al Michaels for most of my life, it seems. He's always been one of those guys that is knowledgeable, well-spoken and easy to listen to. He was at the beginning of broadcasting the Olympics and has been a mainstay in baseball and football for a long time. It's funny to learn that his passion is actually hockey. While few have heard him do hockey often, most people heard him do the broadcast for the US victory over the Russians in the 1980 "Miracle on Ice." In fact, he coined the term. He excoriates Howard Cosell. Michaels says he was self-centered, ignorant, full of himself and an overall asshole. He was often drunk on camera and radio (especially later in his career). Cosell wrote a book late in his career where he blasted everyone he worked with including Roone Arledge, the creator and king of ABC Sports. Michael's discusses the integrity of broadcasting often. He clearly dislikes broadcasters who report stories before they have confirmed them, standing behind "we have heard that . . . " or "others have reported . . . " He strongly believes that only facts should be reported and it is the responsibility of the reporter to make sure the discuss only known information. One thing very cool in the book is Michaels discussing the great athletes, coaches, managers, and owners he worked with over the years. It truly is a who's who of the greats in the last couple of generations.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    While most kids dreamt about playing in the World Series, young Al Michaels wanted to announce it. He followed his dream to being the voice of a minor league baseball team in Hawaii in the 60s. Then the major league came calling but required him to move his family from Hawaii to Ohio - oh, the horror! He moved up from there to a place announcing all types of sports including football, horse racing, and motorcycle racing on ice. He covered hockey at the Olympics including the dramatic 'Miracle on While most kids dreamt about playing in the World Series, young Al Michaels wanted to announce it. He followed his dream to being the voice of a minor league baseball team in Hawaii in the 60s. Then the major league came calling but required him to move his family from Hawaii to Ohio - oh, the horror! He moved up from there to a place announcing all types of sports including football, horse racing, and motorcycle racing on ice. He covered hockey at the Olympics including the dramatic 'Miracle on Ice' game between the U.S. and U.S.S.R. http://youtu.be/qYscemhnf88 I thought his most interesting stories were the ones that didn't directly involve sports. He had just opened the broadcast of the World Series when the Northridge earthquake hit. The game was cancelled and he broadcast from the street until the next morning for ABC's live coverage. One of his best broadcasting partners, tennis partner, and neighbor was O.J. Simpson. He had been to the house many times and was even able to secretly tell ABC not to broadcast the news that O.J. was trapped in his house because he knew that there were other ways out. This was a great overview of the world of U.S. sports in the last 40 years from Wide World of Sports to Sunday Night Football.This review was originally posted on Based On A True Story

  19. 4 out of 5

    Steven Hummer

    I've always enjoyed listening to sports broadcasters. In many ways I am a bigger fan of them than I am a fan of the team or the sport they're a part of. I've always enjoyed watching Al call football games with his sidekicks John Madden and Chris Collinsworth. If you are studying broadcast journalism you need to pick this book up as it's loaded with advice and plenty of tips that Al has learned from his years behind the microphone. The chapter about the miracle on ice hockey game is fantastic and I've always enjoyed listening to sports broadcasters. In many ways I am a bigger fan of them than I am a fan of the team or the sport they're a part of. I've always enjoyed watching Al call football games with his sidekicks John Madden and Chris Collinsworth. If you are studying broadcast journalism you need to pick this book up as it's loaded with advice and plenty of tips that Al has learned from his years behind the microphone. The chapter about the miracle on ice hockey game is fantastic and just what you would expect. What I did not expect was despite iTunes, amazon.com and the print on the CD box is that Al doesn't narrate the entire book! Al reads about three of the 20 chapters which was a huge disappointment for me. I got the audio book because I thought he was reading the book in its entreaty. Hearing an unabridged audio book with a good narrator is wonderful to me! Hearing an unabridged audio book with a revolving door behind the microphone is not only disappointing, but misleading as the CD box, iTunes and amazon clearly state that Al is the narrator. If you are a sports fan or studying broadcasting this book is required reading.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Gary

    Fun read. You will enjoy this book much more if you were born in 1965 or earlier. Al Michaels clearly tells many behind the microphone stories that are fun to read about if you are a sports fan. Also, you get a glimpse inside personalities like: Roone Arledge, John Madden, Howard Cosell, Chris Collinsworth, OJ Simpson and many more Michaels clearly does not like the ESPN network and its leaders, however, other than this grudge, he goes flies fairly level and sticks to telling stories from his ca Fun read. You will enjoy this book much more if you were born in 1965 or earlier. Al Michaels clearly tells many behind the microphone stories that are fun to read about if you are a sports fan. Also, you get a glimpse inside personalities like: Roone Arledge, John Madden, Howard Cosell, Chris Collinsworth, OJ Simpson and many more Michaels clearly does not like the ESPN network and its leaders, however, other than this grudge, he goes flies fairly level and sticks to telling stories from his career and some very interesting behind the camera stories. Because of the length of his career, you get the history of The Wide World of Sports, Monday Night Football on ABC and ESPN, Monday Night Baseball, and Saturday Night Football on NBC and TV sports contracts. You also learn the difference between announcing different sporting events, including: Baseball, Basketball, Football, Golf, Hockey and even Ice Motor Cycle Racing. Lastly the book exposes some of the big egos that not shockingly liter the field of TV sports broadcasting. If you enjoy sports and have been around for a while, you will enjoy reading this book.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Scott Martin

    (Audiobook). For any sports fan, a worthwhile read. You get an autobiographical perspective from one of the premier play-by-play men in sports. From his earliest beginnings, you get an insight not only into the life of one of the top sports broadcasters, but you also get a unique perspective on some of the biggest sports events over the past 45 years. From his time as an employee of the LA Lakers to his time at ABC Sports (Monday Night Football, the Olympics, World Series, etc) to his current ro (Audiobook). For any sports fan, a worthwhile read. You get an autobiographical perspective from one of the premier play-by-play men in sports. From his earliest beginnings, you get an insight not only into the life of one of the top sports broadcasters, but you also get a unique perspective on some of the biggest sports events over the past 45 years. From his time as an employee of the LA Lakers to his time at ABC Sports (Monday Night Football, the Olympics, World Series, etc) to his current role as the lead play-by-play man for Sunday Night Football on NBC, he offers insight and anecdotes sure to appeal to all sports fans. For the audiobook, most of the work is read by a separate narrator who does a great job, but two key chapters are narrated by Al Michaels himself: the Chapter on his interaction with Howard Cosell and the chapter discussing his role in arguably his most famous moment: Calling the 1980 Winter Olympics and his commentary on the US Hockey Team, to include the greatest upset in team sports history (America's 4-3 win over the heavily favored USSR Hockey Team). It is engaging and for the sports fan, definitely worth the time.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Lynn

    Needed something on the lighter side after some relative heavyweights, so I slipped in this book. I'll admit to being enough of a sports fan (on and off, but more on than off lately), and I definitely like Al Michaels, particularly in his current work with Chris Collingsworth on Sunday Night Football, when I can stay awake late enough to watch part of a game. Michaels has seen it all, met everyone, and has had some big moments, notably the famous "Do you believe in miracles? Yes!" (1980 Olympics Needed something on the lighter side after some relative heavyweights, so I slipped in this book. I'll admit to being enough of a sports fan (on and off, but more on than off lately), and I definitely like Al Michaels, particularly in his current work with Chris Collingsworth on Sunday Night Football, when I can stay awake late enough to watch part of a game. Michaels has seen it all, met everyone, and has had some big moments, notably the famous "Do you believe in miracles? Yes!" (1980 Olympics in hockey), and being there for the earthquake before the World Series game in California. And plenty of others. As an accomplished sportscaster, Michaels is by definition a great storyteller, so it should come as no surprise that his book is full of interesting anecdotes, particularly about the inside aspects of the business, particularly all the jockeying around that's been done over the years by the various networks to get the rights to broadcast various sports events. At times, what goes on in and around the booth is no less interesting than the games themselves.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    Very easy read. I'm a sports fan, but was surprised by and highly enjoyed intricate details from big games and events. It was nice to share things with my husband that he may not have known. The opening Kings playoff game, the "miracle" call, telecasts with Howard Cosell and John Madden... So many great stories! Also love his writing style. Super wordy, and never sparing any detail. Couple of cons: Al is sometimes conceited on his telecasts, but his writing in this book seems a tad self-righteou Very easy read. I'm a sports fan, but was surprised by and highly enjoyed intricate details from big games and events. It was nice to share things with my husband that he may not have known. The opening Kings playoff game, the "miracle" call, telecasts with Howard Cosell and John Madden... So many great stories! Also love his writing style. Super wordy, and never sparing any detail. Couple of cons: Al is sometimes conceited on his telecasts, but his writing in this book seems a tad self-righteous. He rarely mentions his wife except when she's pregnant or he's making her move somewhere for HIS career. Speaking of career, toward the end, the idea of execs, talent, agents, and a bunch of other old white men making billions dollar deals and negotiations turned my stomach, but I'm probably a tad sensitive to male-dominated arenas. He does give praise to the ladies in the sideline, so that's good. I'd honestly rather read a book by one of them.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Riley Webster

    I read the book "You Can't Make This Up: Miracles, Memories, and the Perfect Marriage of Sports and Television" by Al Michaels and L. Jon Wertheim. It was published in 2014 and is a memoir about the sports announcer Al Michaels and what he has accomplished throughout his career. Overall, I thought the book was interesting, especially to see how the relevance of sports in our daily lives has changed over the years. One of the aspects that made this book interesting is the different characters tha I read the book "You Can't Make This Up: Miracles, Memories, and the Perfect Marriage of Sports and Television" by Al Michaels and L. Jon Wertheim. It was published in 2014 and is a memoir about the sports announcer Al Michaels and what he has accomplished throughout his career. Overall, I thought the book was interesting, especially to see how the relevance of sports in our daily lives has changed over the years. One of the aspects that made this book interesting is the different characters that are introduced over time. For example, throughout the story, Al Michaels goes through many different partners and each of them have their own personality and bring different opinions to the book. A quote that I found important to the book was "A word pops into my head-miraculous. A split second later, it gets morphed into a question and answer: Do you believe in miracles? Yes!" (p. 117). I would recommend this book to anyone who likes sports or even just wants to hear a good story.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Mike

    As I enjoy autobiographies of various sports figures, I also love reading the stories of the voices behind the microphone and how they got to be the well-known figures today. Al Michaels is one such announcer...you may tune into NFL Sunday Night Football and have heard him or you may have heard him in the recent telecasts of the Olympics...like a trusted friend you have come to rely on for years. This is his story...of his rise from local sports in California to ABC and now NBC sports. You read of As I enjoy autobiographies of various sports figures, I also love reading the stories of the voices behind the microphone and how they got to be the well-known figures today. Al Michaels is one such announcer...you may tune into NFL Sunday Night Football and have heard him or you may have heard him in the recent telecasts of the Olympics...like a trusted friend you have come to rely on for years. This is his story...of his rise from local sports in California to ABC and now NBC sports. You read of many of his many partners over the years including one John Madden or Dan Deirdorf or....Howard Cosell.....each with their own magical personality. This is a very good book for those looking for a history of televised sports from one of the best.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ted

    I have slowly been reading about sportscasters whose careers have coincided with my life. Howard Cosell and Curt Gowdy to name a few. There are several others I have and want to read including Frank Gifford, Don Meredith and Keith Jackson. This book which was released last year, was fairly decent. He was set on his career path early on, and was not to be deterred. His career has been one of utmost professionalism, and I of course have enjoyed his work. I found his criticism of Howard Cosell a li I have slowly been reading about sportscasters whose careers have coincided with my life. Howard Cosell and Curt Gowdy to name a few. There are several others I have and want to read including Frank Gifford, Don Meredith and Keith Jackson. This book which was released last year, was fairly decent. He was set on his career path early on, and was not to be deterred. His career has been one of utmost professionalism, and I of course have enjoyed his work. I found his criticism of Howard Cosell a little rough. Howard's career was also one of supreme dedication as well. While Howard was no doubt a megalomaniac, he was a great entertainer and created must see events. Al should have just accepted Howard for being Howard.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Brandon Anderson

    This was a lot of fun to read. It's amazing all the places Al Michaels has been in his career, and it feels like this book only even scratches the surface. I don't even remember Al Michaels covering the OJ Simpson news, yet here you get to read about his close personal friendship with OJ, his neighbor, and the pretty candid insights he has into that whole thing. You'll read about his rise to stardom through various (but equally amazing) sportscasting jobs and then recap some of his most memorabl This was a lot of fun to read. It's amazing all the places Al Michaels has been in his career, and it feels like this book only even scratches the surface. I don't even remember Al Michaels covering the OJ Simpson news, yet here you get to read about his close personal friendship with OJ, his neighbor, and the pretty candid insights he has into that whole thing. You'll read about his rise to stardom through various (but equally amazing) sportscasting jobs and then recap some of his most memorable moments and sporting events. The whole thing is very well written too- Al either wrote it himself or has an excellent ghost writer, because the entire thing is perfectly in his voice. I could literally hear him saying most of it. Great book, really fun- any big sports fan will love it for sure.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    This is an enjoyable memoir. Al Michaels is one of the great sports broadcasters, and it was interesting to see behind the scenes of the many sporting events he's covered. Having just come off an Olympics, it was interesting to read about how the Olympics have been covered over the years. Al was there for many of the great moments in sports, and it was fun to relive them through his eyes. He's also friends with lots of athletes and celebrities, so there are lots of anecdotes about them as well. This is an enjoyable memoir. Al Michaels is one of the great sports broadcasters, and it was interesting to see behind the scenes of the many sporting events he's covered. Having just come off an Olympics, it was interesting to read about how the Olympics have been covered over the years. Al was there for many of the great moments in sports, and it was fun to relive them through his eyes. He's also friends with lots of athletes and celebrities, so there are lots of anecdotes about them as well. With all the recent documentaries about OJ, I was especially interested in the OJ chapter. Al was a neighbor and friend, and his perspective was interesting. All in all, this is a light and fun read if you enjoy sports.

  29. 4 out of 5

    K

    Good stuff It's a well-written book about a very long career in broadcasting. Al Michaels basically invented the role of network play-by-play announcer. He has worked hard and taken a very unconventional path to where he is now. It is a road paved with a lot of hard work and a lot of small towns at the beginning. He has great stories, and it's interesting to see his views on certain people he has worked with over the years. For the most part, he has favorable things to say. But, there are instanc Good stuff It's a well-written book about a very long career in broadcasting. Al Michaels basically invented the role of network play-by-play announcer. He has worked hard and taken a very unconventional path to where he is now. It is a road paved with a lot of hard work and a lot of small towns at the beginning. He has great stories, and it's interesting to see his views on certain people he has worked with over the years. For the most part, he has favorable things to say. But, there are instances when he makes it clear that there are some people he didn't care for. This was an entertaining read, and if you are sports fan you will enjoy it.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jim Razinha

    Great book. I've always thought of Al Michaels as "just there", which might not sound too good, but to a professional like Michaels, that's actually high praise because it was about the sport and not him. The names! What a career... football, basketball, boxing, hockey, baseball, the Olympics...And what stories! I watched the movies Apollo 13, Secretariat, The Right Stuff and even though I knew what the outcomes were, I (and this is rare for me) got wrapped into them enough to hold my breath at Great book. I've always thought of Al Michaels as "just there", which might not sound too good, but to a professional like Michaels, that's actually high praise because it was about the sport and not him. The names! What a career... football, basketball, boxing, hockey, baseball, the Olympics...And what stories! I watched the movies Apollo 13, Secretariat, The Right Stuff and even though I knew what the outcomes were, I (and this is rare for me) got wrapped into them enough to hold my breath at the crucial points. Michaels (and Wertham) was able to reel me in with his chapter on the 1980 Winter Olympics and the US win over the USSR pros. That alone gets five stars.

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