Monday, May 16, 2011

Book Review - Can I Keep My Jersey?

In my 2nd sports book review, I will be reviewing Can I Keep My Jersey? 11 Teams, 5 Countries, and 4 Years in My Life as a Basketball Vagabond by Paul Shirley.

This book is about Paul Shirley's first four years as a professional basketball player. In those four years, he played for NBA teams such as the Atlanta Hawks, the Chicago Bulls and the Phoenix Suns. He also played in Europe with Panionios BC in Greece, Joventut Badalona in Spain and UNICS Kazan in Russia. He also spent some time in the minor leagues in the US with the Yakima Sun Kings of the Continental Basketball Association(CBA) and the Kansas City Knights of the American Basketball Association(ABA).

The book is mainly about Shirley's 2nd, 3rd and 4th year as a pro baller with a chapter summarizing year one. The book is written in diary format and is comprised of stories Paul wrote on his travels with a bit of editing.

Paul Shirley
You don't need to be a sports fan to enjoy this book but seeing as your on this site, you probably are. The reason I originally picked it up was to see what life is like for a basketball player playing in Europe and in the minor leagues in the States as he struggles to make it in the association. After reading the book, I wouldn't really say the focus is on basketball rather on Shirley himself which may be a good or bad thing depending on your taste. 

I really enjoyed this book but I know it isn't for everyone. You either love this book or you hate it. I fall into the former category. I thought Shirley was witty and sarcastic with his remarks about the many situations he found himself in. Others might regard him as a narcissistic and cynical person who is constantly complaining. For that reason, this is a tough book to review. Personally, I thought this book was a real page turner and at times I found myself rooting for Shirley to succeed. For that reason, I recommend that you check out this book

RATING - 7/10


  1. Fantastic stuff you have shared with us in your blog post. I like the review and I will definitely love to read this book. Thanks for this great review.

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