Zach Hyman has a lot to look forward to this April — and we’re not just talking about the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
The Toronto Maple Leafs forward has another career milestone coming his way when his third book is released.
The Magician’s Secret, due out April 3, will be Hyman’s third children’s book. The young author made his publishing debut in August 2015 with the release of The Bambino and Me, and followed it up with his second work, Hockey Hero, a few months later.
Hyman opened up about his love of writing, which began at a young age, in a Hockey Night in Canada feature which you can watch at the top of this post.
“Being the oldest, you always wanted to entertain your younger brothers and make stories up for them,” Hyman, who has four younger brothers, told Sportsnet’s Christine Simpson.
Simpson also spoke to one of Hyman’s high school teachers, Jory Vernon, who helped nurture Hyman’s creativity and love of writing. Vernon shared a pretty cool story about his former student:
“I had given [the students] a major assignment to do, and he said, ‘I can’t do the assignment because I’m not going to be here — I’m going to be away for a chunk of time playing for Team Canada.’ It’s important to note that he really wanted to do another assignment,” Vernon explained. “I said, ‘I’ll make you a deal: I’ll make you another assignment, but when you make the NHL, your first game at the ACC — I’m there.
“Fast forward a number of years, he gets traded from Florida to Toronto and at some point, near the end of that first season, he gets called up to the Leafs,” Vernon continued. “I get a text message from him: ‘I haven’t forgotten our deal. There’s two tickets waiting for you.'”– Jory Vernon, as told to Christine Simpson on Hockey Night in Canada
It’s only fitting now that Hyman should find himself in classrooms around the city reading to kids and encouraging them to chase their own dreams.
“All my stories have messages and have meaning,” he said. “When you read it, you don’t see it directly but there’s an underlying theme that’s always there and the biggest one is inspiring kids to believe in themselves.”
Now in his second full season with the Leafs, Hyman has registered 28 goals and 43 assists for 71 points in 172 regular season games with his hometown team, with plenty more points — and pages — to come.