For my summer social media series on the Colorado Avalanche, I’ll be doing important in-depth analysis into different members of the team. The objective of my research is to find out whether or not hockey players have actual personalities, outside of being hockey-playing robots. We all understand that social media is a gold mine of information, whether it is good or bad. Some athletes are vocal and opinionated individuals, while others prefer not to have much an online presence. My hope is to sort through all of it to develop an interesting and entertaining profile of the players.
For somewhat obvious reasons, it seemed appropriate to start with Matt Duchene before he is traded away to another team. As a long-time member of the team, he is well-known to so many of you already, which means much of this information may seem redundant. I am hopeful, however, that I’ve successfully unearthed some cool things about number 9.
But before I begin, I wanted to give a hearty congratulations to Matt and his long-time partner, Ashley, on tying the knot this weekend!
In his own words, Matt is a “Christian, Die-hard Fisherman, Wannabe Country Singer, Colorado Avalanche Centre, 2014 Canadian Olympic Gold Medalist, 2015&16 IIHF World Champion.”
Matt likes to keep a tidy Instagram and Twitter account, but does give his followers some intimate glimpses into his home life and passions. The majority of his pictures on social media are of him with his family or his lovely pup.
Due to his upbringing, Matt can best be described as a seasoned outdoorsman who loves hanging out on his boat whenever he gets a chance.
In a video for CCM Hockey, the “die-hard fisherman” describes his unorthodox, “old-school” fishing technique. He explains that this method is a longstanding tradition in the Haliburton area and that when the time comes, he will teach it to his future children.
Matt’s fishing equipment and technique differ from the way millennials like to fish.
One of Matt’s frequent pastimes is posting scenic pictures of Haliburton on his Instagram and making us feel like gigantic losers if we are not living directly next to a body of water, with 24/7 access to a boat. (Unlike another NHLer, Matt has a boating license.)
Another favorite spot Matt visits is his grandparents’ farm in Cornwall, Ontario. According to him, the farm has been in the family for six generations.
A Few of Matt’s Favourite Things
Matt’s favourite teams are the Toronto Blue Jays and the Denver Broncos. You can often catch him out in the world wearing a Jays hat.
Speaking of lids, Paisley’s Point is Matt’s exclusive hat line that reflects his love for his hometown. As explained here, Matt does some of the designs himself, which contain special personal significance:
Another big thanks to @neweracap for hooking it up with this year's #PaisleysPoint lids! ------------------------------------------------------- This is the Windswept Pines logo I designed to represent my parent's part of our property... when we bought their cottage it was named 'Windswept' after the pines that are all along the shoreline. We face west so the prevailing winds hit the trees everyday so they have a bend to them. The old saying goes 'Windswept pines stand up to the wind, they bend but don't break'. This logo represents some of the beauty of our property as well as how to deal with adversity. Some good motivation for all of us
Fun story about the hats: some hockey fans were intrigued when they spotted a maple leaf on the back of his custom-made hat and thought it was a nod to the Toronto Maple Leafs. He then made a video explaining (and apologizing) that it was just a random maple leaf with no real significance and everyone calmed down.
It’s hard to definitively state who is number one in his heart, but here are some of the athletes outside of hockey that Matt has a high regard for:
Tennis: Roger Federer
Football: Drew Brees
Baseball: Josh Donaldson
A hockey-playing man and a baseball-playing man begin a budding bromance.
Like those of us who often express our complex human emotions through emojis, Matt also has a strong emoji game. His go to emojis are heart-eyes, fishing, praying, and fire. Sometimes he’ll hit ya with the double heart eyes and double fire, especially when he’s excited about his Yeezy’s.
A Hockey Playing Man and his Doggo
Here’s how you can follow Paisley’s adventures on Instagram @paisleythebrittany.
This is Paisley. 12/10 would hire as my swimming coach.
Matt follows zero accounts on Instagram, but his Twitter account is slightly more revealing. The most amusing account he follows on Twitter is is a fan account for the show, Friends. This revelation will now inspire my next series: “who are the Ross and Rachel of the Avalanche?”
(While digging a little deeper, I’ve also discovered that Matt’s favorite movie is probably Space Jam. Look how cute this is!)
Some other fun accounts that Matt follows on Twitter include:
@stats_canada: a satirical, The Onion-style account about all things Canada:
18% of Rush songs just ended— Stats Canada (@stats_canada) June 28, 2017
@GodsTinyAnimals: an account that posts photos of pups and other baby animals.
Happiness is a pig and his icecream. pic.twitter.com/PSKqoBm9fY— God's Tiny Animals (@GodsTinyAnimals) July 7, 2017
Matt follows a number of people in the hockey universe, mostly current or former teammates from the NHL or international teams. In terms of hockey writers, the most notable he follows is Craig Custance. Based on this, one might assume that Matt is deeply invested in the Detroit Red Wings.
“Hot Girls, Cold Beers, Pickup trucks”
One of Matt’s biggest passions is music. When he isn’t too busy hockeying or fishing, he likes playing the guitar.
Matt is really into country music, which is somewhat common knowledge among fans. He loves it so much that he’s even discovered singers from Canada’s country music scene. Matt uses his Twitter feed to enlighten us on his favourite jams. Here’s a Dallas Smith song he recommended last year called, “Hoods and Tailgates.”
Sometimes, Matt will borrow a song lyric to magnificently caption his pictures on Instagram in an adorably romantic way, as seen here:
You can just imagine him at 14 years old, killing the game with MSN statuses.
Somewhat surprising is the wide range of his musical tastes. On Twitter, Matt follows artists like Shania Twain, Justin Timberlake, Green Day, Taylor Swift, and Nickelback. Personally, I’m dying to find out his favourite Nickelback’s song might be. I mean, if it’s not “How You Remind Me,” what’s wrong with him?
The important takeaway is that Matt enjoys appropriate amounts of Canadian content in his playlists and that makes him a good Canadian boy.
Matt is a practicing Christian and has openly discussed his faith in the past. He has a religious tattoo on the inner part of his left arm that reads “Philippians 4:13.” The actual verse is, “I can do all things through Him, who strengthens me.”
Last September, Matt made some videos for his sponsor, CCM Hockey, where he gave a tour of his personal gym in the off-season:
One of the coolest features of his gym is the “Wall of Captains,” which is where he hangs framed pictures of the captains from the Stanley Cup-winning teams. He explains that they help him gain extra motivation during his workouts. Matt hopes to “one day put his own picture up there.”