Tuesday @ The Rink

CHAT LIVE With North Dakota Forward Ryan Duncan

Welcome to the CSTV.com moderated chat room!

On Tuesday, March 20 at 2:00 ET, North Dakota forward Ryan Duncan enters the chatroom at "Tuesday @ The Rink", presented by CSTV.com and USCHO.com. Duncan and the Fighting Sioux take on Michigan Saturday in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

Ryan Duncan

On a team filled with highly-touted NHL draft picks and imposing physical specimens, 5'6" Ryan Duncan has stood tallest and shone brightest in 2006-07 for the Fighting Sioux of the University of North Dakota.

Duncan was named WCHA Player of the Year at the league's awards banquet on Thursday, having led the WCHA in both goals (30) and points (53). Duncan was also named one of ten finalists for the Hobey Baker Memorial Award, and has been instrumental in making the Sioux one of the hottest teams in the nation heading into the NCAA Tournament.

The son of former Fighting Sioux forward Bob Duncan, Ryan graduated from Shattuck-St. Mary's in 2004 before playing a year with Salmon Arm of the BCHL. He is a native of Calgary.

** GET YOUR QUESTIONS IN NOW!!: Jonathan won't be stopping by until 2:00 EDT on Tuesday, March 20th, and his time will be limited, so feel free to submit your questions now and we'll save them for his arrival!
CSTV.com Moderator: Good afternoon once again, and welcome back to "Tuesday @ the Rink," presented by CSTV.com and USCHO. We're joined now by University of North Dakota forward Ryan Duncan, the WCHA Player of the Year. The Sioux face Michigan in the West Regional semifinals.
Ryan Duncan: Hi everybody, thanks for having me. I'm looking forward to answering everyone's questions. I'm a huge fan of the chat.

nigel(Bismarck): Ryan-are you and your teammates disappointed you got thrown in a bracket with the gophers or do you look at it as a chance to redeem last weekends upset over the hottest team in the nation. Personally I feel the selection committee failed miserably by matching the two best teams in the nation up against each other for a trip to the frozen four.
Ryan Duncan: Well, if we're even going to have a chance at playing Minnesota, our team is going to have to get through a very tough Michigan team. Our team isn't even thinking about a possible rematch with Minnesota right now. We want to concentrate on the task at hand and that is the Michigan Wolverines. We're just excited to have the chance to be involved in the National Tournament.

Ryan (Grand Forks): Do you think that the loss to Minnesota will help or hurt the Fighting Sioux going into the NCAA tournament? Good luck in Denver, Go Sioux!!!
Ryan Duncan: Thanks a lot. We're hoping that we can look back on that loss and just see it as another bump in the road for us. Our team has faced a lot of adversity this year so far and so far we have been successful in learning from our mistakes and turning them into positives so hopefully we can do the same with this situaton.

John(Fargo): What did Minnesota do so effectively to shut you guys down on Saturday? Do you fear that this has given other teams a blue print to stop you guys in the NCAA's? Thanks and beat UofM (on Saturday and Sunday)!
Ryan Duncan: I think Minnesota played a tremendous game and they worked really hard to beat us. They were very deserving of their win. They played very well and scored a great goal to beat us in overtime. I don't think their is any blueprint to the way they beat us. It was just two great teams battling against one another and they came out on top that night.

Perry (Long Beach, CA): UND hockey seems to pride itself on it's work ethic, and at the WCHA semifinal game Bobby Goepfert said you come at him at 110 MPH, every line, every player. How do you as a team maintain such a fast paced style of play?
Ryan Duncan: I think that's just the way hockey is played here at North Dakota. It's not acceptable for us to take a shift off. It's just the tradition of the program and the players and coaches know that we have a lot to live up to everytime we're wearing the sioux crest.

Perry (Long Beach, CA): Have you noticed any changes with fans and other UND students now that you are a local celebrity and also the WCHA player of the year and a Hobey Baker finalist?
Ryan Duncan: Not at all. I don't see myself as a local celebrity. The fans of the Fighting Sioux have been great to our whole team. North Dakota hockey isn't about individual accomplishments. It's about the success of the team.

Dave, Menomonie,WI: Ryan, what will be the key to beating the Wolverines this weekend?
Ryan Duncan: The biggest key for us this weekend against the Wolverines will have to be out working them. We want to make sure that we're playing our style of game. We know that they have a lot of talent both offensively and defensively that can hurt us so we want to make sure we do a great job of working hard and containing them as best we can.

Maggie (Farmington): #16, thanks for giving us so much exciting hockey this year. Any preparations you guys are making to get ready for the high altitude in Denver?
Ryan Duncan: Thanks for your support. I don't think we will be doing anything more then we would usually do in preparation for a series out in Colorado. We're pretty fortunate to play in a league where we have already taken two trips out to Colorado this year. Hopefully the high altitude won't play to much of a factor on the weekend.

Justin (Greenville, NC): Hey Ryan, congrats on an amazing year so far! Keep it up! It seems like the general consensus, at least from everything I have heard, that the line of you, Toews, and Oshie is the best in college hockey this year. I was wondering what your thought on that is and why you think you three have clicked so incredibly well this season? Thanks, from a former UND student and loyal-to-the-end Fighting Sioux fan.
Ryan Duncan: Thanks a lot. I appreciate all the nice compliments. I don't know if you can say we're the best line in college hockey. That's not up to us to decide. I can't speak for them but I know I just feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to play on a line with two of the most talented and hard working guys in college hockey. I can't really explain why we've clicked. We've just been able to develop some chemistry and we've been really fortunate that things have gone our way so far.

fasbender (gf): Ryan what do you typically order at the red pepper? good luck in CO!
Ryan Duncan: Great question. I usually get a whole turkey grinder with two cheese tostadas and then I wash it down with some milk. Their milk is so cold, some of the best I've ever had.

Jason (Colo Spgs, CO): What's your most memorable moment or game this season? Good luck this weekend!!!
Ryan Duncan: For me, the most memorable moment of the season so far would have to be after the second game of our first round of the playoffs against Mankato. Just accomplishing something with your teammates and having the fans stick around and show their support for our team after the game was a pretty awesome feeling.

Tim F. (East Grand Forks): The loss to the Gophers at the Final Five was a tough one to see either Team lose, 19,000 plus fans on the edge of their seats defined college hockey especially in the WCHA. What are your thoughts on the NCAA Committee putting an almost identical West Regional together like they had in Grand Forks last year?
Ryan Duncan: We don't mind it at all. It was something out of our control and I just think it was a coincidence. All four teams in our region are great teams and we look forward to the challenge we have in front of us.

Ryan (Bismarck): Ryan, great season. Who's the best WCHA player you've played against this season that is not on your team?
Ryan Duncan: There are so many great players in our league it's hard to pick just one. I'd have to say Kyle Okposo. He's such a unique combination of size, speed, strength, and skill. I know from personal experience how hard he works and he can beat you in so many ways. He's a tremendous player.

Mark, Burnsville, MN: Ryan, Congrats on a great year and best of luck in the tournament. As a native North Dakotan college hockey is obviously my life. I was wondering how college hockey is perceived in Canada. Do most players in your homeland follow NCAA hockey?
Ryan Duncan: It's actually starting to be followed a lot more then it used to. Obviously, the big thing up in Canada is Major Junior hockey and the NHL but since there has been an influx of college players playing in the NHL I think U.S. college hockey is starting to gain a little more respect up in Canada. It doesn't hurt when great players like Jonathan Toews, Andrew Cogliano, and Dan Bertram decide to play U.S. college hockey either.

JB GF: Ryan, What is your favorite aspect about playing for the Fighting Sioux in Grand Forks
Ryan Duncan: I'd have to say my favorite thing about playing for the Fighting Sioux would have to be the sense of community and family you get here. The facilities, coaches, and players speak for themselves but no one really knows how tightly knit of a community Grand Forks really is. The people of Grand Forks do a really great job of making everyone feel comfortable.
CSTV.com Moderator: That is all the time we have with Ryan this afternoon...he has an NCAA tournament game to go practice for!
Ryan Duncan: Thanks a lot everyone for your questions and thanks again for having me.
CSTV.com Moderator: That will do it for this week's "Tuesday @ the Rink" chats. Thanks to everyone who submitted questions, and check back for more info on next week's guests. Enjoy the tournament!