This article appears in the February issue of Wild Magazine.
Welcome to Off the Ice, where Wild.com sits down with Wild players to learn more about their lives away from the rink. This month, we chat with Matt Dumba about his family, his favorite road cities and his involvement in Athletes Committed to Educating Students (ACES).
Wild.com: We hear you're close with your family. How often do you get to spend time with them during the season, and as a family, what are some of the things you like to do together?
MD: During the season, [I don't get out there] very often. They usually have to come towards me. But we're lucky enough that this year, we had two games in Calgary. So I'm going to see them over the All-Star break coming up, and then I'm gonna go back to Alberta, I guess Edmonton and Calgary, back-to-back, so I'll see them then, as well. We honestly just chill. I just like being at home on the couch, just watching a movie with everyone or playing cards; I love playing cards with my uncle, my dad and my little brother. That's something we always do.
W: This is your second full season in Minnesota. What do you like most about living here?
MD: To be honest, I like how there's the seasons. It's a lot like back home for me. Having winter just kind of gets me into the hockey atmosphere, how everyone's engaged in the game and knows what's going on. It's really nice having all the sports teams here; there's always something going on.
W: What are some of your favorite ways to spend time away from the rink, and who on the team do you spend the most time with?
MD: I probably spend the most time with [Christian Folin], just because we're roommates. We watch a ton of movies. We've made it a tradition to watch "The Night Before." It's a new Christmas movie that's out, and it's with Seth Rogan, and it's a good cast. It's pretty funny. We're both big food guys, so we're always cooking and doing stuff together like that. And then it's Xbox, TV shows, and that's about it.
W: We hear you're big into music. How do you go about discovering new artists, and are you able to go to many concerts and shows?
MD: I'm not really able to make it to many concerts or shows, but when I can, I definitely like to. I'm on Apple Music, so I just find everything on there, new releases. I have some guys that I always follow, so just staying up to date on all their music is pretty easy, following them on Instagram or social media.
W: Apart from anything hockey related, what is your favorite road city to visit and why?
MD: I like New York or going to L.A. Just the atmospheres of both are so different from any other city; New York just being so crazy, there's something going on all the times of the day with how people move throughout the city. L.A.'s kind of the opposite of that, just chill and laid back, and it's usually pretty nice there, so I like going there.
W: You joined Athletes Committed to Educating Students (ACES) as a player representative earlier this season. Talk a little bit about that cause, what it means to you, and why you decided to get on board with it.
MD: I think what started it was I was just looking to help out with something that was really close to me, and before hockey -- before I knew that I was going to be a hockey player and do this professionally -- my mom was pretty strict on me in school through everything, just wanting a good education to come first, and I think that's huge. In the ACES community, we're building and trying to bridge the gap with these inner-city kids and their education and making sure that comes first and foremost, and finding a fun way to do it, as well. I was really, really happy that I could get in touch with them and be part of it.