Q&A: Ryan Marker

Q&A: Ryan Marker

By Shawn Johnson

January 15, 2020

Ryan Marker has been an absolute superstar with the Delaware Thunder. Marker currently finds himself as the league leader in goals scored and second in overall points in the FPHL this season. As part of a new series we're doing here at Under Review, I spoke with Marker and got to know more about him. Without further delay, here it is!

SHAWN: Tell us a little about yourself. Where did you grow up? When did you start skating and when did you start taking a passion for hockey?


RYAN: I was born in Philadelphia, PA. I lived there until I was in third grade. Then we moved 15 minutes over into New Jersey and that’s where I’ve been ever since. I had a great childhood and met a ton of great people and wouldn’t have wanted it to go any other way. I have a mother and father who really did everything they possibly could for me from day one. I also have two really good siblings; a brother and a sister. My sister has always been there for me with everything and my brother played high levels of hockey and he taught me everything. I started skating when I was four years old and my passion started with my dad and brother. They were both really good and from watching them and seeing them play that’s what gave me the drive to do this my whole life. 

SHAWN: What's it like playing professional hockey for a new franchise near home?

RYAN: It’s honestly amazing; I absolutely love playing for the Delaware Thunder. It’s seriously such a great place to play; we have the best and most loyal fans in the league. They are so passionate about our team and are behind us 100% of the time. It’s been an honor to play for the Thunder and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for us and the Delaware Thunder organization. There is such a good group of guys on this team too; we have probably the greatest group in the league. 

SHAWN: How is it playing for Coach Charlie Pens Sr.? What are some pros and cons of his coaching style?

RYAN: Its honestly great playing for Coach Pens. He really doesn’t have any cons, not just saying that because I really like him. He has a good way of keeping the boys in line and we also have to give credit to our Coach Lou. He helps us with all of our X’s and O’s of the game. He teaches us the right way to play and gives us the best game plan to win every single night. Coach Pens is more in charge of the personnel and stuff like that. They both go hand in hand with stuff and do a great job with the boys. 

SHAWN: Travelling is a big part of hockey, so where is your favorite place so far to play on the road in the FPHL so far this season and why?

RYAN: Hmmmm, I would say my favorite place so far to play in the FPHL is Port Huron, Michigan. The reason being is because I really love that classic and old school style ice hockey rink. I don’t know why playing in that rink legit makes you think and feel like you’re playing old time hockey, but I love it. 

SHAWN: I’m sure you have some stories about the boys and travelling and bonding so let’s keep it PG, but which teammates of yours would you consider your best friend? Who do you like to hangout with and room with on road trips?

RYAN: I would say my favorite teammates to hangout with are Contratto, Cutting and Masters. I’ve become really close with all of those guys and they have been very good to me this year. 

SHAWN: If you had to pick any other team to play for besides Delaware, what team would you pick and why?

RYAN: I honestly don’t have another team that I would want to play for besides the Thunder. I personally love it here. The team, staff and the fan base have made me feel at home from day one. I can’t thank everyone for all of their full on support so far. We really appreciate all of it. 

SHAWN: Which NHL player do you look up to the most?

RYAN: Sidney Crosby

SHAWN: You currently lead the league in goals with 28, and you’re one point behind league leader Tyler Gjurich with 52. How does it feel to be arguably the best forward in the FPHL?

RYAN: It feels great being up there as one of the better guys in the league; I have worked so hard in my life. I’ve had plenty of ups and downs and it just feels great to finally accomplish what I have always wanted to accomplish. 

SHAWN: Have you had any offers from any other teams, including higher leagues? And if so, by what teams?

RYAN: I have had offers yes in the SPHL but I truly want to be in the ECHL. I have a full time job back at home and I don’t want to give up that job unless it’s for the ECHL. That’s my goal and that’s what I’m striving for. I know I can do it and that’s what I want.  

SHAWN: A few of our followers have a few questions for you. First up, Curtis Mosely asks what are your goals for this season?

RYAN: My goals for this season are to win a championship. That’s been the goal all along. I have personal stuff that I want to achieve but the team comes first. We are on our way to make the playoffs and I know we have what it takes if we get there to win a championship. I have full faith in this team. 

SHAWN: Christian Gardecki wants to know what your least favorite rink in the FPHL to play in is?

RYAN: My least favorite rink to play in and this might sound crazy because I haven’t played them yet is Battle Creek. I played there a few times growing up and I feel just stuff never went right when I played there. 

SHAWN: Eric Rymer would like to know, who was your hockey inspiration when you first got started playing hockey?

RYAN: My hockey inspiration growing up was my brother. He really had a huge part in my hockey. He is such a good brother to me. I love him and can’t thank him enough for everything that he does for me. My favorite hockey player of all time is Sidney Crosby. I have been watching him ever since I was a young kid and he is literally amazing and the best player I have ever seen in my life. 

SHAWN: Damiean Evans asks how did it feel to score a hat trick against the Hat Tricks?

RYAN: It felt great, most importantly getting the win was huge. It was a huge turn around for positive stuff to come along the rest of the season. I can’t thank my teammates enough for always helping me out, I love all these guys. 

SHAWN: Our final fan question comes from Kenneth Stephen Belluch who wants to know; how loud is the Thunderdome when the place gets rocking? Does it compare to the noise at other rinks in which you’ve played?

RYAN: The Thunderdome is the loudest rink I have ever played in.  It’s not the biggest rink, but man are our fans loud and supportive. We have the best fans, especially for a new team. I love our fans and they keep us going with all of their support. 

SHAWN: Do you have any final remarks for your fans and the followers of Under Review?

RYAN: I just want to thank everyone who has been with me through my journey and I really appreciate all of the support. Obviously I have to thank the Delaware Thunder fans a ton, they are the best in the league and they are so supportive and I can’t thank them enough. Also have to thank my family and friends that have been with me since day one. I can’t thank them enough. Most importantly, my soon to be wife Emily Epley. She literally has changed my life these past eight years and I can’t thank her enough for always being by my side no matter what. I have never seen a woman who pushes someone the way she does, ever since the beginning she always told me to go for my dreams. She is my life and I can’t thank her enough. She has changed my life in so many ways, without her I don’t even know if I would even be playing hockey. She is the definition of the perfect match; I was so lucky that god chose the perfect match for me. 

From all of us at Under Review, we'd like to thank Ryan for taking the time to talk with us and good luck the rest of the season. Who do you want us to interview next? Leave a comment below and let us know!

PHOTO: 302 Films & Photography