Monthly Archives: March 2014

2013/14 OHL Assesments (Part 1) & First Round Predictions

So here we go again. After another interesting regular season, the 2014 OHL playoffs will start off on Thursday, with a bevy of story-lines in store.

In the East, the Oshawa Generals look to be the team to beat, but the North Bay Battalion have been strong as of late and might be a stern test for them. Plus, the Barrie Colts and Sudbury Wolves are going head-to-head in a series that you could easily see happening in the conference finals, let alone the first round.

The opening set of series in the Western Conference should be straight forward, as all eyes are set on two insane second round affairs between Guelph/London and Sault Ste. Marie/Erie. However, anything can happen in the first round, so an upset might be in store that no one is expecting.

But before we get to all of that, we have to say our goodbyes to the four teams that missed out on the playoffs, and also take a look at what lies ahead for those clubs.

Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.

Sarnia Sting (17-44-2-5 – 5th in West Division/10th in Western Conference – Eliminated on Friday, February 28)

What I Predicted: When it comes down to it, this might be a long winter for fans in Sarnia, as the Sting seem set to return to the bottom of the league.

What Actually Happened: Exactly that. Despite the scoring exploits of Nikolay Goldobin and Anthony DeAngelo, it wasn’t enough to keep the Sting out of the cellar. However, they did allow Soo Greyhounds forward Sergey Tolchinsky to score the goal of the season, so there is that.

What Lies Ahead: Other than a change in team ownership, the Sting is currently preparing to make the first overall pick in April’s draft. It’s the fourth time that the team has had the top selection, having drafted Jeff Brown (1994), Steven Stamkos (2006) and Alex Galchenyuk (2010) previously. Toronto Junior Canadians defenceman Jakob Chychrun is widely considered to be the top overall selection, but don’t be surprised if they end up taking Vaughn Kings forward Adam Mascherin.

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Kitchener Rangers (22-41-2-3 – 5th in Midwest Division/9th in Western Conference – Eliminated on Thursday, March 6)

What I Predicted: It seems like it might be  a couple of years until the Rangers go back to the top of the mountain, but I have proven wrong by this team before.

What Actually Happened: My first instinct was right. The Rangers found themselves fighting for scraps in a division where Guelph, Erie, and London ran roughshod, and the massive changes in the roster from last season proved too much to overcome.

What Lies Ahead: There are some good pieces in the Rangers lineup, especially at forward, so I expect them to be in the playoff mix once again in 2014/15. The only question mark I have is the goaltending, and since no one can draft import netminders anymore (Thanks a lot David Branch), I am expecting Kitchener to take a long look at Michigan recruit Hayden Lavigne, whose rights they got at the deadline from Belleville.

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Ottawa 67’s (23-39-3-3 – 5th in East Division/10th in Eastern Conference – Eliminated on Sunday, March 16)

What I Predicted: There is a chance that this team could make the post-season again this season, despite finishing in the basement when things wrapped up last March.

What Actually Happened: The 67’s had an opportunity to force a tiebreaker game against Mississauga if they were able to beat North Bay on the last day of the season, but were blown out of the building in a 12-1 loss to the Battalion instead. As a result of that defeat, the club will miss the playoffs in back-to-back seasons for the first time in its history.

What Lies Ahead: A move back to the Ottawa Civic Centre (or whatever it’s called these days) is the biggest thing, along with having a second season out of Travis Konecny to build the offence around. Chris Byrne will probably be the most likely coach on the hot seat at the start of the campaign, so the key will be not to get off to a slow start.

Remi Elie of the Belleville Bulls. Photo by Aaron Bell/OHL Images

Belleville Bulls (23-38-4-3 – 4th in East Division/9th in Eastern Conference – Eliminated on Friday, March 14)

What I Predicted: I think the Bulls will be around the bottom of that six team logjam that will contend for the Eastern Conference crown, but given the fact that the East is such a mess right now, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Bulls sneak into the discussion for the East Division title.

What Actually Happened: Well certainly not that. Despite a slow start, and trading away Brendan Gaunce to Erie, the Bulls still had a chance to sneak into the post-season before losing in overtime to Oshawa in it’s second last game of the season. Nevertheless, it was a quick drop-off from a team that was a win away from being in the finals a year earlier.

What Lies Ahead: The biggest question is where exactly the Bulls will be playing in a few years time. The team’s lease at the Yardmen Arena runs out next season, and the debate is raging on whether the facility will be renovated or if a new arena will be built. With Chatham seemingly always coming up now in relocation rumours, it will be interesting to see what happens next with this team.

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It has come to my attention from a number of well-placed and reliable sources, that this former North Bay Centennials legend is no longer playing in the league, thus rendering the 2014 OHL playoffs meaningless.

Nevertheless, I suppose I should still go about making my soon-to-be wrong playoff picks here for the opening round of the post-season, since that’s what everyone is here for anyways.

Eastern Conference

1) Oshawa Generals vs. 8) Mississauga Steelheads: Oshawa in four (The Generals are just too strong for the Steelheads in this one. I expect this series to be rather one-sided.)

2) North Bay Battalion vs. 7) Niagara Ice Dogs: North Bay in four (For the first time since 2002, OHL playoff hockey has returned to the Gateway City, and the fans there should be rewarded for their long wait with a nice playoff run. Like the Generals/Steelheads series, this one should be over quickly.)

3) Kingston Frontenacs vs. 6) Peterborough Petes: Kingston in five (It’s nice to see the Petes back in the post-season, but I don’t think they have enough to match up with Kingston on offence.)

4) Barrie Colts vs. 5) Sudbury Wolves: Sudbury in seven (This is easily the most interesting series of the first round, and I can see this going either way. However, since I picked Sudbury to be in the OHL finals back in the fall, I’m not going to change things around now.)

Western Conference

1) Guelph Storm vs. 8) Plymouth Whalers: Guelph in five (Since the Whalers never miss the post-season, I can see them taking at least one game from the Storm. But an entire series? I doubt that will happen.)

2) Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds vs. 7) Owen Sound Attack: Sault Ste. Marie in four (This series is a rematch of the awesome six-game affair the two sides had in the first round back in 2013, but I don’t think this one will be quite as exciting. However, since I picked the Greyhounds to win in a sweep, watch out for something truly strange to end up happening.)

3) Erie Otters vs. 6) Saginaw Spirit: Erie in five (Given everything that the Spirit have gone through since the death of Terry Trafford, I expect them to put in all that they have left in the tank into trying to pull off the upset. However, Erie has way too much firepower offensively to try and contain over a seven game series.)

4) London Knights vs. 5) Windsor Spitfires: London in five (For awhile, I thought this would be a really tough test for the Knights in the first round. But with Windsor; defender Slater Koekkoek suffering another season-ending shoulder injury, and London finishing off the season strongly, the Memorial Cup hosts should make their way to the second round with ease.)

Anyways, that does it for now, or until the second round at least. Enjoy the playoffs kids, it should be a heck of a ride.

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The 2014 Brier Review

Written by Brett Punkari (With Cameos by Lucas Punkari)

The 2014 edition of the Brier started off kind of bizarre, but eventually the cream rose to the top with the top three teams. However, we did have  a bit of a surprise for fourth place as a team had a  rekindling of some of their old magic from 2006.

Champions: Alberta (Kevin Koe)

Kevin Koe

The 2010 Brier champions picked the best time to have their best game when it mattered the most.  Although they had a bit of a slow start percentage wise, and they had two bad games in Draw 17 against Quebec and the 1 vs. 2 game against British Columbia, things turned around with an extra end semi-final win over Quebec and an excellent game in the final. As a result of the win, they will become the first Team Canada in Brier history next year in Calgary.

Where the heck was this performance during the Olympic Trials? Nevertheless, Koe’s team was probably the best in the field all week, and it was nice to see them rewarded in the playoffs. Plus, it was cool to see Pat Simmons get his first Brier title, as the other three players had already won four years ago.

Team Percentages

Lead: Nolan Thiessen – 88% (Tied for Fifth – Two perfect games)

Second: Carter Rycroft – 86% (Third)

Vice: Pat Simmons – 86% (Tied for Third)

 Skip: Kevin Koe – 85% (Tied for Third)

Second: British Columbia (John Morris)

Carter Rycroft John Morris

Now John Morris and Jim Cotter know how Glenn Howard felt after losing both the Olympic Trials and Brier finals in the same year back in 2009. They were the best team percentage wise in the round-robin, and they had a spectacular showing in the 1 vs. 2 game against Alberta, but in the all-important final they came out flat. That was especially noticeable when they had the hammer as they only had singles while Alberta scored three points with the hammer on three occasions.

Of course, now with all the potential team changes upcoming, it’s hard to tell if Johnny Mo will stay with this team. But if he does stay, they will break through and win a Brier.

Like Brett said, the B.C. squad went flat at the worst possible moment, which is a huge shame as we haven’t had a close Brier final now since 2010 when Kevin Koe won in an extra-end over Glenn Howard.

Again, with all of the off-season changes, who knows what happens with this team. However, this year was Jim Cotter’s coming-out party on a national stage, and he deserves to be mentioned as a Brier contender in the future.

Team Percentages

Lead: Rick Sawatsky – 95%  (First – Three perfect games)

Second: Tyrell Griffith – 88% (Second)

Vice: John Morris – 90% (First)

Fourth: Jim Cotter – 87% (First)

Third: Manitoba (Jeff Stoughton)

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Yes, Jeff Stoughton is back on the podium once again at the Brier, but it was definitely an UnStoughton like week. Although they started off at 4-0, their numbers were not that great and they could have easily been 1-3. They did pickup their percentages during the week, it was not enough as a key miss in the 3 vs. 4 against Quebec took them out of contention, although they had an excellent showing in the bronze medal game.

This might be Stoughton’s final Brier appearance, and if it is, he has had an incredible career.

In what seemed awfully familiar to what happened at the Olympic Trials, it just seemed like the guys were off a little bit, as guys like Mead and Stoughton were missing shots that they would make with their eyes closed a couple of years ago. It’s hard to see Stoughton making another run at the Olympics, but it’s safe to say that no matter what happens, he will go down as one of the best skips in the history of the game.

Team Percentages

Lead: Reid Carruthers – 88% (Tied for fifth)

Second: Mark Nichols – 90% (First)

Vice: Jon Mead – 88% (Second)

Skip: Jeff Stoughton 86% 2nd

Fourth and Biggest Surprise: Quebec (Jean-Michel Menard)

Kamloops B.C.Mar7_2014.Tim Hortons Brier.Quebec skip Jean-Michel Menard.CCA/michael burns photo

The 2006 champions broke a few speakers and maybe some glass with their yelling and screaming, but they showed off some of that ’06 magic once again, especially with a crucial win in Draw 17 over Alberta and a terrific 3 vs. 4 game victory over Manitoba.

Unfortunately, they would come up one end short in the semi-final to Alberta and they would fall flat on their face in the bronze medal game to Manitoba. However, this squad looked like they would match Brad Jacobs feat of winning the Brier from the 3 vs. 4 game, which would have been a huge deal.

Menard’s run was a surprise, especially as it was his first playoff run since his Brier victory, but I’m not sure if it was the biggest shocker of the week. Going into the week, Menard was our pick for fifth place, so I’m not that stunned that he did well.

Eddie MacKenzie

For me, the biggest surprise of the week was Eddie MacKenzie of Prince Edward Island. Okay yes the province got relegated because of the CCA’s three-year result format (which is no fun at all for me, as I was hoping a big province would stumble, or Brad Jacobs would be destroying Nunavut), but he won four games! I don’t think anyone saw that coming. 

Team Percentages

Lead: Philippe Menard – 90% (Tied for Second)

Second: Eric Sylvain – 85% (Tied for Fourth)

Vice: Martin Crete – 86% (Tied for Third)

Skip: Jean-Michel Menard – 84% (Tied for Fifth)

Biggest Disappointment: Newfoundland and Labrador (Brad Gushue)

Kamloops B.C.Mar3_2014.Tim Hortons Brier.Newfoundland/Labrador,lead Geoff Walker,second Adam Casey,third Brett Gallant.CCA/michael burns photo

This image of the team says it all. Coming into this week, we figured that this was Brad Gushue’s best ever shot at winning that elusive Brier crown since making the final in 2007, especially after his great showing last year.

However, there seemed to be problems right from the start, as the front end of Geoff Walker and Adam Casey were struggling and Brett Gallant was the worst third of the week at one point. This forced Gushue to make hero shots once again, and led to me calling him the Eve Muirhead of men’s curling, as he had to make all kinds of tough shots to get out of trouble.

If you want to win a Brier, you can’t do that kind of thing that often.

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Hey, you take that back about Evelyn’s team. Anna Sloan is a heroine of justice.

There is a valid point to Brett’s point about Gushue though, as he just had to make circus shot after circus shot just to keep his team in it. Given all of the changes ahead in the curling world, I would expect Gushue’s squad to be a trials threat in a few years time. But who knows after what happened in Kamloops. 

Team Percentages

Lead: Geoff Walker – 89% (Fourth)

Second: Adam Casey – 83% (Ninth)

Vice: Brett Gallant – 81% (Ninth)

Skip: Brad Gushue – 85% (Tied for Third)

Award Winners

Kamloops B.C.Mar8_2014.Tim Hortons Brier.Alberta lead Nolan Thiessen,second Carter Rycroft,third Pat Simmons.CCA/michael burns photo

Playoff MVP: Carter Rycroft (Alberta)

First Team All Stars: Rick Sawatsky (British Columbia), Mark Nichols (Manitoba), John Morris (British Columbia), and Jim Cotter (British Columbia)

Second Team All Stars: Philippe Menard (Quebec), Tyrell Griffith (British Columbia), Pat Simmons (Alberta), and Kevin Koe (Alberta)

Ross Harstone Award: Greg Balsdon (Ontario)

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The Punkari Brothers 2014 Brier Preview

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Brett’s Picks

Sochi Ru.Feb22-2014.Winter Olympic Games.Medal Prest.Team Canada,Team Jones,Team Jacobs.WCF/ michael burns photo

Before we start, I would like to give a personal congratulations to Jennifer Jones and Brad “COME ON!” Jacobs for their Olympic gold medal performances in Sochi. While Jones dominated and ran the table (which is a first in the Olympics on the women’s side), Jacobs did things the hard way as usual. He started off with a 1-2 record but turned up the intensity when it came to the playoffs as he destroyed both China and Great Britain by a combined score of 19-9.

Now that the Olympics are over, its on to the Brier which has an extra added incentive this year as the winning team will return in 2015 as Team Canada, just like at the Scotties.

1) Manitoba (Jeff Stoughton – Charleswood Curling Club – Winnipeg)

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(LtoR – Skip – Jeff Stoughton “Power”, Vice – Jon Mead, Lead – Reid Carruthers, Second – Mark “Bam Bam” Nichols)

After a very disappointing showing at the Olympic Trials, the Stoughton crew decided to take their frustrations out on the field (and Mike McEwen, again) to win Manitoba. Ho hum right?

Well that was about to change as an announcement came shortly afterwards that Nichols and Carruthers would swap positions at the Brier, which makes this team even deadlier with Nichols upweight ability being almost godlike compared to Carruthers. This will help Carruthers focus on draws more, which he is good at. Also, don’t forget about Mead and Stoughton and their runback ability.

2) Alberta (Kevin Koe – Glencoe Curling Club – Calgary)

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(LtoR – Skip – Kevin Koe, Vice – Pat Simmons, Second – “Jesus Christ” Carter Rycroft, Lead – Nolan Thiessen)

Speaking of disappointments, a lot of people thought this team from Calgary would be a potential dark-horse at the very worst for the Olympic Trials, but they struggled by going winless until their final two games. We’re still not sure how it happened as we know the potential of this lineup, but things just did not click.

So after winning another tight provincial final over Kevin Martin (and potentially ending his career in the process) I see Koe’s true form returning with his deadly hitting ability shining through, which will again make this team a threat.

3) Newfoundland and Labrador (Brad Gushue – Bally Hally Golf And Curling Club – St. John’s)

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(LtoR – Skip – Brad Gushue, Vice – Brett Gallant, Second – Adam Casey, Lead – Geoff Walker)

This team just missed out on making the Olympic Trials and they are also coming off of a great showing at last year’s Brier. However, you have to wonder though if Brad Gushue is carrying this team on his back, as he made a boatload of hero shots at the Brier and the Pre-Trials just to keep his team in it.

If the rest of the team can play well, then they could be a threat for Newfoundland’s first brier since Jack MacDuff won in 1976.

4) British Columbia – John Morris (Vernon and Kelowna Curling Clubs)

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(LtoR – Skip – “Johnny Mo” John Morris (throws third), Vice – Jimmmmmmmmmmmm Cotter (throws fourth), Second – Tyrel Griffith, Lead – Rick Sawatsky)

This team was the biggest surprise of the Olympic Trials in December as John Morris took the Cotter team all the way to the finals before losing to Brad Jacobs. Jim Cotter played fantastic during the trials and the provincials so the pressure could be more on Morris to make more shots as he can be hit or miss, especially with upweight hits. However, if he can do that, watch out for them to make another run to the title like they did at the Trials.

5) Quebec (Jean-Michel Menard – Etchemin Curling Club – Saint-Romauld)

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(LtoR – Skip – Jean-Michel Menard, Vice – Martin Crete, Second – Eric Sylvain, Lead – Philippe Menard)

Last year, Jean-Michel Menard came very close to making the playoffs, which was impressive considering how stacked the field was in Edmonton. Now granted, this field is a bit weaker than last year, but if he is gonna return to the playoffs, he’ll have to knock off one of the big four teams. That may not be an easy feat, however, with his experience it can be done.

6) Saskatchewan (Steve Laycock – Nutana Curling Club – Saskatoon)

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(LtoR – Skip – Steve Laycock, Vice – Kirk Muyers, Second – Colton Flasch “Gordon” (Saviour of the Universe), Lead – Dallan Muyers)

In 2011 Steve Laycock, who normally played third became the skip of a Saskatchewan team that included Pat Simmons. However it ended in disappointment as they finished 4-7.

After Simmons left to join up with Kevin Koe, things kind of went downhill and Laycock struggled as a result. However things have looked on the up and up this year with a semi final appearance at the Pre-Trials and a return to the Brier, so this might be a team that you should not sleep on.

7) New Brunswick (James Grattan – Gage Golf & Curling Club – Oromocto)

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(LtoR – Skip – James “Jimmy the Kid” Grattan, Vice – Jason Roach, Second – Darren Roach, Lead – Josh Barry)

Last year James Grattan looked like a potential playoff threat, especially after a giant upset over Kevin Martin, until he faded late in the going. He might be a bit of a long shot to makes the playoffs this year though, as he will ned to have no bad games at all and try to pull off one or two big upsets.

8) Ontario (Greg Balsdon – Glendale Golf & Country Club – Hamilton)

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(LtoR – Skip – GREG BALSDON!, Vice – Mark Bice, Second – Tyler Morgan, Lead – Jamie Farnell)

Of note, alternate Steve Bice may also play in the second or lead role during the week, as the front end tends to switch around.

All good things have to come to an end at some point and it happened this year in Ontario. Greg Balsdon pulled off the upset of the provincials by defeating Glenn Howard and ushering in a new era in Ontario men’s curling after Howard had won eight straight provincial titles.

Balsdon could be known as the Giant Killer from now as a result, as he also pulled a giant comeback in the Pre-Trials against Brad Jacobs, as he won 10-9 after being down 8-3 after six ends. So the big names may have to watch out for this team, which are the biggest wildcard in this entire field.

9) Northwest Territories/Yukon (Jamie Koe – Yellowknife Curling Club)

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(LtoR – Skip – Jamie Koe, Vice – Kevin Whitehead, Second – Brad Chorostkowski, Lead – Robert Borden)

Two years ago Jamie Koe was the Cinderella story of the Brier by making it to the playoffs for the very first time for not only his team, but for the Territories as a whole. They ended up being 5-6 last year, but that was in a very stacked field that we have talked about before. Last year they were 5-6 but granted the field was stacked as mentioned before.

Now with a slightly changed lineup (Whitehead replaces Tom Naugler) and a weaker field, could Koe catch the magic of 2012? Perhaps, but the chances might be very slim.

10) Nova Scotia (Jamie Murphy – Lakeshore Curling Club – Lower Sackville)

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(LtoR – Skip – Jamie “Don’t call me Charlie” Murphy, Vice – Jordan Pinder, Second – Mike Bardsley, Lead – Donald McDermaid)

In 2012, Jamie Murphy upset Mark Dacey to make his first Brier appearance. Early on, he doing pretty well with a 4-3 record until losing four straight games to finish at 4-7. Since then, he has played in many World Curling Tour events, but I’m not sure if his record will improve that much from two years ago.

11) Northern Ontario (Jeff Currie – Fort William Curling Club – Thunder Bay)

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(LtoR – Skip – Jeff Currie, Vice – Mike McCarville, Second – Colin Koivula, Lead – Jamie Childs)

So without Brad Jacobs, we were going to have a new Northern Ontario team at the Brier. In the end, it turned out to be 1996 Canadian Junior Champion Jeff Currie, who does have a pretty decent lineup for this Northern Ontario squad.

However this does show the issue with this Province and Newfoundland when it comes to the quality of the overall teams on a national stage, and I see nothing struggles for this squad, though he could pull off an upset or two.

12) Prince Edward Island (Eddie MacKenzie – Charlottetown Curling Club)

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(LtoR – Skip – Eddie Mackenzie, Vice – Anson Carmody, Second – Tyler Mackenzie, Lead – Sean Ledgerwood)

For the third time in the last four years, Eddie MacKenzie has returned to the Brier to represent Prince Edward Island, and he has made another change by bringing his son Tyler into the mix. However it could be another long tournament for him, as he tries to finish anywhere but last, which is where he his ended up in his previous trips to the Brier.

Lucas’s Picks

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Whoa whoa whoa Brett, before we get started, we have to also salute Scottish curling heroine Eve Muirhead on her bronze medal at the Winter Olympics. Okay maybe that’s just me.

As for the Brier field, you can probably divide into in three tiers once again. There’s a solid group of teams who can contend, and then another group of teams who are in the mid-level that might sneak into the playoff discussions, and your bottom feeders.

1) Manitoba (Jeff Stoughton)

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Other than some blips at the 2012 provincials, last year’s Brier final to Brad Jacobs, and the Olympic Trials in Winnipeg, this team has been the best in the country over the last few years. It’s hard to say what happens after this season, but I expect this squad to get things done once again.

2) Alberta (Kevin Koe)

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I picked this team to win the Trials. I have no further comment on that great move.

Anyways, like Brett said earlier, Koe’s squad should be a lot better at the Brier, especially since in his two previous trips for Alberta he finished in first and second place in 2010 and 2012 respectively.

3) Newfoundland & Labrador (Brad Gushue)

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Since his 2007 runner-up finish to Glenn Howard in Hamilton, this is Gushue’s best shot at a Brier title. Given the way that he has made shots over the last year, I would be stunned if he doesn’t sneak into the semi-finals at the very worst.

4) British Columbia (John Morris)

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After an amazing run at the Olympic Trials, a lot more will be expected of this squad, especially since they are the host team. Cotter is no slouch though, and Johnny Mo is as solid as they come, so the playoffs should be in the cards. A Brier title won’t be too surprising either.

5) Quebec (Jean-Michel Menard)

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As Brett said earlier, the 2006 Brier champion has the stuff to make it to the playoffs. But if he doesn’t get a win over the top four teams coming into this week, he may have some problems.

6) Saskatchewan (Steve Laycock)

Steve Laycock; Kevin Martin

Since the bad boys of the prairies led by Brock Virtue didn’t return, a somewhat improved Laycock team is back for the land of the Green Riders. If he plays as well as he did at the Pre-Trials, Laycock could be a sleeper. However, if he struggles, it could be a long week.

7) Ontario (Glenn Howa…Wait who won the provincials? GREG BALSDON!!!)

Kitchener Ont.Nov9,2013 Capital One Road to the Roar.Skip Greg Baldson.CCA/michael burns photo

It will be weird to see someone other than Glenn Howard at the Brier for Ontario, but Balsdon is no slouch. I’m not sure he will make the playoffs in his first trip to the nationals, but this team will be in the mix all week as the biggest wild-cards in the event.

8) Northwest Territories/Yukon (Jamie Koe)

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First of all, let us discuss how great these shirts are that the team will be selling at the patch. I don’t expect them to have a 2012 playoff showing, but a 5-6 showing isn’t out of the question.

9) New Brunswick (James Grattan)

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It’s been nearly 20 years since James’ big run at the 1997 Brier, so I don’t think he’s really a kid anymore. His quick start was a nice surprise last year, but I don’t expect that to happen again.

10) Nova Scotia (Jamie Murphy)

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It’s sort of the same thing with James Grattan when it comes to Jamie Murphy. I see this team battling for wins all week long, but I don’t see them finishing super high up in the standings

11) Northern Ontario (Not Brad Jacobs. AKA: Jeff Currie)

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Since Jacobs’ isn’t here, the former national junior champion (over Ryan Fry by the way) will have to prevent Northern Ontario from being in the relegation round next year. Though to be fair, Jacobs destroying Nunavut might be the most violent thing TSN has showed since WCW Monday Nitro.

12) Prince Edward Island (Eddie MacKenzie)

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Poor Eddie. If he gets a win this week, I’ll be impressed.