Monthly Archives: February 2017

The Punkari Brothers 2017 Scotties Preview

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Written by Brett Punkari (With Cameos by Lucas Punkari)

The 2017 Scotties Tournament Of Hearts is the last one in the current Olympic cycle, so for teams that are looking for trials or pre-trials spots, this takes on a more significant purpose.

As for the event itself, it almost has a similar feel to last year’s in Grande Prairie with a group of teams that are legit contenders and others fighting for scraps, especially with a lot of the favorites in certain provinces falling by the waste side. (See our disastrous provincial picks for more on this.)

Also this Scotties marks the final one in which it involves the pre-qualification round, as next year’s Scotties will have a change in format. That format is similar to the Canadian Juniors with a pool system and they will also be adding the highest ranked CTRS team that failed to qualify out of their provincial playdowns. (Don’t even get me started on rewarding teams that don’t win their provincials. I’ll call this the Rachel Homan/Mike McEwen rule by the way.)

For this year’s predictions the same format applies with our picks for the final results, complete with the teams that miss out on the field, and the records for teams that competed at the Grand Slams this season.

(Also, thrill to the photoshop jobs done by Curling Canada to get rid of it’s teams sponsors on their jackets. Channeling the spirit of Warren Hansen apparently.)

1) Northern Ontario (Fort William Curling Club – Thunder Bay)

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Skip – Krista McCarville, Vice- Kendra Lilly, Second – Ashley Sippala, Lead – Sarah Potts

Grand Slam Record: 10-3 (Competed in two slams – Runner-Up and Semi-Finalist)

Last year the talk around the Scotties was of McCarville The Magician, as she kept finding ways to claw back from deficits on their way to a runner-up finish.  Out of all the teams competing this week this seems to be the one that has had the most consistent year, as they haven’t a roller coaster ride of peaks and valleys compared to the other rinks and they’ve had good results at the Grand Slams they’ve played at.

The biggest key surrounding Northern Ontario is the play of all the positions so that life can be made easier for McCarville and perhaps Kendra Lilly. If those things hapen, Northern Ontario could win their first ever Scotties title in just their third year at the event.

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1) Northern Ontario (Krista McCarville)

In a season that has been totally unpredictable, the McCarville rink seems like the only safe bet in this year’s field. With their strong showing in only a couple of Grand Slam and last year’s runner-up result, the time seems right for the Thunder Bay rink to finally break through on a national stage.

2) Ontario (Ottawa Curling Club)

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Skip – Rachel Homan “Destroyer”, Vice – “A Miscue By” Emma Miskew, Second – Joanne ‘Frizz’ Courtney, Lead – Lisa ‘Da’ Weagle

Grand Slam Record: 14-8 (Runner-Up, Quarter-Finalist, Quarter-Finalist, DNQ)

Well I guess the new stuff they are trying worked. We already know about the season Homan and crew have had up to this point, and coming into the provincials we figured they would either blow everyone away or have a tire fire. Neither of those things really happened, as she only had a couple of blowout wins all week in addition to some narrow victories and one tire fire loss to Allison Flaxey.

If the rink can find that form that helped them to Scotties championships in 2013 and 2014 (which was before Courtney joined the team), they well be tough to stop. However, if things go bad and a tire fire does happen, then it might turn out like in 2015 where they almost missed the playoffs before finishing in third place.

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2) Ontario (Rachel Homan)

If things were going according to plan, Rachel’s third title would already be engraved given how good this team is on paper. However, with everything that has happened since the provincial final loss to Jenn Hanna a year ago, I’m still finding it hard to put this rink as my favourite to win the Scotties. They should make it to the final given the strength of the field. If things go South though, who knows what will happen in the lead-up to next year’s Olympic Trials in Ottawa. 

3) Team Canada (The Glencoe Club – Calgary)

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Skip – Chelsea “The Annihilator” Carey, Vice – “Pimp” Amy Nixon, Second – Jocelyn Peterman, Lead – Lanie Peters

Grand Slam Record: 7-12 (Quarter-Finalist, DNQ, Quarter-Finalist and DNQ)

This season has been pretty average for the defending Canadian champions. Sure, they did get a win very early on this year at an event in Japan, but they have struggled quite a bit at other tournaments.

Of all the contending teams, this is the one that might be the most vulnerable to missing the playoffs, but they have turned things a round a little bit at the Continental Cup and the Skins Game, so we shall see if that upward trend continues.

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3) Manitoba (Michelle Englot)

Granted, it’s going to be kind of weird seeing Englot not wearing the green of Saskatchewan at the Scotties, but I expect her squad to be right in the mix this year. It’s a pretty talented group and Michele’s veteran presence is going to be a huge asset for the rink over the course of this week.

4) Manitoba (Granite Curling Club – Winnipeg)

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Skip – Michelle Englot, Vice – Kate Cameron, Second – Leslie Wilson-Westcott, Lead – Raunora Westcott

Grand Slam Record: 7-6 (Competed in two events – Runner-Up and DNQ)

Michelle Englot, who had been a mainstay in Saskatchewan for many years, decided to jump to Manitoba this season and inherited the Kristy MacDonald rink that finished runner-up in last year’s provincials.

They have kind of been under the radar in Manitoba this year, since most people were expecting Jennifer Jones and Kerri Einarson to make it to the Scotties, but Enlgot did lead the team to their first Grand Slam final at the Tour Challenge. Her experience should help this team a lot at the Scotties this year.

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4) Team Canada (Chelsea Carey)

As Brett said earlier, this is the one team among the favourites that is the most vulnerable to missing out on the playoffs based on current form. If Carey and her rink can get back to anywhere near how they played at the Scotties last year, they should be fine. However, if they end up getting off to a bad start, it might be a tough week.

5) Alberta (Okotoks Curling Club)

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Skip – Shannon Kleibrink, Vice – Lisa Eyamie, Second – Sarah Wilkes, Lead – Alison Theissen, Super Sub Skip (Not Pictured) – Heather “Shitballs” Nedohin

Grand Slam Record – 4-2 (Competed in one event – Semi-Finalist)

For the first time in six years, 2006 Olympic Bronze Medalist Shannon Kleibrink has returned to the Scotties. She had to overcome quite a bit to make it there, however, as she suffered a back injury early on at the provincials and had to call in Heather Nedohin to fill in for a couple of games before she had a convincing win in the final over Val Sweeting.

This is a younger lineup than in previous years, but Kleibrink has done well on the tour this year as she made the playoffs at all but one event. Her experience will help them tremendously, and I would not be surprised if she ends up making it to the semis.

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5) Alberta (Shannon Kleibrink)

With Kleibrink’s back still bothering her a bit, we’re going to see a few cameos by Heather Nedohin at skip this week, which will clearly lead to great comedy. Kleibrink’s arguably the best skip to never win a Scotties and she’s probably the biggest sleeper in this field. Depending on who ends up skipping in most of the games this week, this is a rink you shouldn’t take lightly.

6) British Columbia (Golden Ears Winter Club – Maple Ridge)

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Skip – “Pimp” Marla Mallett, Vice – Shannon “Crooked Neck” Aleksic, Second – Brette Richars, Lead – Blaine De Jager

Grand Slam Record: 1-3 (Competed in one event – DNQ)

Marla Mallett has returned to the Scotties for the first time since 2009, where she nearly stunned everyone by having the best record in round-robin before losing to Jennifer Jones in the finals. The lineup she had is something to behold looking back in hindsight, as she had Diane Gushluak, Grace Macinnes and Jaclayn Brown alongside her.

She has one tour event win this year and one other playoff appearance, but to be honest, it’s really difficult to tell where this rink stands. They are one of two wildcards in this field, but I don’t think she will regain her 2009 form.

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6) British Columbia (Marla Mallett)

I feel like I’m rewriting my preview for Jenn Hanna once again when she returned to the Scotties last year for the first time since 2005. If Mallett can get anywhere near her 2009 form, it will be a heck of story. I don’t think that will happen, but I expect her to be right around the middle of this year’s field given it’s overall strength.

7) Quebec (Town of Mount Royal Curling Club and Glenmore Curling Club – Dollard-des-Ormeaux)

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Skip – Eve Belisle, Vice – Lauren Mann, Second – Patricia Hill, Lead – Brittany O’Rourke

Grand Slam Record: N/A

Over the last few years, Quebec has had not a lot of success since the days when Marie-France Larouche was a regular playoff threat. Eve Belisle is the next to step up to the plate for Quebec as she makes her first trip to the Scotties since 2010 as the new skip for Lauren Mann’s rink. Mann’s previous trip to the Scotties wasn’t the greatest though, as she went 3-7 two years ago in Moose Jaw.

Belisle has made the playoffs before at, as she qualified for the 3 vs. 4 game in 2006, so her combined skipping experience with Mann should boost this team’s performance. I think they can pull off a few upsets and maybe have an above .500 record.

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7) Saskatchewan (Penny Barker)

I got to chat with Penny and her lead Danielle Sicinski quite a lot when I worked in Moose Jaw, so I’m looking forward to seeing them play on a national stage. Seeing that most of their bonspiel play takes place around the province, this rink is the biggest unknown in the field. With the said, given Saskatchewan’s relative strong play over the years, they should comfortable finish in the middle of the standings. Also, they have cult hero Amber Holland as their fifth, so that is another reason to cheer for this rink.

8) Saskatchewan (Moose Jaw Ford Curling Centre)

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Skip – Penny Barker, Vice – Deanna Doig, Second – Lorraine Schneider, Lead – Danielle Sicinski

Grand Slam Record: N/A

For me, this is the other potential wildcard team in this year’s field. Penny Barker definitely did things the hard way at the Saskatchewan provincials as she had to win a tiebreaker before beating Stefanie Lawson and Robyn Silvernagle to win her first provincial title.

Barker won a Canadian university silver medal in 2007, but had yet to break through to the Scotties until now. We’re not sure how this rink is going to do, but we felt the same way with Jill Shumay in 2013 before she had a 6-5 record, so the same thing could happen here.

Scotties Tournament of Hearts,

8) Quebec (Eve Belisle)

The addition Belisile to the Lauren Mann is a good one but I’m not sure how they will fair in this field. I think they’ll play well, but it’s hard to see them making it into the top six in the final standings

9) Prince Edward Island (Charlottetown Curling Complex)

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Skip – Robyn MacPhee, Vice – Sarah Fullerton, Second – Meaghan Hughes, Lead – Michelle McQuaid

Grand Slam Record: N/A

This team was put together this season after a few roster changes, with the biggest being that Suzanne Birt has stepped back from curling competitively. Like most East Coast team, they don’t curl in a lot of the major events, but they did pick up a win earlier this season at the OVCA Women’s Fall Classic over the likes of Sherry Middaugh and Ayumi Ogasaware. Could this perhaps be the team that PEI fans are looking for to break out of their recent struggles? We shall see.

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9) Prince Edward Island (Robyn MacPhee)

This is another potential sleeper in the field as MacPhee has always been in the playoff conversation when she played with her sister Rebecca Jean or with Birt. Given that she hasn’t played a lot of major events, I have her lower in the standings but I wouldn’t be shocked if she ended up just on the outside of the playoff mix.

10) Northwest Territories (Yellowknife Curling Club)

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Skip – Kerry Galusha, Vice – Meaghan Koehler, Second – Danielle Derry, Lead Sharon Cormier

Grand Slam Record: 1-3 (Competed in one event – DNQ)

Once again, Kerry Galusha is stuck fighting it out in the relegation round, but with the teams being not quite as strong as the last couple of years, she has a good shot of making the main field. Earlier this season, she became the first team from the Territories to play at a Grand Slam of Curling event as she had a 1-3 record at the Tier II Tour Challenge, so that should help her out a bit.

If she makes the main field, she can pull off a couple of upsets of the top teams if they aren’t careful. I’d be surprised if she doesn’t make the cut, but at least she won’t have to go through this again in 2017.

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10th) Northwest Territories (Kerry Galusha)

Thanks to the pre-qualifying round and a loss to Sarah Koltun in the 2014 Territories playdowns, it’s been a few years since Galusha has been at the Scotties. I think she should be able to get through to the main field this year, but I felt that way a year ago before she lost to Karla Thompson.

11) Newfoundland & Labrador (St. John’s Curling Club)

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Skip – Stacie Curtis, Vice – Erin Porter, Second – Julie Devereaux, Lead – Erica Trickett

Grand Slam Record: N/A

Stacie Curtis is back once again, and looking at her results from last year, she did show some improvement despite a 3-8 record. With the field that is here, there might be a slight chance of finishing towards the middle of the pack, but I’m not going to hold my breathe for the former Canadian Junior champion.

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11) Newfoundland & Labrador (Stacie Curtis)

She has played better in recent years, but there’s still a long way to go before Curtis is up in the standings in my opinion. This might be a rink that fares better if they played more on the tour, but that’s easier said than done. However, we do have the return of Mark Nichols’ sister Shelley (now known as Shelley Hardy) as an alternate.

12) Nova Scotia (Windsor Curling Club)

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Skip – Mary Mattatall, Vice – Margaret Cutcliffe, Second – Jill Alcoe-Holland, Lead – Andrea Saulnier

Grand Slam Record: N/A

In one of the biggest upsets of the provincials (besides Jennifer Jones not making the Manitoba Final of course), Mattatall had the best record in round-robin play and they dominated Jill Brothers in the final to make it to the Scotties. I’m not expecting much from them to be honest, but at least they don’t have to worry about the relegation round.

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12) Nova Scotia (Mary Mattatal)

This is Mary’s sixth trip to the Scotties, but it’s her first since 2005 and she was last a skip at the event in 1998. Her team is currently on a 12-1 run with the provincial Scotties and Senior playdown titles in their back pockets, but it’ll be a tough challenge to be in the mix with some of the top rinks. I do think they can pull of a surprising win or two though.

13) New Brunswick (Capital Winter Club – Fredericton)

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Skip – Melissa Adams, Vice – Jennifer Armstrong, Second – Cathlia Ward, Lead – Katie Forward

Grand Slam Record: N/A

Melissa Adams had been the runner-up in New Brunswick four times in the last six years before finally breaking through last month. She has had some good events on the Tour, but the Scotties are a different beast. I would not be surprised if she does make it through to the main field, and I expect her to be in the 9th to 11th range in the standings if she does.

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13) Yukon (Sarah Koltun)

While I hate the fact that the new 16-team format will reward teams that lose at the provincials (that and bringing back Team Canada each year but that’s another rant for another day), the one positive is that both Galusha and Koltun will be in the main field in Penticton next year. Koltun’s a super-talented shot maker who is one to watch in the future, but I think she’ll just miss out on the main field in a close battle with Galushua.

14) Yukon (Whitehorse Curling Club)

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Skip – Sarah Koltun, Vice – Chelsea Duncan, Second – Patty Wallingham, Lead – Jenna Duncan

Grand Slam Record: N/A

After stepping back last year to focus on her studies, Sarah Koltun has returned to help the Yukon get out of the relegation battle. She’ll be super glad that this format will be gone next year, as it will help her rink get more experience in the years to come. After all, she did have a fourth place finish at the Canadian Juniors back in 2013. If she makes it into the main field this year, I have her finishing around 10th to 12th in the standings.

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14) New Brunswick (Melissa Adams)

It’s good to see Adams make it to the event, but I’m not sure if she’ll have enough to overcome the two Territories rinks this week. The experience will be huge though if she is able to get back to the event next year with the expanded field.

15) Nunavut (Iqualit Curling Club)

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Skip – Geneva Chislett, Vice – Denise Hutchings, Second – Robyn Mackey, Lead – Jenine Bodner

Grand Slam Record: N/A

One event that people may have forgotten about last year’s Scotties was that Nunavut picked up their first ever win a year ago by beating British Columbia, which was huge for the territory. I can’t see them winning any games this year, but if they can keep things somewhat close, that would be a good building block.

2016 Scotties Tournament of Hearts

15) Nunavut (Geneva Chislett)

Next year will be a big one for Nunavut as they will be in the main field and find themselves up against the top rinks in the country. If they can stay in the mix this week, it will be a good sign for them going forward.

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2017 Curling Provincial Preview Blowout Spectacular (Part 5)

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Well those Scotties predictions of ours didn’t go well did they? (Nor did last week’s men’s playdowns picks)

Anyways, it’s time finish off the provincial previews for this with the last five spots up for grabs at this year’s Brier.

Alberta (February 8-12)

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Last Year’s Brier Finish – 1st (8-3 – Tied for 3rd in round-robin)

The Field (Skip to Lead)

Charley Thomas, Nathan Connolly, Brandon Klassen, Craig Savill

Brendan Bottcher, Darren Moulding, Bradley Thiessen, Karrick Martin

Ted Appleman, Tom Appleman, Shawn Donnelly, Adam Enright

Mick Lizmore, Daylan Vavrek, Carter Lautner, Brad Chyz

Graham Powell, Tom Sallows, Jordan Steinke, Chris Wall

Roland Robinson, Jeff Erickson, Ryan Konowalyk, James Knievel

Thomas Scoffin, Tristian Steinke, Jason Ginter, Brett Winfield

Jamie King, Glen Kennedy, Sean Morris, Todd Brick

James Pahl, Mark Klinck, Aaron Bartling, Thomas Stroh

Josh Lambden, Chris McDonah, Rob Collins, Colin Stroeder

Aaron Sluchinski, Justin Sluchinski, Eric Richard, Kyle Richard

Jeremy Harty, Dylan Webster, Joel Berger, Gregg Hamilton

With Kevin Koe already going to the Brier as the defending champion, this year’s Alberta playdowns has more of a wide-open feel to it that feels similiar to when Jennifer Jones isn’t in the Manitoba playdowns.

It’s basically down to two skips with Brendan Bottcher and Charley Thomas, who have both had interesting seasons.

Bottcher brought in former Brier champion Pat Simmons, which felt like a major upgrade, but it didn’t really work out as he left the team following Christmas. Darren Moulding came in at third for the Canadian Open, and that worked out as they reached their first Grand Slam of Curling playoff this year.

Thomas has been pretty busy all year, including subbing for Brad Gushue at the Canada Cup when he was injured. He’s brought in Craig Savill, which is great to see after his battle with cancer last season. The Thomas rink has made it to the playoffs at a Grand Slam this year at the National, and they also won their only head-to-head meeting with Bottcher.

It’s going to be really close, but I’m going to give this one to Thomas. However, seeing that the Alberta Scotties were wacky, I’m going to also say that Thomas Scoffin could end up being a spoiler.

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After seeing Moulding play with the Bottcher rink in North Battleford, I feel like the late change might work out alright for his squad. Like Brett, this should be a close battle with two skips to watch for in the coming years, but I’ll pick Bottcher to make his first Brier appearance.

British Columbia (February 8-12)

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Last Year’s Brier Finish: Tied for 9th (3-8)

The Field

Andrew Bilesky, Steve Kopf, Daniel Wenzek, Cameron Watt

Tom Buchy, Dean Horning, Dave Toffolo, Darren Will

Wes Craig, Miles Craig, Cameron De Jong, Dave McGarry

Sean Geall, Jeff Richard, Brendan Willis, David Harper

Jeff Guignard, Chris Faa, Jeff Sargent, Nick Kuit

Glen Jackson, Andrew Komlodi, Corey Chester, Joel Cave

Dean Joanisse, Paul Cseke, Jay Wakefield, John Cullen

Mark Longworth, Michael Longworth, Aron Herrick, John Slattery

Ken McArldle, Denis Sutton, Daren Boden, Glen Allen

John Morris, Jim Cotter, Tyrell Griffith, Rick Sawatsky

Richard Brower, Jan Bos, Mike Moss, Deryk Brower

Tyler Tardi, Sterling Middleton, Jordan Tardi, Nicholas Meister

Thanks to a win in the last draw of the 2016 Brier, British Columbia can thank their lucky stars that they won’t have to fight it out in the relegation round.

Anyways, John Morris has returned to the Jim Cotter rink this year and they haven’t missed a beat from their time together in the 2013-14 season. They are the obvious favourites, but the usual suspects like Andrew Bilesky and Sean Geall will be in the mix.

A darkhorse in all of this is the new Canadian Junior Champion Tyler Tardi, Aka Team Fresh/Team Mint. Like Matt Dunstone last year in Manitoba, Tardi could win the provincials but be unable to attend the Brier as the world juniors will be at the same time.

With all that said, it should be a relatively easy road for Morris as he tries to bring British Columbia back to the mix at the Brier, depending on the rest of the field of course.

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If I’ve learned anything over the last couple of years, it’s to never count out Johnny Mo. Him and Cotter have been playing really well over the last month and I expect them to win the provincial with ease. I do hope Tardi has a good showing though.

Northern Ontario (Feb. 8-12)

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Last Year’s Brier Finish: 3rd (11-0 – 1st in Round Robin)

The Field

Chris Glibota, Dustin Montpellier, Eric Gelinas, Matt Gordon

Jordan Chandler, Sandy MacEwan, Luc Oment, Lee Toner

Dylan Johnston, Mike Badiuk, Cody Johnston, Travis Showalter

Al Hackner, Kory Carr, Frank Morissette, Gary Champagne

Bryan Burgess, Rob Champagne, Al Macesmchuk, Pat Berezowski

Ryan Sayer, Graehem Sayer, Ryan Forget, Gavan Jamieson

Brad Jacobs, Ryan Fry, E.J Harnden, Ryan Harnden

Tanner Horgan, Jacob Horgan, Nicholas Bissonnette, Maxime Blais

Once again Northern Ontario could be the Brad Jacobs show and he has had a better season than last year with two wins this season on the tour.

The only teams that could challenge him are last year’s runner up Jordan Chandler and Canadian Junior Bronze Medalist Tanner Horgan. Horgan actually played at the Boost National Grand Slam event in December and finished with a 1-3 record, with his lone win coming over Steve Laycock.

They’ll make things interesting, but I think Jacobs will once again make it to the Brier.

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As much as I want to pick Al Hackner for the heck of it, it’s getting to the point in Northern Ontario where you can pencil in Jacobs like you do for Brad Gushue in Newfoundland. Granted, there’s a lot more competition in Northern Ontario, but the Olympic champion is just too strong compared to the rest of the pack.

New Brunswick (February 8-12)

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Last Year’s Brier Finish: Tied for 9th (3-8)

The Field

Josh Barry, Rene Comeau, Andrew Burgess, Robert Daley

Ryan Cain, Dimitri Makrides, Mike Flanney Jr., Brent Stewart

James Grattan, Paul Flemming, Kevin Boyle, Peter Case

Mike Kennedy, Scott Jones, Marc Lecocq, Jamie Brannen

Jeremy Mallais, Jason Vaughn, Ryan Freeze, Jared Bezanson

Terry Odishaw, Grant Odishaw, Chris Jeffery, Merk Kehoe

Jason Roach, Andy McCann, Darren Roach, Brian King

Charlie Sullivan, Paul Dobson, Mark Dobson, Spencer Mahwinney

Thanks to Mike Kennedy’s performance last year, he kept New Brunswick out of the relegation round for this year’s Brier. When it comes to the provincials, it’s a really interesting field, with the likes of Kennedy, James Grattan and Jeremy Mallais among the favourites.

However I think this could be Rene Comeau’s year as the former Canadian Junior runner-up has brought in Josh Berry and he is back skipping, which has to help. I’m picking him to win it, but it’s going to be tough.

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I’m going with Comeau as well for a couple of reasons. Not only does he have a talented young rink, but we’ve seen a number of surprising results in the provincials already this season, so why not go with another one. Also, I’ve been burned the last couple of years in picking James Grattan.

Manitoba (February 8-12)

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Last Year’s Brier Finish: 4th (8-3 – Tied for 3rd in Round-Robin)

The Field

(As usual, because of such a gigantic field and since I’m no fun, a link is provided for the field. http://viterrachampionship.ca/teams)

As always we save the biggest field for last, as Manitoba has 32 teams because why not.

Before we get to the two main favourites, there are two squads to keep an eye one. One of them is last year’s provincial runner-up Matt Dunstone, who has a different lineup this season after joining the men’s ranks full time. The other possible darkhorse is cult hero and King of Bomb City Jason Gunnlaugson, who has Dunstone’s team from last year and was in the Top 10 in the CTRS rankings early this season.

Of course, the two rinks to watch are the last two provincial champions in Mike McEwen and Reid Carruthers.  This season hasn’t been the greatest of ones for McEwen so far, as he’s failed to make it out of the quarter-finals at the Grand Slam events and he missed the playoffs at the Canada Cup. In a way, it’s sort of similar to what happened to Brad Jacobs last year.

On the other hand Carruthers is having a career year, as he’s picked up an Olympic Trials spot by winning the Canada Cup and is in the mix for being the best team in Canada this season. Unlike other years, this turned out to be a somewhat easy pick for me as I’m going with Carruthers to win Manitoba over McEwen.

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Let’s finish this thing off with a possibly crazy pick.

Yes I know Carruthers is having a really good season, and McEwen has gotten over the hump of trying to get to a Brier, but let’s be honest. Don’t you want to see Gunner throwing 300 MPH bombs at the Brier?

That’s right, I’m picking my boy to win Manitoba. Hey when you’ve crashed and burned through your provincial picks all year, you might as well wrap it all up in style.