Curling, Feb. 11: Couple of Canadian surprises

Early in the week, the shock results started rolling in from the Canadian provincial playdowns, from which the Brier field is assembled. Kevin Koe lost! Oh my! And Reid Carruthers! But, these tournaments being the double- or triple-elimination events that they are, Koe and Carruthers are back where we’d expect. Kirk Muyres won in Saskatchewan ahead of Matt Dunstone, and having seen that game (loved the CurlSask broadcast apart from seeing the same ads about 100 times), I’d say it wasn’t a fluke. So the only change to the rankings is a straight swap — Muyres takes the 11th spot … Continue reading Curling, Feb. 11: Couple of Canadian surprises

Fixing the curling calendar

What was the big curling event of the past weekend? Was it the third leg of the Curling World Cup? How about the provincial qualifiers for the Scotties and the Brier? Maybe the made-for-TV Skins Game? If you’re curling in Canada, the Scotties and the Brier take top priority. To explain this to an American audience — this is the equivalent of the U.S. Open Cup or FA Cup in the sense that it’s a national championship in which unheralded entries can beat the big names. Qualification for the national event, which is broadcast on TSN (and therefore to a … Continue reading Fixing the curling calendar

Curling, Jan. 21: Continental Catastrophe

In the long history of the Currently in Curling rankings (OK, a couple of weeks), no one has ever been bumped down (or up) in the rankings based on mixed doubles. That event lives in its own universe. Some people focus mostly on that. Some don’t. Generally, it’s not going to affect the rankings here. We deal with the traditional four-person game. Maybe we’ll expand to doubles one day, but we’ll need more than one person running this. But we’re (I’m) making an exception here. In the first draw of the Continental Cup, a Ryder Cup-style tournament pitting North America … Continue reading Curling, Jan. 21: Continental Catastrophe

Curling, Jan. 14: Hail Homan, again

The Order of Merit (OOM) standings use a calculation called the “strength of field multiplier” (SFM) to determine which events count more toward the standings. In men’s curling, the just-concluded Canadian Open had an SFM of 11.6325, edging out December’s Canada Cup (11.5605) and the National (11.5514) for the highest SFM of the season so far. In women’s curling, the Open’s SFM was even higher — 12.0656, ahead of the Masters of Curling (11.8071), the National (11.7432) and … Look, it’s a Very Big Event. OK? And to borrow a joke from soccer — everyone competes in a set format, … Continue reading Curling, Jan. 14: Hail Homan, again

Curling season so far (Jan. 6)

MAJOR EVENTS: Grand Slams, Canada Cup, continental championships. Players are Canadian unless noted. MEN Sept. 26-30, Princess Auto Elite 10: F: Gushue def. CarruthersSF: Epping, JacobsQF: Howard, KoeDNQ: Mouat (Sco), Paterson (Sco), Gunnlaugson, Edin (Swe) Oct. 23-28: Masters of Curling: F: Epping def. KoeSF: Edin (Swe), Mouat (Sco)QF: Dunstone, Shuster (USA), Paterson (Sco), GushueTB: Carruthers, MurphyDNQ: Schwaller (Sui), Howard, Walstad (Nor), Jacobs, Gunnlaugson Nov. 6-11, GSOC Tour Challenge: F: Jacobs def. BottcherSF: Howard, de Cruz (Sui)QF: Gushue, Ruohonen (USA), Koe, Shuster (USA)TB: DunstoneDNQ: Epping, Gunnlaugson, Paterson (Sco), Edin (Swe), Carruthers, Calvert Nov. 16-24: European Championship: Top seven qualify for World Championship; next two not yet qualified and … Continue reading Curling season so far (Jan. 6)

Curling power rankings (Jan. 1 update)

It’s fair to say curling is my second-favorite sport behind soccer. It’s also fair to say it’s underappreciated in the United States and that it’s difficult for us to follow. This page aims to change all that. This will help you remember who’s Brad Jacobs and who’s Brad Gushue. It’ll help you see if Nina Roth or Jamie Sinclair will make a John Shuster-style vault into mainstream culture. (No, but read anyway.) It’ll help you follow the season as it progresses. Enjoy. (Abbreviations you really need to know: OOM – Order of Merit, which covers two years. YTD – year-to-date) … Continue reading Curling power rankings (Jan. 1 update)

Goodbye Twitter, at least for now …

I’ve been harassed on Twitter. Not to the extent of Sandy Hook families or female journalists. But just enough to know what it’s like. I can hardly imagine what other people go through. And it’s clear — from the Rose McGowan situation last year and the Alex Jones situation now — that Twitter’s selective enforcement is inadequate at best, deliberately inciting hatred at worst. So I’m out, aside from two things … You’ll still see automated posts from my blog feed. It’s a pain to shut those off, and I hope I can return to Twitter someday. The intent here is to … Continue reading Goodbye Twitter, at least for now …