Friday, November 16, 2007

Black Book: was Gushue right?

Back in black, for a third time, is the new BDO Black Book of Curling, now produced by the usual geekoids at CurlingZone in partnership with curling sponsors BDO Dunwoody LLP.

Buy it, right here at CurlingZone’s new E-Store, as it’s a great read and great value at over 300 pages for just $19.99 (Canadian).

Included this year is the always-controversial Team Rankings – who is really the best out there? – plus a very detailed look at the strategy conundrum that has still got everybody talking: Brad Gushue’s fateful decision in the seventh end of the 2007 Brier final versus Ontario’s Glenn Howard. To gamble or not to gamble? The Black Book has the definitive answer on whether Gushue was crazy as a loon, or right on the money... er, the numbers.

Incidentally, both Howard and Gushue are in Brantford this weekend.

There’s another new twist, too... a whopping half of the cover price is available to curling clubs, leagues or teams as a fundraiser, for each book sold. Now that’s cool.

If your club, league or team wants more info, contact the BBoC office at 416-690-1835 or 866-690-1835 (toll free in North America).

What else is up in our wonderful world of curling?

• Do nice guys actually win? We’ll find out today, when host Alberta takes on the über-veterans from Ontario in the final of the Canadian Mixed ...

• Delisle’s Team Sherry Anderson sends a player on the road to make a personal donation every year to the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix offices in support of Sporting Christmas, the paper’s campaign for the Salvation Army. Hey, it’s not just to get good press; it’s a great casue and committment from a team at the height of the busy season ...

• Hurry hard... with the emphasis on hard ...

• There’s an invasion of Scots underway in the colonies this weekend ...

• While the Grand Slams continue to grow, the regular WCT schedule gets more and more crowded ...

• Finally, Winnipeg Free Press and SWEEP! Magazine writer Paul Wiecek made some fun predictions yesterday on Brier qualifiers – if it were suddenly March 2008 today – and had this to say about the Northern Ontario entry:

Northern Ontario – look, as far as I’m concerned, it’s a complete sham they even get their own entry. It’s time to do away with the special treatment and give Northern Ontario’s berth in the Brier to the defending Team Canada, just like they do at the Tournament of Hearts.

If the Brier was tomorrow – It would bug me, like it does every year, that Manitoba and Alberta get one berth each at the Brier but Ontario gets two.