Martin loses another at Brier, playoff berth in danger

EDMONTON — The hometown team is in real danger of not making the playoffs at the Canadian men’s curling championship. Alberta’s Kevin Martin, one of the three pre-tournament favourites at the Tim Hortons Brier, suffered a fourth defeat Tuesday afternoon.

EDMONTON — The hometown team is in real danger of not making the playoffs at the Canadian men’s curling championship.

Alberta’s Kevin Martin, one of the three pre-tournament favourites at the Tim Hortons Brier, suffered a fourth defeat Tuesday afternoon.

A 6-5 loss to New Brunswick’s James Grattan put the Olympic and four-time Canadian champion in an precarious position with three days remaining in the round robin.

“It’s just been a disaster,” Alberta third John Morris said.

Although Alberta recovered to thrash Nova Scotia 9-3 on Tuesday night, Martin has zero wiggle room with a 2-4 record.

The top four teams at the conclusion of the preliminary round Friday get into the Page playoff. Ties for fourth will be solved by tiebreaker games.

Brad Gushue of Newfoundland and Labrador and defending champion Glenn Howard of Ontario topped the standings at 6-0 ahead of Quebec’s Jean-Michel Menard and Manitoba’s Jeff Stoughton together at 5-1.

“I don’t want to say we can afford a couple of losses, but if they do happen, it’s not the end of the world,” Gushue said.

“It’s going to allow us to go a little more relaxed into the last couple of games, hopefully not too relaxed.”

Howard beat Brad Jacobs 8-2, which was a second straight loss for Northern Ontario at 4-2.

“Ecstatic, the fact that we’ve gone 6-0,” Howard said. “Even better is the fact my guys are making everything.”

Grattan and Jamie Koe of the Territories were 3-3 followed by Alberta and Saskatchewan’s Brock Virtue at 2-4. Nova Scotia’s Paul Flemming, B.C.’s Andrew Bilesky and Prince Edward Island’s Eddie MacKenzie were winless in six games.

Martin, Howard and Stoughton are considered the three heavyweights at this Brier.

Martin’s team out of the Edmonton Saville Centre finishes the round robin Friday night against defending champion Howard.

The hosts must win out and will likely need losses from other teams to continue playing into the weekend. When asked what he believed his playoff chances were following the loss to New Brunswick, Martin blurted out “Dead.”

The faces of Martin, Morris and front end Marc Kennedy and Ben Hebert were stoney as they left the playing surface.

The four men won Olympic gold together at the 2010 Winter Games. They went undefeated in the round robin of both the 2008 and 2009 Canadian championships en route to the title.

“For the four of us, losing is not usually in our vocabulary,” Morris said. “We’re trying as hard as we can. I promise you that. I don’t know how to put my finger on it.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Red Deer Public Schools says that in the absence of additional funds from the provincial government, there was no consideration of using alternate classroom sites in the district. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Red Deer Public Schools launches online engagement process

Red Deer Public schools is seeking community input to help ensure a… Continue reading

Red Deer Rebels defenceman Mason Ward battles with a Medicine Hat Tigers’ forward during the WHL Central Division season opener. (Photo by Rob Wallator/ Red Deer Rebels)
Tigers come back to spoil Red Deer Rebels home opener

It’s been nearly 345 days since the Red Deer Rebels last played… Continue reading

Students walk into Hunting Hills High School, which is one of the Red Deer Public Schools with solar panels on its roof. (Photo by SEAN MCINTOSH/Advocate staff)
Red Deer high school was placed in lockdown following potential threat

Hunting Hills High School was placed in a lockdown Friday after Red… Continue reading

Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer says some details of the provincial government’s 2021-22 budget need to be ‘sorted out’ when it comes to the hospital expansion funding. (File photo by Advocate staff)
More detail needed regarding hospital funding, says Red Deer mayor

Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer says some information is unclear regarding the… Continue reading

Alberta Health reported two new COVID-19 deaths in Red Deer Friday. (Image courtesy CDC)
Two more deaths linked to Olymel outbreak in Red Deer

Province reported 356 additional COVID-19 cases Friday

An arrest by Red Deer RCMP is facing online scrutiny. No charges have been laid and the incident is still under investigation. (Screenshot of YouTube video)
Red Deer RCMP investigating violent arrest caught on video

Police say officer ‘acted within the scope of his duties’

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto, Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021. A single dose of Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine is barely enough to cover the average pinky nail but is made up of more than 280 components and requires at least three manufacturing plants to produce. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
From science to syringe: COVID-19 vaccines are miracles of science and supply chains

OTTAWA — A single dose of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine is barely enough… Continue reading

Crosses are displayed in memory of the elderly who died from COVID-19 at the Camilla Care Community facility during the COVID-19 pandemic in Mississauga, Ont., on November 19, 2020. The number of people who would have died from a COVID-19 infection is likely to be much higher than recorded because of death certificates don't always list the virus as the cause of a fatality, experts say. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Death certificates don’t accurately reflect the toll of the pandemic, experts say

The number of people who would have died from a COVID-19 infection… Continue reading

Wetaskiwin RCMP say a Maskwacis man died after he was struck by a vehicle. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Clare’s Law in Saskatchewan used handful of times; Mounties review their role

REGINA — A first-of-its-kind law in Canada meant to warn those at… Continue reading

The Magpie river in Quebec is shown in a handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Boreal River MANDATORY CREDIT
Quebec river granted legal rights as part of global ‘personhood’ movement

MONTREAL — With its kilometres of rapids and deep blue waters winding… Continue reading

Thorough sanding of a table top is usually the first step to renewing a finish. Wax contaminants can sometimes still remain on a surface like this after sanding. Cleaning with rubbing alcohol and a rag gets rid of these contaminants without leaving a residue behind. (Photo by Steve Maxwell)
Houseworks: Fixing wood finishes

Q: How can I stop polyurethane from beading up on a mahogany… Continue reading

Need a knife? There are knives of all shapes and sizes at The Kitchen Store.
Hints from Heloise: Finding a good set of kitchen knives

Dear Readers: A good set of knives in the kitchen is a… Continue reading

Runner Melissa Bishop-Nriagu speaks to the media at the opening news conference at the Canadian Track and Field Championships Thursday, July 25, 2019 in Montreal.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Canadian athletes struggling to find competition as they try to qualify for Tokyo

Canadian athletes struggling to find competition as they try to qualify for Tokyo

Most Read