Saturday, February 27, 2010

Thoughts on the women's final

One final down and one to go. It’s been a long two weeks but the Olympic curling competition has provided some remarkable moments.

First, last night’s match between Canada and Sweden. What a crazy game and a wild finish.

It looked to me like they had things wrapped up in 10 but the team said after they hadn’t played down that spot all week. Someone sitting behind the sheet, who is a world-class curler, said she looked wide – I couldn’t tell from my angle – but the gals said after they just didn’t know the ice in that spot and were expecting more curl.

In the 11th, though, I was sort of surprised at Cheryl’s first rock. I might have played around the guard to the top 12, but that’s probably why I’m on the bench and not on the ice. If she makes the double for the win, no one is questioning any calls. And, as she admitted, it was a fairly routine shot.

Someone asked me if I’d ever seen a crazier finish to a big game and the only thing I could think of was the Bob Labonte Leap of Loss back in 1972.

From a media standpoint, most of us had our stories written about Canada winning. One writer told me he had his mouse on the send button and was just about to hit click.


After the famous Mark Dacey comeback over Ferbey, however, most curling writers have two stories in the can, ready to send the right one.

Having covered the gals for some time, you can’t help but feel for them. They are all wonderful people. The normally strong-minded Bernard was understandably in tears after the game. And she was honest with her words, saying silver was nice but it stung being so close to the gold. I’m not sure if any athletes at these Games came so close to gold without winning.

What’s interesting is that in looking back at a lot of comments over the past few months, just about every one of them has talked about how the Olympics aren’t everything, that it’s just a game. That perspective should help them when they return to their normal lives next week.

And the best words I heard out of any of them were from Susan O’Connor who said the team didn’t lose the gold, they won silver. True, dat.

On to the men’s final.

P.S. – can there be anything worse than losing the bronze medal game in the Olympics?

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