Of course as Wiecek points out, that's the four that we know about. Who knows what might happen by the end of the week. And, of course, over the course of the competition the numbers could fluctuate. You just never know what these crazy curlers are up to.
There will be at least four couples competing among the eight men's and eight women's teams at this year's Roar of the Rings -- Ontario's Wayne and Sherry Middaugh; Alberta's David and Heather Nedohin; Manitoba's Mike and Dawn McEwen (née Askin); and Manitoba's Jennifer Jones and Ontario's Brent Laing.
We say 'at least' four curling couples because it's not like they keep track of such things in a program somewhere. And this winter has been, after all, unusually cold on the Prairies.
"It's hard," says Dawn McEwen, the longtime lead for Jennifer Jones who married her longtime off-ice partner earlier this year. "If this were an event that I wasn't competing in, I'd be at his beck and call -- whatever he needed to perform well. But obviously that's not going to happen.
"We've talked about it and decided that what's best for us is for both of us to just kind of do our own things next week. We're not even going to watch each other's games at the arena. It's just added stress that neither of us needs. If Mike's game is on TV, yeah, I will watch. But I'm not going to sit in the arena and gnaw my fingers off sitting because I'm so nervous.
"It's so stressful to watch him play. I'd rather compete myself all day long than have to watch him -- and especially at an event as important as this."
The full piece is well worth the read; it's a human story of these athletes.