The 2022 World Men’s Curling Championship will start on Saturday from Orleans Arena in Las Vegas. This will be the second time Sin City is hosting the World Men’s Curling Championship. In 2018, Sweden won their eighth title in the history of the tournament as Niklas Edin defeated Brad Gushue of Canada in the final, 7-3.
Edin and Gushue are back in Vegas this weekend, and representing their respective countries. Edin is a five-time World Champion, and defending Olympic champion. At the 2022 Olympic Winter Games in Beijing, Edin won the gold medal by beating Great Britain’s Bruce Mouat, 5-4. Like Edin, Gushue is also an Olympic gold medalist and world champion. Gushue’s gold medal came back at the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Turin, and also won the 2017 World Men’s Curling Championship in Edmonton.
There is no doubt that Edin and Gushue are the heavy favourites to contend for the top two spots on the podium. According to Sports Interaction, Canada is the current favourite at +103, followed by Sweden at +157. All-time, Gushue has the 21-9 advantage, but Edin did beat Gushue twice at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games, and beat Gushue twice at the 2018 World Men’s Curling Championship in Las Vegas.
Where everything is up for grabs at the moment is the bronze medal, where it is extremely wide open. Norway (+900), Italy (+1200), Switzerland (+1200), Scotland (+1300), and the United States (+1400) are the contenders for the final spot on the podium, while South Korea (+7100), Germany (+8100), Czech Republic (+10800), Denmark (+13500), Finland (+21800), and the Netherlands (+21800), are the definite outsiders. (Odds presented are the chances teams have of winning the gold medal).
The slight edge at this time for gold should go to Edin. Remember it is much easier for the high performance European teams to get out of their respective countries than it is for the Canadian champion. Gushue won the 2022 Tim Hortons Brier in a tightly contested Canadian Men’s Curling Championship where he beat two-time world champion Kevin Koe in the final, 9-8 earlier this month. How much energy Gushue has in the tank is questionable. It should also be noted that Gushue’s third Mark Nichols had coronavirus during the 2022 Tim Hortons Brier and missed the playoff round.
Of the bronze medal contenders, the slight edge should go to Norway’s Steffen Walstad. In 2018, he reached the Tour Challenge Final in Regina, Saskatchewan, before losing 9-1 to Gushue. This will also be his fifth World Championship appearance and could benefit by the fact Switzerland is not sending Olympic bronze medalist and four-time World Championship bronze medalist Peter de Cruz, Great Britain is not sending reigning Olympic and World Championship silver medalist Bruce Mouat, and the United States are not sending 2018 Olympic champion John Shuster.
Where to Watch
The 2022 World Men’s Curling Championship will be seen on TSN in Canada. All of the Canadian games will be televised, in addition to one game of each draw in the playoffs. The gold medal game is Sunday, April 10 at 8 pm ET.
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