Curling Best Bets: 2022 Tim Hortons Brier

Notice! Actual odds are subject to change and are correct as displayed only at the time of publishing: 1:39 PM 28.02.2022.

Curling Best Bets: 2022 Tim Hortons Brier

The top men’s curlers from across Canada will come together in Lethbridge, Alberta this week as the 2022 edition of the Tim Hortons Brier gets underway. Fresh off a disappointing performance while representing Canada at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Brad Gushue arrives in Lethbridge perched as a short 2.25 favourite at Sports Interaction to claim a record-tying fourth Brier title. Kevin Koe already has four Brier titles to his credit, and closely follows Gushue as a 3.75-second favourite. The man that Gushue beat to earn the right to represent Canada in Beijing, Brad Jacobs, rounds out the top of the odds as a 4.10 bet.

CanadianBettingSites takes a look at all the odds and trends as the countdown continues towards the start of this year’s Tim Hortons Brier on March 4 at ENMAX Centre. Sports bettors looking to get in on curling action for the first time can check out our guides to the best online sportsbook reviews and online casinos in Canada to learn all they need to know to get the most out of their betting experience.

2022 Tim Hortons Brier OddsSports Interaction
Wild Card 1 - Gushue2.25
Alberta - Koe3.75
Northern Ontario - Jacobs4.10
Wild Card 2 - Dunstone9.50
Canada - Bottcher12.00
Manitoba - McEwen13.00
Ontario - Howard19.00
Saskatchewan - Flasch29.00
Wild Card 3 - Gunnlaugson29.00
New Brunwick - Grattan67.00
Nova Scotia - Flemming76.00
Quebec - Fournier91.00
British Columbia - Pierce126.00
Newfoundland & Labrador - Young201.00
Prince Edward Island - Smith301.00
Northwest Territories - J. Koe551.00
Yukon - Scoffin2001.00
Nunavut - Mackey2001.00

Brier Returns with Expanded Format

For the second consecutive year, the Tim Hortons Brier has adopted an expanded format. With a number of provincial championships getting postponed due to COVID-19 restrictions, organizers have increased the number of wild card teams in this year’s tournament from one to three, creating a field of 18 teams, divided into two pools.

Seeding in each pool is determined by a round-robin, with the top three teams from each pool advancing to the playoff round, where a champion will be crowned and awarded a berth in the 2022 World Curling Championships.

Gushue Coming off Beijing Disappointment

Brad Gushue returns to the Brier with a lot to prove after falling well short of gold in Beijing. The Newfoundland native enjoyed a fast start at the Olympics, opening the Round Robin portion of the tournament with five wins in his first seven matches. However, it was all downhill for Gushue and his Canadian teammates. After narrowly eking out a win over host China, the Canadians suffered a stunning loss to Russia and Great Britain to close out the Round Robin. In their lone playoff contest, Gushue’s squad never led on their way to an early, falling 5-3 to eventual gold medal winners Sweden, with the 41-year-old turning in a disappointing 78% performance in that contest.

However, the Brier represents a golden opportunity to redeem himself. Gushue owns an impressive track record of success at this event, where he has appeared in the final in four of the past six years, raising the trophy on three occasions over that stretch. And despite his recent Olympic disappointment, Gushue maintains his perch atop the Canadian Team Ranking System (CTRS) standings and enjoys the benefit of hitting the ice with the three teammates with whom he won his three previous Brier titles.

Koe, Jacobs Well Positioned to Challenge

One of just four skips to ever claim four career titles at the Tim Hortons Brier, Kevin Koe enjoys a home-ice advantage at this year’s event. The native of Edmonton, Alberta sits a close second to Gushue in the CTRS standings but also finds himself mired in a lengthy championship drought.

The 47-year-old last win at the Brier came three years ago but has not tasted victory since. Forced to settle for a wild card berth at least year’s tournament, Koe looked destined for the win while racking up a sparkling 10-2 record. However, disappointment struck again with a 4-2 loss to his provincial rival Brendan Bottcher and Team Alberta. Koe also endured hard luck at the 2021 Canadian Olympic Curling Trials, bowing out to Northern Ontario’s Brad Jacobs, denying him a chance to atone for his disastrous performance at the 2018 Winter Olympics.

As for Jacobs, he would like nothing more to avenge his loss to Gushue at the Olympic Trials. The Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario native has reached the podium at the Brier on five previous occasions, including his lone championship win in 2013, and also has an Olympic gold medal to his credit. However, in addition to his loss to Gushue in the finals of the Olympic Trials, Jacobs has continued to struggle to duplicate his early career success, failing to win a major tournament since tallying three Grand Slam wins two seasons ago.

Can Bottchner Successfully Defend His Crown?

With his primary rivals faced with the challenge of snapping out of slumps, the biggest threat to Gushue’s bid for a fourth career Brier title may be coming from defending champion Brendan Bottchner. Listed as an attractive 12.00 bet on the curling odds, the 30-year-old’s star remains on the rise. A finalist at this event in each of the past four years, Bottchner finally broke through with last year’s victory over Koe, and will now be eager to avenge losses to Gushue in the finals in both 2018 and 2020.

Bottchner has not enjoyed the same level of success on the international stage, settling for a share of fifth place at last year’s World Championships, and finishing a distant 7th at the Canadian Olympic Trials. However, those struggles should not dim enthusiasm about Bottchner’s chances of repeating, and his current long odds are simply too attractive to overlook.

Best Bet: Bottchner – Team Canada (12.00)