Why should you care about curling? Because all the cool kids are doing it. San Francisco 49ers Pro Bowl tight end
In short, you'd care more about curling if you actually played it, and just 16,000 of us do here in the U.S. That's about less than two percent as many who do in Canada, where -- as with hockey -- anything short of gold for the host country in this year's Games would be cause for civil unrest.
On the men's side, Martin and Team Canada will look to avenge their loss to Murdoch and Great Britain, and Martin will be assured another riveted national television audience if the countries' ultimate showdown happens in the gold medal round. On the women's side, the Americans are hoping for another shot at the defending Olympic champion Swedes, who also pipped Team USA at the '06 world championships. But the McCormick & Co. will have to get past Switzerland (which claimed silver in Turin) and Canada (bronze) first.
China is another emerging "rock star" in the curling world. When they broke onto the scene a decade years ago, the Chinese were known primarily for being technically sound. With just 200 active curlers, participation remains relatively low. But as their international experience has increased, so too has their strategic acumen -- the latter thanks in large part to the hiring of coach
The women's team has been the fastest to break through, claiming gold at last year's Curling World Championships. The victory was the first by an Asian nation and a shot across the bow at the European and North American countries that have long dominated the sport. Leading the Chinese is 25-year-old shooter