Radical revamp to TSN Skins Curling

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Words by George Karrys, Image by Anil Mungal

Vic Rauter, George Cooke and Stewart Johnston (L to R)

Vic Rauter, George Cooke and Stewart Johnston (L to R)

RAMA, Ont. – Here's the official word: The Dominion continues to ramp up its involvement in and support of the Roaring Game, and has been announced as the title sponsor of the “2013 The Dominion All-Star Curling Skins Game” at Casino Rama.

Chief Executive Officer George Cooke was on hand – along with TSN president Stewart Johnston - for the live announcement during the fourth-end break of the 2012 final between teams Kevin Koe and Jeff Stoughton, and was obviously delighted to reveal the news.

“We at The Dominion are excited to be the title sponsor of the THE DOMINION ALL-STAR CURLING SKINS GAME” said Cooke. “This event will raise the profile of curling in Canada, pushing it upward in the hierarchy of sport – parallel to that of hockey, baseball or basketball which all have All-Star game events.

“Enabling curlers and curling teams to take part in the team selection furthers The Dominion's commitment to the growth of grassroots curling in Canada.”

And here's the big twist: you, the curling fan, will be able to vote in advance – online – to decide the competing players.

Interesting stuff.

What's unknown at this time is what this will mean for teams that have until previously been permitted to wear their own uniforms (atrocious or not). My guess is that each participating team will have to wear a special uniform prepared by the event – similar to CCA championship events – that will feature event logos, such as The Dominion, TSN etc. The alternative would be a cacophony of colours, designs and logos that even the most hardened fan of curling colour might find difficult to stomach.

I'm also guessing that the players wouldn't be big fans of that – although they are no doubt aware that this is a third-party event which can pick and choose the rules (and the competitors) as they darn well like. A saw-off might see the event sew player sponsor logos onto the provided jerseys, once the players were confirmed.

But if the players were announced just as the All-Star Skins was due to begin – at a media launch the day before, for example – that could mean an all-night sewing session!

There's no date set for the January 2013 reboot, and the early indication is that The Dominion is on board as sponsor in a multi-year deal, so there are many more details to come.

Johnston's official quote was also interesting:

“TSN’s partnership with The Dominion extends to the insurance company’s extensive programs and platforms supporting grassroots curling in Canada , including The Dominion Curling Club Championship – the ultimate experience for club curlers”, said Johnston.

“Beginning in December 2012, TSN will air an annual one-hour special on The Dominion Curling Club Championship, as the country’s top men’s and women’s club championship teams are afforded the opportunity to compete not only within their province or territory, but also nationally in the CCA sanctioned event.”

All sounds great. Hearty congrats to the TSN Skins Game and The Dominion, loyal curling supporters... and also advertising partners with us here at The Curling News!