The Curling News Blog

Most commented: TSN commentators

Alberta fell to 1-3 after a loss to NONT

by Colin Hodgson

EDMONTON – I’ve been plowing through the archives of The Curling News Blog, and wow – there is a LOT of material here. Great material.
I’ve seen scoops, in-depth features, pop-culture curling highlights and tons of exclusive, behind-the-scenes event reports from various Briers, STOHs, provincial championships, Worlds, Grand Slams, World Curling Tour spiels, World Juniors, Canadian Juniors, charity bonspiels, you name it.
Some of the bloggers who have preceded me are professional journalists, wannabe journalists, photographers, recreational curlers or curling fans and even big-name competitors – like Jennifer Jones’ second, Jill Officer (sample here). This is amazing stuff.
Then I noticed the “Rating” and “Comments” sections below each blogpost, where readers get to “vote” for each posting by choosing a rating, between one and five, and/or leave a comment about the posting. Some posts I’ve seen have lots of “star” ratings while others have none, and I’ve also seen some postings with a few comments, and others with exactly zero.
I began to wonder, what makes a blogpost popular? Obviously the subject matter is important – it has to be something everyone is talking about or thinking about. Another is the share factor: these days it’s all about how many “Likes” your Facebook page gets or how many “Followers” you have on Twitter, et cetera. A popular blogpost here at The Curling News website would obviously need an attractive subject but the blogpost itself would have to make an impact, and need to be something that people want to share with their friends, colleagues and so on.
I asked TCN editor gk if he knew, off-hand, which blogpost was THE most popular one on his site, dating back to when the blog first started in late 2005. He didn’t hesitate with an answer.

Praise for Russ from March 2010 (click to increase size)

“I think it has to be one from back in 2010,” he said. “TSN had just started breaking in Russ Howard as a new TV analyst, and he was going to be working morning draws with Bryan Mudryk. Meanwhile the old gang of Vic Rauter, Linda Moore and Ray Turnbull were working the afternoon and evening draws.
“As we all know, Turnbull retired after the 2010 season and Russ moved up to take his place on the No. 1 crew, but at the time of the blogpost, Russ was still a new voice on the scene. So we called the blogpost ‘Which TSN crew do you prefer?’ or something like that, and invited folks to tell us what they thought.”
I couldn’t believe what he said next.
“To this day, this week in fact, people are still finding that blogpost on the web somehow, and are commenting on the TSN TV curling crew in that Comments section,” said gk. “It’s incredible. The page must rank high on Google when people search for  ‘TSN curling’ or ‘Vic Rauter curling’ or whatever, because Turnbull is long gone and people keep using that page to make comments about curling shows, right up to now.”

Criticism for Russ from February 2013 (click to increase size)

I took a look myself and boom, there it was, from February 4, 2010, just before the start of the Vancouver Olympic Winter Games. And holy smokes, there are 49 comments to date, with a few of them coming during last week’s STOH and event the start of this week’s Brier!
It’s a blast, reading these comments. I think that everyone who loves curling on TV seems to love the TSN broadcasts the most of all, and the TSN talent crew above all tohers. But all of them get their fair share of criticism – Vic, Russ and Linda – and how!
Later on, I found this TCN blogpost, which republishes excerpts from a book written by an ex-president of CBC Television. This fellow was in charge of CBC during the controversial 2005-06 seasons, when CBC took over all the Season of Champions shows and TSN had nothing, and as the excerpt says, curling fans went absolutely nuts. Like, super-crazy, out-of-their-minds nuts. Just read the excerpts, you won’t believe that gentle curling fans can act worse than wild-eyed, booze-filled hockey freaks. Unbelievable.
And now I’ve realized it: the most popular blogpost I could ever write, here at the online portal of The Curling News, is about curling on television, specifically curling on TSN.
And who knows – maybe I’ve just written it!
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Rating: 4.1/5 (12 votes cast)
Most commented: TSN commentators, 4.1 out of 5 based on 12 ratings
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  1. Brian Said,

    March 7, 2013 @ 3:41 pm

    I was working for CBC when that happened. I worked in news technology… about as far away as possible from sports, programming, or decision making involved with curling broadcasts. I didn’t even know people who worked on those floors of the building. As soon as people found out, they’d verbally abuse ME for my involvement with the horrible choices CBC had made with their schedule.

    So yes. I remember that, and I remember the blogpost that went with it, and I can completely understand why that one got a lot of traffic.

    Great post, Colin. Interesting throwback!

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  2. Ki Said,

    March 7, 2013 @ 6:52 pm

    Why did Gushue blank the 8th end in the game against Howard?

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  3. mike macdonald Said,

    March 20, 2013 @ 1:44 pm

    how will 2014 olympics conflict with 2014 world championships; ie, will scotties and brier champions be able to curl in world championships if they are also olympic representatives?

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  4. Rose Ann Scherger Said,

    April 20, 2013 @ 8:07 pm

    You need to get rid of Joan M and Harris as commentators. They are so negative about the shots that are being made. You can tell always tell who they are cheering for usually Stoughton and Howard. They make me not want to watch curling.

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  5. Gayle Smiggg Said,

    November 3, 2013 @ 2:58 pm

    I see that the Curlig Commentars remain totally biased toward Howard and his team.Would it be so difficult to give Martin equal coverage,or do we have to watch Curling on mute again this year.

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  6. Lynn Brick Said,

    December 3, 2013 @ 6:11 pm

    Time to get rid of that Vic Rauter, he is so biased, the public from the western provinces can’t stand to watch!! It make me sick with his fascination with and lover affair with Jennifer Jones. Just to set a record straight, yes I have seen more than a 4-ender again Jennifer and it was by Stephanie Lawton in 2010 at the Grey Power Players’ Championship. Stefanie scored 3 in the 1st end and 6 in the 3rd at which time the almighty “Jennifer Jones” quit!!! And furthermore out of 19 games Stefanie has played against her since 2008, Jennifer has only won 6.
    Go Sask, Alberta & BC!!!

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  7. Lynn Brick Said,

    December 7, 2013 @ 3:14 pm

    Kudo’s and a pat on the back to Russ Howard a class act. You definitely know he’s hoping for his brother to win all week, but not once does he show bias when Glen was on the ice. TSN you should go with Russ & Linda, don’t need that droning biased Vic Rauter (most people you talk to don’t care for him at all). Time to modernize your coverage!!

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  8. Donna Higgs Said,

    March 3, 2014 @ 10:15 pm

    Could you please let the TV viewers listen to the curlers – I do not care if Linda had a curling school or Russ had curled before or whether they like the way the team is playing – I would like to just watch the curling

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  9. Brian M Said,

    March 16, 2014 @ 10:16 am

    I was always of the opinion that the current crew (Linda/Vic/Russ)were hands down the top curling broadcasters on the air. This was re-enforced many times over after watching the Olympic curling broadcasters! Lotsa dead air – disagreements on the air – terrible broadcasting. Congrats to Linda, Vic and Russ for top quality and very entertaining work with the curling. All of you clearly do your homework and present a great show – and you sure do add some priceless humour. Keep it up!!

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  10. Brian M Said,

    March 16, 2014 @ 10:20 am

    Vic Rauter is a class act. Disregard those sore a– westerners who think he is biased. Keep up the great work Vic!!

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  11. Joyce Crane Said,

    January 17, 2015 @ 6:19 pm

    Too much commentating!! Russ Howard is very informative and easy to listen too BUT Vic Rauter needs to stop all the useless repetitive chatter… need for all the ‘play by play’ as the rocks are moving… need to say each players name each time they appear on the screen. I’m an avid curling fan and watch each and every game on TV…..most of the time I have my remote on ‘mute’ just to block Vic out

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  12. susan mitchell Said,

    February 21, 2015 @ 8:29 pm

    I agree with several others here. The broadcast team is good and informative, but I feel in need of a Vic mute button when he starts endless repetition, silly enthusiasms and public habit of practicing counting to three. I actually watch with my finger on mute.

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  13. Nick Said,

    February 22, 2015 @ 4:07 pm

    Get rid of Vic I-love-hearing-myself and trying-to-sound-intelligent. I really don’t care what happened years ago. I would rather Russ explain how he determines that there is a chance to get three

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