John Shuster wins Olympic curling trials, aims for gold, Beijing record

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John shuster won the Olympic Trials in the United States, qualifying for a record fifth Olympic curling appearance and to defend his surprise gold medal in 2018.

Team Shuster rallied to win the best-of-three finals series against a side ignored by Korey dropkin, winning the deciding match by a comfortable 5-4 on Sunday. Shuster, 39, and his quartet lost the opener in Omaha on Friday night, putting them in must-see scenarios on Saturday and Sunday nights.

Shuster delivered, just as he did at the 2018 Olympic Trials (losing the first game of the final series) and the PyeongChang Winter Games (starting 2-4, then winning five consecutive must-see matches to win the first title. American Olympic Curling).

Dropkin, 26, was poised to become the youngest captain to win the US Olympic Trials since 2006. Until a miss in the sixth end of Game 2, breathing life into Shuster. Two other men from Dropkin’s “Young Bucks” team are in their 20s. But Shuster’s squad, made up of people aged 31 and over, made the American team of the future wait at least a year longer.

“The hardest I’ve ever worked to beat someone in my life,” Shuster told Dropkin during the post-game handshakes.

Shuster may become the first person to curl in five Olympic tournaments as medalist events (since 1998; Torger Nergård, if Norway qualifies), according to Olympedia.org.

Shuster is joined by his teammates 2018 gold medalists Matt hamilton and John Landsteiner and new member of the team Chris Plys, who replaced Tyler george when he retired two months after PyeongChang.

MORE: Plys, the man mistaken for a gold medalist

No one has won multiple Olympic gold medals in the men’s tournament. Shuster will enter as an underdog, as he did at PyeongChang after notable failures as captain in 2010 (when he was briefly benched and Plys promoted) and 2014. His team finished fifth in both last world championships in 2019 and earlier in 2021.

Sweden, ignored by Niklas edin, won all three world titles of this Olympic cycle. It was Edin that Shuster knocked out in the 2018 Olympic final. Edin has won four of his five games against Shuster since the start of 2019, according to Curlingzone.com.

The next big curling event is the Canadian Olympic Trials underway, with a playoff next weekend.

Canada was a medalist in the first 11 Olympic curling tournaments since returning as a medalist sport in 1998, but failed to reach the podium in both men’s and women’s events in 2018.

Despite this, three Olympic gold medalist captains are in the round robin fields in Saskatoon – Brad gushue (2006), Brad jacobs (2014) and Jennifer jones (2014).

Then in December, Plys and Vicky Persinger attempt to participate in the Olympic mixed doubles tournament in the last chance qualifier in the Netherlands.

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