Brad Gushue and his Newfoundland and Labrador teammates did what any team with good chemistry does after a tough loss. They picked themselves up and curled back into contention at the 2009 Tim Hortons Brier.
Gushue lost a heartbreaker in his first game against Ontario but won a pair of games Sunday over B.C. and 8-5 over Northern Ontario in the evening draw to improve to 2-1.
"We had a good talk (about the loss to Ontario) and just chalked it up to a big choke. You can go two ways after a loss like that - you can grind back or you can fold and we're not the type of people to fold."
There have been great curling teams thrown together over the years that on paper, at least, should win any championship. But without the chemistry, it often doesn't work.
"You could take the four best curlers in the world and if they don't have chemistry they won't come close to winning anything," said Gushue, the 2006 Olympic gold medallist.
"The only thing that really separates the teams is the chemistry. The team that are 1, 2 and 3 in the world seem to get more out of the talent they have than say the teams that are 7, 8, 9 or 10," he said.
Alberta's Kevin Martin and Ontario skip Glenn Howard kept pace with each other, both improving to 3-0. Howard knocked off both Northern Ontario and B.C., beating Sean Geall 7-4 in the evening draw.
"I want to get off to a great start because the bottom line is you want to get as many wins under your belt to get yourself to the playoffs. You start losing games and you're in that hole and the pressure is on you to get to the playoffs," said Howard.
"In some teams chemistry is not as big a deal and they look at it as a business venture but like ours get along together and do everything together and I personally can't imagine playing on a team if you didn't get along," he added.
Kevin Martin continued to roll along, dumping Quebec and hammering Joel Jordison of Saskatchewan 11-3 in the evening.
"It's going pretty good. That was a good solid effort tonight. We didn't miss much," he said.
Martin is also watching the chemistry work on his team and has mixed his team up over the years, adding former Ontario skip John Morris as his third.
"The chemistry on our team is quite a fluke. I was actually worried about that when we got together three years ago. But its been unbelievably simple," said Martin.
"I think he has really settled into this third position. I was worried about that. We get along great on the ice and off the ice."