What’s more, the rink has done it so far this season without Gushue, who has been sidelined by hip/groin issues. In fact, with Mark Nichols subbing as skip, the team has made the playoffs in all eight events it has entered so far this season, including the runner-up finish over the weekend, when the team won $17,000.
The Gushue rink also leads the World Curling Tour’s Order of Merit points standings.
However, Gushue plans to return to action and make his 2016-17 season debut later this week in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., at the Boost National, the third event in the Pinty’s Grand Slam.
Nichols will drop back to his regular third position as the Gushue rink — which also includes Brett Gallant and Geoff Walker — prepares to defend the National title it won last year.
CRTS Men’s Standings
Team/Skip (province) Pts
1. Brad Gushue (NL) 281.815
2. Reid Carruthers (Man.) 263.880
3. John Epping (Ont.) 252.476
4. Steve Laycock (Sask.) 230.123
5. Brad Jacobs (N. Ont.) 224.925
6. Kevin Koe (Alta.) 200.579
7. John Morris (B.C.) 173.442
8. Mike McEwen (Man.) 159.637
9. Jason Gunnlaugson (Man.) 152.940
10. Greg Balsdon (Ont.) 151.609
11. Brendan Bottcher (Alta.) 146.315
12. Charley Thomas (Alta.) 133.582
13. Glenn Howard (Ont.) 111.536
14. Matt Dunstone (Man.) 110.719
15. Dayna Deruelle (Ont.) 103.320