John Morris (curler)

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John Morris
Curler
John Morris in Vancouver 2010.jpg
Born (1978-12-16) December 16, 1978 (age 36)
Winnipeg, Manitoba
Team
Curling club Glencoe CC, Calgary
Skip John Morris
Third Pat Simmons
Second Carter Rycroft
Lead Nolan Thiessen
Alternate Scott Bailey
Career
Brier appearances 7 (2002, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2014)
Top CCA ranking 1st (2006–07, 2007–08, 2009-10, 2010-11)
Grand Slam victories 9: The National (Mar 2007, Dec 2007, Dec. 2010);
Players (2004, 2007, 2010);
Canadian Open (Jan 2007, Dec 2007, 2010)

John Morris (born December 16, 1978 in Winnipeg, Manitoba; nicknamed "Johnny Mo") is a Canadian curler, and Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic gold medalist from Chestermere, Alberta. Morris played third for the Kevin Martin team until 24 April 2013. He currently skips the Jim Cotter team and throw third rocks.[1] Morris, author of the book Fit to Curl,[2] is the son of Maureen and Earle Morris, inventor of the "Stabilizer" curling broom. Morris grew up in Ottawa and at the age of five began curling at the Navy Curling Club.

Career[edit]

Early career[edit]

After finishing second at the 1997 Canadian Junior Championships, Morris, who at the time curled out of the Ottawa Curling Club, went on to win the next two national championships in 1998 and 1999, setting records for most wins by a skip along the way. In both those same years, Morris would win world junior championships; in 1998 against Garry MacKay of Scotland and in 1999 against Christian Haller of Switzerland.[3]

After living in Ottawa, Morris moved to Southwestern Ontario to attend Wilfrid Laurier University, and curled out of the Stayner Granite Club in Stayner, Ontario.[4] During the 2001 Olympic trials Morris garnered national attention after a difficult loss to Russ Howard. While in Stayner, Morris won the 2002 Ontario provincial championships, qualifying him for the 2002 Nokia Brier. At the Brier, Morris would lose to Alberta's Randy Ferbey in the final. By 2004, Morris had moved to Calgary, where he played out of the Calgary Winter Club.

2006–2013[edit]

In 2006, the formerly dubbed bad-boy of curling joined forces with veteran skip Kevin Martin[5] on a four-year plan aimed at winning a gold medal at the 2010 Winter Olympics.[6] On February 27, 2007 just four days before the 2007 Tim Hortons Brier Morris was hit by a car. He was knocked unconscious, but went on to compete at the 2007 Tim Hortons Brier, where Alberta placed fourth after a loss to Jeff Stoughton in the 3-4 page playoff.[7] Morris later recovered by winning all-star third in the tournament.

Morris and the Kevin Martin (Alberta) rink returned to the 2008 Brier in Winnipeg. Roughly a week before the Brier, Morris broke his right hand and subsequently had to wear a special brace while sweeping.[8] The Martin team went 11-0 in the round robin, and won their 1-2 playoff game to make the finals. In a game marred by tricky ice and missed opportunities, Alberta won by a score of 5-4. Morris was named MVP of the finals after curling 90%. At the following 2008 World Men's Curling Championship, Morris led all players with a round robin percentage of 90%, and helped team Canada to a World Championship crown; the first for any player on the team.

At the 2009 Canadian Olympic Curling Trials, Morris and Team Martin won the tournament and the chance to represent Canada at the 2010 Winter Olympic Games. On February 27 at the Vancouver Olympics, Team Martin won the gold medal with a score of 6-3 in the final against Thomas Ulsrud of Norway.[9]

Morris represented Alberta at the 2011 Tim Hortons Brier with Team Martin after winning the provincials. They finished with a 9–2 win-loss record, but dropped their page playoff game against Ontario's Glenn Howard and lost the bronze medal game against Brad Gushue of Newfoundland and Labrador.

In the 2011–12 curling season, Morris and the rest of the team won the Canada Cup of Curling over Glenn Howard, giving them a berth into the 2013 Canadian Olympic Curling Trials. They participated in the 2012 Alberta provincials, but struggled against Kevin Koe and Brock Virtue, eventually losing the semifinal to Virtue.

Team Martin was unable to defend their Canada Cup title in 2012, finishing outside of the playoffs. Morris subbed in as skip for an injured Martin at the Canadian Open of Curling, and played with former teammate Joe Frans, finishing with a 2–3 win-loss record. After Martin recovered, the team went to the 2013 provincials, where a close win over Kevin Koe in the final gave them the right to represent the home team Alberta at the 2013 Tim Hortons Brier. The team went to the Players' Championship, where they finished with a 2–2 win-loss record, and they advanced to a tiebreaker, where they lost to John Epping. A few days after the conclusion of the Players' Championship, on 24 April 2013, Morris announced that he and Martin were parting ways.[10] One week later, it was announced that Morris would join Jim Cotter and his team for the 2013–14 season.[11]

2013-present[edit]

Morris would find immediate success with the Cotter rink, skipping the team out of the Kelowna Curling Club, and throwing third rocks. The team qualified for the 2013 Canadian Olympic Curling Trials through the pre-trials event, only to lose in the final to the Brad Jacobs team that would go on to win the Olympic gold medal. Following that the team won the British Columbia provincial championship and the right to represent the province at the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier. This makes Morris one of only three curlers to have played for three different provinces at the Brier, joining his father Earle, and Ryan Fry. Morris' B.C. rink lost the 2014 Kamloops Brier final 10-5 to Alberta's Kevin Koe.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Morris, a certified personal trainer, currently serves as a full-time firefighter for Rocky View County Fire Services. Drawing on his degree in Kinesiology from Wilfrid Laurier University,[1] in 2009 Morris co-authored the book Fit to Curl, a sport-specific training manual.[13]

In 2010, Morris was featured by ET Canada in a Valentines special as one of Canada's most eligible bachelors.[14]

Teams[edit]

From left: Kevin Martin, Morris, Marc Kennedy, Ben Hebert
Season Skip Third Second Lead Events
1996-97 John Morris Craig Savill Matt St. Louis Mark Homan 1997 CJCC
1997-98 John Morris Craig Savill Andy Ormsby Brent Laing 1998 CJC, WJCC
1998-99 John Morris Craig Savill Jason Young Brent Laing 1999 CJCC, WJCC
1999-00 John Morris Craig Savill Andy Ormsby Brent Laing
2000-01 John Morris Joe Frans Craig Savill Brent Laing 2001 Ont.
2001-02 John Morris Joe Frans Craig Savill Brent Laing 2001 COCT, 2002 Ont., Brier
2002-03 John Morris Joe Frans Craig Savill Brent Laing 2003 Ont., CC
2003-04 John Morris Kevin Koe Marc Kennedy Paul Moffatt 2004 Alta., CC
2004-05 John Morris Kevin Koe Marc Kennedy Paul Moffatt 2005 Alta., CC
2005-06 John Morris Kevin Koe Marc Kennedy Paul Moffatt 2005 COCT, 2006 Alta., CC
2006-07 Kevin Martin John Morris Marc Kennedy Ben Hebert 2007 Alta., CC, Brier
2007-08 Kevin Martin John Morris Marc Kennedy Ben Hebert 2008 Alta., CC, Brier, WCC
2008-09 Kevin Martin John Morris Marc Kennedy Ben Hebert 2009 Alta., CC, Brier, WCC
2009-10 Kevin Martin John Morris Marc Kennedy Ben Hebert 2009 COCT, 2010 OG
2010-11 Kevin Martin John Morris Marc Kennedy Ben Hebert 2010 CC, 2011 Alta., Brier
2011-12 Kevin Martin John Morris Marc Kennedy Ben Hebert 2011 CC
2012-13 Kevin Martin John Morris Marc Kennedy Ben Hebert 2012 CC, 2013 Alta., Brier
2013–14 Jim Cotter (fourth) John Morris (skip) Tyrel Griffith Rick Sawatsky 2013 RTTR, COCT, 2014 Brier
2014-15 John Morris Pat Simmons Carter Rycroft
Scott Bailey
Nolan Thiessen 2015 Brier

Awards[edit]

  • Canadian Junior Men First Team All-star skip: 1998
  • Canadian Junior Men First Team All-star skip: 1999
  • WJCC All-star skip: 1999
  • Canadian Citizenship Award: 1999
  • Canadian Men's Curling Championship First Team All-star Third: 2007
  • Canadian Men's Curling Championship First Team All-star Third: 2008
  • MVP-Canadian Men's Curling Championship Final

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Athlete Profile". February 2010. 
  2. ^ "Fit to Curl". September 2009. 
  3. ^ "Canadian Associated Press Athlete Profile". The Star (Toronto). February 2010. Retrieved May 7, 2010. 
  4. ^ "Laurier Grad Morris Finds His Match With Martin Rink". February 2010. 
  5. ^ McAndrew, Brian (March 2009). "Curling's Former Wild Child Simmers Down a Bit". The Star (Toronto). Retrieved May 7, 2010. 
  6. ^ "Olympic Curling Spots up for Grabs at Canadian Trials". CBC News. December 2009. 
  7. ^ "John Morris Hit by Car, Could Miss Brier". CBC News. March 2007. 
  8. ^ "John Morris Out With Broken Finger?". February 2008. 
  9. ^ "Canada Cruises to Gold Medal in Men's Curling". February 2010. 
  10. ^ Johnston, Mike (24 April 2013). "Morris set to leave Team Martin curling rink". Sportsnet. Retrieved 24 April 2013. 
  11. ^ "Field set for 2013 Capital One Road to the Roar Pre-Trials". Canadian Curling Association. 1 May 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  12. ^ "Brier: Alberta's Kevin Koe beats B.C.'s Morris for title". CBC Sports. The Canadian Press. March 9, 2014. Retrieved March 10, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Morris' Fit to Curl Battles Sport's Stereotypes". October 2009. 
  14. ^ "John Morris Named One of Canada's Most Eligible bachelors". February 2010.