Road To The Olympic Games

Curling

Olympic champ Marc Kennedy ending retirement to join Team Jacobs

Olympic champion curler Marc Kennedy, 37, announced Thursday he is coming out of retirement to join Team Brad Jacobs.

37-year-old will replace Ryan Fry on Canadian rink

Canada's Marc Kennedy, seen above curling for Team Koe at the Olympics in Pyeongchang, announced Thursday he is coming out of retirement to join Team Jacobs. (Aaron Favila/The Associated Press)

After taking a season away from curling, 2010 Olympic champion Marc Kennedy is returning to the game as third for Team Jacobs. 

Last week, the Northern Ontario rink announced longtime third Ryan Fry would be leaving the team after seven seasons together. 

Kennedy, 37, got a phone call shortly after the announcement from Brad Jacobs. He took a few days to consider things and called Jacobs on Monday to commit to the next three years. 

"I'm fully committed to this," Kennedy said. "There aren't a lot of opportunities I would have said yes to but this is one, with these three guys, I couldn't pass up," Kennedy said. 

Kennedy left the game after playing third for Kevin Koe's team that placed fourth at the 2018 Olympics. Since then, he's been spending time with his family in Alberta while rehabbing a sore hip.

"I had to consider family first. I have had some good quality time with my girls this year," Kennedy said. "And my health. Where was my hip at? Is it ready for another three-year run. Not sliding thirty times a day has helped."

Kennedy has won three Briers, two world championships and Olympic gold. He's considered one of the best in the game, and filled in with Team Jacobs as a spare at the Canada Cup in place of Fry who had stepped away after an incident in Red Deer, Alta. 

The team meshed immediately and won the event.

"It gave me a taste of wanting to get back into the game," Kennedy said. "I want to be all-in. I'm dealing with guys who are all-in as well. They're as committed as it gets. This my kind of group and I'm excited to build on the chemistry we had in Estevan."

Kennedy will continue to live in Alberta and be the team's lone import player. 

Fresh start for Team Jacobs

Jacobs said the seven-year run for his team that included Ryan Fry was magical. The team won a Brier title, multiple Grand Slams and the 2014 Olympic gold together. 

But he admits it was time for a fresh start — something all four members of the team agreed with. 

"This is exactly what all four of us needed. Seven years together is a very impressive run for a curling team," Jacobs said.

"It was a time for a fresh start for all of us. We need to feel that excitement on the ice a little bit more. And feel that excitement to train and compete. It's a new perspective on things."

Jacobs said the team wasn't looking for a replacement until they decided to amicably part ways with Fry last week. But after a lengthy conversation, they decided to head in a different direction. 

"If we were going to approach anyone it was always going to be Marc Kennedy first and foremost. Our first choice was a slam dunk," Jacobs said. "Every one knows how great Marc is. He's going to be a phenomenal addition to our team."

Broadcast Partners

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.