Kevin Martin was cautious and David Nedohin was heavy.
Martin's Edmonton squad scored three in the sixth end en route to a 7-4 victory over Randy Ferbey in the latest heavyweight tilt between two of the top curling squads in the country before 6,000 fans at yesterday's final of the BDO Classic Canadian Open at the MTS Centre.
After a quiet first few ends, and with Ferbey up 2-1 in the sixth, Nedohin tried a freeze to force Martin to take a point. But the former Winnipegger was heavy, allowing Martin to score three with an easy takeout.
"It was a tight game and you've got three points given up in an end -- obviously it's a big dramatic swing in the game," a disappointed Nedohin said after the game.
"I don't think they did anything fantastic to beat us today. I missed a shot and the teams are so close and that's the difference in the game."
Nedohin won a measurement for a deuce in the seventh to tie but Martin made a double raise for three to win it in the eighth, pocketing $30,000 in winnings.
"You're always disappointed when you lose on your shots as opposed to maybe a team actually beating you," said Nedohin. "But they played well and they didn't miss any of their shots that they needed to make. That was the difference."
After the game, Ferbey said it was the most cautious he'd ever seen Martin.
"He was throwing a couple guards there and it caught me by surprise but it worked for him today," said the Edmonton skip, who's team took home $18,000 as runner-up.
In their last Grand Slam game at the Masters in Waterloo back in December, Ferbey had deuces in the second and fourth ends before cracking a four in the sixth for an eventual 8-5 win. Martin refused to allow that to happen again yesterday.
"I didn't want to give them the big end in the late or middle of the game, that's what happened last time," said Martin. "I didn't want to see that happen again."
Ferbey was diplomatic in defeat.
"You're not going to beat Kevin Martin every time and I don't think he's going to beat us every time. It was his day (yesterday). We'll probably be playing him again in a short period of time. Maybe it will be our turn."
The victory was the ninth Grand Slam win for Martin, his third Canadian Open but first with his new team of John Morris, Ben Hebert and Marc Kennedy.
"I didn't expect us to have this type of year in our first year but all the credit to the guys," said Martin. "To come here and play (Wayne) Middaugh, (Glenn) Howard and Ferbey on the last day, that's a hard quarter-final, semi and final to get through," said Martin.
But they got through it, and you can bet Martin enjoys nothing more than beating his longtime adversary whenever he gets the chance.
"It's a lot different now because of the young guys," Martin said of the heated rivalry with Ferbey. "The battle started years ago. Ben (Hebert, Martin's lead) was in Grade 11. It's really just myself and Randy and not Dave, Scott (Pfeifer) or Marcel (Rocque) either. That's from playing together for one month one time and there's lots of history there and two great teams."
"I think it's more one-sided than most people think," Ferbey said of the feud. "It's definitely more of a Kevin thing than ours, there's no doubt. In the last little while, Kevin's the one who won't let it go, let's put it that way."