Maybe the most intriguing storyline leading up to the 2018 World Men's Curling Championship at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, is that of how the match-ups are going to play out in the arena's seating area.
At the USA's last World Men's Championship, ten years ago in Grand Forks, North Dakota, Team Kevin Martin of Canada emerged victorious, amid boisterous support from thousands of Canadian fans who had travelled from nearby Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Northwestern Ontario.
For the recent Continental Cups held in Las Vegas between 2014 and 2017, the fan base was made up, again, of thousands of Canadians and hundreds of Americans.
So far, for Las Vegas 2018, pick-up of multi-game ticket packages still tilts heavily in favor of Canada. But, that is gradually changing, according to Jon Killoran, event manager.
"The verdict is far from over in terms of which team will have home ice advantage", says Killoran.
"USA's big gold medal win at the Olympics has electrified all of America and we are witnessing the reaction at our box office. There are now tens of thousands of new curling fans here in the immediate market, and we are confident they are going to make their presence known loud and clear at the Orleans Arena."
Killoran adds that next week will be interesting to watch as both the United States and Canada declare their representatives this coming weekend.
"This is when teams' most ardent followers get really revved up and make the commitment to be there for the live action. We're all set to host them."
Tickets for the World Men's are priced from just $25 for single draw and 4 day mini packs start at $199. All tickets can be purchased at the Orleans Arena Box Office, or online at LasVegasCurling.rocks.