Matt Hamilton: Olympic curling champion on his support for brain cancer research

The Wisconsin native is aiming to bring the Stars and Stripes a second consecutive gold medal in men's curling at Beijing 2022, but is even more driven by his charity goals. Here are the top things to know about  USA's altruistic renaissance man.

By Hayes Creech
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

Matt Hamilton has already written his name into the annals of Team USA Olympic history.

The man from McFarland, Wisconsin, who plays second for Team Shuster, helped win his nation's first gold medal in curling at PyeongChang 2018.

But chances are his gold medal is very low on the list of what he would say defines him.

We break down the top things to know about Hamilton: human being first, athlete second.

MORE: Curling at Beijing 2022: Full schedule and how to watch at the Olympics Winter Games

He's growing out his hair for a worthy cause

Many viewers have noticed Hamilton's beautiful, flowing locks at the Games. But it turns out there's more to the story, as is usually the case for him, than it simply being a fashion statement.

"I'm going to cut it and donate it to a children's wig foundation," Hamilton said earlier during Beijing 2022. "And I'm trying to raise some money with one of the charities I'm working with, an awesome non-profit out of New York that is doing brain cancer research."

Stache Strong is a non-profit that has raised more than $1.75 million for research to fight glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer.

MORE: Olympic champion Matt Hamilton: Curling for charity — and gold

Matt Hamilton of Team USA looks on at the National Aquatics Centre at Beijing 2022
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

Modern day renaissance man

It really feels like Hamilton can do it all, and it's hard to find something that he's not interested in.

For example, he can accurately describe how the game of curling works using lego bricks.

He has more than a passing interest in roasting coffee, playing golf, tennis, frisbee, spikeball, football, softball, and boating.

He's had a bobblehead made depicting him, which, by all accounts, would make him the first curling professional to have a bobblehead made from his likeness.

He also wears customised shoes and sports colourful socks with wacky patterns, which he did at PyeongChang 2018.

Hamilton's elite curling family

Matt Hamilton's sister Becca, who is just a year younger than him, has been competing for USA on the women's curling team at Beijing 2022. The brother and sister competed together in mixed doubles at the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games and finished in sixth place.

“My sister has had the biggest impact on my performance," Matt told Athlete. "I’m super competitive and when Becca took up the game I knew I had to stay ahead of her. Steel sharpens steel and she made me refine and hone my game to get to where it is now. She is an absolute stud and I owe her a lot for the success I’ve had."

Becca's ambition is to win an Olympic medal, and the reason is pretty obvious. "Now that Matt has a gold medal I need one too," she admitted to Athlete.

Becca Hamilton and Matt Hamilton at PyeongChang 2018
Picture by 2018 Getty Images

Tattoos on tattoos

Hamilton has many tattoos, but one of his standout inks is a skyline of Madison, Wisconsin, the place of his birth.

That's on one of the arms that Team USA fans hope will help sweep and slide them to more curling success as part of Team Shuster.

"He's a little 'sticious"

Hamilton always has a bright green winter hat in his back pocket while he competes.

"My lucky hat!" he told ESPN. "In the words of Michael Scott, 'I'm not superstitious, but I'm a little 'stitious.' This goes to every event I play and goes in the back pocket."

Matt Hamilton and his lucky green hat
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

He's about to become a radio host

Hamilton is planning on co-hosting an afternoon drive radio show called “Rutledge & Hamilton”, starting in March 2022. The show will focus on all things Wisconsin sports.

State of play

The holding gold medallists have some work to do if they are going to win back-to-back titles.

They sit in sixth place out of the ten-team pool in men's curling, and have a .500 record at 3-3 from their first six games.

Only the top four teams move on to the semi-finals.

Up next? At least on paper, there are three winnable games left against Switzerland, Italy, and Denmark, with the latter two sides struggling and at the bottom of the table.

Team USA contemplate their next shot against Team China in the men's curling tournament at Beijing 2022
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

When and where to watch Hamilton, Shuster, and Co

USA's title-defense is coming down to the wire, and you don't want to miss their final round robin matches.

They have two games on Tuesday 15 February. The first will be with Switzerland at 09:05am Beijing time (17:05 Monday 14 February in LA), and they will go again in the nightcap at 20:05 against Italy.

Finally, their round robin play conclude on Thursday 17 February with a matchup against Denmark at 09:05am. If they qualify for the semifinals, the game will be later that same day at 20:05.

The gold medal game is scheduled for Saturday 19 February at 14:05.

From the Opening Ceremony to athlete action, here's where and how you can watch the Winter Games in your region via the Official Olympic Broadcast Partners.

Keep up with all the action in our Live Blog updates throughout Beijing 2022, here.

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