New names will be inscribed on the Hendrick's Gin Scottish Men's Curling Championship trophy this year after reigning World and European champions Team Mouat were knocked out of the event at the semi-final stage.
In what always looked set to be a competition of the highest calibre, world number four ranked Team Whyte were first to earn their place in the final when they won the 1 v 2 play-off against world number 13 ranked Team Craik.
While that was taking place, four time champions Team Mouat, who went on from last year's title win to win their first World Championship title, before successfully defending their European title later in the year, were battling it out for a place in the semi-final in their 3 v 4 encounter with the team skipped by fellow Olympian Kyle Waddell.
They came through that meeting relatively comfortably, registering a 9-5 win, but that set up a re-match of last year's final and this time around the team led by James Craik, the 2022 men's World Junior Championship winning skip proved too strong, requiring just six of the scheduled 10 ends to build up an impregnable 9-1 lead.
After he and Mark Watt, Angus Bryce and Blair Haswell had clinched their place in the final, Craik was swift to pay tribute to the men who have been trail-blazers in the Scottish men's game which is performing as never before with five teams currently in the top 20 of the world rankings.
"We had a lot of things to think about going into this game today, firstly who we were playing against obviously a very well renowned world skip, but we had also just beaten them in our round-robin match last night, so knew it was possible," he said
"I knew we could do it and we managed to bounce back from a pretty slack performance this morning, so we just dialled in together and came in with one mission and that was to get into the final and we did it.
"I am really really proud of us. Bruce is a phenomenal athlete, I mean their whole team is, exemplars in so many different ways.
"We have tried to emulate some of their characteristics and attitudes and bring it into our team, but also add our own which I think makes every team different, so we are adapting and changing all the time and I think that is why maybe we have previously lost about eight games to Bruce and the team and then won two against them in the past few days."
He also believes that the experience of gaining regular experience of curling at the very highest level on the Grand Slam circuit prepared his men to seize this opportunity.
"I feel like we are starting to get the reward back for all of the hard work we have put in as a team," he said.
"We are all juggling so much outside of curling as well, so to be the third ranked team in our country and perform like this has been a true test of what British and Scottish Curling are doing and Scotland is one of the biggest forces in curling right now and we are very proud to be part of that.,
"We have played in three Slams this year and qualified for the knockout stages in two, so we don’t really have any fear any more which is really nice.
"And I like to think that we are a team that is building up an element of intimidation.
"We are not taken lightly anymore in the Slams, or in any competition we play and that is something I am very proud of.
"With the success that British Curling has been enjoying over a number of years with medals coming in from everywhere it gives clarity to all programme teams and athletes that what you are doing works."
A three-time Scottish Junior champion, winning two of those titles as skip, he is now savouring the prospect of taking on Ross Whyte, Robin Brydone, Duncan McFadzen and Euan Kyle as both teams bid to claim the title for the first time in their second appearances in the final, Whyte's men having reached the final in 2022 and Craik's last year.
"To go one better wow... well I have had a taste of it at juniors and it remains one of my proudest achievements so to go and do it and win the biggest title there is in Scotland that would seriously be the icing on the cake for what has been a dream season so far.
"Our whole season has been geared towards this and this is where we wanted to perform and to now take it up a notch and seriously play the games of our lives right now we are more than happy to take on anyone tomorrow.
"I am super excited to play against the Whyte guys tomorrow. We haven’t beaten them this week and losing twice to them in a row is not nice, so let's just hope it is third time lucky tomorrow and gets us the silverware tomorrow.
"We have had a taste of the final more recently than them, so we are familiar with what we are walking into and we are very excited to go and try and take this title tomorrow."
That Bruce Mouat, Grant Hardie, Bobby Lammie and Hammy McMillan meanwhile now face an anxious wait to find out whether they will get the chance to defend their world title when they are also current European champions, are the highest ranked Scottish team in the world rankings and won the most recent Grand Slam event just a couple of weeks ago in Canada, meanwhile speaks volumes about what is happening in the domestic men's game.
"We are gutted that we couldn’t come out and play the game that we wanted to play," said Mouat
"We just got on the back foot early and then struggled to get anywhere near them."
He refused to make excuses in spite of having to spend part of the week playing as a three-man team with McMillan nursing a hip injury.
"We never found our groove this week regardless of what was happening on the ice with three of us or four of us, so it is just disappointing that we couldn’t come here and display what we have been working so hard on all season," said Mouat.
"We have had pretty good results all season, so it is pretty gutting to come to your nationals and not be able to perform."
While he acknowledged the tribute offered by Craik to the way his team has raised standards in the Scottish game, Mouat said that offered little consolation right now.
"We still want to achieve things in this sport and that is why we continue to play on," he said.
"We have got a lot competition in Scotland and it is great to have that as it puts Scotland at the top of the game, so if it is not us it is one of them and they are all doing really well and I am proud to see that, but at the same time disappointed in our own performance.
"I will maybe think about that more at the end of my career when I am not curling against them, so it is always nice to have that knowledge that people potentially look up to us and what we have achieved, but as I say we are still here to win and just gutted.
"I will probably watch the final but as I say Scotland has done really well in the past and if we are given the courtesy of world selection we would obviously take it with open arms and try and run with it, but we will have to wait and see."
The men’s Scottish Curling Championships final takes place at 4pm (February 10) with live streaming available on Curling Stadium Europe.
Please click here to the Scottish Curling website for the schedule and results.
Please click here for tickets.
Please click here for streaming from Curling Stadium Europe.
Images: Scottish Curling