Category Archives: James Chillcott

MTG Fast Finance Podcast: Episode 29

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MTG Fast Finance is our weekly podcast covering the flurry of weekly financial activity in the world of Magic: The Gathering. MFF provides a fast, fun and useful sixty minute format. Follow along with our seasoned hosts as they walk you through this week’s big price movements, their picks of the week, metagame analysis and a rotating weekly topic.

Show Notes: Aug 18th, 2016

Segment 1: Top Movers of the Week

Note: Price movements reflect posted NM prices, and may not represent prices players have paid.

Greater Gargadon (Time Spiral)
Start: $4.00
Finish: $16.00
Gain: +$12.00 (+300%)

Collective Defiance (Eldritch Moon)
Start: $1.50
Finish: $5.00
Gain: +$3.50 (+233%)

Aluren (Tempest)
Start: $15.00
Finish: $45.00
Gain: +$30.00 (+200%)

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Conflagrate (Time Spiral)
Start: $3.00
Finish: $7.00
Gain: +$4.00 (+133%)

Bridge from Below (Future Sight)
Start: $10.00
Finish: $20.00
Gain: +$10.00 (+100%)

Golgari Grave-Troll (Foil, Ravnica)
Start: $38.00
Finish: $75.00
Gain: +$37.00 (+98%)

Bloodghast (Zendikar)
Start: $22.00
Finish: $32.00
Gain: +$10.00 (+43%)

Segment 2: Cards to Watch

James Picks:

  1. Selfless Spirit (Eldritch Moon) Confidence Level 7: $8 to $15 (+88%, 0-12+ months)Card may have a future in Modern as a 4-of in one of a couple of decks. Like this pick a lot more closer to $5, but willing to take on a few sets now.
  2. Wasteland Strangler (Foil, Battle for Zendikar) Confidence Level 6: $2.5 to $10 (+300%, 24+ months) Card keeps showing up in decks despite the banning of Eye of Ugin. Eg: http://www.hareruyamtg.com/en/k/kD13518S/
  3. Thought-Knot Seer (Foil, Oath of the Gatewatch) Confidence Level 8: $15 to $30 (+100%, 12+ months) Between Modern and Legacy play this constant 4-of should be able to get above $30 within the next couple of years.

Travis Picks:

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  1. Rest in Peace, Return to Ravnica, Confidence Level 8: $4 to $10 (+150%, 0-6+ months)
  2. Council’s Judgement, Conspiracy, Confidence Level 7: $5 to $10 (+100%, 6-12+ months)

Disclosure: Travis and James may own speculative copies of the above cards.

Segment 3: Metagame Week in Review

This past weekend saw three big Standard tournaments: GP Portland and GP  Rimni, as well as the SCG Classic in Syracuse. Bant Collected Company continued to be a major force, despite not making as strong a showing at Pro Tour Eldritch Moon. Izzet Thermo-Alchemist finished first at the SCG event.

The SCG Modern Open in Syracuse was won by the latest strain of Dredge deck, featuring Golgari Grave-Troll, Bridge from Below, Greater Gargadon, Prized Alamgam and Conflagrate, all cards on the move.

Segment 4: Topic of the Week

Conspiracy: Take the Crown previews kicked off this week, with a plethora of worthy reprints including Serum Visions, Inquisition of Kozilek, Burning Wish, Phyrexian Arena, Wild Pair and Exotic Orchard. The guys theorized that IoK and Serum Visions would be most likely to rebound from a likely price decline  a bit down the road. Burgeoning foils are likely to be lovely and should see some increase in demand.

Of the new cards, Sanctum Prelate, Daretti, Ingenious Iconoclast , Arcane Savant and Leovold, Emissary of Trest have caused the most buzz so far.

Track your collection's value over time, see which cards moved the most, track wishlists, tradelists and more. Sign up at MTGPrice.com - it's free!

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MTG Fast Finance Podcast: Episode 28

 
MTG Fast Finance is our weekly podcast covering the flurry of weekly financial activity in the world of Magic: The Gathering. MFF provides a fast, fun and useful sixty minute format. Follow along with our seasoned hosts as they walk you through this week’s big price movements, their picks of the week, metagame analysis and a rotating weekly topic.

Show Notes: Aug 13th, 2016

Segment 1: Top Movers of the Week

Note: Price movements reflect posted NM prices, and may not represent prices players have paid.

Conflagrate (Foil, Eldritch Moon)
Start: $11.00
Finish: $35.00
Gain: +$24.00 (+218%)

Thespian’s Stage">Thespian’s Stage (Foil, Gatecrash)
Start: $13.25
Finish: $38.00
Gain: +$24.75 (+187%)

Desert Twister">Desert Twister (Arabian Nights)
Start: $7.50
Finish: $16.00
Gain: +$8.50 (+186%)

Pithing Needle (Foil, Saviors)
Start: $40.00
Finish: $10.00
Gain: +$60.00 (+150%)

Voldaren Pariah/mtg_card] (Eldritch Moon)
Start: $1.15
Finish: $2.75
Gain: +$1.60 (+140%)

[mtg_card]Emrakul, the Promised End">Voldaren Pariah/mtg_card] (Eldritch Moon)
Start: $1.15
Finish: $2.75
Gain: +$1.60 (+140%)

[mtg_card]Emrakul, the Promised End (Eldritch Moon)
Start: $12.50
Finish: $28.00
Gain: +$15.50 (+124%)

Strip Mine (Antiquities)
Start: $12.50
Finish: $25.00
Gain: +$12.50 (+100%)

Kozilek’s Return (Oath of the Gatewatch)
Start: $5.50
Finish: $11.00
Gain: +$5.50 (+100%)

Traverse the Ulvenwald (Shadows Over Innistrad)
Start: $2.00
Finish: $3.75
Gain: +$1.75 (+88%)

Deranged Hermit (Foil, Urza’s Legacy)
Start: $27.50
Finish: $50.00
Gain: +$22.50 (+81%)

Segment 2: Cards to Watch

James Picks:

  1. Cryptbreaker (Eldritch Moon) Confidence Level 7: $2 to $6 (+40%, 0-12+ months)Foils at $5 also likely to represent good value long term.
  2. Hanweir Battlements (Foil, Eldritch Moon) Confidence Level 6: $5 to $10 (+100%, 12+ months
  3. Hanweir Garrison (Foil, Eldritch Moon) Confidence Level 6: $5 to $15 (+150%, 12+ months)

Meld cards represent a unique long term collectible and foils are likely to rise over time. Garrison has a shot at some Standard success and could go $2 to $5 in the right meta with it being used as a 4-of in multiple decks. Battlements often just a 1 or 2-of, and has more to gain but a lesser chance to pop at $1 for non-foils.

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4. mtg_card]Thalia’s Lancers[/mtg_card] (Foil, Eldritch Moon) Confidence Level 8: $3 to $10 (+333%, 12+ months)

As an open-ended synergy card that can fetch up legendary permanents, in EDH, Lancers is has the potential in to be pulling out Griselbrand, Gaea’s Cradle or Umezawa’s Jitte. That power and flexibility likely means that these foils are destined to top $10 or even $20 given a few years to mature.

Travis Picks:

  1. Golgari Grave Troll">Golgari Grave Troll, Ravnica: City of Guilds, Confidence Level 7: $9 to $20 (+122%, 0-6+ months)

Disclosure: Travis and James may own speculative copies of the above cards.

Segment 3: Metagame Week in Review

Pro Tour Eldritch Moon was a dramatic affair full of big swingy matches that required tight play and saw the Channel Fireball crew dominate the Top 8. Emrakul, Traverse the Ulvenwald, Liliana, the Last Hope and Elder Deep Fiend are just some of the cards the guys cover in breaking down the Pro Tour metagame.

Segment 4: Topic of the Week

TCGPlayer.com has added additional data points to card pages this week. The guys talk through which ones are useful, which not, and speculate on the impact on the marketplace of freshly minted buylist data.

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Pro Tour Eldritch Moon: Day 2 MTGFinance Coverage

Editor’s Note: Relevant financial details in blue, folks.

Coming into Day 2 of this smaller than usual Pro Tour stop, several interesting decks have made waves, and a handful of cards have already popped. After being featured on camera winning games over and over on Day 1, Emrakul, the Promised End popped from $15 to well over $40, only to fall back toward $25 as vendors and speculators sought to sell into the hype. Liliana, the Last Hope, which came into the weekend holding a $40 price tag, was reported to be selling for ridiculous amounts on the tourney floor and has gained $5 to $45 domestically as we wait to see how many copies make Top 8. Voldaren Pariah, the grindy flip creature making waves in the U/B Zombie lists has popped to $3 from $1. Kozilek’s Return has jumped to $10 from $6. Traverse the Ulvenwald looks set for a double up, moving from $2 to $4.

Ishkanah, Grafwidow and Prized Amalgam have also shown modest gains based on frequent camera time, though their ultimate fate this weekend has yet to be written in stone.

Follow along with us as we follow along with the final 5 rounds of constructed play before the cut to Top 8 and the establishment of the new Standard metagame.

Round 13 (7th Standard Round): LSV (Bant Company) vs. Reid Duke (RG Ramp)

Reid  (11-1) is on track to make Top 8 with one more win today, and LSV (10-2) needs just two wins to make Day 3 for the third time in a row, the first time this has happened in a generation!

In Game 1 LSV misses a couple of land drops while Reid sets up shop on his ramp plan. Despite the fast takeoff, Reid draws hollow for a few turns, giving Luis too much time to get back in the game. A few value creatures, a Jace, and a Collected Company later, LSV is able to take Game 1.

In Game 2, Reid mulligans twice, but an early Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy from LSV is still answered by Kozilek’s Return, and the players trade threats and answers for a few turns as Reid achieves delirium. In the mid-game LSV adds a Tamiyo, Field Researcher to a crowded board to really start churning the value engine. At just four life Reid finally stabilizes with an Emrakul that wrecks most of the board for LSV. LSV manages a Selfless Spirit on his next turn, but the combination of Emrakul and Ishkanah (with her spiderling buddies) holds his attacks at bay. Soon after Luis is forced to Reflector Mage the Emrakul, allowing Reid to cast it again and take another bonus turn against his best interests. Facing certain doom, LSV top decks another copy of Tamiyo, tapped Emrakul and Ishkanah, attacks with his Sylvan Advocate, eats Reid’s remaining spider and finds himself just a bad top deck away from a win. Sure enough, Duke is unable to find a blocker and falls in two games to put both players one win away from the Top 8.

Round 13 (7th Standard Round): Lucas Blohan (WB Control) vs. Zen Takahashi (Naya Legends)

The innovative Naya Legends deck in the hands of Takahashi features Oath of Nissa, Hangarback Walker, Thalia’s Lancers, Nissa, Vastwood Seer, Evolutionary Leap, Linvala, the Preserver and a toolbox of interesting legendary creatures. Oddly, Takahashi just barely qualified for this Pro Tour via the GP in Australia last week, and here is in Top 8 contention. Off camera, Blohan takes Game 1.

Deck Tech: Esper Control (6-1 in Standard, out of contention on draft record)

  • 4 Jace, 2 Gideon, 2 Sorin, Grim Nemesis, 1 Ob Nixilis
  • 2 Descend Upon the Sinful, 3 Declaration in Stone, 2 Languish, 1 Anguished Unmaking
  • 3 Transgress the Mind, 3 Clash of Wills, 1 Silumgar’s Command, 2 Ojutai’s Command
  • 3 Fortune’s Favor, 3 Secure the Wastes, 2 Painful Truths
  • 3 Westvale Abbey

Secure the Wastes and Fortune’s Favor singled out as crucial to the deck. At just $.05 picking up 20-40 copies of Fortune’s Favor could be an easy penny spec if enough players start testing Esper Control builds in the coming weeks. 

Here are the top table standings after Round 13, with just three rounds left before the cut to Top 8.

rnd13
With Owen, Reid, LSV, Sam Pardee, Jacob Wilson and the rest in contention, this Top 8 is looking likely to be epic. This crowd includes BG Delirium x2, Temur Emerge x2, BW Control, Bant Company.

Round 14: LSV (Bant Company) vs. Owen Turtenwald (Temur Emerge)

This match is a win and in for Top 8, and will result in a fantastic narrative regardless of who wins. Both guys come in 11-2. Owen is now within reach of Player of the Year, while LSV is looking to Top 8 for the third time in a row this year!

Game 1 is over quick as strong early pressure from LSV bumps up against an Elder Deep-Fiend, only to have Archangel Avacyn flash in on the end step to clinch the victory the following turn for Luis.

In Game 2, Owen is available to chain Gnarlwood Dryad into Deep Fiend, triggering a flashed back Kozilek’s Return and then on into an Emrakul. LSV is forced to spend his Tamiyo to keep Emrakul tapped down for a couple of turns. Chandra Flamecaller shows up alongside Emrakul, and the threat level is just too high for LSV to recover from. Tied at 1-1.

In Game 3, LSV leverages a Duskwatch Recruiter to overcome some land flood, and again makes excellent use of Tamiyo, Field Researcher to lock down key blockers and get in for the win. This almost certainly puts LSV into the Top 8 and breathes fresh life into Bant Company moving forward.

Round 14: Sam Pardee (BG Delirium) vs. Andrew Brown (Temur Emerge)

In Game 1 we arrive from off camera to find a Liliana emblem in play. Kozilek’s Return from Brown clears the zombie army, and allows him to take down Liliana. Pardee responds with Languish to clear all but a Deep Fiend from Brown. We miss the next several turns, but Pardee ends up winning with the ultimate emblem proving too much for Brown. Pardee also takes the match, butting BG Delirium into the Top 8.

Off camera, Reid Duke puts away Jacob Wilson to clinch Top 8 as well, meaning RG Ramp has a shot at the title as well.

Deck Tech: Jund Delirium (Simon Nielsen)

Running 3x Kozilek’s Return, 3x Traverse the Ulvenwald, just a single Emrakul. 2x Distended Mindbender. 3x Mindwrack Demon and 3x Lianna, the Last Hope. 3x Languish.

Round 15: Reid Duke (RG Ramp) vs. Takahashi (Bant Company)

Reid loses Game 1 quick to an explosive start from the CoCo mage. Reid loses Game 2 as well, butting Takahashi and the 2nd Bant Company deck into the Top 8.

Round 15: Owen Turtenwald (Temur Emerge) vs. Lukas Blohon (WB Control)

Owen needs to win this match or the next to make Top 8 and Player of the Year. Big money on the line here for the new Hall of Famer. Blohan takes Game 1 on the back of yet another Liliana emblem and puts Owen on the back foot. In Game 2 a pair of Transgress the Mind removes the relevant threats from Owen’s hand, and Blohon takes the match quickly to make Top 8 with BW Control. Owen must now win his final match to make Top 8 and win Player of the Year. Biggest pressure point of the season coming up next round.

On a back table Daniel Cathro has the UB Zombies dream still alive at 10-3-1, and is up a game against Temur Emerge/Thomas Hendriks. A Liliana emblem is in play and generating massive advantadge, and Cathro takes the match to gift himself with a win and in next round.

Jan Ksandr on Bant Spirits is also battling fellow 10-3-1 player Ken Yukihiro on GR Ramp, but the match goes to time, with both players due to miss Top 8 if they pick up the draw. Weaver of Lightning ends up winning the match on the back of a Tormenting Voice, removing a key blocker to allow the Japanese player to get it done and put a second G/R ramp deck into the Top 8. Kozilek’s Return, also featured in the Temur Emerge deck seems likely to hold near $10.

Round 16: Owen Turtenwald (Temur Emerge) vs. Daniel Cathro (UB Zombies)

Owen has it all on the line this round. Sadly for him, Game 1 sees first time Pro Tour participant Cathro return a Haunted Dead via a double Prized Amalgam discard to put four creatures into play, a move quickly followed up by a Liliana, the Last Hope. A couple of turns later Owen manages to go Pilgrim’s Eye into Wretched Griff to bring back Kozilek’s Return and clear the board at two life. A couple of turns later a similar pattern is demonstrated, and the players jockey for board position with Owen trying to hold down the looming zombie threats. Owen manages to stabalize on an Emrakul, but more Haunted Dead shenanigans into a Voldaren Pariah, clears much of the board on both sides. A Murderous Cut lurking in Cathro’s hand signals danger to Emrakul but Owen gets a full value Ishkanah into play. Cathro at 4 life, Owen still at 2 but Daniel can’t easily bypass the spider force. Owen alpha strikes with Emrakul and all his spiders, but Cathro pulls the trigger on the Murderous Cut on Emrakul, and sets up to get more zombies back with the players now tied at two life a piece. Owen manages an Elder Deep Fiend to pop another enhanced Kozilek’s Return, but Daniel works through two copies of Voldaren Pariah in response to end up with a big bad flyer on the table ready to strike by end of turn. Owen looks for a solution, comes up dry, and we move to Game 2 with Owen facing the loss of both Top 8 and Player of the Year.

Cathro mulligans into two lands and can’t find his third land. Owen gets Chandra Flamecaller into play and the pressure is real. Despite still being on two lands Haunted Dead comes back with a spirit and a Prized Amalgam and the team takes down Chandra. At ten lands to his opponent’s three, Owen chains Spiders into Eldrazi and earns his last chance at the best possible weekend.

Both players keep a full grip and the game pivots early when Owen casts Negate on the first copy of Liliana, the Last Hope. He then keeps the board stable for a few more turns, drops Emrakul, controls the next turn, and manages to snag victory out of the jaws of defeat one turn later. Huge congratulations to Owen Turtenwald for making the Hall of Fame, a fresh Pro Tour Top 8 AND Player of the Year all in one weekend. Temur Emerge earns another slot on Sunday, and puts Kozilek’s Return and Emrakul squarely in the spotlight. Side note: the UB Zombie build looks very hot indeed, and this won’t be the end of things for that archetype despite the loss.

Ken Yukihiro defeats Reid Duke in final turns for the second match in a row to make Top 8. Some of the best Pro Tour match play ever today, wow.

Top 8 Announcement

  1. Sam Pardee (BG Delirium)
  2. LSV (Bant Company)
  3. Yuta Takahashi (Bant Company)
  4. Lukas Blohon (BW Control)
  5. Ken Yukihiro (GR Ramp)
  6. Owen Turtenwald (Temur Emerge)
  7. Reid Duke (GR Delirium Ramp)
  8. Andrew Brown (Temur Emerge)

What a star studded Top 8, topping off an epic year of great Top 8s. Two Hall of Fame players. Sam Pardee and Reid Duke. Great players fill the rest of the bracket.

Relatively few Liliana, the Last Hope in the Top 8 in the end, with just BW Control and BG Delirium running the card. Kozilek’s Return and Emrakul however feature prominently in roughly half the decks. Elder Deep Fiend could show gains if it wins the whole thing. Bant Company still has a shot to take it all in the hands of red hot LSV.

The brackets look well balanced with no real blowouts set up to play out. Anyone could take this, but odds on favorites have to be the dominating Channel Fireball squad, with Reid Duke, LSV, and Owen looking set to have a west coast wizard take the tournament.

Tune in tomorrow for the final result of a great weekend of Magic!

 

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Pro Tour Eldritch Moon Finance: Standard Day 1

Check out our Pro Tour preview over here, and join us for round to round coverage in live blog style below all day.

Round 4 started at 1am EST, Friday.

Round 4 (1st Standard Round):  Andrew Cuneo (BG Delirum) vs. Owen Turtenwald (Temur Emerge)

Owen comes to the table with a snazzy new hair cut and a relatively unseen archtype for Standard thus far this season in Temur Emerge. The deck features Emrakul, the Promised End, Gather the Pack, Kozilek’s Return, Ishkanah, Grafwidow, Den Protector, Elder Deep Fiend, Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy, Pilgrim’s Eye, Nissa’s Pilgrimage, Chandra, Grapple with the Past and Gnarlwood Dryad. Ishkanah showing up in Temur certainly opens the door for the card to see more play.

Andrew’s deck on the other hand is a version of the familiar GB Control style build including value cards such as Liliana, the Last Hope, Mindwrack Demon, Grasp of Darkness, Gilt-Leaf Winnower and Nissa, Vastwood Seer. After some back and forth, Owen takes Game 1 on the back of a late game Emrakul.

In Game 2, Owen shows off Coax from the Blind Eternities, perhaps a sideboard option against Infinite Obliteration. Midway through Game 2, both players are still at 20 life, and Turtenwald has three copies of Elder Deep-Fiend in hand.

Floor report has Liliana, the Last Hope selling at prices as high as $100.

Round 4 (1st Standard Round):  Brad Nelson (Jund Delirium) vs. Patrick Dickmann (Bant Eldrazi Rites)

Dickmann is on a unique Bant brew with Reality Smasher, Elvish Visionary, Reflector Mage, Spell Queller and Drowner of Hope. He’s running Collected Company and Cryptolith Rites, despite running many creatures over three casting cost.

Nelson is on a Jund deck with Emrakul, the Promised End, Kozilek’s Return, Traverse the Ulvenwald, Distended Mindbender. Emrakul getting a lot of camera time, and seems to be in many decks. Brad takes Game 1 with Emrakul in similar fashion to Owen at the other table.

Dickmann takes Game 2 off camera.

In Game 3, Brad gets off a Kozilek’s Return in the mid-game to clear most of Patrick’s board. He follows up with Ishkanah and sets up to run back the Return off a forthcoming Distended Mindbender. Spell Queller eats the Return, but Brad top decks Languish to clear the board. Reality Smasher comes off the top for Patrick however and with Brad at just three life, Dickmann puts the match away.

Not many aggro decks at the top tables so far.

Round 4 (1st Standard Round):  Ben Seck (U/B Madness) vs. Marco Camilluzzi (Legendary Naya)

Seck is on U/B Madness, using Voldaren Pariah. Camilluzzi is on a Naya build that leverages Thalia’s Lancers and a toolbox of legendary creatures to try and take control of the mid-game. Marco takes the match mostly off camera 2-0 in their games.

Over a quarter of the field is caught still playing with time called. Format is slow!

Deck Tech #1: Bant Company (Andrea Mengucci)

Randy notes that Bant Company is only 19% of the total field, as opposed to the expected 30-35%. Everyone gunning for it. As per usual, deck is built around Bant value creatures Duskwatch Recruiter, Spell Queller, and Reflector Mage coming into play via Collected Company.

Round 5 (2nd Standard Round): Matt Sperling (B/G Delirium) vs.  Reid Duke (R/G Delirium)

Reid Duke is basically on an old school red/green ramp deck, using green ramp spells, Hedron Crawler and Hedron Archive to get to Ulvenwald Hydra (one copy), Dragonlord Atarka and Emrakul, the Promised End. At the low end he runs Sylvan Advocate, Fiery Impulse and other board stabilizing cards.

Sperling is making use of many of the green and black delirium cards, leveraging the graveyard and various card selection, discard and kill spells to try and control the mid-game. The deck also features Languish, Liliana, The Last Hope, Nissa, Vastwood Seer and the rest of the expected cards of the archetype. Traverse the Ulvenwald into Emrakul, the Promised End is also part of the game plan. Traverse is looking like an important card in this meta.

In Game 1, Reid manages to get his Emrakul out a turn before Sperling and quickly earns a concession with Atarka also on his side.

Between games I checked out the movement on Emarkul, the Promised End, and watched 20-30 copies dry up under $15. Channel Fireball is sold out. This card could be over $20 by end of the weekend if it stays prevalent near the top tables.

Reid manages to take down Game 2 in similar fashion, this time getting in with Atarka before Sperling can stabilize.

Round 5 (2nd Standard Round): Christian Calcano (Bant Company) vs. Marcio Carvalho (U/B Zombies)

We come into this match in Game 3, with the players tied at a game a piece. Carvalho is on a full-fledged blue/black zombie deck. Deck runs the full set of Prized Amalgam, discarding them to Haunted Dead and Stitchwing Skaab (!) for major value. Crypt Breaker is also present, as is Voldaren Pariah, which at $1, certainly has room to move up if it does well. Indeed, the card is absolutely savage in the third game and earns a place on the must watch list for the weekend as Carvalho takes the match.

Calcano’s deck is running Elder Deep Fiend, a card rarely seen in Bant Company, and further evidence of players looking to go bigger this weekend.

At end of Round 2, more than half (!) the matches are still going. Ultra grindy indeed.

Round 6 (3rd Standard Round): Luis-Scott Vargas (Bant Company) vs. Steven Rubin (Black/Green Delirium)

LSV is running a fairly stock Bant Company list with a few tweaks. Defending Pro Tour champion Rubin is on a GB Delirium list running many of the same cards already expected. Rubin takes Game 1 fairly easily. LSV crack back in the next game to even things up.

In the third game things get very grindy, with LSV trying to fight through Ishkanah and Void Winnower to get rid of a threatening Liliana, the Last Hope. The solution ends up being Tamiyo, Field Researcher, which allows LSV to tap down the big blockers and get in to kill both Liliana and a flipped Nissa. Nevertheless, Steve does get off an Emrakul on the next turn that absolutely wrecks his opponent’s board state, including an Ojutai’s Command countering a Reflector Mage. Rubin is able to put it away and advance to 6-0. A great game.

Round 6: Patrick Dickmann (Bant Company/Rites) vs Yuuya Watanabe (R/G Ramp)

The Watanabe deck is similar in some ways to the one Reid Duke is running, but with a few twists, including Hangarback Walker, and Ishkanah, Grafwidow. At one point Yuuya takes control of Dickmann using Emrakul and forces him to use Reflector Mage to give him back the Emrakul for another go at mind control. Savage, but Dickmann does manage to take the next game to even things out.

100+ copies of Emrakul, the Promised End have now evaporated across the online vendors after being constantly featured as the finisher of choice across multiple decks. The price looks likely to settle above $25 if the pace of camera time continues and it makes Top 8 in quantity.

At another table, Owen Turtenwald beats Reid Duke, to put Temur Emerge at 3-0, and Owen at 6-0 on the day. A great start for our newest Hall of Fame member.

Deck Tech #3: 4-Color Emerge (Michael Bonde)

Gather the Pack, Grapple the Past, Traverse the Ulvenwald, are all 4-ofs, as is Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy. Three copies of Noose Constrictor and a single copy of Nissa, Vastwood Seer. Prized Amalgam and Haunted Dead are also four copies each, providing a recursive value engine we’ve seen in a few decks now.  Haunted Dead and Prize Amalgam could both end up in the $3-4 range. Kozilek’s Return, and Elder Deep-Fiend are also 4-ofs and provide even more shenanigans with the Amalgam/Haunted Dead package. Just the Wind and Ishkanah are used in single copies.

Back at the coverage desk, Liliana, the Last Hope called out as the defining card of the tournament.

Round 7 (4th Round of Standard): Olivier Ruel (Sultai Control) vs. Jacob Wilson (BG Delirium)

Ruel is on a deck similar to the one Ali Aintrazi ran to 2nd place last week at SCG Baltimore. Jacob Wilson is on G/B Delirium. Ruel gets down a Liliana, only to get it answered with a Ruinous Path. Both decks running Liliana, and Jacob has both Grim Flayer and Ishkanah, Grafwidow. About ten turns into the game we find Wilson casting Emrakul, finding another Emrakul in Ruel’s hand. Eldrazi overlords for everyone! Wilson’s Emrakul is stolen by Dragonlord Silumgar, but Liliana and Grasp of Darkness take out the Dragonlord and Jacob is able to take Game 1 as Ruel draws dead.

In a very grindy second game, at one point both players have Liliana and Nissa in play in planeswalker mode with Ruel also having a flipped Jace in play. Things grind on for a dozen or more turns with over a dozen permanents in play. Ultimately time is called, and the players enter the five extra turns. Wilson casts an Emrakul on Turn 3 of extra turns, giving him control of Turn 4, but forcing him to get rid of multiple potential attackers on the forthcoming Turn 5 to fend off the tie. Wilson moves to 6-1.

Here’s the Day 1 meta:

meta

Note that the blue/green Crush of Tentacles deck from last weekend is nowhere to be found here, though it may have been a good choice facing this incredibly grindy meta.

Deck Tech 4: GB Delirium (Shaheen Soorani)

Shaheen calls out Emrakul as the best finisher in the format.

Round 8 (Standard Round 5): Owen Turtenwald (Temur Emerge) vs. Steve Rubin (GB Delirium)

Owen comes into this round at 7-0, while Steve is at 6-1. Turtenwald uses Emrakul to take Game 1, playing into the themes of the weekend thus far. In Game 2, Owen chains a pair of Elder Deep Fiends with Kozilek’s Return to wipe out Rubin’s opposing creatures and present serious pressure. Owen moves to 8-0 on the same day he is elected to the Hall of Fame. Talk about driving it home. See you guys tonight for Day 2!

James Chillcott is the CEO of ShelfLife.net, The Future of Collecting, Senior Partner at Advoca, a designer, adventurer, toy fanatic and an avid Magic player and collector since 1994.

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