PROTRADER: Their Second-Best Album

By: Travis Allen

If you’re reading this the day it goes live, Christmas is in two days. My condolences to all of you that receive intro decks from well-intentioned relatives. I suppose it’s too late for my open letter to friends and family members of Magic players to be useful, though if you have one aunt that waits until the last second to do her shopping, perhaps she’d take it to heart.

Gift-giving holidays make me anxious in a way that few things do, and receiving things like Theros intro decks is part of the reason why. This person tried—genuinely tried—to give you something they they thought would be meaningful to you, and you’re forced to feign excitement for a stack of cards you normally wouldn’t accept for free. Nothing stirs up a slurry of decisively unseasonal emotions like off-the-mark Magic card gifts. Blegh. Here’s hoping you handle it better than I do!

This year I took control of the holiday and opted to buy myself a Magic-laden Christmas gift. I have to say, I really surprised myself with my generosity. My magnanimity knows no bounds.


I ended up purchasing nearly $2,000 worth of Expeditions lands over the course of the last week and a half or so, with the intention of keeping basically none of them. This is a speculative purchase, and I’m looking to profit on these within the next four months or so. I’m not just horn-tooting, though. I want to show you why I considered this, the research I did, and how I arrived at my decision. It’s my hope that by illustrating my process, you’ll see that doing your homework is vital to succeeding in these endeavors, and hopefully be able to apply these techniques to your own purchases down the road.

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6 thoughts on “PROTRADER: Their Second-Best Album”

  1. UPDATE: As of 12/23, the top played lands are now in the following order:

    1. Island
    2. Wooded Foothills
    3. Windswept Heath
    4. Bloodstained Mire
    5. Scalding Tarn

  2. Excellent article!

    I bought about $20k of expedition lands about oct to nov and prior have been monitoring them for days and noticed the trend just as it was climbing up when I pulled the trigger.

    Been wondering when will someone write a detailed article on this. Well done…

  3. When I sent my expedition in to wizards, they required a receipt. I assumed that receipt should be from the store that the pack came from. Did they put up a fight about the receipt being from SCG, considering you knowingly ordered SP cards?

  4. Bravo on the great article! Very well articulated as well. Thank you for sharing this.
    About LMAOMOBILE’s comment: What’s the point of sending your Expedition in to Wizard’s?
    (I cracked an expedition Polluted Delta in my second booster box of BFZ and I pulled the trigger about 2 weeks later, making my money back on the boxes plus significant profit, along with a foil mythic, a Gideon, and an Ulamog…)

  5. Don’t knock those intro decks too hard. Got a foil Japanese Phyrexian Metamorph out of a intro deck pack from my uncle in Japan. Free packs are free

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