Unlocked Pro Trader: Backed By Data, Like Always


There’s a place in Northern Michigan called Bronner’s Christmas World. As you can imagine, the store is Christmas-themed. Very much so. All of the decor is Christmasy, the cafeteria serves Christmas dinner type fare year-round and there’s tinsel as far as the eye can see. Fake snow, glitter, the works. You want to buy a Christmas tree ornament with the University of Michigan logo on it? You’ve come to the right place. Stocking with your name (Bort) stitched onto it with the delicacy and care only one of Santa’s elves could manage? Bronner’s baby. It’s… frankly a little dystopian. It’s a wonderland at first, obviously, but after you’re there about 45 minutes and the initial charm has worn off and you start looking around for the employees, they won’t meet your gaze. They trudge around like the walking dead, and how could they not? It’s all Christmas, all the time. The store is open 364 days a year. Can you guess which day the staff is given respite from the unending onslaught of the holly-jolliest of occasions? Good guess, it is Christmas Day. The one break they get from the Twilight Zone-esque horror of perpetual Yule is the day they have to go home and spend Christmas with their own families. Understandably, the employees don’t often make eye contact. I am starting to understand how they feel.

There’s a new set out so I’m going to write a series of articles about the cards that people are going to play because that’s a thing we’re going to do every 3 weeks until the heat death of the universe. When people would complain about wallet fatigue and criticize WotC for releasing too many products in a year, I’d say “not everything is for everyone, they’re just compartmentalizing their bases a little more and catering to them individually” and that’s great for buyers but not great for people who pay attention to EDH because EVERYTHING AFFECTS EDH. So you’ll forgive me if I don’t sing a jaunty little Christmas tune and hotshoe into the back of the store to see if we have any more of the nativity set where the Three Wise Men are in Star Trek Starfleet uniforms and the baby is Spock. I’m just going to slap a price tag on the floor model and call it a day because, and I hope you’ll come to see the wisdom in this approach, the floor model is just as good.

You know what helps pick me up out of my doldrums? Surprises. And this set is full of them. Can you guess what the most popular commander is? Just guess. Don’t try to go on EDHREC and look, I’m literally going to show you in a second. You scrolled down, didn’t you? You’re 0 fun. Fine, here it is.

If you’d asked me to guess, I would have put Anje and K’rrik near the top, so it’s good I didn’t have to guess. Eggygirl is our number one commander for the week and we don’t have to like or understand that, we just have to adapt to a reality where that’s the case. Is this a bad Mayael or a better Mayael? Who cares? It’s the new hotness and there are relevant cards. Maybe you have some of them in your bulk.

Nesting Dragon makes eggs and that’s a good thing. It’s also one of the only cards worth anything in the Lord Windgrace deck from last year and that’s good. However, if you can snag those decks for $35 or even better, less, you can get cards totaling closer to $80 if you can get close to a dollar for dollar cards reliably. Realistically, you’ll be able to buylist everything for more than you paid and that’s worth doing, especially if Nesty here jumps to $10. I don’t know how long Atla hype is going to last, but this belongs in 100% of Atla decks. Buy these today.

If Congregation ever gets under a buck again, consider going deep. Something always seems to pop up to make it do something and even though it comes back down, you want to have copies when it goes nuts next time. I don’t think it will ever truly be bulk-tier again but I also don’t think they’re in a hurry to reprint it. Consider the $7 foils on Card Kingdom while you’re at it – they’re closer to $8 on TCG Player.

Foils of this have mostly dried up under $10 and I think that’s goofy but with multiple tribal decks wanting Changeling effects and this card making all of your creatures eggs and therefore a real beating when they Wrath, try and score cheap foils and try to get the non-foil copies you can out of bulk. They should move a bit – really bad cards did in Feather decks after all and Lorwyn bulk is harder to find.

This is never getting reprinted and we would do well to remember that. We would also do well to remember that with the exception of Mayael herself and a bunch of decks that don’t have access to Green mana, there has never been a better deck to Stampede with than Atla. You’re concerned with the top of your deck and running cards like Worldy Tutor, Congregation at Dawn and Scroll Rack to make those egg triggers count. This card was made for this deck.

Seems like the best time to grab these is 2013 and the second best time to grab these is right now before they go up any more. I don’t know what else to say about this card other than that it continues to go up, seems unlikely to get another reprint anytime soon and has really good growth. I wish I had gone deeper when I was buying these for my own decks but I always end up cutting this late. Atla decks won’t cut this, though – it’s literally everything they want in a card, and being 1 mana means they can always keep it up.

There are plenty more picks on the page. You don’t have to make it a Dino deck but a lot of people are and that’s worth knowing about. For a deck that screams “CASUAL” I am surprised to see it polling so well and I’ll be interested to see if it’s still on top next week. Right now people are speculatively throwing lists together but not as much buying cards because they don’t have the decks yet, so don’t buy what speculators are buying unless you don’t want anyone to sell the stuff to. You can buy a lot of 8th Edition Foil Rukh Eggs for cheap but that doesn’t mean you’ll sell them later. Until next time!