Magic coverage this week includes highlights from Star City Games Columbus. As usual, the Open this week includes Standard and Legacy, with a side of Modern in the form of a Premier Invitational Qualifier. Let’s see what results came out of the weekend.
SCG Open Columbus – Standard (OH, USA)
Steve Rubin took down the Standard portion piloting Abzan Midrange, a familiar deck that we’ve all seen before. Two copies of [card]Brimaz, King of Oreskos[/card] in the main deck is the only thing that pops out to me from his list. Everything else is your stock Abzan Midrange build.
Second place was a Mardu Aggro deck piloted by Andy Ferguson. Notables out of this deck included four [card]Bloodsoaked Champion[/card]s and four [card]Thoughtseize[/card]s in the main deck, as well as three [card]Hushwing Gryff[/card]s out of the side. Hushwing Gryff is a card that many players are keeping their eye on because it’s from M15 and is a great card in the right metagame. It’s pretty cheap if you can pick copies up for $2.50 or less. The TCGplayer mid price is getting pretty close to the Star City Games listing at $3, which is a sign to me that this card could see some upward price mobility in the near future.
Third place went to UW Heroic, a deck we’ve seen in a Pro Tour Khans deck tech video but haven’t seen since (barring the Jeskai Ascendency combo version of the deck that took down the Star City Games Open in Oakland last weekend). These results have made [card]Hero of Iroas[/card] a card of interest and have taken it out of the $1 range into $2 and beyond.. Another card to look out for is Eidolon of Countless Battles, which was a two-of in the deck and hasn’t put up any results until now. All in all, it is a very budget friendly deck since Hero and Eidolon are the only rares outside of the manabase.
UB Control resurfaced again to put up another Top 8 Result. [card]Pearl Lake Ancient[/card] has gone down significantly since spiking after Pro Tour Khans. However, as long as the UB Control deck remains alive, the card will continue to see play throughout its life in Standard. [card]Perilous Vault[/card] was a playset in the deck and could continue to trend upward if UB control remains a metagame regular due to scarce M15 supply.
SCG Open Columbus – Legacy (OH, USA)
Jeskai Stoneblade took down the event, piloted by Rudy Briksza. Instead of three [card]Treasure Cruise[/card]s, Rudy chose instead to include two of the old standby, [card]Jace, the Mind Sculptor[/card], and only one Cruise. He also put in a [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card] to help him recast such classics as [card]Brainstorm[/card], [card]Pyroblast[/card], [card]Counterspell[/card], and [card]Swords to Plowshares[/card] among others. This is a much more controlling version of other Jeskai Legacy builds I’ve seen. It is a strange deck in a sense, because it plays like a Jeskai Miracles deck without the Miracles pieces. I think Briksza opted not to play a Miracles build of Jeskai because there are so many [card]Cavern of Souls[/card] running around in Legacy these days. The land nerfs Jeskai Miracles pretty hard if they don’t have an answer for it.
We also got our first glimpse at [card]Containment Priest[/card] this weekend. Instead of the loud fanfare that [card]True-Name Nemesis[/card] got when it was printed and became Legacy-legal upon its release, [card]Containment Priest[/card] has immediately been relegated to the sideboard in Briksza’s build. The 12th-place Maverick deck also played [card]Containment Priest[/card], and even it couldn’t find two spots in the main deck for the creature among its motley cast of characters (such as one [card]Mirran Crusader[/card], one [card]Brimaz, King of Oreskos[/card], three [card]Judge’s Familiar[/card]s, and two [card]Flickerwisp[/card]s). Unless you’re planning on playing a deck with white mana at Grand Prix New Jersey, I would stay far away from [card]Containment Priest[/card] at $15 to $20. Commander 2014 is going to be printed into oblivion just like the previous Commander 2013 release. You don’t want to get stuck holding the bag, especially if the white and red deck are released in greater numbers due to casual demand.
Of [card]Dualcaster Mage[/card], the other $15 card from the Commander 2014 series, we have seen nothing so far. Now would be the time to dump these as well, since the price can only go down from here as more Commander 2014 product is opened.
Going back to the tournament results, Elves came in second place along with UR Delver at both third and fourth places. The only thing of note here is that some red decks are opting to play [card]Electrickery[/card] out of the sideboard to fight against UR Delver. Foils are less than $1 and seem like a good pickup to me. I thought [card]Mizzium Skin[/card] out of Jared Rice’s board was a nice, “Gotcha!” card for targeted removal, but I think [card]Electrickery[/card] is a better foil target.
The rest of the Top 8 included Sneak and Show, a deck called Mono-Red Moggcatcher, Miracles, and another UR Delver deck. Brad Nelson decided to main deck two [card]Overmaster[/card] in his Sneak and Show build for the tournament. This is a neat way to get around counter magic. I’m not going to go deep on regular copies, since it is from Odyssey block and could be reprinted at some point in the future. However, picking up foil copies is certainly an option. The foils also have Commander appeal since the card also works in that format to get around pesky counterspells.
Mono-Red Moggcatcher is an interesting deck. A spin on the old mono red Dragon Stompy decks, Marshall Arthurs decided to take it into… experimental territory. The deck seems to be based around a toolbox package of [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card], [card]Murderous Redcap[/card], [card]Siege-Gang Commander[/card], [card]Tuktuk Scrapper[/card], and [card]Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker[/card], along with four [card]Imperial Recruiter[/card]s and four [card]Moggcatcher[/card]s to get them out. [card]Simian Spirit Guide[/card], [card]Chrome Mox[/card], [card]Ancient Tomb[/card], and [card]City of Traitors[/card] help with speeding up the clock, and at the same time, [card]Chalice of the Void[/card], [card]Trinispshere[/card], [card]Magus of the Moon[/card], and [card]Blood Moon[/card] are slowing the clock down for opponents. [card]Koth of the Hammer[/card] seems to be a nice finisher if the goblins can’t get the job done.
If you like the deck, I would pick up pieces before GP New Jersey happens and some cards have a chance to spike. [card]Moggcatcher[/card] is a pretty random card that is poised to have the most significant spike if the deck also makes waves at New Jersey. This deck could also take [card]City of Traitors[/card] into the $100 range, and could also randomly make [card]Gemstone Cavern[/card]s spike, since it is below $2 TCG Mid and is a two-of in Arthur’s sideboard.
Outside of the Top 8, Mono-Black Pox made an appearance along with Maverick and ANT. Maverick and ANT were basically standard lists, barring some of the cards I mentioned before for Maverick. Pox is an interesting deck that came out of nowhere and seems pretty good in the format. The end game of Pox is [card]Cursed Scroll[/card], [card]Nether Spirit[/card], and [card]Mishra’s Factory[/card], along with discard spells, land destruction, and sacrifice effects to control the game until the win conditions come online. Surprisingly, the deck doesn’t play its namesake Pox from Ice Age and the only pox in the deck was [card]Smallpox[/card]. Smallpox is played in Modern as well, so picking up foil copies of the card seems good to me. This deck is definitely a pet deck for now, though [card]Cursed Scroll[/card] could also see a spike if it places well at New Jersey.
SCG Premier IQ Columbus – Modern (OH, USA)
Three copies of UR Delver made the Top 8, along with Jeskai Ascendancy Combo, UR Twin, RG Urzatron, Jeskai Control,and Mono-Red Burn.
There were four [card]Dragon’s Claw[/card]s in the winning deck’s sideboard. Foils of this card are generally under $1, which could be a good pickup due to the rise of Burn and UR Delver in Modern.
[card]Forked Bolt[/card] has spiked recently, going from $0.50 to $4 with foils going for $25. Be on the lookout for [card]Forked Bolt[/card]s, since they will be used heavily in Modern and Legacy (as long as [card]Treasure Cruise[/card] remains in the format). I also like [card]Gut Shot[/card] in the post-Khans Modern format as well. This was a $4 uncommon during its time in Standard, and I think there is a good chance it could be adopted in Modern if Delver starts taking over the format. Foils of this card are around $3, which I think is a great price point for long-term gains.
Jeskai Ascendancy Combo came in second and looks to be a combo deck that is going to stick around. The combo is disruptable, but it can win very fast with the correct hand. The card [card]Jeskai Ascendency[/card] seems to be on a downward trend, and I will be looking to pick them up at the floor based on the results the deck has put up.
- [card]Bloodsoaked Champion[/card] and [card]Hushwing Gryff[/card] are cards to watch from Mardu Aggro.
- [card]Hero of Iroas[/card] and [card]Eidolon of Countless Battles[/card] are cards to watch from UW Heroic.
- [card]Pearl Lake Ancient[/card] and [card]Perilous Vault[/card] are cards to watch from UB Control
- [card]Containment Priest[/card] seems to be sideboard only at this point. Sell into the hype, and buy in later once she bottoms outs.
- [card]Dualcaster Mage[/card] didn’t even show. Sell into the hype here as well.
- Foil [card]Electrickery[/card] is a sideboard card to watch.
- Foil [card]Overmaster[/card] is a good pickup if you like the card.
- Two innovative archetypes did well, Mono-Red Moggcatcher and Pox.
- [card]Moggcatcher[/card] is pretty cheap. However, the cost of the deck mostly goes into [card]Imperial Recruiter[/card]s and [card]City of Traitors[/card]. Still should keep an eye on Moggcatchers for future results.
- [card]Cursed Scroll[/card] is the card to watch from Pox, along with foil [card]Smallpox[/card] since it also has Modern appeal
- Tools to fight UR Delver are cards to watch currently. They include [card]Forked Bolt[/card], [card]Gut Shot[/card], [card]Smallpox[/card], and [card]Dragon’s Claw[/card]s—especially foils of these cards.
- Look to pick up [card]Jeskai Ascendency[/card] once it bottoms out due to the Modern appeal of the Ascendency combo deck.
See you next week!