Hello and welcome back to Weekend Recap! This was quite an exciting weekend of Magic, with the World Championships in Seattle, Washington, and the SCG Tour making a stop in Richmond, Virginia.
Brian Braun-Duin is your 2016 Magic: the Gathering World Champion! BBD emerged from the field of 24 of Magic’s best players as the victor, after he defeated Marcio Carvalho in the finals. He piloted Bant Humans in Standard and Bant Eldrazi in Modern. However, it’s very hard to take any useful information in terms of a constructed format from the World Championships for a few reasons.
Firstly, there are only 24 players in the entire tournament. Even if they are the 24 best players on the planet, a true worldwide metagame cannot be found when looking at a 24 person tournament. For example, Death’s Shadow Zoo and Burn are both tier 1 decks in Modern, but neither even made an appearance at Worlds.
Secondly, these 24 players know they are metagaming against a very small field. This causes them to choose decks that they might not have chosen if the tournament were a few thousand people like a Grand Prix, or even a few hundred people like a Pro Tour.
And lastly, each format is barely even seen. Modern was a format that many people wanted to see the competitors play, but they only got to see 4 total rounds of it. Only 2 of the top 4 competitors had a record of 3-1 or better in Modern, which shows that success in a format is not conducive to success in the overall tournament, or vice versa.
If you see a deck that you like from the World Championships, definitely don’t be afraid to test it or build it, but remember that the results from Worlds are not a good way to assess a format.
SCG Open in Richmond
The SCG Tour continued this weekend with an Open series weekend in Richmond, unlike Pro Tour weekends when the Tour goes on a weeklong break and instead offers SCG Regionals and SCG States. Ted Felicetti emerged victorious with the bogeyman Bant Company, defeating Jacob Hagen playing a resurgent U/G Crush deck.
The rest of the top 8 was extremely diverse, with 1 copy of Esper Control, 2 copies of Temur Emerge, a Sultai Emerge deck, 1 B/G Control deck, and a copy of Mono White Humans. Notable names in this top 8 included Shaheen Soorani, Todd Anderson, SCG Tour commentator Cedric Phillips, Noah Walker, and Frank Skarren. What a top 8! If you look a little further down the final standings, you’ll see notable players such as Ben Friedman, Ross Merriam, Dan Jessup, and SCG Invitational runner-up Jadine Klomparens.
What can we take away from this tournament? Bant Company seems to be in check. Only 1 copy made the top 8 (yes, I know, it won) and only 3 more made top 16. It is still the most popular deck in the format, but it doesn’t seem to be putting up the numbers that it used to. I feel like I keep saying this and the format keeps proving me wrong, but here we go again…
The format is healthy!
This coming weekend features two Team Limited Grand Prix, so there will not be a Weekend Recap next Monday.
Comment below your thoughts on this Standard format and give this article a read if you want some valuable advice for doing well at competitive Magic tournaments.
Until next time.