B/G Energy by Ken Yukuhiro at Pro Tour Amonkhet

Creatures (27)
4 Walking Ballista
4 Greenbelt Rampager
4 Longtusk Cub
4 Winding Constrictor
3 Glint-Sleeve Siphoner
4 Rishkar, Peema Renegade
4 Bone Picker

Non-Creature Spells (13)
4 Attune with Aether
4 Fatal Push
2 Grasp of Darkness
3 Heart of Kiran

Lands (20)
5 Forest
4 Aether Hub
4 Blooming Marsh
4 Hissing Quagmire
3 Swamp

Sideboard (15)
1 Grasp of Darkness
1 Heart of Kiran
3 Manglehorn
2 Tireless Tracker
4 Blossoming Defense
1 Lay Bare the Heart
2 Dispossess
1 Nissa, Vital Force

Summary

While the top 8 of Pro Tour Amonkhet is not what one would call diverse, Ken Yukuhiro has given us an outside deck to root for in top 8. He’ll have to battle with his B/G Energy deck against a top 8 filled with Zombies and Marvel in order to take home the trophy. Rather than taking up a new hotness, Ken decided to bring to the table a deck very similar to the one he played at Pro Tour Aether Revolt, likely due in large part to the expected Mardu Vehicles-heavy metagame.

The powerful combo of Winding Constrictor and Rishkar, Peema Renegade is still the centerpiece of this deck. Presenting a 4/5 and 4/4 on turn 3 is powerful enough to win many games on its own, and it forces the opponent to focus on disrupting you, allowing you to firmly get on the front foot. Longtusk Cub and Glint-Sleeve Siphoner are the powerful energy-users on 2 mana. Longtusk Cub has been described by some as “Tarmogoyf”. And while that’s a little bit bold, the Cub certainly has the power level to win games on its own. In conjunction with Winding Constrictor, it becomes a massive monster very quickly. Glint-Sleeve Siphoner, on the other hand, likes to generate card advantage over several turns. One weakness of this deck is that it can run out of cards and can be weak to board wipes, but Siphoner helps a lot with both.

The main innovations of this deck is including two very powerful flyers: Amonkhet’s Bone Picker and Heart of Kiran. Ken has 1 planeswalker in his 75, so the alternate crew cost on Heart of Kiran will rarely come up. Instead, it’s simply a powerful vehicle that allows him to pressure planeswalker and pressure the opponent’s life total when they have clogged the board. Bone Picker is an interesting one for sure. A 4 mana 3/2 flyer is all but exciting, but Ken’s deck has 6 mainboard removal spells and 4 copies of Walking Ballista, so creatures dying is a semi-common occurrence. Like Heart, Bone Picker is great at pressuring planeswalker and the opponent’s life total in the air, two things that this archetype has struggled with in the past.

The sideboard of this deck certainly had the metagame in mind. The 3 copies of Manglehorn are great against both Mardu Vehicles and Marvel variants. Dispossess and Lay Bare the Heart are used to target Marvel’s important spells and disrupt their hand. 4 copies of Blossoming Defense are certainly interesting, and I’m curious why Ken included them. They’re excellent against the mirror match and control decks, but removal spells seem slightly few and far between in this format. However, I’m inclined to not doubt this choice. He’s a much better player than I am.

Here are the changes I would make going forward:

Mainboard

-1 Greenbelt Rampager

+1 Grasp of Darkness

Sideboard

-1 Grasp of Darkness

-1 Heart of Kiran

+2 Lay Bare the Heart

This is day 134 of Spellsnare.com’s 2017 Deck of the Day column, where each day we’ll feature a different Standard, Modern, or Legacy deck that caught our eye. You can read day 133 here, where we featured a deck that looks to take the B/G archetype we featured today and jam it together with Aetherworks Marvel.

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