Previously, in Portland

Posted in Arcana on July 31, 2014

By Blake Rasmussen

Blake is the content manager for, making him the one you should email if you have thoughts on the website, good or less good (or not good). He's a longtime coverage reporter and hasn't turned down a game of Magic in any format ever.

Tomorrow marks our fourth and final Pro Tour of the 2013–2014 Pro Tour season and the first time the Pro Tour has ever stopped in Portland, Oregon. It is not, however, the first time we've ever seen high-level Magic in the Rose City.

Twice before, the Grand Prix circuit has visited Portland, with the stop in 2010 coincidentally featuring Core Set Limited (then Magic 2011). Once again, players in Portland will be sleeving up Liliana Vess, Plummet, Sign in Blood, Hoarding Dragon, Juggernaut, Stormtide Leviathan, Gargoyle Sentinel, and other core set stalwarts in search of victory in the Pacific Northwest.

For Martin Jůza, that could be a very good sign, as the Czech master won Grand Prix Portland in style—taking his finals match over Thomas Kiene by the rarely repeated score of 2–0–1.

I'm sure Martin Jůza is pretty happy to have this trophy from his last stop in Portland, but chances are good he'd trade it in a second for a trophy from this weekend instead.

That's right, there was an unintentional draw in the finals of the first major tournament played in Portland, thanks to Howling Banshee. They do say they like to keep it weird in Portland.

Jůza wasn't the only name to find success at that Grand Prix. Brazilian Hall of Famer Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa made the Top 8 as well, only to lose to Jůza in the quarterfinals. David Ochoa also made an appearance at the final draft.

Even scarier? The Top 16. Eric Froehlich, Ben Stark, Shuhei Nakamura, Christian Calcano, and Gerry Thompson were all in the Top 16. That's a lot of incredible players marking the Top 16, and a lot of them just happen to be on Team ChannelFireball.

Does this bode well for the ChannelFireball squad? Can they dominate in Portland once again with core set cards in their hands? Tune in tomorrow for three days' worth of coverage to see if history can repeat itself, or if things get weird in Portland one more time.

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