Modern Naya Blitz

Posted in Daily Deck on September 22, 2015

By Melissa DeTora

Melissa is a former Magic pro player and strategy writer who is now working in R&D on the Play Design team.

For those of you who don't remember Standard Naya Blitz, it was a top-tier deck back in Return to Ravnica Block Standard. Naya Blitz was a hyper-aggressive deck that flooded the board quickly with low-mana creatures. The most important creature in the deck was Burning-Tree Emissary. This guy produced two mana when it entered the battlefield, which meant that you could play another creature in the same turn. If you had drawn multiple Emissaries early in the game, you could chain them together and produce a huge army on turn two!

What I remember most about this deck is how fast it was. I remember a local player taking his Standard Naya Blitz deck to a Legacy event (he added four Lightning Bolts, of course) and winning the event with it. If a Standard deck could put up that kind of a performance in an Eternal format, it had to be the real deal.

Here is Doug Hendrickson's Modern Naya Blitz deck that he played at Grand Prix Oklahoma City to a ninth-place finish. It's nearly identical to the Standard version from a few years ago, with a few upgrades. The Modern version gives you access to one-mana removal, such as Lightning Bolt and Path to Exile, and of course the most powerful green two-drop, Tarmogoyf. Goblin Guide is one of the best one-drop red creatures in the format, giving this deck a nice boost.

One of the problems that the Standard version of Naya Blitz had was its mana base. Standard three-color aggro decks have historically always struggled with mana. You need to play all of your spells on curve in order to keep up, and missing one of your colors will cause you to fall very far behind. In Modern, this is not the case. The fetch land/dual land mana base means that you can almost always find whatever color you need. This is one of the reasons why three-color aggro decks succeed in Modern.

Doug Hendrickson’s Naya Blitz

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