Mono-Red Beatdown at BIG MAGIC Open

Posted in Daily Deck on November 10, 2014

By Shuhei Nakamura

Shuhei Nakamura is a member of the Pro Tour Hall of Fame, former Player of the Year, and is one of just six players with more than 400 lifetime pro points.

The BIG MAGIC Open Standard event also had nearly 400 players, and while Takashi Boku was unable to claim that title despite battling to the final round, he also posted a Top 8 finish in the Legacy tournament the day before, making him one of the outstanding players of the weekend. In Legacy, Boku chose an ANT deck, but for Standard he went with a mono-red beatdown deck.

The key to this deck? Hammerhand. This card was a staple of Magic 2015 Limited play, but it remains a strong tool in red's arsenal in Constructed.

"When Hammerhand enters the battlefield, target creature can't block this turn. Enchanted creature gets +1/+1 and has haste." Each of these effects is small in and of itself, but when combined into one card, for a cost of just one mana, it creates a powerhouse.

If things combine ideally, you can attack with hasty creatures two turns in a row without having to worry about blockers. That should be enough to drop the opponent's life sufficiently into burnout range. And while your opponent is reeling from that, you can keep up the pressure with Hordeling Outburst.

Of course, if you're running mono-red, it can be hard to pass up Sarkhan, the Dragonspeaker, but it's possible that Hordeling Outburst is actually the best card red picks up from Khans of Tarkir. In as aggressive a color as red, it's often better to have three 1/1 creatures than one 3/3 creature, as it's harder to deal with multiples. Not only does the Outburst power up other creatures like Foundry Street Denizen and Monastery Swiftspear, when the tokens get pumped by something like Hall of Triumph, they might even be able to carry the game on their own.

Takashi Boku's Mono-Red Beatdown

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