Draft 1: Phoenix Foundation vs. Outland

Posted in Event Coverage on March 14, 2002

By Ben Seck

The Team Pro Tour Draft Champions seemed to go in with a distinct strategy in the draft, with player A, Dirk Baberowski going Blue/Green, Kai Budde in seat B drafting Blue/White and Marco Blume finishing off with a Red/Black deck. Outland on the other hand seemed to let the draft dictate their choices, often playing a reactive draft towards the Germans. In seat A, Nicolai Herzog decided to fight through Marco Blume's Red/Black drafting, Nitter decided to go with Blue/Green and Jocumsen ended with what is likely to be the only three color deck on the table, splashing green only for two bombs, Mystic Enforcer and Ivy Elemental. To a large extent they stayed in their colors for the entire duration of the draft, only stopping to hate draft after there was no more picks to take.

Here is how they were seated in the draft: (the first pack was opened by Nitter)

Dirk Baberowski 		Kai Budde		Marco Blume
Blue/Green			Blue/White		Red/Black

Bjorn Jocumsen			Eivind Nitter		Nicolai Herzog
Black/White (splash Green)	Blue/Green		Red/Black

The Matchups

Match A – Baberowski vs Herzog

Dirk Baberowski's deck seems to have a large amount of creatures, with a great curve that begins with Werebear and Seton's Scout and goes through Krosan Avengers all the way to multiple Elephant Ambushes. He also has a few breakers in the form of Turbulent Dreams and Seton's Desire. He seems to have a good curve against Herzog's unwieldy removal spells.

Nicolai Herzog started his draft unusually, wheeling TWO Dwarven Strike Forces in the first pack. This placed him firmly into Red, even with Marco Blume filtering a great deal of the choice cards. Despite this, he didn't end up with a terrible deck, though it is quite mana intensive and maybe too slow for the efficiency of Baberowski's army of creatures.

Match B – Budde vs Nitter

This match will be a little closer, with Budde drafting three Hallowed Healers and getting a gift Kirtar's Wrath out of pack 3. Heavy with multiple Psionic Gifts that define the Blue/White draft archetype, if he should be able to stabilize he stands a great chance of winning a long game. He also was 'forced' to take an Angel of Retribution in his third last Tormet pack. On top of that, he is Kai Budde, isn't he?

Nitter's deck offers a lot in the way of resistance to the German Juggernaut, with a first pick, first pack Wild Mongrel, and plenty of threshold creatures (Metamorphic Wurm, Springing Tiger, Seton's Scout). Coupled with a couple Skywing Avens, Cephalid Looter, Deluge and Aether Burst, Nitter can bust trhough a great deal of resistance. It is possible that he will decide to splash red for Lithatog and Chainfliger as will give him an answer to Kai's army of Healers.

Match C – Blume vs Jocumsen

Blume's deck seems to benefit of being sheltered by two of his teammates as well as having no real competition for his colors other than Herzog who he controlled for most of the draft. With a decent balance of burn (Firebolt, Flame Burst, Violent Eruption) as well as a strong array of creatures (Chainflinger x2, Mindslicer, 2x Grotesque Hybrid) he should be able to deal with many threats, with the exception of Mystic Enforcer, which may become a problem in every duel.

By the nature of the packs, Bjorn Jocumsen was forced to play three colors, something that is a well defined job of a C seat player. He was forced to defensively draft a Mystic Enforcer after starting the draft with an Aven Windreader, but it soon became apparent that he needed to abandon the Blue in favor for an abundant amount of Black removal (Afflict, Patriarch's Desire, Crippling Fatigue) spells. With the addition of an Ivy Elemental pick in the last pack Odyssey before the first rotation, he was firmly ensconced in a three color draft. Despite his potential mana problems, he'll provide significant threat to Marco's more consistent deck, especially if the Enforcer comes into play.

Nicolai Herzog

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Eivind Nitter

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Bjorn Jocumsen

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Kai Budde

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Marco Blume

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