Of the 379 players that began Pro Tour Avacyn Restored on Friday, only 242 mustered up the requisite 4-4 record required to advance to Day Two. After exhaustedly poring through the Day One decklists, it became clear that the deck of the tournament was GRW Angels and Wolves. As described yesterday, this excellent midrange aggro deck uses the early mana generation of Avacyn's Pilgrim and Scorned Villager to power out expensive, yet difficult to handle threats all backed up with a removal suite including Bonfire of the Damned to deal with early creature rushes. One hundred and two players, making up 27% of the Day One field, chose this as their deck of choice for the event. Despite many cards in the deck being geared more towards beating the aggressive decks in the format (I'm looking at you, Huntmaster of the Fells), the choice seemed to be a good one, as 80 players survived to Day Two, ultimately making up 33% of the field.
One of the other major movers of the tournament was WG Humans. This deck relies on putting out a fast stream of efficient Humans to swarm and ultimately crush unprepared opponents. This is the type of deck that the midrange GRW deck was designed to beat. Despite this, and the overwhelming odds of facing the midrange deck, only 5 of the original 26 players piloting GW Humans failed to make Day Two. Considering that many Channelfireball team members opted to run this as their option, it was also clearly a great choice for the field.
Beyond these, there were some other great performances by some unexpected decks. First, the RG Wolf Run midrange deck piloted by a team of great players, including Matthias Hunt, Kyle Stoll, Brandon Nelson, Shahar Shenhar, Michael Hetrick, and Ricky Sidher, only lost 3 of its original 18 pilots in the transition to Day Two. This deck eschewed the flashier endgame offered by the GRW deck for the good old fashioned face-sploding power of Kessig Wolf Run. This deck had a bit of extra reach that the GRW deck didn't have to finish things off in case the deck got stalled along the way. This was good enough to sport post some impressive Day One records for the team, including 7-1's for Shahar Shenhar and Kyle Stoll.
Another powerhouse was the UGw Tempo deck designed by members of the SCG Black team, including Sam Black, Jon Finkel, Kai Budde, and Gaudenis Vidugiris. This deck tries to speed out a Geist of Saint Traft or an Invisible Stalker, just before it beefs it the hell up with an Increasing Savagery or Wolfir Silverheart and melts faces. Multiple times on the weekend, players have taken games from reasonable games of Magic to completely over in the span of two turns, including one story of Jon Finkel winning a game before his opponent played a non-land permanent. Only one player playing the deck failed to make Day Two, and the ones remaining are some of the best the game has to offer. Echoes of this deck being the "best deck in the tournament" should have those of you preparing to brew for Standard dreaming of the Wolfir and Traft (also possibly the best buddy cop show ever).
Perhaps the biggest loser of the tournament was WR Humans. Out of the 40 players who started the tournament with the deck, only 16 players managed to crawl their way into Day Two. Considering the large amount of midrage decks designed to beat the more aggressive decks, it seems that WR Humans lacked the resiliency that WG Humans showed in fighting through the tide of decks poised to beat it. Lacking cards like Gavony Township and Wolfir Silverheart to provide the late game punch that WG Humans has, WR was poorly equipped to deal with a tide of Huntmaster of the Fells and Bonfire of the Damned. Without the ability to get the game down to single digits before the midrange decks took over, WR seemed to have trouble taking advantage of the reach that the red burn spells it was packing gave it.
|Deck Archetype||No Played Day 1||No Played Day 2||Percentage in Day 1||Percentage in Day 2||Difference Between Days|
|GRW Angels and Wolves||102||80||26.91||33.06||6.14|
|RG Wolf Run Aggro||18||15||4.75||6.20||1.45|
|UGw Tempo Pump||8||7||2.11||2.89||0.78|
|RGb Wolf Run Aggro||1||1||0.26||0.41||0.15|
|UWR Miracle Control||12||8||3.17||3.31||0.14|
|BWG Angels and Wolves||3||2||0.79||0.83||0.03|
|BWG Planeswalker Control||4||2||1.06||0.83||-0.23|
|WUR Burning Vengeance||3||1||0.79||0.41||-0.38|
|BRG Vampires and Wolves||9||4||2.37||1.65||-0.72|
|UW Miracle Control||11||5||2.90||2.07||-0.84|
|UWR Creature Control||7||0||1.85||0.00||-1.85|