Live Coverage of 2005 Pro Tour Nagoya

Posted in Event Coverage on January 30, 2005

By Paul Sottosanti

Even though Pro Tour–Nagoya marked the last Rochester Draft format to be used at a premier Magic event, here's a quick look at the strategies each player used in the Top 8 draft.

Jarno Harkonen

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Jarno Harkonen kicked off the draft with a Nezumi Cutthroat and quickly moved into green-black, a combination that has been very popular at this tournament. The ace up his sleeve was a trifecta of Hondens that he quietly picked up and included in his final build. With two Sakura-Tribe Elders to fix his mana and two Nezumi Cutthroats to bring the beats, he looks to have a decent shot at the title.

Terry Soh

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Terry Soh took Hanabi Blast from the first pack and then continued to pick up an array of removal -- Pain Kami, Pull Under, double Rend Flesh, Swallowing Plague, and Frostwielder all found their way into his pile. He's created a midrange red-black deck that's capable of aggression against the slow decks and control against the fast ones.

Shu Komuro

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Shu Komuro started off with a premier green common, Order of the Sacred Bell, and soon added blue to the mix. When a chance at a Glacial Ray came, he snapped it up, and finished with that plus a second Ray, two Kodama's Mights, and a Consuming Vortex for lots of splice potential. Add to the mix three Sakura-Tribe Elders and a Kodama of the North Tree and you get what looks to be one of the top decks at the table.

Masashiro Kuroda

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After dipping into four different colors in the first six picks, Masashiro Kuroda ended up with a white-red that was heavily teched out for his quarterfinal matchup against Anton Jonsson. Three Sokenzan Bruisers, two Kitsune Riftwalkers, and four Indomitable Wills were liable to give his opponent fits. His main issue seems to be that he's lacking two and three drops.

Murray Evans

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Murray Evans' draft could best be described as a train wreck, but he managed to pull together a reasonably playable deck at the end. He ended up with a blue-black deck that wanted to revolve around Long-Forgotten Gohei, but was a little light on both Spirits and Arcane spells.

Frank Karsten

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As his neighbors to the right fought over black and red, Frank Karsten quietly picked up a solid white-green deck that splashes Keiga, the Tide Star as an all-star finisher. Between two Cage of Hands, two Kabuto Moth, and two Moss Kami, along with the aforementioned Keiga and a Myojin of Cleansing Fire, many people have him picked to win the tournament.

Vasilis Fatouros

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Vasilis Fatouros began the draft in green-black, but almost switched to red when he opened up Kumano, Master Yamabushi. He did indeed take the legend (much to Jonsson's dismay), but Anton cut red hard enough in the second round of packs that he was forced to abandon the color entirely. Still, he ended up with two Devouring Greeds and thirteen Spirits to abuse them with. He also had Dance of Shadows and Tatsumasa, the Dragon's Fang as additional finishers.

Anton Jonsson

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Anton Jonsson quickly settled into blue-red, a combination that's been amazing for him all weekend. He seems to be a little short on cards, having to play Guardian of Solitude and Battle-Mad Ronin, but also has the amazing Earthshaker, double Teller of Tales and triple Yamabushi's Flame. He spent his final first pick of the draft simply hating Kami of the Ancient Law from his quarterfinals opponent Kuroda, as the pack didn't have much for him and Kuroda was light on early drops.

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