Round 14: Bob Maher vs. Alan Comer

Posted in Event Coverage

By Randy Buehler

Bob Maher hasn't had a great season so far, but the reigning Player of the Year is in his element now. His 10-3 record has him in 12th place and he's playing "Maher Oath." Alan Comer (currently in 11th) is equally in his element, playing a bizarre recursion deck. The eccentric Comer has joined teammate Zvi Mowshowitz and they're playing Zvi's pet deck: Turbo-land.

overgrown estate
"You know what this card does" said Comer as he played an Oath of his own on turn 2. Maher's deck only has 3 creatures, but they are his eventual route to victory. Maher wasn't really worried about it, though. He kept drawing extra cards from his Sylvan Library and then Enlightened Tutored for Seal of Cleansing and just left it on the table, guarding against Comer's more important artifacts and enchantments. Things can get weird when two essentially creatureless decks face off against one another.

Maher's next play was Overgrown Estate. Comer smiled, and worked things out out loud: "That's a pretty funny combo. Every extra land you get is almost an extra card? I think I'll actually fight over that one." Maher won the fight and his Sylvan-Estate engine kicked in. Comer - who's playing the splash-red version of Turbo-Land, knew he couldn't sit back and watch Maher keep drawing extra cards so he played out a Crater Hellion. Maher used Comer's Oath to bring out a Morphling. Maher then used Wasteland to deprive Comer of the second red mana he needed to upkeep the Hellion, along with the second red he needed to play the Obliterate that was in his hand. Of course, Obliterate isn't actually that good when your opponent gets to sacrifice all his land for 3 life each as a response and gets to keep his Sylvan Library. Mostly, Comer's draw was pretty weak and Maher's wasn't. Comer did play his Obliterate, because it seemed better than dying, and Maher gained 22 life. Predictably, with 25 life and a Sylvan in play, Maher recovered from the Obliterate faster and Comer conceded to save time.

sylvan library
Comer had to mulligan down to 5 cards before game 2, and Maher pointed Wastelands at each of his first two lands. Maher then used Enlightened Tutor to go get Sylvan Library, but after Impulse revealed a second Treetop Village, he decided to go beatdown. He put his Wastelands back into his deck with Gaea's Blessing and started tapping out to attack with Treetop Villages. Comer took 3, 3, 6, 6, and with just two points of life left he extended his hand. Maher's plan was perfect - Comer had a hand full of permission and Sylvan would never have gotten into play. Meanwhile Comer's only answer to Treetop Village is to go off and win the game.

With two wins under his belt in two rounds with his namesake deck, Maher has to be a favorite to make his second straight Worlds Top 8. With Finkel playing on table 1, the whispers about a repeat final have already begun.

Final Result: Maher 2 - Comer 0

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