Round 6 Feature Match: Satoshi Nakamura v. Kenichi Fujita

Posted in Event Coverage on February 16, 2002

By Josh Bennett

In still more Fujita Action, we find the aging superstar up against another of Japan's National Magic Treasures, the Hat Man himself Satoshi Nakamura. Though he's been on a bit of a hiatus from competitive play, what with his work as a game designer, Nakamura's game is still in fine form.

Fujita got things started with a Krosan Avenger. Nakamura, struggling with awkward mana, refused to Sonic Seizure it, hoping to draw out of his predicament. When he did not find the second black mana to go with his Crippling Fatigue, he had to act. He lost his Gravedigger to the Seizure.

Now Fujita turned up the heat with a Call of the Herd. Nakamura ate some pain and had no answer. A second elephant hit the board. Fujita pitched Crippling Fatigue, Cabal Surgeon and Mesmeric Fiend to Sickening Dreams, giving Fujita a monstrous 4-1 card advantage, but dispatching his twin elephants.

Nakamura was finally on the offensive with Pardic Firecat. Fujita made a pair of tokens with Chatter of the Squirrel, but Nakamura one-upped him with Angel of Retribution. Unfortunately for him, he was low enough that Fujita could simply drop his hand to his Sickening Dreams and take the game.

In game two, Nakamura's turn-three Organ Grinder was answered by Fujita's Call of the Herd. Nakamura couldn't wait to bring the beats and cleared a path with Fiery Temper. Fujita went one better with an Afflict on his Grinder. Soon it was Barbarian Lunatic holding off a second Call token.

Fujita's Krosan Restorer did little to break the stalemate. Nakamura went to the air with Aven Fisher. Fujita made a Lunatic of his own. The two stared at each other. Ghastly Demise took down Nakamura's Lunatic, who tag-teamed with Afflict to take out the token. Nakamura tapped out for Gravedigger and the resurrected Lunatic.

Trying to stay in the game, Fujita used Flame Burst to take out the Fisher. Nakamura kept the pressure up with Barbarian Outcast. Now it was his turn to force the Lunatic, this time with Firebolt. It took down the Outcast on the way out. Mesmeric Fiend stripped Fujita of his only useful card, Fiery Temper. Between Pardic Arsonist and Sickening Dreams, it was a short walk to game three.

In the deciding game, Fujita again had turn-three Call of the Herd. This time it was foiled by Chainer's Edict, and then Afflict and Firebolt. The Firebolt took down Fujita's Chainflinger for an encore. Mesmeric Fiend took Afflict, leaving Anurid Scavenger and Seton's Desire, and Organ Grinder threatened to bring the beats.

Fujita topdecked Barbarian Lunatic. Nakamura swung in with the Grinder, losing it and the Fiend in the process. Chainflinger came off the bench. Fujita held it off with Anurid Scavenger. Fortunately for Nakamura, Fujita was short on gas. He could afford to wait out the Scavenger. Barbarian Outcast made racing a bad idea for Fujita.

The Scavenger ran out of food. Fujita tried a Krosan Restorer and Seton's Desire, but Afflict and Chainflinger stopped that nonsense. Nakamura swung for six. When Fujita had no further offense, Nakamura wrapped it up with Pardic Arsonist and Sickening Dreams.

Satoshi Nakamura defeats Kenichi Fujita 2-1

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