Round 8 Feature Match: Gerard Fabiano vs. Bob Maher

Posted in Event Coverage on July 12, 2003

By Josh Bennett

“That Gerard stole my mojo. That should be me in there.” – Tony Tsai

Indeed, Gerard Fabiano has had a very good day. He’s sitting at 7-0 thanks to his goblins, and is looking for the sweep. He’s facing Bob Maher and his red-white control, far from an ideal matchup. They kept things light, what with their acceptance into Day 2 guaranteed.

“How’d you get so good?” – Gerard Fabiano

“I play too much. Many hours of my misspent youth.” – Bob Maher

Prospector accelerated Fabiano into a turn-two Warchief while Maher did nothing but play lands. With two plains and a mountain opposite him, Fabiano considered his options. He eventually chose to play Gempalm Incinerator as a man and swing with it. Maher Shards’d it away. Fabiano followed up with Skirk Prospector.

Maher put the boots to him on turn four, with Silver Knight and Lightning Rift. Fabiano played the waiting game, as did Maher.

“Now I know why you played Goblins: You actually get to finish matches!” – Bob Maher

“Yeah, Jon Sonne 5-0’d too, it’s busted!” – Gerard Fabiano

Fabiano threw down the Siege-Gang Commander and sent all his men into the Red Zone. Maher blocked the Commander with his Knight. After first strike damage finished it off, he was free to Starstorm away Fabiano’s board. He untapped and dropped a second Rift.

“Could you kill me already, what’s wrong with you?” – Gerard Fabiano

Maher granted his wish. With no pressure from Fabiano Maher was free to cycle him to death in two turns.

Maher 1 – Fabiano 0

Fabiano moved like lightning in the second game, slapping down Prospector and Warchief while Maher made a Lightning Rift. Maher shut down the Chief with a cycled Renewed Faith, but Fabiano came back with Clickslither. Maher made a Silver Knight, and Fabiano trumped with Siege-Gang Commander. His Clickslither ate two goblins and trampled over the Knight to put Maher down to nine. Maher cycled Renewed Faith to kill the Commander at end of turn.

He waited on his mana again. Fabiano hit with Clickslither and token. Maher let the Knight’s first strike take down the token and then played Wing Shards. Fabiano had Sulfuric Vortex, but Maher had Wipe Clean. He got in with a second Knight and started swinging. Fabiano found his sixth land and returned the favor with Rorix. Maher was forced to hit and Vengeance away the board.

Fabiano untapped and played a second Vortex. Maher had two turns to find enchantment removal. He did not.

Maher 1 – Fabiano 1

Maher mulliganed quickly, but kept his six. Fabiano stared at a hand of two Spark Spray, Shock and four land, but had to send it back. Maher had the first play of the game, and it was a good one: Silver Knight. Fabiano’s Piledriver had to stay home, and his Prospector was a late arrival. Without a fourth land he had to eat his Piledriver to enable a Clickslither, and he just stayed home. Maher cycled Renewed Faith and Akroma’s Vengeance.

He untapped and dropped another Knight. Fabiano tried to keep up, playing another Piledriver. Maher had yet another Knight.

“He’s got a full grip. I don’t like what can happen when he has a full grip.” – Bob Maher

Fabiano ditched his goblins and upgraded to a Rorix. It hit Maher for six, leaving him at sixteen. Maher hit back for four and passed the turn with four cards in hand. Fabiano swung in again, this time adding Clickslither. Maher Shocked him and then played Wing Shards, getting rid of both attackers. Fabiano made a Gang. Maher took out the Commander and swung for two, sitting on seven mana. Fabiano made another Gang, sitting at twelve life.

Maher ripped a land, and tapped them all to throw down Akroma, Angel of Wrath. Twelve damage exactly. Fabiano showed the Clickslither that would have given him the match with one more turn.

Bob Maher defeats Gerard Fabiano 2-1

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