Sealed Deck Construction - William Jensen

Posted in Event Coverage on February 22, 2003

By Josh Bennett

Being called one of the five best drafters of all time is a tough reputation to live up to. Good thing William “Baby Huey” Jensen shrugs off praise so easily. His impressive resume contains countless just-short-of-the-spotlight finishes. Recently, he broke the curse with a Top 8 at Pro Tour – Chicago, ousted by eventual Champion Kai Budde in the quarters. He’s a favorite to make the final table if only he can escape the Sealed Deck portion of the tournament. Three byes go a long way to helping his cause.

Centaur Glade
Jensen quickly thumbed through his five colors. Blue was the first to go to the wayside. Jensen noted that he had some splashable fliers. White was next, with almost no incentive to run plains. At that point Jensen cut to the chase. From the first glance he knew he would be running green. It had all his best monsters and a Centaur Glade. He laid it out and then threw the red overtop it.

For just a second he went back to the black, but there after a few hits there wasn’t anything to keep him there. He focused on making red-green work.

“I don’t really know what I’m doing, I’ve got to let everyone know that.” – William Jensen

He wasn’t kidding. Having played all of one On-On-Le draft, and a bit of sealed at the Prerelease, he was still giving Legions cards the once-over as he turned them up. It looked like all the tools were there. Removal in the form of Solar Blast, Words of War and Erratic Explosion, early bears and then a strong line of beasts. To say nothing of the Centaur Glade that would take matches on its own. He started to make cuts.

“Hate hate HATE Erratic Explosion. Four ones, I’m not playing it.” – William Jensen

Certainly, Vitality Charm, Patron of the Wild and Goblin Sledder looked like they’d have to stay. He thought better of the Birchlore Rangers, though, and they hit the bench. He pulled the overcosted Bloodstoke Howler, while he was at it.

Things looked a little meager, so he went back to the blue, returning Echo Tracer, Keeneye Aven and Aven Fateshaper to the mix, as well as a Lonely Sandbar. Now he had four cards in his seven slot.

Hundroog can’t be that good.” – William Jensen

Now he thought about taking out the Keeneye, but immediately reconsidered and pulled Macetail Hystrodon instead. He corrected a shortness of spells by swapping Erratic Explosion for Goblin Sledder. A quick once-over and a count, and he’d decided on his final arrangement.

Jensen was his usual short-spoken self about the decisions he had to make. Green, he said, was obviously the source of his best cards, so it was really just a matter of playing red or black. Red’s better removal easily tipped the balance. Overall, he was happy with the way his deck turned out. Very aggressive, with good tricks and a nice bomb. He wasn’t afraid of having to play six rounds instead of five.

William “Baby Huey” Jensen

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