Team Performances on Day One

Posted in Event Coverage on February 16, 2013

By Blake Rasmussen

Blake is the content manager for, making him the one you should email if you have thoughts on the website, good or less good (or not good). He's a longtime coverage reporter and hasn't turned down a game of Magic in any format ever.

Play-test teams have long been a part of Magic's history. Top 8s of Pro Tours and Grands Prix events have been strewn with members of Phoenix Foundation, Team Your Move Games, Team ABU, CMU, TOGIT and a million other alphabet soup teams that supported some of the best minds and decks the game has ever seen.

While teams never went away, there has been something of a team renaissance as of late as new teams form in the arms race started, one could argue, by the creation of the ChannelFireball super-team a few years back.

A surge of super-teams have descending onto the tournament floor this weekend. ChannelFireball isn't the only big team being represented here this weekend!

Now we have, of course, ChannelFireball, as well as Team SCG, Team Panik, Team TCG Player, and Team Mana Deprived, among others. Each team has varying levels of cohesiveness, experience and talent, but they're all chock full of players to watch.

For a more in-depth look at the makeup of several of the teams, check out Rich Hagon's excellent preview of Pro Tour Gatecrash. It's important to note that these teams were testing teams and idea-sharing teams, not sponsorship teams. For the quick and dirty stats of how each team is doing (plus a roster at the end), read on below.

Naturally, that made us curious as to how the teams performed on Day One. So we rounded up each team's performances for the first eight rounds of competition from Friday and compared them side by side to see who enjoyed the best Day One performance.

Total wins per player:

  • TCG Player: 5.33
  • ChannelFireball: 4.45
  • Team SCG: 4.36
  • Mana Deprived: 3.78
  • Panik: 3.63

It took a record of 4-4 to make Day Two, which means, on average, Mana Deprived and Panik missed Day Two, while the other three teams' average player would have marched on. Here you start to get a hint of how well the TCG Player team did on Day One.

Percentage of the team making Day Two (number making it/total on team)

  • TCG Player: 88.9 percent (8/9)
  • Mana Deprived: 77.8 percent (7/9)
  • Team SCG: 71.4 percent (10/14)
  • ChannelFireball: 63.6 percent (6/11)
  • Panik: 50 percent (45 percent)

Despite fewer wins per player, both Mana Deprived and Team SCG jumped ahead of ChanelFireball on Day 2 appearances. This is because Mana Deprived and Team SCG had more players around four and five wins, while ChannelFireball had a significant spread between its best and worst performances.

Best performance

  • TCG Player: Melissa DeTora, 8-0
  • ChannelFireball: Ben Stark, Gerry Thompson and Eric Froehlich, 7-1
  • Team SCG: Andrew Cuneo, Tom Martell, Paul Rietzl and Owen Turtenwald, 6-2
  • Mana Deprived: Jon Stern, 6-2
  • Panik: Shahar Shenhar, 6-2

DeTora was the lone 8-0 player after Day One. TCG Player also had a 7-0-1 performance by Timothée Simonot and a 6-1-1 mark for Robert Jurkovic.

Constructed Decks Chosen

  • TCG Player: Bant Midrange (with Kessig Wolf Run), UWR Control, Esper Control
  • Mana Deprived: Jund Midrange
  • Team SCG: The Aristocrats, Jund Midrange
  • ChannelFireball: UWR, Mono Black-ish, Esper Conrol, Naya Zoo
  • Panik: Gruul Aggro, Bant Black

ChannelFireball unusually split several ways after mostly sticking with one deck for previous Pro Tours. Conley Woods was the only Mono Black-ish player, but the rest of the decks had multiple adherents. Mana Deprived was easily the most cohesive, and all of the players had very similar records. Most of the Team SCG players went with The Aristocrats, but a few – notably Reid Duke and Owen Turtenwald – stuck to Jund Midrange.

Team Rosters


  • Luis Scott-Vargas
  • Paulo Vitor Damo Da Rosa
  • David Ochoa
  • Martin Juza
  • Conley Woods
  • Shuhei Nakamura
  • Josh Utter-Leyton
  • Brian Kibler
  • Ben Stark
  • Eric Froehlich
  • Gerry Thompson

Team Panik

  • Christian Calcano
  • Sam Pardee
  • Jackie Lee
  • Jia Wu
  • Michael Hetrick
  • Matt Nass
  • Mathias Hunt
  • David Gleicher
  • Jacob Wilson
  • Jesse Hampton
  • Shahar Shenhar

Team SCG

  • Sam Black
  • Patrick Chapin
  • Matthew Costa
  • Andrew Cuneo
  • Reid Duke
  • Jon Finkel
  • Tom Martell
  • Zvi Mowshowitz
  • Gabriel Nassif
  • Paul Rietzl
  • Beck Seck
  • Matt Sperling
  • Owen Turtenwald
  • Gaudenis Vidugiris

TCG Player

  • Raphael Levy
  • Louis Deltour
  • Jeremy Dezani
  • Timothée Simonot
  • Stanislav Cifka
  • Lukas Jaklovsky
  • Robert Jurkovic
  • Ivan Floch
  • Melissa DeTora

Mana Deprived

  • Jon Stern
  • Miguel Gatica
  • Tzu-Ching Kuo
  • Pascal Maynard
  • Alexander Hayne
  • Hao-Shan Huang
  • Doug Potter
  • Marc Anderson

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