So, this is it. Our last look at the Magic Top 25 Pro Rankings before the season ends this weekend in Vancouver. And, like orbits aligning, the Top 25 and the Player of the Year table will be as one. Those of you who pay regular attention to the hottest players around know, however, that what the table looks like this week and what it's going to look like next week are potentially—even probably—very different. For example, every single player in our Top 25 could end up as Player of the Year, and there are a dozen more waiting in the (necessarily capacious) wings, in case the principles fluff their closing night lines.
Still, the setup for the big showdown in Vancouver has Eric Froehlich in the No. 1 spot on the table, as he has been through much of the season. Sam Black holds No. 2 by the tiniest of margins from Hong Kong's Lee Shi Tian, while Yuuya Watanabe and Owen Turtenwald—both former Player of the Year winners—round out the Top 5. North America occupies the rest of the Top 10. Paul Rietzl and Ari Lax are both Pro Tour Champions, while Shaun McLaren and Jacob Wilson will go at it in Vancouver to determine the captaincy of the Canadian World Magic Cup team—one of more than 30 national races that have yet to be decided.
This past weekend, many of the top Pros decided to take a couple of days off from testing. Quite simply, the lure of possible "last minute" Pro Points at Grand Prix Dallas/Fort Worth was too much to pass up. The biggest beneficiary of this plan was one of the European travelers en route to the Pro Tour. Ondrej Strasky has made huge waves on the Pro scene, with two Pro Tour Top 8 finishes in a fledgling career that threatens to go stratospheric this weekend. He's our big mover this week, up five to No. 15. Also nudging upwards is former Player of the Year Josh Utter-Leyton, who goes into Vancouver at No. 11. Spain's Antonio Del Moral Leon enters the table at No. 22, and Jason Chung becomes the first New Zealander to enter the ranks of the Top 25. He enters at No. 24.
But, as we said, a lot is going to happen in the next few days. Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year, World Championship slots, World Magic Cup captains, Silver, Gold, and Platinum Pros . . . and, of course, the Magic Top 25 Pro Rankings. We'll tell you how it all shook out when we meet again in seven action-packed days. Until then, enjoy the show.
|3||Lee Shi Tian||63.32||3|
|18||Paulo Vitor Damo Da Rosa||52.13||-1||17|
|22||Antonio Del Moral Leon||48.97||—||NR|
Dropped from rankings: Craig Wescoe, Alexander Hayne