Top 4 Profiles

Posted in Event Coverage on June 26, 2017

By Corbin Hosler

Learn more about Grand Prix Cleveland's Top 4 teams—including who they are, what they’ve done in the game, and more—by taking a look through their profiles

Chris Ferber / Nick Neill / Josh Sellers

Name: Chris Ferber

Age: 27

Hometown: Agoura Hills, CA

Previous Magic Accomplishments: Two GP cashes, many more Day 2s.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Josh Sellers and Nick Neill because they needed a “Chris” upgrade.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Optimizing a synergistic Game 1 deck recognizing small upgrades in sideboarding.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? This Top 4 was my long-awaited RPTQ win.

What does this Top 4 mean to you? It justifies and validates the time I’ve spent playing this game and hopefully helps my dad to admit that my hours playing were worth something.


Name: Nick Neill

Age: 32

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA

Previous Magic Accomplishments: three-time Gameday champion. Lost to Reid Duke that time.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Josh Sellers – best friend and long-time gaming partner. Chris Ferber – the previous Chris was bad and should feel bad.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Replacing bad Chris with better Chris.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? No.

What does this Top 4 mean to you? Best tournament finish and some justification and vindication for time spent playing Magic.


Name: Josh Sellers

Age: 36

Hometown: North Hills, CA

Previous Magic Accomplishments: two-time FAD champ. Perennial ninth-place States finisher.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Chris Ferber and Nick Neill. They are the bros. And we needed a replacement Chris.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Opening gods and praising them.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? Nope. This will be my second time on the Pro Tour, and the first was 20 years ago.

What does this Top 4 mean to you? I’m glad we made it! Winning would mean much more.



John Rolf / Brandon Ayers / Nathan Smith

Name: John Rolf

Age: 28

Hometown: Omaha, NE

Previous Magic Accomplishments: Best player in the Rolf household.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Brandon Ayers and Nathan Smith because they are Gold pros (obviously).

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Team chemistry.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? This queues me for the Pro Tour!

What does this Top 4 mean to you? Everything since it was with two of my closest friends


Name: Brandon Ayers

Age: 26

Hometown: Omaha, NE

Previous Magic Accomplishments: Gold pro, two Grand Prix Top 8s, Top 50 at the Pro Tour in Hawaii.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? John Rolf and Nathan Smith, best friends who luckily are insane at Magic.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Having fun with a lit squad!

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? This Top 4 locked me for Gold!

What does this Top 4 mean to you? This Top 4 with the squad means infinite. Nothing better than winning with friends.


Name: Nathan Smith

Age: 22

Hometown: Omaha/Houston

Previous Magic Accomplishments: Top 8 and GP Oakland and GP Dallas. 2015 Magic Online Championship Series competitor. Beat Steve Wise at FNM. Five cashes at Pro Tours and a Gold pro.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Brandon Ayers and John Rolf because they’re great. Clearly.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Respect your teammates. Build good decks.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? I guess I can hit Platinum with a slightly worse Pro Tour finish now.

What does this Top 4 mean to you? Locked my teammate Brandon for Gold. Got John Rolf his first Top 8 to put him back on the Pro Tour.



Shuhei Nakamura / Corey Burkhart / Martin Jůza

Name: Shuhei Nakamura

Age: 35

Hometown: maybe Tokyo?

Previous Magic Accomplishments: First time playoff this season.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Martin and Corey, because we just missed Top 4 at GP Mexico.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Play for fun.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? Guaranteed Gold next season.

What does this Top 4 mean to you? Play Magic for one more year.


Name: Corey Burkhart

Age: 25

Hometown: Alta Loma, CA

Previous Magic Accomplishments: Five Grand Prix Top 8s, member of Team ChannelFireball Fire.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Martin Jůza and Shuhei Nakamura. Matrin needed three points for Worlds, and Shuhei needed three points for Gold. I flew here to help my buddies reach their goals.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Being patient, working to together and making sure you support your team’s biases.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? I was already locked for Gold on the season. This means a Top 8 finish at the Pro Tour gets me to Platinum. It’s not a big but something to savor and words towards.

What does this Top 4 mean to you? Means I’m two matches away from my goal of adding a trophy to my trophy case. It’s been three years.



Name
: Martin Jůza

Age: 30

Hometown: Plzen, Czech Republic

Previous Magic Accomplishments: three Pro Tour Top 8s, 25 Grand Prix Top 8s

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Shuhei Nakamura and Corey Burkhart because they are great and I 100% trust every decision they make.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Open good Sealed decks.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? This gets me to Platinum before Kyoto and gets me closer to Worlds.

What does this Top 4 mean to you? Shuhei and I got the points we needed, now we are playing to get Corey a trophy.



Reid Duke / William “Huey” Jensen / Owen Turtenwald

Name: Reid Duke

Age: 27

Hometown: Sugar Loaf, NY

Previous Magic Accomplishments: 2 Pro Tour Top 8s; 20 previous Grand Prix Top 8s; 2011 Magic Online champion.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Willian Jensen and Owen Turtenwald. Peach Garden Oath.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Play with a high concentration of your best cards. Build streamlined decks with good mana and a high creature count.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? Currently in the lead for US National Champion and Team Captain. The race is close and every point counts.

What does this Top 4 mean to you? I’d like to win the tournament.


Name: William “Huey” Jensen

Age: 34

Hometown: Boston, MA

Previous Magic Accomplishments: Hall of Fame inductee in 2013, member of Peach Garden Oath.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Reid Duke and Owen Turtenwald because we took an oath to defend the realm.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Team with Owen and Reid.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? I think this reduces by one the number of wins I need to lock Platinum at the last Pro Tour.

What does this Top 4 mean to you? Trophy or bust.


Name: Owen Turtenwald

Age: 28

Hometown: Milwaukee, WI

Previous Magic Accomplishments: Two-time Player of the Year, 2016 Hall of Fame inductee.

Who did you team with this weekend and why? Reid Duke and William Jensen because they promised to help me remind everyone who runs the streets.

What's the secret to success in Team Limited? Teaming with Reid Duke and William Jensen.

Are you chasing Pro Points for Players Club Status? If so, what can this Top 4 do for you? What do you still need in the last month of the season? Gained points in the race for Worlds.

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