TOP 8 PROFILES

Posted in Event Coverage on March 6, 2016

By Corbin Hosler

After many rounds of Swiss and some great games of Magic, the Top 8 for Grand Prix Detroit is set! Learn more about this event's Top 8 competitors, their history at the top tables, and more by taking a look through the Top 8 profiles.


Ralph Betesh

Age: 30

Occupation: Wi-Fi Tech

Hometown: Philadelphia, PA

Previous Magic accomplishments: Top 8 Grand Prix Miami

What deck did you play and why? Abzan Company. I didn't lose a match to White-Blue Eldrazi on MTGO in the past week of testing.

What changes would you make to your deck and why? Nothing as of now - if Eldrazi get banned you don't need Intrepid Hero, and possibly the Orzhov Pontiff in the main.

Are the Eldrazi inherently evil? Would that mean Eldrazi players are inherently evil too? 100%.

What's your favorite Shadows over Innistrad preview so far, or, what's your favorite Innistrad memory? I haven't looked at any previews, but I liked Charmbreaker Devils and Into the Maw of Hell in Limited in Innistrad.


James Zornes

Age: 33

Occupation: Ebay

Hometown: Benton, AR.

Previous Magic accomplishments: Grand Prix Denver Top 8; 2001 Arkansas State Championship, 7th place.

What deck did you play and why? GiftStorm

What changes would you make to your deck and why? None.

Are the Eldrazi inherently evil? Would that mean Eldrazi players are inherently evil too? Yes and yes.

What's your favorite Shadows Over Innistrad preview so far, or, what's your favorite Innistrad memory? Playing Innistrad block at the Pro Tour in Spain.



Eric English

Age: 27

Occupation: Lab Technician

Hometown: Rochester, NY.

Previous Magic accomplishments: Won a StarCityGames.com Open and have one Pro Tour appearance.

What deck did you play and why? Red-Green Eldrazi. The lands are busted and Kozilek's Return plus World Breaker is incredible.

What changes would you make to your deck and why? Nothing unless I could figure out a better plan against White-Blue Eldrazi.

Are the Eldrazi inherently evil? Would that mean Eldrazi players are inherently evil too? Of course not, squiggly monsters are great!

What's your favorite Shadows Over Innistrad preview so far, or, what's your favorite Innistrad memory? Spider Spawning was easily one of my most favorite Limited archetypes ever.


Gerry Thompson

Age: 31

Occupation: Writer for StarCityGames.com.

Hometown: Roanoke, VA

Previous Magic accomplishments: I'm making a run for the Player's Championship.

What deck did you play and why? White-Blue Eldrazi. It's the best deck and I'm trying to win more.

What changes would you make to your deck and why? Shriekmaw, Calciform Pools and Training Grounds all seemed sweet.

Are the Eldrazi inherently evil? Would that mean Eldrazi players are inherently evil too? No, we're the good guys who are cleaning up Modern.

What's your favorite Shadows Over Innistrad preview so far, or, what's your favorite Innistrad memory? Archangel Avacyn, Relentless Dead, Heir of Falkenrath and Incorrigible Youths. They all look great, and this set should be fun.


Ronald Ritner

Age: 25

Occupation: Degenerate

Hometown: Cleveland, OH

Previous Magic accomplishments: A couple of Pro Tours I was queued for and didn't go to!

What deck did you play and why? Red-Green Eldrazi because that's the deck my friend let me borrow (I had never played a match with it!)

What changes would you make to your deck and why? Nothing because I will probably never play Modern again unless there is a close Grand Prix.

Are the Eldrazi inherently evil? Would that mean Eldrazi players are inherently evil too? No.

What's your favorite Shadows Over Innistrad preview so far, or, what's your favorite Innistrad memory? I haven't looked through them yet.


Hao-Shan Huang

Age: 33

Occupation: MTGMintCard Pro Player

Hometown: Chinese Taipei

Previous Magic accomplishments: Five Grand Prix Top 8s, including a win at Grand Prix Taipei in 2014. Two Nationals Top 8 appearances, two World Magic Cup appearances, and the 2015 Taiwan national champion.

What deck did you play and why? White-Blue Eldrazi. I had worked on several decks I didn't want to regret not playing a broken deck when it's available do so. I played the same 75 as Kelvin Chew who lost his win-and-in in Melbourne.

What changes would you make to your deck and why? None for now but definitely need to tune a bit to adapt to the upcoming metagame.

Are the Eldrazi inherently evil? Would that mean Eldrazi players are inherently evil too? They are. But I believe the justice will come in two months. I feel a little bit guilty about being on the guilty side for once.

What's your favorite Shadows Over Innistrad preview so far, or, what's your favorite Innistrad memory? Archangel Avacyn. I believe the common answer, and I am not special and I like whatever people like.


Eduardo Sajgalik

Age: 28

Occupation: Searching for tomorrow

Hometown: Unknown Shores

Previous Magic accomplishments: Three Grand Prix Top 8s, Top 8 at Pro Tour Return to Ravnica in 2012, four Nationals Top 8s, and three National Team appearances.

What deck did you play and why? White-Blue Eldrazi; it's the best deck by far.

What changes would you make to your deck and why? Find another deck, it's unlikely it sticks. I liked the list. Cyclonic Rift is the flex, and one more Grafdigger's Cage would be nice.

Are the Eldrazi inherently evil? Would that mean Eldrazi players are inherently evil too? What is evil? What is good? You cannot reason with it; you cannot comprehend it. You just need to destroy them.

What's your favorite Shadows Over Innistrad preview so far, or, what's your favorite Innistrad memory? Archangel Avacyn is sweet. I like that Avacyn, the Purifier is red (passionate), not black (selfish). In original Innistrad I liked the Altar of the Lost/Burning Vengeance/Secrets of the Dead deck. Also turn 2 Geist of Saint Traft, turn 3 Increasing Savagery.


Evan Buchholz

Age: 23

Occupation: Salon supervisor/streamer (JustevSopriv)

Hometown: Lawrenceville, NJ.

Previous Magic accomplishments: None.

What deck did you play and why? White-Blue Eldrazi. it's the best deck and has a shot against everything.

What changes would you make to your deck and why? I would cut one Hurkyl's Recall for a Meddling Mage and have a better plan for the mirror.

Are the Eldrazi inherently evil? Would that mean Eldrazi players are inherently evil too? No. They just eat and everything is in the way. No comment on the second.

What's your favorite Shadows Over Innistrad preview so far, or, what's your favorite Innistrad memory? Heir of Falkenrath. It looks like a sweet enabler.

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