The Deck Ben Rubin Wants To Play

Posted in Event Coverage on May 8, 2016

By Jacob Van Lunen

Jacob Van Lunen began playing Magic in 1995. He has participated in organized play at every level of competition and was a member of the winning team at Pro Tour San Diego in 2007, thanks to an innovative draft strategy. As a writer, Van Lunen has had more than three hundred Magic strategy pieces published

Hall of Famer Ben Rubin plays by his own set of rules. Rubin has four Pro Tour Top 8s, is the only player to win two Masters events, and just Top 8ed a massive Standard Grand Prix with a 64 card deck earlier this year.

Ben Rubin - 64 Card Blue Abzan

A lot of the game’s greatest minds, myself included, think that Ben Rubin is one of the best Magic players to ever play the game.

Rubin tried a few different decks leading up to the weekend of Grand Prix New York.

“I tried some control decks with Languish, but they weren’t impressing me. Then I tried a Red-White deck that wasn’t great. I really liked Lightning Axe and I thought it’d be good if I could discard Deathmist Raptor to it.”

A bit of brewing later and Rubin was starting to put together an entirely new Standard strategy.

“I really wanted to play with Radiant Flames and Thought-Knot Seer.”

Rubin wanted sweepers that were big enough to beat the more aggressive decks and small enough that they wouldn’t be killing the high toughness threats that he wanted to build his deck around.

The right mix of cards meant that Rubin could take full advantage of the delirium mechanic too.

We’re used to seeing ramp strategies with a very big top end, but Rubin’s deck didn’t need to be overly ambitious and could, instead, simply focus on card advantage and board control.

Rubin was still undefeated the last time I checked in with him and it’s beginning to look like his deck might be the real deal.

Ben Rubin - Rubin Red-Green

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