TOP 8 PROFILES

Posted in GRAND PRIX ORLANDO 2014 - COVERAGE - EVENTS on October 6, 2014

By Wizards of the Coast

After many rounds of Swiss and some great games of Magic, the Top 8 for Grand Prix Orlando 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.


Ian Farnung

Age: 26
Hometown: Chicago, IL
Occupation: Full-Time Dad; Mind Sculptor

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Top 4 Grand Prix Sao Paulo

What was your record in Sealed? What did you play? What was the hardest decision in your build?
9-0, Abzan: How many cheap, bad cards to play.

What was your record in Draft 1? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
1-2, White-Green.

What was your record in Draft 2? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0, Simic Morph Combo. Icefeather Aven is very good.

Which Khans of Tarkir card exceeded your expectations in Limited, and why?
Secret Plans was very good with sixteen morphs.

Tuesdays or Thursdays, and why?
No comment.


Artur Villela

Age: 32
Hometown: Juiz de Fora, Brazil
Occupation: Gamer

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Conceded in the finals of a Grand Prix to a friend.

What was your record in Sealed? What did you play? What was the hardest decision in your build?
7-2, played Sultai splashing white-red. I had to decide whether I wanted to play the best spells I had or a mediocre three-color deck.

What was your record in Draft 1? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0. Played Sultai morph.

What was your record in Draft 2? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0. Played white-green. First picked Herald of Anafenza. The card is pretty good. It seemed like an obvious choice.

Which Khans of Tarkir card exceeded your expectations in Limited, and why?
Incremental Growth. I was pretty sure it was going to be good. I had no idea it could be as good as it was for me.

Tuesdays or Thursdays, and why?
Tuesday. It's usually more quiet and peaceful than Thursdays.


Sol Malka

Age: 40
Hometown: Born in Hollywood, FL; residing in Atlanta, GA for 17 years.
Occupation: Operations Research; occasional Nightlight Promotions

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Winner, Grand Prix Tampa 2002. Built some black-green deck that's 50-50 vs. everything that people are still playing 15 years later.

What was your record in Sealed? What did you play? What was the hardest decision in your build?
8-1, Mardu. Sided out all but three red cards every round to tighten up the mana.

What was your record in Draft 1? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0, Blue-Black with sixteen lands (all basic) and fliers. Took Mardu Ascendancy from a weak pack, then abandoned it when blue kept coming.

What was your record in Draft 2? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
2-1. Jeskai. First pick Mantis Rider: Swings races like few other cards can. Clearly the best card. It was one of only two blue cards in my fourty to ensure consistency.

Which Khans of Tarkir card exceeded your expectations in Limited, and why?
Rakshasa's Secret. Mind Rot was always good. Mind Rot plus Black Lotus (in a delve deck) equals broken.

Tuesdays or Thursdays, and why?
Tuesdays' Free pizza and drinks night from 9 to 10 PM at Buckhead.


Eugene Hwang

Age: 29
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Occupation: Data Analyst

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Top 8 Grand Prix Vancouver 2014,Top 16 Grand Prix Providence 2013,and a bunch of GP min cashes.

What was your record in Sealed? What did you play? What was the hardest decision in your build?
8-1, played Abzan splashing Butcher of the Horde and Riverwheel Aerialists. Hardest decision was choosing the ternary color (green vs blue).

What was your record in Draft 1? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
2-1, played 21 creature BGuw. I first-picked Ainok Bond-Kin, because it was monocolored and also happened to be the best card in the pack.

What was your record in Draft 2? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0. Played Sultai control. I first-picked Murderous Cut...once again because it was monoclored and the best card.

Which Khans of Tarkir card exceeded your expectations in Limited, and why?
It's a tie between Shambling Attendants and Dazzling Ramparts. Both looked overcosted to me, but the toughness is extremely impressive on both.

Tuesdays or Thursdays, and why?
Thursday has more letters, and more is always better.


Pierre-Christophe Mondon

Age: 30
Hometown: Columbus, Ohio
Occupation: Prop

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Lost PT Portland.

What was your record in Sealed? What did you play? What was the hardest decision in your build?
7-2. Played Mardu. Toughest decision was whether or not to drop and draft upon seeing my pool.

What was your record in Draft 1? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0, Mardu, Butcher of the Horde, because I thought it would be nice.

What was your record in Draft 2? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0, Abzan, Ainok Bond-Kin. Picked it because it turns out you can tap it to put a counter on it, thus giving it first strike. In addition, if you put counters on other creatures, they get first strike too. Go figure.

Which Khans of Tarkir card exceeded your expectations in Limited, and why?
Rotting Mastodon.

Tuesdays or Thursdays, and why?
Ian Gossett, undignified name drop.


Harry Corvese

Age: 26
Hometown: Ligonier, PA
Occupation: Currently Fun-Employed

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Top 8 of 3 GPs. 60 lifetime Pro Points.

What was your record in Sealed? What did you play? What was the hardest decision in your build?
8-1, Abzan splash Icefeather Aven. The hardest decision? Question: Should I splash a red morph? Answer: Nope.

What was your record in Draft 1? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0. Sultai, splash Anafenza, the Foremost. P1P1 was Anafenza, because I enjoy branching off from black/green.

What was your record in Draft 2? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
2-1. 5-color morphs. P1P1 Pine Walker – That guy is a house.

Which Khans of Tarkir card exceeded your expectations in Limited, and why?
Archers' Parapet. Creates parity well into the 4th and 5th turns of the game.

Tuesdays or Thursdays, and why?
Thursdays not close, Fantasy Football night.


Melissa DeTora

Age:
Hometown: Providence, RI
Occupation: Pro MTG player and writer at tcgplayer.com

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Top 8 GP Santiago, Top 8 PT Gatecrash

What was your record in Sealed? What did you play? What was the hardest decision in your build?
8-1, Sultai. Mostly UB, splashed G. Hardest decision was should I play straight 3 color with bad mana, or not?

What was your record in Draft 1? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0, Abzan, GW splashing black. Abzan Charm was my first pick. It was a cear first pick, the pack wasn't that good, and it's a card worth committing to three colors for.

What was your record in Draft 2? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
2-0-1, Abzan, BW splash G. Feat of Resistance was my first pick. It's a good start to the white Outlast deck.

Which Khans of Tarkir card exceeded your expectations in Limited, and why?
Rush of Battle. It looks bad because it's a Sorcery and expensive, but it's awesome, can be built around, and it wins games.


Frank Lepore

Age:
Hometown: St. Pete, FL
Occupation: Editor and Community Manager of tcgplayer.com. Streamer, supplier of laughs.

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
5K win. Community Cup team 2014.

What was your record in Sealed? What did you play? What was the hardest decision in your build?
8-1. 5 colors. I played every good card I had, had zero sideboard options, and eight nonbasicv lands. Trail of Mystery was MVP.

What was your record in Draft 1? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
3-0. I first-picked Master of Pearls because surprise Overrun seemed good. Also had High Sentinels of Arashin and splashed for blue in Abzan for Sagu Mauler.

What was your record in Draft 2? What did you play? What did you first-pick and why?
2-0-1. First-picked Sidisi, Brood Tyrant and went all in on Sultai. Couldn't splash the pack 3 Sarkhan, much as I wanted to.

Which Khans of Tarkir card exceeded your expectations in Limited, and why?
Ruthless Ripper. Incredibly versatile creature.

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