Top 8 Players of Grand Prix Orlando 2018

Posted in Event Coverage on August 12, 2018

By Craig Jones

After 15 rounds of Standard at Grand Prix Orlando 2018 we were left with just eight players. Let's take a look at who they are, what was their weapon of choice, and which cards performed well for them over the weekend.


Name: Kyle Cooper

Age: 19

Occupation: Aftercare Monitor

Previous Magic accomplishments:

Day 2 Grand Prix Atlanta 2017.

What deck did you play this weekend, and why?

Mono-Red Flame of Keld. It was well positioned against Nexus (Turbo Fog).

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?

Wizard's Lightning. It is Lightning Bolt in Standard.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?

Hazoret. It attacks very well and comes in a lot.


Name: Adam Fox

Age: 32

Occupation: Self-employed

Previous Magic accomplishments:

Various Pro Tour appearances. Nothing notable.

What deck did you play this weekend, and why?

Grixis Midrange. Everything but Mono-Green felt beatable.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?

Glint-Sleeve Siphoner.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?

Chandra's Defeat. Very versatile.


Name: Gabriel Joglar

Age: 25

Occupation: Bartender

Previous Magic accomplishments:

Some Pro Tours, SCG Top 8 and random other stuff.

What deck did you play this weekend, and why?

UW Approach. It's good against the Nexus of Fate deck (Turbo Fog) and I have a good sideboard plan for red-black.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?

Teferi is the best planeswalker printed in a long time. (Seal Away is close second.)

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?

History of Benalia attacks other decks from other angles.


Name: Andrew Calderon

Age: 30

Occupation: PPG player

Previous Magic accomplishments:

Won GP Vegas Legacy. TCG Invitational finalist.

What deck did you play this weekend, and why?

Esper Control. I made the deck to beat RB and I did.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?

Torrential Gearhulk. It did the most work and had the most value this weekend.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?

Arguel's Blood Fast. It surprised me how much value both sides provided.


Name: Greg Sokol

Age: 28

Occupation: Magic Coach. Limited specialist ("I don't play constructed")

Previous Magic accomplishments:

Won an online PTQ a few months back.

What deck did you play this weekend, and why?

Anti-Red Black. Join 'em (with Harvesters)

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?

Aethersphere Harvester. 3/5 booty.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?

Lost Legacy. Silver bullets all day.


Name: Ian Plantz

Age: 25

Occupation: Technical Consultant @ Dell

Previous Magic accomplishments:

Two-time PPTQ Champion.

What deck did you play this weekend, and why?

GB Constrictor, because I feel it has a great Control and Turbo Fog matchup.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?

Thrashing Brontodon, because I destroyed a lot of Gift of Paradise and Search for Azcanta this weekend. It's also a wall versus red decks.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?

Duress, as the information and utility versus Control and Combo is great.


Name: Corey Burkhart

Age: 26

Occupation: Game Designer

Previous Magic accomplishments:

3 GP Top 8's. Member of team Face to Face games. Gold? Platinum? Pro. Who knows.

What deck did you play this weekend, and why?

UB Midrange. Has the Grixis interaction, but a better mana base. Shout out to former US National Champ Michael Jacob for helping me out with the mana/list.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?

Censor. I countered an unreal number of Teferi and Chandras with it. I also cycled into a Vraska's Contempt to an Angrath, the Flame-Chained stealing my Scarab God.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?

Spell Pierce. Shout out to MJ. 1 mana interaction is so key.


Name: Arseniy Egorov

Age: 29

Occupation: Magic: the Gathering judge

Previous Magic accomplishments:

25th Anniversary Pro Tour.

What deck did you play this weekend, and why?

Grixis Control. Dmitry Butakov was playing the same deck this weekend in Brussels, after the PT. I asked him what he would recommend and he sent me this list. It's good against current meta and has good answers against Turns (Turbo Fog).

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?

Arguel's Blood Fast clearly MVP. It helps to stabilize vs Aggro decks (especially with The Scarab God) and it gives you tons of fuel vs Control and Combo.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?

Duress. All matches I sided it in I drew all three and won.

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