Top 8 Profiles

Posted in Event Coverage on June 21, 2015

By Adam Styborski

Stybs has played Magic the world over, writing and drafting as part of the event coverage team and slinging Commander everywhere his decks will fit.

Learn more about Grand Prix Providence's Top 8 competitors by taking a look through their profiles!
 


Neal Sacks

Age: 24

Hometown: Lynnfield, MA

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
37th grand Prix Cleveland 2015; 70th Grand Prix Las Vegas 2015

What did you play this weekend, and why?
Abzan Aggro because Fleecemane Lion into Anafenza, the Foremost into Siege Rhino is the best curve in the format.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?
Rakshasa Deathdealer: Early game attacker, last game threat. What more could you ask for?

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?
Arashin Cleric: I only played mono-red twice, but the 1/3 body and 3 life made that matchup much easier. Drown in Sorrow actually had more applications.

What was the most interesting play you made so far this weekend?
I pumped Rakshasa Deathdealer to an 8/8 then used Dromoka's Command to make it 9/9 and fight a Dragonlord Atarka for the win.


Josh McClain

Age: 25

Hometown: Iowa City, IA

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Grand Prix Detroit 2013 winner; four total Grand Prix Top 8s

What did you play this weekend, and why?
Abzan Megamorph. Mike Sigrist said it was good.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?
Den Protector: Between the evasion and the ability to rebuy cards, it does everything you could ever want.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?
Ultimate Price: People are trying to cast giant creatures. Killing them for two mana is great.

What was the most interesting play you made so far this weekend?
Using a single Den Protector to get back two more Den Protectors to attack through an army of 0/3s and 1/1s.


Raeef Istfan

Age: 25

Hometown: Westwood, MA

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Day 2 at grand Prix Atlantic City 2015 and Grand Prix Boston-Worcester 2012

What did you play this weekend, and why?
Red-Green Devotion: Been playing some version of green devotion for two years now and it is finally good!

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?
Dragonlord Atarka: Gives the deck unbeatable draws.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?
The fourth copy of Xenagos, the Reveler: It’s really good on turn three.

What was the most interesting play you made so far this weekend?
Top deck Dragonlord Atarka, Hornet Queen, and Ugin, the Spirit Dragon.


Pedro Carvalho

Age: 28

Hometown: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
I top decked Cranial Plating once. Or twice.

What did you play this weekend, and why?
Sultai Whip because it’s a blast to play.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?
Satyr Wayfinder and Courser of Kruphix as a tandem.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?
Haven of the Spirit Dragon because it comes in almost every single match.

What was the most interesting play you made so far this weekend?
Thoughtseizing myself to Whip of Erebos Dragonlord Atarka into play.


Eric Severson

Age: 23 (As of yesterday!)

Hometown: Berkeley, CA

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Finalist Grand Prix Portland 2014. Six 11-4 finishes at other Grand Prix since then. Will be a Silver Pro if I win this tournament!

What did you play this weekend, and why?
Bant Megamorph: Did really well for me at Grand Prix Toronto and I only brough cards for this or Abzan, but I didn’t like Abzan in testing.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?
Disdainful Stroke: Went up ot three to help the Red-Green Devotion matchup. Never played it, but they countered a lot of Elspeth, Sun's Champions and finally an Ugin, the Spirit Dragon to win my last game.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?
Mastery of the Unseen: Going to three is great versus Esper Dragons but also the Abzan morph decks, who have cut down on Dromoka's Command. It lets you keep up Disdainful Stroke while developing your board.

What was the most interesting play you made so far this weekend?
Round 9 versus Ross Merriam. I curved Fleecemane Lion into morphed Rattleclaw Mystic. He played Anafenza, the Foremost which I attacked into with the Lion. He blocked, not realizing I coul dunmorph, make five mana, and monstrous to blow him our in combat.


Sky Mason

Age: 21

Hometown: North Attleboro, MA

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Winning Grand Prix Trials and judging as an L2.

What did you play this weekend, and why?
Red-Green Devotion: It beats Abzan very hard and had the best late game draws.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?
Ugin, the Spirit Dragon: No one expected it and it took over matches with ease.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?
Nissa, Worldwaker: It helped some grindy match-ups by using Ugin, the Spirit Dragon to clear a path for her 4/4 lands.

What was the most interesting play you made so far this weekend?
Turn four Dragonlord Atarka to win game one of my win-and-in.


Oliver Tiu

Age: 17

Hometown: Cambridge, MA

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Went 2-2 at FNM.

What did you play this weekend, and why?
“Green-Black Dragon Morph” because people tell me it’s a bad deck.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?
Dragonlord Ojutai because it’s not very fair.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?
Drown in Sorrow because I don’t like mono-red.

What was the most interesting play you made so far this weekend?
Using Dragonlord Silumgar on a Goblin token.


Steve Rubin

Age: 23

Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA

Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Two Grand Prix Top 8s

What did you play this weekend, and why?
Red-Green Dragons: Good against Abzan and also better than Red-Green Devotion against control.

What was the best card in your main deck, and why?
Elvish Mystic: It lets me play from ahead.

What was the best card out of your sideboard, and why?
Roast: Going up to four is critical against green decks.

What was the most interesting play you made so far this weekend?

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