The 6-0 Drafters of Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan

Posted in Event Coverage on February 3, 2018

By Chapman Sim

Yesterday, an astounding 58 players went undefeated in their first draft. Today, seven of them did wonders again, winning out their second draft to achieve the perfect 6-0 record for the Draft portion. Let's hunt down these brilliant players and have them share with us how to get better at Rivals of Ixalan Booster Draft. We'll take a look at their winning decklists, and perhaps gain some insight about the Rivals of Ixalan Limited format.

Eliott Boussaud

Eliott Boussaud is a 28-year-old French player who has three Grand Prix Top 8s, including a win at Grand Prix Prague 2015. He also finished 11-5 at Pro Tour Ixalan, earning an invitation for Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan. He was able to draft two removal-heavy decks, which made it possible to stave off early offense while taking over the late game with his stronger threats, such as quadruple Juzam Djinns (Dusk Charger)!

Eliott Boussaud's White-Black

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 1 (3-0)

Eliott Boussaud's Blue-Black Ascend

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 2 (3-0)

Jean-Emmanuel Depraz

Interestingly, Jean-Emmanuel Depraz had the same route to success as Boussaud. Also from France, Depraz was a Grand Prix winner as well. Drafting White-Black in Pod 1 and then Blue-Black in Pod 2, he was also able to achieve the home run. To make things even more coincidental, both players also had Nezahal, Primal Tide!

Both players also felt that Black was one of the strongest colors in the new environment, a sentiment which was echoed by several other 6-0 drafters.

Jean-Emmanuel Depraz's White-Black

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 1 (3-0)

Jean-Emmanuel Depraz's Blue-Black Ascend

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 2 (3-0)

Andrea Mengucci

Two-time Pro Tour Top 8 competitor and Gold pro Andrea Mengucci had done it again! Playtesting intensively with his teammates from team Connected Company and team MTG Mint Card, he was able to acquire enough knowledge to bulldoze through the Draft portion with two very similar White-Black Vampire decks! Did they break the format this time?

"Yes, we sort of did," he said. "White-Black is the best color combination because it is so deep. You don't really need specific cards and our strategy was to pick all kinds of removal spells extremely high and then hope to table Snubhorn Sentry and chickens."

Chickens?

"Yea, the 2/5 dinosaur-bird is what we call a chicken," he explained. "Basically, Calcano is really good in Limited, and he found out that Sun-Crested Pterodon was insane. Calc even started to splash it in nonwhite decks. He had chickens in every deck, and now our whole team has the chickens too."

Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

Andrea Mengucci's White-Black

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 1 (3-0)

Andrea Mengucci's White-Black

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 2 (3-0)

Jon Stern


Jon Stern showcased his history of experience at the Pro Tour through this weekend's draft rounds, earning an undefeated record in the Limited portion of the tournament.

Lurking at the top of the standings all weekend, Massdrop West's Jon Stern was well-poised to make his very first Pro Tour Top 8. Both his draft decks were probably the best of the lot, a textbook Red-Green Dinosaurs deck and a Blue-Green Merfolk deck with all the goodies you could possibly ask for.

What can we tell you about the Red-Green Dinosaur deck? It's absolutely bonkers! Double Raging Regisaur and double Raging Swordtooth highlighted Stern's exemplary deck.

Going 6-0 in the Draft portion certainly gave him a lot of motivation and confidence for the last few rounds of Modern, and he would need a couple more wins if he wished to advance to Sunday.

Jon Stern's Red-Green

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 1 (3-0)

Jon Stern's Blue-Green

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 2 (3-0)

Pascal Vieren

Pascal Vieren of Cardmarket is a Silver pro who has two Grand Prix Top 8s. Not only did he crush the Draft portion, but he also rattled off enough wins in Modern mid-way through Saturday to be among the first two players to lock up a Top 8 spot.

Pascal Vieren's Blue-Green

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 1 (3-0)

Pascal Vieren's White-Black

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 2 (3-0)

Elias Watsfeldt

Elias Watsfeldt, just like all the players on this list, had lots of experience on the circuit. With four Grand Prix Top 8s under his belt, he qualified for Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan by finishing 11-5 at Pro Tour Ixalan. Seeing how he was doing well all weekend, it would seem like Ixalan block was his forte!

Let's take a look at his Red-Green Dinosaur deck and his Blue-Green Merfolk deck!

Elias Watsfeldt's Red-Green

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 1 (3-0)

Elias Watsfeldt's Blue-Green

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 2 (3-0)

Mattia Zapparoli

Last but not least, the seventh and final player who went 6-0 was Mattia Zapparoli. As the least experienced the pack—this was Zapparoli's first Pro Tour—it was stunning to see him zoom past the Booster Draft rounds unimpeded! Unfortunately, due to his poor showing in the Modern rounds, he won't be making the Top 8, but he will at the very least be going home with a feat of strength unlocked.

"Going 6-0 at my first Pro Tour is simply amazing," Zapparoli said. "It made my first Pro Tour really memorable!"

Mattia Zapparoli's White-Black

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 1 (3-0)

Mattia Zapparoli's Grixis

Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan – Draft 2 (3-0)

This marks the second of three Pro Tours in the 2017-18 season that count towards the Draft Master title, which awards the person who earns the most match points in individual-format Pro Tour Booster Draft rounds a spot in the 2018 Magic World Championship. Elias Watsfeldt currently leads the race by a comfortable six match points.

First Last Nationality Match Points
Elias Watsfeldt Sweden 36
Craig Wescoe United States 30
Alexander Hayne Canada 30
Pascal Vieren Belgium 30
Zile Yao China 27
Ari Lax United States 27
Reid Duke United States 27
Ivan Floch Slovakia 27
Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa Brazil 27
Kentaro Yamamoto Japan 27
Martin Dang Denmark 27
Arne Huschenbeth Germany 27
Jarvis Yu United States 27
Luis Salvatto Argentina 27
Bernardo Santos Portugal 27
Andrea Mengucci Italy 27
Jon Stern Canada 27
Eliott Boussaud France 27

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