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I decided to brave the reportedly blistering cold of Canada recently at GP Vancouver, but luckily was greeted with nothing more than an average Bay Area chill. In fact, the city itself was quite nice and felt a bit like downtown San Francisco. Not exactly a homecourt advantage, but I took this as a sign of a great weekend to come. I arrived the day before the tournament and made the responsible decision to play Theros draft instead of practice games of Standard, the format of the GP. I felt reasonably prepared for the most part. I was rewarded with a mediocre Red White heroic deck, but was able to 3-0 the draft by curving Shuhei Nakamura all-star Silent Artisan …
GP Sacramento was the last major Theros event in the US before Born of the Gods. With scores of online sealed events and countless practice drafts under my belt, I went in with high hopes, feeling good about my level of preparation. I can confidently say Theros is the best set since Innistrad, boasting a deep and rewarding limited format. The drafts are flexible, with a variety of speed not seen since triple Rise of the Eldrazi, where a board of one drops versus a board of eight drops could still be a competitive game. In some ways, the “build a threat” strategy of Theros reminds me of Rise drafts. As much as I love drafting, in order to get to draft, I’d have to make day 2, so I practiced quite a bit of sealed leading up to the event. Building radically different decks from round to round, I was pleasantly surprised when I found very few pools were simply unplayable. …
This Sealed Daily Event allowed for some interesting deck construction, since the power level was relatively low and even in my pool. Rather than being forced to play some of the set’s stronger cards, I was able to make a deck around having the best possible plan. Synergy decks are often best in circumstances like these when rares can’t carry you through the late game to victory. Enjoy, and see you at GP Sacramento!
During the sleepless nights and anxious hours before a PTQ, I figure out matchups, run plays in my head, and envision the sweet taste of victory. The anxiousness and excitement would prove sufficient stimulant to keep me from drifting to the Land of Nod, but the stimulant that time and again prevails is that elusive question: “Is Warleader’s Helix the right 15th card for my sideboard?”. Sideboarding is tough. You only get 15 slots in constructed. It is important to make them count. An established fan of limited, I sleep better when my sideboard is much larger than 15 cards. So let’s examine some limited sideboarding in Theros to get ready for GP Sacramento: