MagicTraders Articles

How to Prepare for a Grand Prix

Neal Oliver's picture

In an attempt to help contribute to the ever present question “How can I improve at Magic?” today I want to break down how to approach preparing for Grand Prix tournaments. This should be very helpful for any aspiring players looking to get to the Pro Tour. I’ll include some tips and tricks to help give you the best chance at spiking your next Grand Prix!

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Holiday Cube Draft with Tristan Killeen

Neal Oliver's picture

Lessons from GP Baltimore

Neal Oliver's picture

GP Baltimore was a unique experience for me. I went into the event with high hopes, as I felt like I knew exactly how to build a good Sealed deck in KTK. I thought I had a good chance of doing well in the Draft portion as well, since I’ve practiced at least a couple hundred Drafts of the set. Things were looking great after an 8-1 start Day 1, doing well with a pool that I thought was somewhat mediocre. All of a sudden, I just couldn’t win a match on Day 2, and ended up finishing outside the money. There were a lot of lessons along the way, and I’d like to tell you a series of these short lessons through this article.

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Competing in the World Magic Cup

Neal Oliver's picture

Hello everyone!

My time at the World Magic Cup playing for Team USA was an incredible experience, and one I won't soon forget. I had All-Star teammates Isaac Sears, Andrew Baeckstrom and Owen Turtenwald. We duked it out with the rest of the world and came out in 4th. It was a tough fight, and we won just enough matches and scraped by in pool play to make the Top 8. The testing process itself was quite intriguing, and I want to recreate for you how we arrived at our Team Unified Standard decks.

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Crafting Secret Plans in Ottawa

Neal Oliver's picture

Hi everyone!

I had an amazing trip to Ottawa, full of great times and Magic. You can read my report about the non-Magical journey on, but for now, let’s jump right into the Magic!

Here’s the list of cards I was handed after my sleep-in special:

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KTK #5 with Chris Akers

Neal Oliver's picture

KTK #4 with Ben Weitz

Neal Oliver's picture

Team Sealed in Nashville: 18th Place

Neal Oliver's picture

I recently had a blast playing Team Sealed at GP Nashville. I am on record saying that Team Sealed is the sweetest tournament Magic format. Not only do you get to plan with your friends, but as a Limited style it has way lower variance. You’ll almost always have three playable decks, since across twelve packs you rarely have that many unplayables. Certainly, good rares and uncommons will lead some decks a cut above the rest, but the more skilled team will generally win.

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KTK #2 with Sam Sherman

Neal Oliver's picture

KTK with fellow local player Sam Sherman!

How to Play Your Morphs

Neal Oliver's picture

I mentioned a while back that Morphs Khan’t Disappoint, but that we’d have to wait and see how they should be sequenced. I stated that correct sequencing would be dependent on both which morphs we have in hand and what the board state is. While this does hold true, I’ve practiced enough KTK limited to have a good grasp on which morphs to play first in different situations. Let’s look at some examples:

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