The Biggest Ass in Texas is a resident of Austin, where he works for a Customer Service Corporation.
He has qualified for the Pro Tour four times but has not made day two yet. He has played competitively since Stronghold and has many top 8's under his belt.
Well... I was going to play BUG. But I didn't. After four hours of sleep
and then a 3 1/2 hour drive (waking up at 4am), I did not think I would
perform well with a control deck. Half the field thought that BUG was the
way to go (if it wasn't half it was at least 1/3). I asked around at the
hotel, "Have a spare G/R deck on you?" The only spare deck someone had
was a R/B deck. It sounded better than anything else so I picked it
up. The guy was a friend of a friend, I still don't even know his
name. But, thanks!
The deck was pieced together out of what he had available. I scrounged up the Obliterates and Spiritmongers from the original friend, Brian Mutumbo, and I was off to play. Since this was the largest attended PTQ in Dallas it would be 8 rounds of swiss. Just wonderful.
Mason (my twin for the unitiated), had stated the day before (after losing several times to it) 'how many Ceta Storm decks do you expect to see anyway?'. This was to justify why his deck was still good even though it lost to the deck. Game 1 Dal went turn two Meteor STorm, Turn 3 Ceta Sanctuary. I've heard this called a combo before. Even though he saw lots of land, he ended up discarding more than necessary and I never missed a land drop. I raged him with kicker the turn before he was going to untap and kill me with Meteor Storm. Game two was very lopsided as my Thunderscape Battlemages showed up in force and destroyed each enchantment as it entered play. His deck has promise as shown by the top 8 at the PTQ at worlds.
G/W/U Snake Call
Game 1 was over rather quickly as he draws his hand and realizes he has a sideboarded card in his deck. We move on to game 2 with me sideboarding into a more anti-control deck as he had showed me the Gainsay and Prohibit that were switched around. This is a major mistake as I get bashed by G/W/U creatures such as Hippo, Treva, and Mystic Snake. In the third game, despite him savagely topdecking two calls in a row to get Mystic Snakes, I pull it out with Voids (three in my hand at one time) and then a well placed Yawgmoth's Agenda.
B/R (almost mirror)
Andrew's deck was slightly different, running Blazing Specters and Ghitu Fire. I dominate game one with Pyre Zombie as he has no way to deal with it main deck. He played first and put down his own Pyre Zombie on turn 3. I scorched it out of the game, put down my own and it just killed everything he played. The second and third games were very disappointing as my deck produced a very slow land draw in game 2, getting me to 5 land by turn 10, and never giving me land past 3 until it was a foregone conclusion. I was quite annoyed but Andrew is a good player (he ended up making top 8 this weekend and the previous) so it wasn't too harsh of a loss.
Jim is one of the nicest guys I played all day, as usual. We have matched off against each other before (2-1 total record, which he thought was in his favor when we discussed it while shuffling up). Since I hadn't playtested before, I didn't know what a total stomping I would give his deck. My draw was good, his was good, but Void for 2 on turn 5 gained me 4 cards. The lowest my life total was at in two games was 8. At one point a scary Shivan Wurm hit the table, but I just untapped, Voided for five, and next turn dropped a Spiritmonger. This was enough to have Jim packing up his hand.
I was down to six life this time. But I won this one in two. This configuration of R/B just destroys G/R. At the end of game two, two Spiritmongers were swinging for the win. 4-1 (thinking I have a chance now)
This match started out on the wrong foot immeadiately. Because the room was so crowded, each round I had asked my opponent to move to the back of the room where we would have more space to play. Mark's response was 'I'm fine here'. I'm a big guy, and sitting in a cramped place was not an appealing idea, so I asked again, and again, and finally he said yes. I win game one rather quickly, as my deck does what its supposed to do. The second and third games I don't draw land. In the third game I am at three mana when he plays Crosis, The Purger. Despite being a control deck, Mark consistently tapped out to do things on his turn. I was never able to capatalize on his poor play because of my mana problems. I guess that's Magic though. Later in the evening, Mark kept giving his unsolicited opinion about cards and decks and games being played that he was not involved in. The best one had to be, 'I won't even consider an Arena deck without Dega Sanctuary.'
Round 7 (I didn't drop because I didn't have anything else to do)
The first game I wreck him. It was quick. The second and third games I get to three mana and sit there as he draws answer after answer for the few cards I can play. The third loss in a row where my deck fails to deliver more than three land in the third and deciding game. I was frustrated at my deck, at my luck, but not at Kendall. If you're reading this Kendall, thanks for a good game.
One of the things I've noticed about this format, is that so many decks are viable. The deck that ended up winning was U/W/B with Sunscape Familiars. They proved surprisingly good against the U/G/R deck of his finals opponent, holding off Blurred Mongoose completely.
I'm not sure what I'll be playing this upcoming weekend here in Austin. I think it totally depends on who's coming and what cards I can borrow.
Until next time,
The Biggest Ass in Texas
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