Daily Digest: Guardian Angels

There’s a very good chance that this exact deck won’t take home the glory at #SCGINVI. But that doesn’t matter. What matters is when someone does things their way and succeeds. Michael Majors highlights one great deck and performance that reminds us what this game is all about.

SCG Invitational in Columbus April 15-17!

Sometimes you just have a goal. Admittedly, I don’t know exactly what that was for Kyriakos Mavroulis this past weekend at the Modern Classic in #SCGBALT, but if it had anything to do with “jam a bunch of Angels and hate cards into my deck and smash my opponents,” then Mavroulis succeeded.

Part prison, part heavenly control, this R/W deck is looking to lock an opponent out with some combination of Leyline of Sanctity and Blood Moon while managing the battlefield and then bashing the opponent’s face in.

I have a feeling that Mavroulis really expected the Classic to be a welcoming party for Thopter Foundry. Guardian Seraph is an excellent answer for any decks going wide, particularly ones that might be killing their opponents with 1/1 tokens.

We all know what Blood Moon and Leyline of Sanctity are capable of doing for making an opponent’s life miserable, but the use of sweepers, Fogs, and even main deck Sudden Shocks can put a huge damper on decks like Affinity and Infect. Any attempts to move “all-in” on a key turn are going to be super-difficult against the interaction featured here.

While Linvala, Keeper of Silence and Baneslayer Angel are well-known and respected tools of their trades, the fun-of Sunblast Angel and Gisela, Blade of Goldnight look to be featured for style points. This doesn’t mean that these cards aren’t powerful, but I think this might have been part of that goal I mentioned before.

The sideboard largely doesn’t feature anything too crazy, but c’mon, Angel’s Grace? If I had to guess whether the intention here is for flavor or Scapeshift and Ad Nauseam hate, I’d probably guess the former first. That on-theme split second spell is complemented by your normal hate cards against creatures, graveyards, and artifacts.

This deck is just sweet. Oftentimes, competitive magic players can get a little pompous in their attitude towards cards being “strictly better.” The fact is, even cards that aren’t largely glorified as being top-tier options can be objectively very powerful.

Mavroulis wanted to win this weekend with something specific, and did. Well done.

SCG Invitational in Columbus April 15-17!