Quarterfinals: Michael Braverman vs. Michael Majors
The Top 8 includes a bunch of Delver and Miracle decks, this matchup is no different. Majors has made three Open Top 8s this year and is playing U/W/R Delver and is facing the older Braverman brother playing BUG Delver. Which Delver shell would advance to the semifinals?
Braverman kills off a Stoneforge Mystic.
Both kept their seven and Braverman led with an Underground Sea and no play. Majors went for a Delver of Secrets, but Braverman Dazed. Braverman replayed his land and dropped a Delver of his own. Majors Pondered and shuffled away the cards for a fresh rip and played a Wasteland and used it on Braverman’s Underground Sea. Braverman’s Delver did not flip, but he did find a Wasteland to blow up Major’s Volcanic Island then attacked for one. Majors had another Volcanic and passed with no play. Braverman’s Delver didn’t flip again but he did find a Verdant Catacombs and attacked again. Majors found a Tundra and played a Stoneforge Mystic that grabbed a Batterskull.
Braverman didn’t transform his Delver for third time in a row and cracked his fetch land to get a new draw and put an Underground Sea into play. He found a Bayou and used an Abrupt Decay on the Mystic then knocked Majors down to 17 with his Delver. Majors Brainstormed and played a Misty Rainforest and a Delver of Secrets and passed the turn. Braverman’s Delver stayed a 1/1, but attacked anyway and dropped Majors to 16. Braverman went to 18 after cracking a fetch land and got a Tropical Island then Pondered. After drawing he deployed another Delver and passed, Majors fetched up a Tundra at the end of the turn and used a Swords to Plowshares on one of the Delvers. Majors flipped his Delver with a Daze and sent it in to even the score at 16. Majors followed up his attack with a second SFM and got his Batterskull again after shuffling it away with an earlier Brainstorm.
Braverman was able to transform his Delver on a Daze, but Majors responded to the flip by killing it with a Lightning Bolt. Braverman drew the Daze and added a Polluted Delta to his mana base and resolved a Dark Confidant. Braverman fetched up a land used an Abrupt Decay on the SFM and passed. Majors attacked for three then played a True-Name Nemesis, Braverman tried to Daze, but Majors Dazed back. Braverman took five when Bob revealed a Force of Will and fell to 7. Braverman tried to sneak in damage with the great one, but Majors insta-blocked. Majors untapped and sent in the team to knock Braverman to 1 and passed. Braverman looked at three cards off a Brainstorm and scooped up his cards.
Majors 1, Braverman 0
Majors gets ready to send Delver into battle.
Braverman kept his seven while Majors showed a hand of six lands and threw it back for a suitable six. Braverman started things off with an Underground Sea off a fetch land and played a turn-1 Delver of Secrets. Majors opted to fetch up a Volcanic Island and Ponder. Braverman played Brainstorm in his upkeep, but Majors Dazed it, so Braverman’s Delver stayed a 1/1. Braverman dropped a Misty Rainforest and passed. Majors dropped another fetch land and passed back. Braverman revealed a Golgari Charm and transformed his Delver, played a Bayou and knocked Majors to 15 with his 3/2. Majors cracked his Scalding Tarn at end of turn for a Tundra, then drew for the turn and played a Delver of his own and a Volcanic Island.
Braverman bashed for three and added another fetch land to his board and resolved a Tarmogoyf before passing. Majors Brainstormed in his upkeep to look for a card to flip his Delver and succeeded by showing a Gitaxian Probe. Majors went into the tank for his next line of play and decided on paying the life to probe his opponent and played a second Delver then dropped a Wasteland and passed. Braverman used the -1/-1 on his charm at the end of the turn to kill the 1/1 Delver, untapped, and cast a Liliana of the Veil and forced Majors to sacrifice his flyer then bashed in for seven to knock him down to 2. Majors started his next turn looking for answers by casting Brainstorm and dropped to one when he fetched up … nothing. Majors conceded the game as he looked through his deck.
Both players kept seven and Majors led with a Volcanic Island and passed. Braverman opted to use a Wasteland on the Volcanic, so Majors played another. Braverman cast Thoughtseize, but Majors returned his land to Daze it. Majors decided to use a Wasteland on Braverman’s Underground Sea, leaving no player with a permanent. Braverman drew and fetched up a replacement Sea and went for another Thoughtseize, this one resolved. Braverman took a Stoneforge Mystic, leaving Majors with double Lightning Bolt, double True-Name Nemesis and the Volcanic Island. Majors replayed his dual land and passed. Braverman played a Tarmogoyf and Majors drew and passed. Braverman Pondered then sent in his 4/5 Tarmogoyf to drop Majors to 16.
Majors found a Misty Rainforest and considered his plays. During Braverman’s upkeep, Majors fetched up a Tundra and used a Swords to Plowshares on the Tarmogoyf to put Braverman at 21. Braverman drew and Brainstormed then dropped a Polluted Delta and played a Delver of Secrets, but it was killed off by a Lightning Bolt at end-of-turn.
Majors played a Wasteland and a Stoneforge Mystic that searched up a Batterskull and passed. Braverman considered action in his upkeep, but drew his card then used a Disfigure on the Mystic and shipped the turn. Majors untapped and Brainstormed then dropped a Tundra and passed. Majors used a Wasteland on Braverman’s Underground Sea during Braverman’s upkeep, so Braverman floated a blue and fetched up another Sea and drew a card, ignoring the floating mana. Braverman Brainstormed after drawing his card passed back.
Majors went for a True-Name Nemesis, but Braverman Brainstormed in response and let it resolve. Braverman played a Misty Rainforest then added a Tarmogoyf to his board before saying “go.” Majors cracked two fetch lands on his turn for a Tundra and a Volcanic Island and played Batterskull that resolved after some hesitation from Braverman. Majors knocked his opponent to 17 with his merfolk and passed. Braverman went to 16 to fetch a land then played a Deathrite Shaman and passed.
Majors attacked again with his Nemesis to tie up the score at 13 then used a Lightning Bolt on the Shaman and played a second True-Name Nemesis. Braverman got rid of the germ token with an Abrupt Decay at the end of turn and went for a Golgari Charm on his main phases, but Major’s last card was a Spell Pierce to counter it. Braverman tried to sneak in an attack, but Majors blocked with his Nemesis. Majors knocked Braverman down to 4 after equipping a Nemesis with the Batterskull. Braverman fired off another Golgari Charm so Majors Brainstormed in response, but didn’t find an answer and let one Nemesis die. Braverman looked at his hand and couldn’t find a solution and extended the hand.
Majors 2, Braverman 1