Deck Tech: Bant Geist with Adam Cai
Adam Cai took an early loss in the Atlanta Legacy Open, but he's been battling back ever since. His weapon of choice? A Bant list he brewed up himself, featuring Standard powerhouse Geist of Saint Traft, which has impressed him ever since Charlotte. “During the last Invitational, I played in the Charlotte Legacy Open and I played Geist in the sideboard of Stoneblade,” he said. “It was really good whenever I resolved it against the mirror, or any other control matches.”
He noticed his win percentage tended to trend right alongside how quickly he could resolve Geist—turn 2 sounded just right. To do that, he moved toward a shell resembling traditional Maverick. “I think that Maverick is already really resilient in general, and blue added a lot to it,” Adam said. “I wanted to get Geist out on turn 2 a lot, so I'm playing three of them with six ramp spells.”
Adam Cai knows a thing or two about Legacy, and his Bant deck features Russian foils alongside Beta duals!
Packing Green Sun's Zenith, Adam naturally built a number of bullet green creatures into the decklist. Qasali Prdiemage has worked out the best so far, but the Cat isn't his only target, although it might be the most frequent. “Pridemage has been really good, but that's expected,” Adam said. The more unusual addition has been Eldric, Spymaster of Trest. “I haven't gotten to play with him a lot today, but in playtesting he's been good. He's especially great against Pox…all their removal isn't targeted, so if you can just keep a creature out with him that's usually enough.” Eldric also has no small amount of synergy with Geist!
Adam's sideboard has been especially strong so far, packing a number of bullets alongside a surprising package of counterspells. “I'm not playing any counters main, which people will see when they realize I'm playing a Maverick deck,” Adam said. “The sideboarded Spell Pierces can surprise them sometimes. Spell Pierce has been amazing in the board!”
Legacy's two top decks appear to be reasonable matchup. “U/R Delver is a toss-up—it can depend on if they get Price of Progress or not,” Adam said. “Against U/W I take out the Stoneforge package and bring in Stony Silence and Choke. If you resolve Choke, the pros are much better than the cons.” It's unusual to see Choke in a deck with Islands, but for Adam the card restricts his opponents far worse than himself. The Enlightened Tutor engine has also been a strong one. “I won a game on turn 2 against Dredge—I played Wheel of Sun and Moon, and he just scooped.”
Adam would happily play the deck again, so far. “Other than my loss, I've 2-0'd every single round,” he said with a grin. Geist of Saint Traft is the real deal!