Finals: Brad Nelson vs. Gerard Fabiano
Two legends of the Open Series meet up in the finals of the Players’ Championship! Both players are bringing Sultai Reanimator to the table, which player will take home the trophy?
Gerard considers his play.
Gerard’s Forest kicked things off but Brad made the first play with a Thoughtseize off a Swamp, taking away an Eidolon of Blossoms form his opponent. Gerard made Satyr Wayfinder on two but bricked on a land as Brad had a two-drop of his own, Sylvan Caryatid. Gerard bluff attacked and Brad called with his 0/3 and Gerard passed after playing a land. Brad played a Courser of Kruphix and played an Evolving Wilds, with the life trigger on the stack, Gerard delved to use a Murderous Cut on the Courser, leading Brad to sacrifice the Wilds for a Forest to get the life point.
Once the Courser was dead, Gerard attacked for 1 and passed with no fourth land drop. Brad played a Temple of Malady and a Whip of Erebos, passed, and took another hit from the 1/1. Gerard added a Forest to his board, but Brad landed a Soul of Innistrad. Gerard found a Caryatid of his own and took a hit from the Soul on Brad’s turn, leading to a Wayfinder of his own. Gerard tapped out for a Doomwake Giant, killing Brad’s Wayfinder. At the end step, Brad activated the Soul to get his creatures back, untapped, and attacked Gerard down to 7 while he went up to 30.
Brad played his Wayfinder again, getting a land this time, and shipped the turn. Gerard went to 6 to play his own Whip, prompting Brad to respond with a Murderous Cut on the Doomwake Giant. Gerard played another land and passed with no other actions. Brad fired off a Sultai Charm on the opposing Whip at Gerard’s end step, untapped, used his Whip to get Sidisi, Brood Tyrant back, and attacked with his team, getting a Zombie off the Sidisi trigger, knocking Gerard down to 2. Brad ended his turn by playing Pharika, God of Affliction. Gerard looked at his next draw and said, “good game.”
Brad 1, Gerrard 0
Gerard, on a mulligan to six, led off with a Temple of Deceit as Brad matched with a Temple of Malady. Gerard fired off a Thoughtseize to rip a Pharika, God of Affliction from Brad’s hand. Both players went land-go for a sequence with Brad landing a Courser of Kruphix on his third turn. Gerard’s fourth turn brought him an Eidolon of Blossoms, but it died to a Reclamation Sage from Brad, who got in for 2 points of damage.
Gerard played a land and passed and Brad knocked him down to 12 with his team before adding a second Courser to his board, leading to a land off the top to go up to 23. Gerard used a Sultai Charm at the end step to draw two cards and pitch another. Gerard found a new Eidolon to get him a card and passed after finding a temple. Brad considered his options before sending his three creatures into the red zone and Gerard offered the trade on the Sage with his Eidolon then used a murderous Cut on one of the Coursers to fall to 10. Brad played his sixth land after combat and dropped the Soul of Innistrad.
Gerard tanked before using a Sultai Charm on the Soul and went to 8 to use a Read the Bones. Brad went to 25 with a land, attacked Gerard to 6 and used a Thoughtseize to take a Treasure Cruise from Gerard’s hand., falling to 23. Gerard played his known Caryatid and Brad exiled his Soul to get three creatures back, including Pharika and a Reclamation Sage. Brad hit Gerard for 2 more and played Hornet Queen, but Gerard used his Disdainful Stroke to prevent the swarm of insects from hitting the board.
Gerard landed Kiora, the Crashing Wave and opted to draw a card with the -1 before passing. Brad drew a Whip of Erebos off the top and Gerard responded by killing the Courser with a Murderous Cut in the draw step, leading Brad to play a replacement Courser and Pharika. Gerard bubbled the Courser with a Kiora and shipped the turn. Brad pointed a Hero’s Downfall at the Kiora to kill it off and played his Whip, but Gerard stopped it with a Negate. Gerard took a draw and passed back as Brad got a land off the top with Courser and resolved Sidisi, missing on the Zombie reveal. Brad deployed Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver and a Satyr Wayfinder, getting a Mana Confluence and triggering Sidisi, then bashed in with his God and the Courser. Gerard blocked the Courser with his Caryatid and strived Silence the Believers to exile Sidisi and Pharika to stay alive.
Gerard dropped a Wayfinder and a Caryatid before killing Ashiok with a Hero’s Downfall. Brad attacked Gerard to 4 after he traded his Wayfinder for Brad’s, and Brad ended his turn with a Reclamation Sage for just the 2/1 body. Gerard looked at his next card and scooped up his cards.
Brad 2, Gerard 0
Brad deals with a troublesome permanent.
The third game opened with Opulent Palaces for both players and Gerard leading with the Thoughtseize this time, taking Brad’s own Thoughtseize, and a Windswept Heath. Brad opted for a Temple of Malady as Gerard fetched up a Forest, leading to a Sylvan Caryatid, but no third land drop. Brad slammed his Pharika on the third turn leading to another Thoughtseize from Gerard, who took the Kiora from Brad’s grip.
This time Brad had no action on his turn other than an Opulent Palace and Gerard used a third Thoughtseize to take Brad’s Sidisi, though Brad made a Snake with his God at the end of the turn, which dropped him to 12 on the next attack. Brad went with an Ashiok and exiled Gerard’s top three cards before adding a temple and passing. Gerard landed an Ashiok of his own and passed. Brad’s Ashiok went up and the Snake took Gerard to 11. Brad ended his turn with a Doomwake Giant and passed. Gerard played a Caryatid of Brad’s from his Planeswalker and played a Pharika of his own.
Brad played an Eidolon of Blossoms from his Ashiok, getting to draw a card, then played a Courser to get another card and attacked with his Giant at Ashiok, and his other creatures at Gerard. Gerard fell to 6 and lost his Planeswalker before the turn was over. Gerard played an Opulent Palace and passed the turn back.
Brad went to 22 off a land from the top and started his turn with a Whip of Erebos, getting him a card and shrinking Gerard’s team at the same time. A Wayfinder got Brad another land and pushed his team into the red zone. Gerard made his blocks and used a Silence the Believers on the God, falling to 2, while Brad went to 31. He wrapped up his turn with a +2 from Ashiok. Gerard glanced at his next draw and extended the hand.
Brad 3, Gerard 0