Finals: Michael Miller vs. Jim Davis
Jim got here by beating friend and travel partner, Danny Jessup, who was also on Sultai Control. Can Jim and Jeskai Aggro win his second trophy this Season or will Michael continue his winning ways as the top seed with Sultai Control?
The finals kicked off on Michael’s first-turn Thoughtseize, taking a Soulfire Grand Master, leaving Jim with two copies of Seeker of the Way and two copies of Goblin Rabblemaster, but only one land. Jim dropped his Temple of Triumph and passed leading Michael to go to 18 to play a Satyr Wayfinder, hitting on an Opulent Palace. Jim missed on his second land and passed the turn, taking one from the Wayfinder as Michael played his Palace.
Instead of discarding, Jim fired off a Wild Slash on Michael. Michael attacked for one and kept a card on top with his Temple of Silence. Jim drew and missed on land again, discarding an Outpost Siege. Jim fell to 17 from the Wayfinder and Michael landed Kiora, the Crashing Wave, drawing him an extra card and getting an extra land drop in a Swamp and Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth. Jim hit his land and deployed Seeker of the Way, but Michael killed it at the end step with a Murderous Cut.
Michael got in for one and upped Kiora as Jim played his second Seeker, leading Michael to Dig Through Timer at the end of the turn. Michael drew another card off Kiora and killed the Seeker with a Hero’s Downfall before dropping Jim to 15 from the Wayfinder. Jim whiffed on his draw once again and Michael drew some cards with Sultai Charm at the end step. The 1/1 beats continued as Kiora ticked up and Michael played another Wayfinder, hitting on a Temple of Malady he played.
Jim discard a Valorous Stance after missing on land and Michael kept using Kiora to draw and play lands. Michael dropped Jim to 12 and passed the turn. Jim found a Plains off the top and went for a Rabblemaster that died to a Downfall before combat. Michael used another Charm to draw more cards at the end step. Dylan knocked Jim to 10, upped Kiora, and resolved Ugin, the Spirit Dragon, hitting Jim for three. Jim went to 6 to play Mantis Rider and hit Michael for three, giving up on killing the Planeswalkers.
Michael killed the Rider with Bile Blight and dropped Jim to 1 after using Ugin and his 1/1s. Jim looked at his next card and picked up his permanents.
“I’d keep it again,” Jim said as he went to his sideboard.
Michael 1, Jim 0
Both players went to six cards and opened with tapped lands, though Jim did hit his second land drop on time this time. Michael had a Wayfinder that found a Temple of Malady, leaving an opening for Jim to resolve a Rabblemaster and a token that traded with the Wayfinder. Michael played a Swamp and passed as Jim sent his Goblins into the red zone. Jim played a post-combat Brimaz, King of Oreskos, but Michael had the Hero’s Downfall for the cat at the end step.
Michael bottomed his scry with the Temple of Malady and passed back with three untapped lands. Jim lost his Rabblemaster to another Downfall before combat, letting him get in for one, and resolve an Outpost Siege set to Khans. Michael had another Wayfinder find him a Temple of Mystery that he played and kept the top card before passing. Jim sent in his Goblin and traded with Michael’s Wayfinder. Jim played the Seeker of the Way from his Siege and passed the turn.
Michael simply played an Opulent Palace and passed as Jim fetched an Island at the end step, going to 19, enabling him to point a Stoke the Flames at Michael, dropping him to 11. The Siege revealed a Mantis Rider for Jim, who played it and sent both creatures into the red zone. Michael took the damage and fell to 6. Michael resolved a Crux of Fate to clear the creatures and passed the turn.
Jim attempted to rebuild with another Siege, also on Khans, and passed. Michael fetched an Island, falling to 5, and went for an Ugin and used -4 to clear away the Sieges. Jim slammed a Sarkhan and dropped Michael to 1 with it. Michael used Ugin to hit Jim for three then pointed a Hero’s Downfall at the Planeswalker, clearing the threat. Jim drew a card and considered his options before passing.
Michael dropped Jim to 13 with Ugin and passed, looking to fade burn spells. Jim played a Shivan Reef and shipped, going to 10 from the next hit from Ugin. Jim played a Seeker of the Way and passed. The Seeker died to Ugin and Jim found a Mantis Rider, but it didn’t make it to combat, falling to a Hero’s Downfall. Michael used Ugin’s ultimate, going to 8 and putting a land into play and seven cards in hand before passing. Jim delved seven for a Treasure Cruise, but didn’t get to draw as Michael had the Disdainful Stroke. Michael dropped Jim to 7 from Ugin and played his own one-mana Cruise, but Jim stopped it with his own Stroke.
Jim passed with no play and fell to 4 as Michael played a land and passed. Jim found a Temple of Epiphany and sent the card to the bottom before passing back. Michael put Jim at 1 with Ugin and passed back. Jim looked at his next card and showed a hand of lands as he extended the hand.
Michael 2, Jim 0