Round 12: Brian Braun-Duin vs. Steve Mann
Two 2014 SCG Players' Championship competitors enter and only one will still be in contention for Top 8 at this year’s Season One Invitational. Which one will still have a chance to punch their ticket back to the Players' Championship, Brian Braun-Duin or Steve Mann?
Mann burns away BBD’s Seeker.
After shuffling up, both players keep their opening seven, with Braun-Duin on the play. The first turn is relatively unexciting, as both players start their turn ones’ with tapped lands and passes of the turn.
BBD plays his deck’s name sake card, Jeskai Ascendancy, followed by an attack for three from his Seeker. As his deck is curving out exactly how he would like, he confidently passes the turn back to Mann.
After his draw for the turn, Mann goes into the tank, but comes out in a fury, casting a Boon Satyr and a Crater’s Claws, targeting BBD’s Seeker of the Way, which due to the Ferocious ability, Shocks the Seeker dead. All BBD can do for his turn is play a Temple of Epiphany and summon forth a horde of Goblins with a Hordeling Outburst.
Mann keeps the aggression going, however, with a Stormbreath Dragon and an attack with it and his Boon Satyr. BBD trades two of the freshly summoned Goblins for Mann’s Boon Satyr, but takes four damage from the hasty Dragon. BBD has more Goblins to aide him, with another Hordling Outburst. After an attack by a lone Goblin, he casts Antcipate, triggering his Jeskai Ascendancy, in hopes of accelerating his gameplan. After all the triggers and draws resolve, he passes the turn back to Mann.
Mann continues to bring the beatdowns with a second Stormbreath Dragon, and attacks BBD for eight damage, putting his life total to eight overall, and dead next turn.
But luckily for BBD, he has a Jeskai Ascendancy in play. And as is common with the deck, BBD deals massive amounts of damage to Mann, by first playing a Goblin Rabblemaster, then attacking with all of his Goblins, followed by pointing a Lightning Strike at Mann’s face. Once the trigger from Jeskai Ascendancy pumps all his Goblins, BBD’s attack is enough for lethal, as he steals Game 1 from Mann and his duo of Stormbreath Dragons.
BBD Strikes for victory!
After sideboard, we begin Game 2 with Mann on the play. Both players keep their opening seven, and Mann leads off with a Haven of the Spirit Dragon, perhaps a sign of things to come later. BBD just plays his Mystic Monastery and passes.
As in Game 1, both players have a second turn play, as Mann leads with a Mana Confluence into Rattleclaw Mystic, whereas BBD responds on his turn with a Flooded Strand, a crack and fetch for an Island, followed by a Lightning Strike to kill Steve’s mana creature.
Mann’s follow up is a Heir of the Wilds, hoping to keep up the aggression, but he misses his third land drop, and has to pass the turn. BBD takes the time to cast and Anticipate, in hopes of finding some aggression to punish Mann for missing land drops.
Mann attacks with his Heir of Wilds on his fourth turn, but again misses his third land drop, and just has to pass the turn. BBD plays a Goblin Rabblemaster, trying to put the Goblins it creates to good use, as he did in Game 1.
Mann does hit his land drop, but it is a tapped Temple of Abandon, and his only play for the turn is a Crater’s Claw on BBD’s Goblin token. He leaves the Heir back to block, but those plans are for struck away with when BBD Lightning Strikes it on his turn. An attack with Goblin Rabblemaster and his cohort have put Mann on the back foot.
However, Mann has the answer he needs, casting Arc Lightning to kill both the Rabblemaster and his Goblin friend. At the end of his turn, however, BBD casts a Raise the Alarm, continuing to put the pressure on Mann and his missed land drops. BBD follows this up with a Hordeling Outburst on his turn, followed by an attack, continuing to press his advantage.
Mann finds his fourth land, and casts a Goblin Rabblemaster, hoping to block this onslaught of tokens with his 2/2. After attacking for 1, Mann reluctantly passes the turn back to BBD. However, before we get back to BBD’s turn, he has a Stoke the Flames to point at Mann and put him close to death. After an untap step, BBD unleashes a powerful Treasure Cruise, delving away his graveyard so that it is essentially Ancestral Recall. After an attack to put Mann to 1, BBD shows him the Wild Slash he drew from the Treasure Cruise and Mann extends his hand.
BBD wins the match, 2-0.