Semifinals: Thomas Graves vs. James Baker
Thomas Graves and his handful of cards after putting a Griselbrand into play.
James’ Thoughtseize took Exhume, leaving Show+and+Tell times two and Ponder, on the first turn, and James used the Ponder on his first turn. Those first turn plays were the only flurry of action for a good long while, save for an occasional Brainstorm or other cantrip. Both players armed themselves for the eventual unavoidable counterspell battle.
When it came on turn five or so, Reanimate targeting Griselbrand (placed there by Entomb) was quickly Force of Willed by the Stoneblade pilot, who dropped Jace, the Mind Sculptor the following turn. Thomas, facing only a tapped out opponent now with two cards in hand, used Reanimate targeting Griselbrand to get the 7/7 onto the battlefield and put himself to 11 life. Jace used the -1 Unsummon ability, to which Thomas drew seven in response (falling to 4 in the process). After James’ fifth land came down, another Entomb found Tidespout+Tyrant before the turn ended.
Exhume the following turn brought the Djinn back into play, which would make every spell James played from then on Boomerang after Boomerang. Show+and+Tell is in fact a spell, and that bounced the Jace before both Batterskull and Griselbrand came down off the Urza’s Saga sorcery. Jace returned to the stack… but Force+of+Will countering the Jace also bounced the Germ token in the process thanks to the Tyrant.
A turn later, Thomas fell to 4. A turn later, James scooped.
Thomas 1, James 0.
James Baker set to battle in the semifinals.
James led game two with a slow start, just a fetchland on turn one and turn two, while Thomas had a slightly more explosive draw of turn one Careful+Study discarding Griselbrand and Thoughtseize into turn two Thoughtseize targeting James. The Stonebladesman used Flusterstorm in response to avoid having his thoughts seized, so Thomas proceeded by also casting Ponder.
James found a Thoughtseize of his own to target Thomas, who showed off his hand of double Exhume, Lotus+Petal, Force+of+Will, Flusterstorm. What a stacked hand! The Force hit the bricks before James then cast Brainstorm with a fetchland in play to help combat the oncoming combo turn. The turn did come about the next turn, as City+of+Traitors helped Exhume resolve to bring back the previously mentioned Avacyn Restored mythic. Griselbrand immediately drew seven cards for Thomas, which also allowed Thoughtseize to snag James’ Snapcaster+Mage. The Rest in Peace James hand was already too late.
“It would have been good a few turns ago.”
Griselbrand dropped James from 17 to 10, whilst also gaining Thomas seven life. He immediately cashed in those life points Necropotence-style. This allowed Show+and+Tell to bring in Thomas’ Tidespout+Tyrant and James’ Vendilion+Clique. A Lotus+Petal then acted like a bounce spell, as did Ponder. Both bounced lands, and James scooped in response seeing the writing on the wall.
“That’s revenge for you beating me in the Swiss.”
Thomas 2, James 0.