Ten Minute Magic (June 20, 2016) – 16 Year Old Wins MTG GP, Pro Points Race Heats Up
Join Joseph Dunlap and Ben Cottee in this week’s episode of Ten Minute Magic, a bi-weekly podcast format that highlights recent news in the world of Magic: The Gathering and looks at exceptional comments from recent content on Manaleak.com.
This is what’s going on in Magic: The Gathering this week…
1. 16 Year Old Wins Grand Prix
You may remember last month at Grand Prix Los Angeles, 13 year old Ethan Brown became the youngest Grand Prix finalist ever. Well, his fellow teen has gone one better. The past weekend at GP Columbus in what is considered the most skill intensive format – Legacy – 16 year old Clay Spicklemire took the whole thing down with Infect. With live coverage that weekend coming from GP Prague in Europe, it’s fair to say that the GP Columbus win has gone a little under the radar.
It’s not only coverage, however, that missed this achievement. While featuring a number of decks on StarCityGames including the winner of GP Prague, and Columbus finalist Joe Lossett, Adrian Sullivan’s article made no mention of this incredible win or even Clay’s decklist. Even across social media there was not much of a stir, and more remarkable still is that the final play of the Finals match should probably go down as one of the greatest of all time: 24 trample damage from a Noble Hierarch winning a long game against Miracles.
Clay’s achievements solidify why these younger players are such an important part of Magic at every level, and I feel the community and Pros do a disservice in not recognizing this accomplishment. From Ten Minute Magic and Manaleak.com, we say: Well done, Clay!
2. Sleep In Special Stirs Controversy
The sleep in special was first introduced by Tournament Organisers as a perk that allowed players in a sealed GP to pay so they didn’t have to turn up until later in the morning and construct their already registered pool. This is also a common practice at LGS pre-release events. It proved very popular and meant a few more precious hours sleep or the ability to arrive on a flight in the morning, or red eye flights.
. @PESmtg Why must I attend the Player Meeting if my decklist is turned in and I am not required to play until round 4? #GPColumbus
— David Ochoa (@_DavidOchoa) June 10, 2016
This was then expanded to players with byes for constructed tournaments, which garnered complaints, as if you had already submitted your decklist early you were just being charged to sleep longer and skip the players meeting. At GP Columbus, PES included the option for any player to submit their decklists electronically in advance, including those not participating in the sleep in special. This meant the only benefit to the sleep in special was literally paying to sleep longer.
certainly not my first time beating this drum…
— Sam Black (@SamuelHBlack) June 10, 2016
It broke the camel’s back and many pros, notably Todd Anderson and Sam Black, went on lengthy Twitter lambastes of not PES in particular, but the lamentable “value” in a sleep in special fee of upwards of $20. It wouldn’t be surprising if this gains traction and ultimately leads to either the removal of the sleep in special for constructed, or reduced fees overall.
3. How Much Eternal Masters (EMA) is There?
As is often the case, Wizards of the Coast haven’t told us exactly how much Eternal Masters product is in circulation. They sold it all to distributors, and like the Modern Masters printings of the past, no product would be available direct from Wizards at any point.
MM1 had a small print run, but distributors kept some back to bleed into the market slowly over time. In addition, there was the record breaking Vegas GP which opened a lot of product in one weekend. With MM2 there was the huge release weekend with effectively 4 GPs and a much larger print run.
From looking across the various finance commentators on StarCityGames and MTGPrice, it would seem the view is that the run was similar in size to MM1 (as Wizards had alluded to when it was announced), but no more product is being held back by distributors. With no GP product being opened, the amount of singles available in the secondary market appears to be even less than MM1. The time to get singles is now, with peak supply and bounce back on prices, which have dropped dramatically, expected to be swift and substantial.
4. GP Points Race Heats Up
As part of the piece on Fabrizio’s suspension in our last episode, we mentioned how open the race for GP Master has become – the player with the most Pro Points across all GPs in the year – and with it a World Champs slot. The competition is heating up.
With only three GPs since the suspension, there still isn’t a clear front-runner. Saito and Brian Braun-Duin are literally tied at 47 points, with the fourth tiebreaker, Planeswalker Points, being the current decider. Reid Duke is currently one point behind, and Seth Manfield 2 points behind. With only 3 GP’s left for the competitors, culminating in GP Sydney before the PT, every event counts as everyone plans for the team GP in Sao Paulo!
5. Popular Magic: The Gathering Articles This Week
- Is Abolishing The MTG Reserved List The Way Forward For Legacy And Vintage? by Chris Belfield
- “So What Do You Do For Fun?” – Magic: The Gathering, Mental Health – And Me, By Claire Stephenson
- Mental Magic: Anxiety, Fear, Doubt & Depression, And That’s OK, by Rebecca Rose
- A Comprehensive Beginner’s Guide to Magic: The Gathering Online (MTGO/MODO), by Kerry Meyerhoff (as featured on Draw 4 Podcast Episode 21)
Thank you for joining us in Ten Minute Magic. We would love to hear your feedback on the presentation, format, and length – as well as the topics discussed – so please leave a comment with your thoughts and we look forward to hearing from you.
Joseph and Ben