Pro Tour Dominaria is in the books… and it didn’t quite pan out like one would hope. There were 28 Goblin Chainwhirlers in the main decks of top 8. That’s 28 out of possible 32. Yes. It was bad.
This was Play Designs first big set and it didn’t quite pan out. They clearly have a problem with overemphasizing certain cards which warp the metagame around them. When first spoiled, Llanowar Elves was widely touted as the most important card in the set for Standard, so there needed to be a hoser. Sadly, that very same card has now hosed everything else as well.
… but some of us have tournaments to attend in the near future. And I don’t want to go in playing what everyone else is playing. I want to try to find deck advantage.
So, here’s a few ideas.
Monoblack seems to work. I haven’t done a lot of testing, but a good suite of removal and some hard to kill (for red) threats and were good. Probably throw in some card advantage the red decks can’t handle. Willy Edel had a pretty good looking deck for just this.
There might also be a bunch of decks in the lists of decks from the pro tour, that had a positive record against that deck, but there just weren’t enough of them to make a big enough splash. I mean, if you have a 70% match-up against BR, you’ll still do just 7-3 on average and if you don’t do well in the Draft rounds, that’s not going to be good enough.
How about that Enrage? Ramp into Ranging Raptors with your Llanowar Elves, so it want even matter that much if your Elves take the fall from the Chainwhirler. Ripjaw Raptor is quite nice as well. Or, how about Trapjaw Tyrant? How is that going to go down for the red decks, which might not have anything to remove it with?
Of course, this might just mean that they won’t play their Chainwhirlers, but at least you’ve completely blanked their card in that situation.
Of course, the problem with many plans is that they won’t work that well against other decks. Targetting a certain deck at a PT is different from targetting decks at GPs, as in GPs there will (in general) be a wider range of decks. At least in the early rounds. Although, I do remember playing in GP Stockholm right after PT Khans of Tarkir and just playing against Abzan through-out the day (there was one Jeskai deck).