Today, for all CFB Pro subscribers, I’m putting it all out there. With no secrets, and no holding back, I’m going to tell you everything there is to tell about my preparation for the MTG Vegas Modern main event. Consider this the magician’s greatest secrets revealed (or something like that). And complete with deck lists!
I’m also hoping to convey the human element of preparing for a tournament. I think a lot of readers have the misconception that pros and sponsored players have unlimited resources. That we have easy access to every card we want, we’re tuned into the cutting edge technology for every strategy and we have countless hours with which to practice.
The truth is that all players need to balance conflicting priorities, and work with limited time and resources. I’m hopeful that a glimpse into my process will be helpful (or at least encouraging) if you ever have to work through these issues yourself for a future event.
So I’ve packed my bags and am ready to leave for Las Vegas, but haven’t yet locked in a deck choice. I have a short list of seven decks for which I’ve packed my cards, and I’ve left everything else at home. My final choice will depend on how much more I get to play in the last week before the tournament, how easily I can access the cards that I’m missing and any final inspiration or gut feelings I get at the last minute.
I have a pretty extensive Modern collection, but I haven’t kept it updated through the years of the pandemic. And I suspect that my situation isn’t unique. In particular, I think the chase mythic rares from Modern Horizons 2 will be expensive and difficult to come by on site in Vegas.
I do think I could lock down Urza’s Sagas, Ragavans and Solitudes if I put some time and money into the CFB Marketplace. But this is a little intimidating when I’m not even certain what deck I’d like to play! I also think it’s possible that I could borrow missing cards from other players, but that can have its own logistical issues (I’m not looking for any readers to step up with offers, but thank you anyway!).
In the end, I’m not ruling out the possibility that I’ll dust off the credit card and buy into any of the decks on this list. However, maybe card availability will be the tiebreaker I needed in order to lock in one of my old favorite archetypes.
As an aside, I think this phenomenon will lead to pre-Modern Horizons 2 archetypes like Burn and Tron being slightly overrepresented, at least on Day One of the event. Whatever deck I choose, I’m planning to play one or two extra dedicated sideboard cards for the Burn matchup.
In any case, the first two decks on my list are what I consider to be the “best” decks. In the hypothetical world where I had unlimited resources for practicing and obtaining cards, I suspect that one of these would give me the absolute peak chance of performing well.