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Deck of the Day – Mono-White Humans

I’m going to preface this article by saying I don’t think that this deck is good. In fact, I think it’s actively bad. I wouldn’t recommend that anyone play it and don’t feel like it has a great place in the metagame.

So why, exactly, am I writing about it?

I’ve been wrong before. And I’m guaranteed to be wrong again.

And this guy Tom Ross just keeps finding a way to win with it! Throw in a 9-1 record at the Pro Tour with a slightly different version and maybe the deck is more playable than I thought.

The premise is still the same. You have a crazy low land count. 18 basic Plains is all that you’re working with here. There will be no color screw and it’s a rare game that you’ll get flooded.

Then there are 22 1-drop creatures, so the deck plays out nearly the same way in every game. Kytheon, Hero of Akros is the most powerful, with the ability to transform into a pretty solid planeswalker as early as turn 3, but it is also legendary. Not being able to have 2 in play at the same time when you’re trying to unload your hand quickly is a real downside. Town Gossipmonger and Thraben Inspector provide power and value for a single mana.

Expedition Envoy and Dragon Hunter are the filler 1-drops. They do what they do, they don’t do it especially well, and they don’t scale. Attacking for 2 is what you’re looking for, or more with a pump spell, and curving out is important.

Anointer of Champions doesn’t have 2 power, but it does make combat much more challenging for your opponents. Add vigilance and it becomes a powerhouse.

Knight of the White Orchid rewards you for the super low land count. You can keep a handful of your 1-land hands knowing that a single Knight will get you up to 3 lands in play, ready to cast your big cards, and catching you up on lost tempo.

 

These pump effects are the real MVPs and reward you for flooding out the board. Thalia’s Lieutenant is the big payoff, pumping your entire team and continuing to grow, and Always Watching is the card that makes this deck playable. You’re pumping your entire team and making sure you can play both offense and defense.

Declaration in Stone is the perfect piece of removal for a deck that’s getting aggressive, since your opponent won’t have time to cash it in. Gryff’s Boon gives you that additional reach if you didn’t have a Declaration to clear the way. In the late game, you should have 4 mana available to threaten to bring this back every turn, creating an evasive attacker that they’ll have to deal with every turn. This card was slightly weakened due to the exile clause on Spell Queller, but is still solid.

The only new card to make the main deck is a really interesting one. Stitcher’s Graft adds a ton of power for a small mana investment. At just a single mana to cast, it’s easy to slip one into play on turn 2 or 3 when you don’t have another creature. The cheap equip cost to grant an additional +3/+3 means that your creature should be able to rule the battlefield. This can get you through big blockers, survive sweepers, and close out a game.

Graft is additionally powerful on creatures with first strike or that have been given flying with Gryff’s Boon. If Town Gossipmonger is about to “chump attack” into a bigger blocker, equipping can be a huge swing. The real benefit comes from cards like Always Watching, as granting your creature vigilance completely negates the downside of the Graft, or with Kytheon transforming into Gideon. Gideon allows you to untap a creature, which is a nice combo.

You can also move the Graft around if you’re willing to sacrifice your measly 2/1s to force through that extra 5 damage. Keep in mind that if you have excess Clue tokens on the battlefield that you’re at huge risk of getting blown out by Tragic Arrogance. An opposing Arrogance can choose to keep your Clue token and the creature that’s equipped, having you destroy everything else on the battlefield. This will destroy the Graft, which technically unequips it, and will also force you to sacrifice your last creature.

Mono-White Humans may not be the best deck in the format, but it’s extremely fast and consistent. While it wouldn’t be my first choice to take into battle, following in the footsteps of Tom Ross has rarely been a bad choice.

Mono-White Humans

Tom Ross, Top 8 at the Invitational

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