My pick of the week is Abzan Megamorph!
This is the exact decklist used by Yuuki Ichikawa to win Grand Prix Shangai and I think the deck is excellent. In fact, I used this deck list (minus one Tasigur) to go 3-0 in the most recent week of the Standard Super League. I can’t in good conscience recommend playing with 61 cards, since so many of the cards are high impact in so many matches. Reducing your chances of drawing a Siege Rhino off the top once you get the opponent to 3 life, or having a lower chance of hitting that crucial Drown in Sorrow against Atarka Red is totally unacceptable.
The second copy of Tasigur was an easy cut since I haven’t liked that card in previous builds of Abzan. It’s overrated. Its ability is sometimes worthwhile and sometimes not, there’s a random element to it since you can mill cards you don’t want, and you can’t even activate it at all if you have a Deathmist Raptor in the graveyard since it’s more powerful there than it is in your hand. In fact, I recommend cutting both Tasigurs for a Murderous Cut and playing a good, clean 60 cards.
This looks like your run-of-the-mill Abzan list with Satyr Wayfinder, Deathmist Raptor, and Den Protector shoehorned into it but frankly that’s what made it so attractive to me. It wasn’t a tricksy cool megamorph deck, it was just all good cards and using them for value. Satyr Wayfinder is a rock solid card in its own right, I used it in my league matches to block a Foundry Street Denizen one match and completely blank a Foul-Tongue Invocation in the next, all while smoothing my mana draws, putting Deathmist Raptors in my graveyard, fueling delve for Tasigur, and even giving me a wider selection of cards to return with Den Protector.
I feel strongly that playing an Abzan list that runs 4 Satyr Wayfinder and 4 Den Protector would already be a smart thing to do, and the cost of adding Deathmist Raptor to your deck is low while the upside in long grindy matchups is so high that it feels like an easy call. I’ll admit, though, that in a midrange mirror Deathmist Raptor is a bad card to draw in your opening hand. It can be acceptable late-game to play face down and bring back other Raptors you might have milled but that’s a huge mana investment for a couple of 3/3s. It’s tough, too, since you want to play four to maximize your chances of milling them but you also don’t want to draw them into your hand.
In summation, Elspeth, Sun’s Champion is still totally awesome and Abzan is a great deck. If you’re playing a Standard deck this weekend, I recommend you head into battle with both.
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