Pro Tour winner and TOGIT superstar Osyp Lebedowicz has already shown he's a master of the Block Constructed format, and coming into this weekend noted Magic pundit Josh Ravitz gave him fifty-fifty odds of making the top 8. Michael Kuhman probably could have gotten 1000-1 coming into the weekend that he would not make the finals, and in the end it would have been a great bet. His Big Red deck has allowed him to survive play mistake after play mistake on his way to a huge payout as both top amateur and at least second place.
"Look, do me a favor, okay?" asked Osyp, as the players were settling into the Feature Match area. " Mess up against me like you did last time, so that this match is easy. I need the extra Pro Tour point for the end of the year payout."
"I have been so bad this tournament," Kuhman admitted. " Like, I've messed up against probably every opponent today, but I'm still in the finals. That just proves my deck is amazing."
Osyp got out to his usual fast start, forcing a chump block on turn 2 from a Slith Firewalker as he swung with a 7/2 Frogmite on the third turn. Aether Vial at the end of Kuhman's next turn put Atog into play with Kuhman tapped out, and the Atog plus a bunch of sacrificed artifacts and life loss from Disciple of the Vault dropped Kuhman to -1 life. We hear turn 4 kills are pretty good in most Block Constructed environments, and this one is no different.
In Game 2, a turn 1 Vial from Osyp died to Shatter, while a second turn Ravager met its end from an Electrostatic Bolt and Kuhman complicated matters further by casting a fourth turn Arc-Slogger off of a Seething Song. Shrapnel Blast made certain the electric beast didn't stick around to do anything, as the game devolved into a battle of removal from both sides. Luckily for Osyp, Kuhman stalled on three land, turning what looked like a hot start into a real problem. Granulate cleared away a Frogmite and an Arcbound Worker, but left Osyp with all of his lands and an Atog. A second Atog plus a Cranial Plating gave the TOGIT member a two-turn clock, and Kuhman simply conceded he couldn't stabilize the board, revealing his only card to be a Pulse of the Forge.
Lebedowicz 2 - Kuhman 0
"What was your opening hand?" asked Osyp. "One land, double Electrostatic Bolt and Shatter. I had to keep it because it was too good. I even drew the lands I needed for the first couple of turns, but it didn't matter."
"Wow, I don't think I'd risk it," admitted Lebedowicz. "But good job, my man. You made more money than me this weekend, anyway, so good for you."
Osyp Lebedowicz is the 2004 Grand Prix: Orlando champion!