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Vidugiris Wins Third Grand Prix Title!

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Gaudenis Vidugiris is the Grand Prix Atlanta Champion!

Fighting through 904 other players, countless Griselbrands, numerous Snapcaster Mages, hordes of Goblins and Droves of Elves, Vidugiris took down his third Grand Prix title, just moments before jetting off to catch a plane.

Beyond Vidugiris' memorable third Grand Prix win, this weekend will also be remembered for yet another Sam Black concoction finding a hole in the format all the way to the Top 8 and for Griselbrand coming in with a roar, but leaving with a whimper after not a single copy made the Top 8. Oddly enough, Vidugiris had wanted to play Black's deck before the tournament, but was talked into playing RUG Delver by Black himself.

Atlanta will also be remembered for the diversity of the format, the dominance of RUG Delver, and for a breakout performance by Michael Majors, a young player who showed real talent on his way to the finals. Were it not for running into the Grand Prix master and his Nimble Mongoose in the finals, we might be congratulating him.

Congratulations once again to Grand Prix Atlanta Champion Gaudenis Vidugiris!

Stay tuned for live coverage on www.DailyMTG.com and www.GGSLive.com to find out!




Quarterfinals   Semifinals   Finals   Champion
1 Ben Stark   Fred Edelkamp, 2-1        
8 Fred Edelkamp   Gaudenis Vidugiris, 2-1
       
4 Gaudenis Vidugiris   Gaudenis Vidugiris, 2-0   Gaudenis Vidugiris, 2-1
5 J. Sawyer Lucy    
       
2 Daryl Ayers   Daryl Ayers, 2-0
7 Samuel Black   Michael Majors, 2-0
       
3 Michael Majors   Michael Majors, 2-0
6 Gerardo Fedon    




  Streaming video coverage of Grand Prix Atlanta provided by ggslive.com with Rashad Miller, Rich Hagon, Sheldon Menery, and Rusty Kubis. See full video archives at ggslive's YouTube channel.









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EVENT COVERAGE TWITTER

INFORMATION
 1.  Vidugiris, Gaudenis $3,500
 2.  Majors, Michael $2,300
 3.  Ayers, Daryl $1,500
 4.  Edelkamp, Fred $1,500
 5.  Stark, Ben $1,000
 6.  Lucy, J. Sawyer $1,000
 7.  Fedon, Gerardo $1,000
 8.  Black, Samuel $1,000
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Top 8 Decklists

by Event Coverage Staff


Gaudenis Vidugiris
Grand Prix Atlanta 2012 - Top 8

Daryl Ayers
Grand Prix Atlanta 2012 - Top 8

Gerardo Fedon
Grand Prix Atlanta 2012 - Top 8

Fred Edelkamp
Grand Prix Atlanta 2012 - Top 8



 

Top 8 Profiles

by Event Coverage Staff


Gaudenis Vidugiris

Age: 27
Hometown: New York
Occupation: Lawyer


Previous Magic Accomplishments:
2 PT Top 8s, 2 GP Wins

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
RUG - Sam told me to play it instead of his zombies deck

What’s your best matchup?
They are all close

What’s your worst matchup?
They are all close

How big of a factor was Reanimator in your preparation for this tournament?
Big



Fred Edelkamp

Age: 20
Hometown: Alexandria, VA
Occupation: Student


Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Two GP Top 64’s

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
VAPORBLADE!! Because I want to play Delver and Cawblade at the same time.

What’s your best matchup?
Reanimator of Burn

What’s your worst matchup?
Probably Maverick

How big of a factor was Reanimator in your preparation for this tournament?
Yes, I was going to play it to have fun, but didn’t have Show and Tell.



Gerardo Luis Fedon Sormiento

Age: 28
Hometown: Valencia, Venezuela
Occupation: Unemployed Electrical Engineer


Previous Magic Accomplishments:
L1 Judge since 2005

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Goblin Charbelcher. I like playing this kind of combo deck and my brother let me play it so it was free.

What’s your best matchup?
Not Force of Will

What’s your worst matchup?
Force of Will

How big of a factor was Reanimator in your preparation for this tournament?
No factor



Michael Majors

Age: 21
Hometown: August, GA
Occupation: Student


Previous Magic Accomplishments:
None

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Esper Stoneblade, Robbie Cordell told me to

What’s your best matchup?
Fair green decks

What’s your worst matchup?
The clock

How big of a factor was Reanimator in your preparation for this tournament?
Zero. Never played legacy before and was handed a deck Friday



Sam Black

Age: 30
Hometown: Madison, WI
Occupation: Writer


Previous Magic Accomplishments:
2nd US Nationals 2008. 1st Team Worlds 2008. 3rd PT Philadelphia

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Zombies -- Fun

What’s your best matchup?

What’s your worst matchup?

How big of a factor was Reanimator in your preparation for this tournament?
Same, but it’s not worth worrying too much about any particular deck in Legacy



Daryl Ayers

Age: 18
Hometown: Virginia Beach, VA
Occupation: Unemployed Ladies Man


Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Top 8 SCG Richmond 2011, No GP/PT

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
RUG, was going to audible at 3 am, but my friends wouldn’t let me. Thanks Conrow!

What’s your best matchup?
Stoneblade, Belcher, Tendrils, Reanimator

What’s your worst matchup?
Mirror, maybe Maverick. It’s close because of Submerge/Mind Harness

How big of a factor was Reanimator in your preparation for this tournament?
Nothing. Played the same amount of graveyard hate as normal. Reanimator gives up an edge in most matchups compared to Sneak and Show, but it’s a lot stronger against the other Griselbrand decks



J. Sawyer Lucy

Age: 26
Hometown: Chapel Hill
Occupation: Future law student


Previous Magic Accomplishments:
2 PTQ wins, 3 PT scrub-outs, 10th JSS Nationals

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Goblins with Thalia. It plays well versus other agro control decks and forces opponents to do more decision making than me. A lot of people have not played versus it and don’t know what is/isn’t important to deal with.

What’s your best matchup?
Elves

What’s your worst matchup?
Reanimator

How big of a factor was Reanimator in your preparation for this tournament?
Not much, I accepted it as a tough matchup



Ben Stark

Age: 28
Hometown: Tamarac
Occupation: None


Previous Magic Accomplishments:
PT Paris Champion. 3 PT top eights, 5 GP Top eights

What deck are you playing, and why did you choose it?
Maverick because Pat Cox told me to play it and LSV built it for me

What’s your best matchup?
RUG Delver

What’s your worst matchup?
Charbelcher/Ad Nauseum

How big of a factor was Reanimator in your preparation for this tournament?
We board more than usual



 

Quarterfinals: Gerardo Fedon vs. Michael Majors

by Blake Rasmussen


"Well, it's been a good tournament," Gerardo Fedon said while looking over Michael Major's deck list. His Belcher list could win as early as turn 1, but was very weak to Force of Will, which Majors had the full boat of.

Fedon was a newcomer to the Top 8 stage, quipping beforehand that the closest he had ever come to a Top 8 was sitting in the judge's chair.

Majors was also playing in his first major Top 8, but having watched him pilot his Esper Blade list, it was apparent he was adept with the deck. He also happen to have a very good matchup going for him.

Game 1

Fedon went for a Goblin Charbelcher on turn two off of several rituals and an Elvish Spirit Guide, but Majors had the Force of Will ready to go.

Gerardo Fedon knew he was in trouble with his quarterfinals matchup.

Majors spent the next few turns searching up Sword of Feast and Famine with Stoneforge Mystic and using Inquisition of Kozilek to strip Fedon of a ritual. Majors went through the motions, but from that point on, the game was never really in doubt.

Majors 1 – Fedon 0

Game 2

For his first few turns, Fedon looked at his hand, did some math and passed the turn without a play.

That just gave Majors time to cast Inquisition of Kozilek, revealing Empty the Warrens, Chrome Mox, Pyroblast, Elvish Spirit Guide, Tinder Wall, Pyrretic Ritual and Desperate Ritual. After working on the sequence of the hand, he chose to bin the Elvish Spirit Guide.

Michael Majors had all of the answers against his Belcher opponent.

Majors followed up with Ethersworn Canonist and a Sword of Feast and Famine, two cards that could make Fedon's life miserable.

And they did. A Disenchant killed Fedon's Chrome Mox and a Gitaxian Probe only revealed just how little Fedon could do. Force of Will, Brainstorm and another Cannonist looked nearly impossible to overcome.

"I had no chance against you," Fedon said, a smile on his face.

Majors 2 – Fedon 0



 

Quarterfinals: Gaudenis Vidugirs vs. Sawyer Lucy

by Blake Rasmussen


As they sat down for their quarterfinal matchup, Gaudenis Vidugiris noted that Goblins was the first deck he had played in a competitive tournament, and here he sat facing it at Grand Prix Atlanta. Since picking up the little red creatures, Vidugiris has found incredible success on both the Pro and the Grand Prix circuits, now looking for what would be his third Grand Prix victory.

Sawyer Lucy didn't have near the same resume, but his Thalia-Goblins list had bedeviled opponents all weekend. He thought his matchup against RUG Delver was pretty good, meaning the rookie could school the veteran if things went according to Lucy's plan.

Game 1

Lucy's first seven lacked any land, but his second was acceptable. Vidugiris started with a Delver of Secrets, which flipped immediately, and followed it up with a Scavenging Ooze, coming out faster than even his Goblin opponent.

But Lucy immediately tried to make things sticky for the RUG Delver player with an uncounterable (thanks to Cavern of Souls) Thalia, Guardian of Thraben.

Lightning Bolt cleared out the first Thalia, but Lucy had a second, even though he was now quite far behind on board. Goblins, however, was capable of catching up in a hurry.

Though his Goblins deck has been lightning quick all weekend, Sawyer Lucy quickly found himself behind in Game 1.

But all the while Vidugiris was plugging away with his Insectile Aberration and 3/3 Scavenging Ooze, meaning Lucy's life total was already in single digits.

Daze stopped a Goblin Matron, and when Vidugiris attacked again the next turn, Lucy scooped up his scant few permanents.

Vidugiris 1 – Lucy 0

Game 2

Another game, another mulligan for Lucy, but this time it resulted in a turn one Æther Vial. Or at least it would have if Force of Will hadn't stood in the way. Vidugiris also had the Daze for the second turn Goblin Piledriver. And just like that Lucy was out of gas.

On the RUG side of the board, Nimble Mongoose started the offensive while Ponder helped him dig for more action to make the Goblin player's life even more miserable. He even followed up with a Scavenging Ooze and Delver of Secrets.

A Goblin Ringleader was Lucy's first spell to resolve, but it only turned up a lonely Goblin Matron. Lucy 's follow up Relic of Progenitus and Pyrokinesis, however, turned put some life into the Goblin player's plan. Just two turns later, Lucy even resolved a Siege-Gang Commander to take, um, command of the board.

Vidugiris worked his cantrips trying to find an answer. He found a second Scavenging Ooze and a second Delver – which flipped immediately, of course – but still had to find a way through the commander.

The RUG team attacked in, taking advantage of Lucy being tapped out. A Thought Scour helped buff the Nimble Mongoose and keep the team alive. Lucy fell to seven on the attack.

Vidugiris, meanwhile, sat at a healthy 14 life with a Scavenging Ooze at the ready if needed.

Lucy searched with Goblin Matron, debating between the various Goblin lords before finally settling on the original, the king, Goblin King. The ability to Mountainwalk through Vidugiris' Volcanic Islands would be invaluable. He then attacked with his Commander and Ringleader to put life totals at 7 to 10.

At this point, the board looked like this:

Board State

Lucy flung a Goblin Token at the Insectile Aberration after chump blocking the Scavenging Ooze. He fell precipitously to four life, but was outside of Lightning Bolt range for the time being.

Lightning Bolt killed the Siege-Gang Commander, and Vidugiris even found another Nimble Mongoose to threaten quite a bit more than lethal the next turn. Lucy was in trouble if he couldn't put together 10 damage this very turn or find a way to keep a good portion of his team through the next attack.

He cast his Goblin King and followed with a Goblin Piledriver and, after contemplating his options, eventually chose not to attack.

That didn't deter Vidugiris from attacking with everything headlong into Lucy's defenses.

Gaudenis Vidugiris was fearless in the quarterfinals, repeatedly running his Nimble Mongoose and Scavenging Ooze into Lucy's Goblin horde.

Lucy took three damage after letting one Mongoose through, but ended up trading his Goblin Ringleader and Piledriver for the Ooze and one Mongoose. The Mongoose came in the next turn and traded with Lucy's remaining creatures.

But Vidugir's deck was good to him, producing a Tarmogoyf off the top. At a healthy 4/5, it was large enough to survive the Pyrokenesis sitting in Lucy's hand. With no way to kill the 'Goyf or block it, Lucy congratulated Vidugiris on moving on to the semifinals.

Vidugiris 2 – Lucy 0



 

Quarterfinals: Sam Black vs. Daryl Ayers

by Steve Sadin


At 3AM Saturday morning, Daryl Ayers got some pre-tournament jitters and wanted to audible into anything other than RUG Delver. Fortunately for Ayers, his friends wouldn't let him, and about 37 hours later he was rewarded with his first Grand Prix Top 8. But the sleep deprived Ayers' work is far from done, has he still has to win one more match in order to secure his first Pro Tour invitation...

While Ayers was able to find success with a tuned version of an established archetype, Pro Tour Philadelphia finalist Sam Black fought his way to the Top 8 with a completely unique deck that he's been working on (by himself) for the past few months.

Sam Black and Daryl Ayers

Whenever Sam would bring up the fact that he wanted to build a Legacy deck with Carrion Feeder, and Gravecrawler in it to one of his friends, they would shoot him a weird look, or laugh assuming he was telling some sort of joke.

But after his Carrion Feeders carried Sam Black to his fourth Grand Prix Top 8, it's become clear that Sam definitely wasn't joking.

Game One

Ayers passed his first turn without a play, before casting a Nimble Mongoose and a Stifle countering Black's Bloodstained Mire activation on turn two.

Sam had lands left in reserve, and was consequently able to Thoughtseize Ayers stripping a Tarmogoyf out of his opponent's hand, and leaving him with Stifle, Forked Bolt, and Spell Pierce – but it was clear that the Stifle had left him reeling.

Sam Black

On the next turn, Ayers responded to Black's Cabal Therapy with his freshly drawn Brainstorm. After Ayers put his cards back, Black opted to name Forked Bolt (which he knocked out of his opponent's hand), before casting a Carrion Feeder.

Ayers then added a second Nimble Mongoose to his side of the board, while Black continued building his engine with a Blood Artist.

But before Black could get anything substantial going, Ayers used a second Brainstorm to get himself to threshold, a Forked Bolt to leave Black with just a Carrion Feeder for a board, and a Delver of Secrets to help him get off to a quick one game lead.

Daryl Ayers 1 – Sam Black 0

Game Two

Sam began game two with a Carrion Feeder, a Bitterblossom, and two Gravecrawlers – but no matter what he did, Daryl was ready with an answer. A Grafdigger's Cage prevented any Gravecrawler shenanigans; a Force of Will countered the Bitterblossom; and Lightning Bolt plus Forked Bolt wiped away all of Sam's early threats.

Nimble Mongeese take quick wins from Black

And just like in the first game, a pair of Nimble Mongooses allowed Ayers to seal the deal before Black's deck could do anything impressive.

Daryl Ayers 2 – Sam Black 0



 

Quarterfinals: Ben Stark vs. Fred Edelkamp

by Ben Swartz


"You're deck is like half-Stoneblade half-Delver!" Ben Stark, the GW Maverick player, claimed while looking at his Fred Edelkamp's decklist.

The two players played already this tournament in the final round, with Stark defeating Edelkamp in two games. Stark was trying to position himself at the top of the standings thanks to the new play-draw rule where the highest seed gets to choose in each match. In reaching the top seed, he had nearly knocked Edelkamp out of the final tables, but the 36-pointer had squeaked in as the final seed, earning him a rematch with Stark.

Game One

Edelkamp, after a mulligan, started things off with a turn one Delver of Secrets. Stark attempted to cast a Fauna Shaman on his second turn but Edelkamp had a Force of Will to counter the pesky utility creature. While Edelkamp's Delver of Secrets did not transform, he did have a second Delver of Secrets.

A Qasali Pridemage, and, on the following turn, an Umezawa's Jitte allowed Stark to take advantage of the fact that Edelkamp had failed to transform his Delvers. Edelkamp was quickly on the back foot, using Ponder and Brainstorm to try to draw an answer to the equipment. The best he could muster was Geist of Saint Traft.

Ben Stark and Fred Edelkamp

Thanks to the Exalted of Qasali Pridemage, Stark was able to attack through the Geist of Saint Traft. He followed that up with a Knight of the Reliquary, passing the turn back with Edelkamp, reeling a bit on the board.

Edelkamp was able play a Stoneforge Mystic, fetching out a Umezawa's Jitte of his own, but thanks to the Stark's Wasteland on the previous turn, he was unable to cast the equipment on the same turn.

Stark was able to take advantage of this extra time by using Jitte to destroy Stoneforge Mystic and using Knight of the Reliquary to continue to deny Edelkamp access to mana.

With no way to deal with Stark's creatures Edelkamp conceded and looked to his sideboard for help in game two.

Ben Stark 1 – 0 Fred Edelkamp

Game Two

Both players kept their opening hands for the second game. Stark started the action with a first turn Mother of Runes. Without a turn two play from Edelkamp, Stark cast a second turn Thalia, Guardian of Thraben. Surprised that his opponent did not have an answer for the legend, Stark attacked for one with his Mother of Runes, but Edelkamp used this opportunity to Path to Exile the attacker. Edelkamp followed that up with a Geist of Saint Traft on his own turn.

Stark cast a Scavenging Ooze on his turn, leaving his Thalia back on defense to first strike the Geist of Saint Traft. Unfortunately for Stark, Edelkamp had a Karakas to bounce the Thalia and a second Path to Exile to take out Scavenging Ooze, allowing him to attack for six with his Geist of Saint Traft.

Ben Stark

Stark repopulated his board with a Mother of Runes and Thalia, and used a Wasteland to destroy Edelkamp's Karakas giving Stark some much needed breathing room.

Without Karakas, Edelkamp used a Submerge to return the Thalia to Stark's hand before crashing in for another six with his Geist.

With no third way of delaying the Thalia, Edelkamp was content with throwing his Geist away to deal 4 damage on the following turn, following it up with a new Geist.

Stark cast Knight of the Reliquary, but the four damage from the Angel token was enough to send the match to a third game

Ben Stark 1 – 1 Fred Edelkamp

Game Three:

Stark mulliganed to six for the final game and started things off with a first turn Green Sun's Zenith for zero, fetching out a Dryad Arbor. With no turn one play from Edelkamp, Stark used his acceleration to cast a Scavenging Ooze and a Mother of Runes. Edelkamp used this opportunity to Daze the Mother of Runes, but was still had no play on his own turn.

Stark attacked in with his Scavenging Ooze and Dryad Arbor, but Edelkamp had a Path to Exile for the Ooze, giving Stark and opening to cast a Thalia, Guardian of Thraben.

Finally, with two lands at his disposal, Edelkamp was able to cast a Jotun Grunt. Stark used his Horizon Canopy to dig for an answer to the 4/4 to no avail, passing the turn back.

Edelkamp, thinking the cost was clear, attacked in with Jotun Grunt, but Stark blocked with his Dryad Arbor and used a freshly minted Scryb Ranger to return it to his hand.

On his own turn, Stark replayed the Dryad Arbor, planning to delay Jotun Grunt one more turn, but Edelkamp had other plans; after Submerging Stark's Thalia, and digging with Ponder he was able to Vapor Snag Stark's Dryad Arbor and attack him down to 10

Knowing that Jotun Grunt couldn't stick around forever, Stark simply replayed his previous turn: replaying Thalia and replaying Dryad Arbor. Edelkamp, however, had a replacement for the grunt: Geist of Saint Traft.

Edelkamp had a second Submerge to take out Thalia and attacked in with his Geist of Saint Traft, forcing Stark to attempt to trade with his newly minted Qasali Pridemage. Edelkamp had a Path to Exile for the cat, dropping Stark down to 7 before passing the turn.

Fred Edelkamp advances to the semifinals

With no new draw step for Stark, all he could do was recast Thalia and hope to block Geist on the following turn. Edelkamp had another way to delay the Thalia with an Echoing Truth, dropping Stark down to three.

Stark was only able to recast his Thalia, bracing for the worst.

With a second Path to Exile, Edelkamp was able to take out Scryb Ranger, deal the last three points with his Angel token and head to the Semifinals

Fred Edelkamp defeats Ben Stark 2-1



 

Semifinals: Daryl Ayers vs. Michael Majors

by Steve Sadin


Legacy expert Daryl Ayers spent Friday night (and the early parts of Saturday morning) restlessly trying to decide between playing his trusty RUG Delver deck, or Reanimator... or Stoneblade... or Maverick... or one of a half a dozen other decks that he felt at various points would be the best choice for this event. His friends were eventually able to talk him off of the ledge, and convince him to play the RUG Delver deck that he had put countless hours into.

Michael Majors, on the other hand, didn't have that problem at all. Georgia native Michael Majors has never played Legacy before, but he wasn't about to skip a Grand Prix in his home state -- so he asked his friend Robbie Cordell what he should play. Cordell told him that Blue White Black Stoneblade was the best deck for the tournament, so he played just that.

And while Cordell fell a match short of making Day Two, Majors now finds himself within striking distance of winning the entire tournament!

Game One

Ayers kept his opening hand, and then agonized for a while over whether or not to shuffle with his first turn Ponder. Ayers quickly demonstrated why his Ponder decision was so tough as he had no second land!

After this board was completely wiped, was nothing Ayers could do to salvage the first game

A Delver of Secrets gave Ayers a way to punch through some early damage – but a Wasteland, and a Swords to Plowshares soon left Ayers with literally 0 permanents on his side of the board.

And while Ayers was able to counter Majors' Geist of Saint Traft with a Force of Will, he could do nothing to stop the Stoneforge Mystic and the Batterskull that followed from giving Michael Majors the first game.

Michael Majors 1 – Daryl Ayers 0

Game Two

The second game went a bit better for Ayers as he actually had multiple lands, but his draw still left a lot to be desired.

Ayers had some early offense with a Nimble Mongoose, and a Tarmogoyf – but a Perish wiped the board clean. And while Majors couldn't touch the replacement Nimble Mongoose, a Lingering Souls plus Umezawa's Jitte gave him some serious pressure.

At this point, Ayers (whose hand contained 2 Stifles, and a Forked Bolt) realized that he needed to shift gears, and began using Life from the Loam, and Wasteland to attack Majors' lands. Ayers' Stifle prevented the Umezawa's Jitte from going live, and Forked Bolt cleared away his opponent's spirits, but that would only offer Ayers a brief reprieve.

Congratulations to Michael Majors as he advances to the finals

Snapcaster Mage (which could pick up an Umezawa's Jitte at the drop of a hat) gave Majors another Ponder, and a Stoneforge Mystic found him a Batterskull that he could eventually dominate the game with.

Ayers continued doing what he could to stay alive by using a Lightning Bolt to take out the Stoneforge Mystic, and another cycle of Life from the Loam plus Wasteland to knock Majors down another land, but it was clear that the game was rapidly slipping away.

A Swamp allowed Majors to Inquisition of Kozilek his opponent, and left him largely immune to Ayers' Wasteland strategy. A couple of turns later, Majors was up to five lands, and able to cast his Batterskull.

When Majors attached a Umezawa's Jitte to his germ token, and attacked with it – Ayers confidently declared that he was "Going to make the right play."

He then scooped up his cards, and wished Michael Majors good luck in the finals.

Michael Majors 2 – Daryl Ayers 0



 

Semifinals: Gaudenis Vidugiris vs. Fred Edelkamp

by Ben Swartz


"Who needs basics?" Gaudenis Vidugiris said in response to Fred Edelkamp's puzzled look while peering over Vidugiris' decklist.

Vidugiris, seeking his third Grand Prix win, brought a RUG Delver deck to Atlanta and was playing incredibly tight this weekend.

Staking in his way was Edelkamp, who hoped to continue his streak of defeating pros with his so-called Vaporblade deck, having just defeated Ben Stark in the quarterfinals.

Game One

Vidugiris started things off with a first turn Delver of Secrets. After no play from Edelkamp, Vidugiris attempted a second turn Tarmogoyf prompting a Force of Will.

Edelkamp had an answer for the double faced card in the form of Path to Exile, but Vidugiris had a second Delver of Secrets. Unfazed, Edelkamp untapped and cast a Geist of Saint Traft.

Vidugiris transformed his Delver of Secrets, revealing a Thought Scour and holding back his Insectile Aberration, planning to block Edelkamp's Geist of Saint Traft.

Edelkamp had different plans, however, and used Vapor Snag to take out the Human Insect before attacking for six with the Geist. Post combat, Edelkamp cast a Delver of his own.

Edelkamp takes the first game as we're winding down to the finals

After digging with a Brainstorm, Thought Scour, and Ponder, Vidugiris cast a Nimble Mongoose and a Lightning Bolt on Edelkamp's Delver.

Edelkamp had a trump in the form of Sword of Feast and Famine, prompting a Spell Pierce from Vidugiris. Edelkamp had a Daze for the Spell Pierce, allowing the Sword to resolve.

Vidugiris chose not to block the equipped Geist, allowing Edelkamp to untap his lands, cast Snapcaster Mage, and recast his Path to Exile on one of Vidugiris' Delvers.

Without any answer to the Geist, Vidugiris prepared for game two.

Fred Edelkamp 1 – 0 Gaudenis Vidugiris.

Game Two

Both players mulliganed to six for the second game and Vidugiris started things off with a first turn Delver of Secrets. Edelkamp opted to play a first turn Ponder, instead of casting a Delver of his own, searching for a second land in his land-light mulligan hand.

Unable to transform his Delver, Vidugiris simply attacked in for one point before passing the turn back.

Edelkamp, without a second land, attempted a second Ponder to dig for one. Noticing his opponent's lack of land, Vidugiris decided to Red Elemental Blast the Ponder.

Vidugiris' Delver transformed revealing a Spell Pierce, and, after combat, he attempted to resolve a Scavenging Ooze. Edelkamp attempted to counter the Ooze with Force of Will, but Vidugiris used his freshly drawn Spell Pierce to force the Ooze into play.

On the back foot and still without a second land, Edelkamp was forced to use his turn to Vapor Snag Vidugiris' Insectile Aberration. Vidugiris simply attacked in with his Scavenging Ooze before recasting his Delver of Secrets.

Still without a second land, Edelkamp finally cast his Delver of Secrets, but Vidugiris was way ahead, casting a Tarmogoyf before passing the turn.

Edelkamp peeked at his top card, a Karakas, giving him a second mana to cast a Jotun Grunt. Vidugiris calmly used his last card, a Spell Snare, to counter the 4/4.

Vidugiris continued to bring the beats in on his turn, and with nothing off the top for Edelkamp the players went to a decisive game three.

Fred Edelkamp 1 – 1 Gaudenis Vidugiris

Game Three

Edelkamp started things off what would be the last game of someone's tournament with a first turn Ponder and a second turn Delver of Secrets. Vidugiris had a Ponder of his own, a Nimble Mongoose, and a Lightning Bolt to attempt to take out Edelkamp's Delver. Edelkamp used a Vapor Snag to save his Delver.

On the following turn, Edelkamp cast a Geist of Saint Traft, which prompted a Daze from Vidugiris.

In the driver's seat, Vidugiris used a Thought Scour to get threshold and attacked in with his Nimble Mongoose for three, dropping Edelkamp to 15 before casting a Delver of Secrets. Edelkamp recast his Delver on the following turn.

Gaudenis revealed a Fire//Ice with his Delver of Secrets during his upkeep, but, while still in upkeep, Edelkamp used Submerge to put the Insectile Aberration on the top of Vidugiris' library, forcing him to draw it instead of the Fire//Ice. Vidugiris simply recast his Delver and passed the turn back.

Edelkamp transformed his Delver by revealing a Daze before attacking, dropping Vidugiris to 15.

Vidugiris advances to the finals

Vidugiris transformed his Delver again with Fire//Ice, but Edelkamp had a Vapor Snag this time. Vidugiris simply continued attacking in with his Nimble Mongoose and recast his Delver.

After attacking with Insectile Aberration, Edelkamp had a second Submerge to put Vidugiris' newly minted Delver of Secrets on the top of his library. He followed that up with a Sword of Feast and Famine, the card that finished Vidugiris off in game one.

Vidugiris attacked in for three with his Nimble Mongoose dropping Edelkamp to five before using Fire//Ice to take of the Insectile Aberration.

With no play on his following turn Edelkamp was forced to pass the turn back allowing Vidugiris to attack him down to two with the Mongoose.

Edelkamp drew and cast a Delver of Secrets and immediately equipped his Sword of Feast and Famine to it. Vidugiris had an answer for the sword this game in the form of Ancient Grudge, and without an answer to the Mongoose from Edelkamp, Vidugiris was headed to the finals

Gaudenis Vidugiris 2 – 1 Fred Edelkamp



 

Finals: Gaudenis Vidugiris vs. Michael Majors

by Steve Sadin


A few months of rough tournament finishes left Gaudenis Vidugiris in a precarious position going into Pro Tour Avacyn Restored. The Lithuanian born Pro Tour mainstay had exactly 10 Pro Points and needed at least a Top 16 finish to reach the Gold level in the Pro Players Club and ensure that he would remain invited to every Pro Tour this season. With his back against the wall, Vidugiris didn't disappoint – advancing all the way to the finals before losing a close 5 game match to champion Alexander Hayne.

A month and a half later, and Vidugiris has firmly demonstrated that his cold streak is behind him by catapulting into the finals of Grand Prix Atlanta.

Michael Majors, who secured his second lifetime Pro Tour invitation when he advance to the Top 4 earlier today, doesn't have the same history of success that Gaudenis has – but that doesn't mean that he's any less eager to win.

Majors debuting in his first Legacy GP and earning himself an intivation to his second Pro Tour

After playing the first game of Legacy of his life on Saturday morning, Majors showed that he was a quick learner, winning match after match with a Blue White Black Stoneblade deck that his friend Robbie Cordell told him to play the day before the event.

Now the Georgia native finds himself a mere two games away from becoming a Grand Prix champion.

Game One

Vidugiris opened with a Nimble Mongoose, and while his first Tarmogoyf couldn't get past a Counterspell – he was able to resolve his second a turn later.

Meanwhile, Sword of Feast and Famine and Snapcaster Mage gave Majors a substantial board presence of his own, and forced Gaudenis to spend a lot of time figuring out what to do with his Brainstorm.

Game One board state

"I wish I could draw extra cards and make some decisions," said Majors as he waited for Vidugiris to make a decision.

To which Vidugiris, who was deep in the tank, could only sigh exclaiming, "decisions are hard..."

Vidugiris ultimately decided to build up his army with a second Nimble Mongoose, and a Delver of Secrets, before Wastelanding away one of Majors' lands.

Majors then untapped, played a Ponder, and passed the turn hoping that his Snapcaster Mage could continue to hold off Vidugiris' army. However, that was not to be.

Vidugiris revealed a Thought Scour to transform his Delver of Secrets, and cast the blue side of Fire//Ice to tap the Snapcaster Mage and clear the way for an attack that knocked Majors all the way down to 4.

A Flooded Strand, and a Marsh Flats left Majors on 2 life before he tried to resolve a Batterskull. But rather than let Majors see if he could somehow crawl back into the game by untapping with Sword of Feast and Famine, and playing something else good – Vidugiris Brainstormed, and ended the game immediately with a Lightning Bolt.

Gaudenis Vidugiris 1 – Michael Majors 0

Game Two

Vidugiris mulliganed to start the second game while Majors had a Wasteland that he immediately pointed at the Lithuanian born pro's Tropical Island. Vidugiris hoped that a Brainstorm would find him a new colored land to replace it with – but when he whiffed, and was forced to put two non-land cards on the top of his deck, he knew that he was in a lot of trouble.

Game 2 begins and ends quickly

And indeed, it didn't take long for Michael Majors to even the match up at one game apiece with a Stoneforge Mystic, and a Geist of Saint Traft.

Gaudenis Vidugiris 1 – Michael Majors 1

Game Three

Vidugiris got off to a strong start in the final game with a Nimble Mongoose, a Wasteland, and a Delver of Secrets. And while his Delver of Secrets got exiled by Swords to Plowshares, Vidugiris was able to keep the pressure on by quickly getting to thanks to Ponder, and Thought Scour.

Game three decides it all

Lingering Souls then got countered by Daze, and another Wasteland left Majors with just two lands. Vidugiris, who was sitting on a hand full of countermagic, allowed the flashbacked Lingering Souls to resolve, but that did nothing other than buy Majors a bit of time.

Vidugiris then sped up his clock with Tarmogoyf, and used a Spell Snare to counter Snapcaster Mage. A Path to Exile allowed Majors to take out the Tarmogoyf, but Vidugiris had enough answers to prevent Majors from ever resolving another relevant spell.

Spell Snare countered Majors' second Snapcaster Mage, and then at three life Majors hoped that his Humility would resolve and buy himself some more time – but a Spell Pierce was enough for Gaudenis to secure his third Grand Prix title!

A close third match ends with Gaudenis Vidugiris as our Grand Prix Atlanta champion.

Gaudenis Vidugiris 2 – Michael Majors 1



 

Top 32 Decklists

by Event Coverage Staff


Gaudenis Vidugiris #1
Grand Prix Atlanta 2012 - Top 32

Daryl Ayers #3
Grand Prix Atlanta 2012 - Top 32

Fred Edelkamp #4
Grand Prix Atlanta 2012 - Top 32

Gerardo Fedon #7
Grand Prix Atlanta 2012 - Top 32

Jeremy Blair #9
Grand Prix Atlanta - Top 32

Owen Turtenwald #10
Grand Prix Atlanta - Top 32

Mary Jacobson #11
Grand Prix Atlanta - Top 32

Byron King #15
Grand Prix Atlanta - Top 32

Michael Braverman #19
Grand Prix Atlanta - Top 32

Andrew Calderon #26
Grand Prix Atlanta - Top 32

Mikuel Conrow #29
Grand Prix Atlanta - Top 32



 

Top 5 Cards

by Black Rasmussen




5. Force of Will

More than any other card, Legacy is defined by the Alliances pitch counterspell. Known for a long time as the glue that holds the format together, Force of Will keeps combo decks like Belcher and ANT from running rampant. The importance of the spell was on display in the Top 8, where the four Force of Will decks all defeated the non-Force of Will decks. It's also one of the cards that makes the RUG Delver deck not only possible but possibly the best deck in the format. Nearly a quarter of the field on Day 2 was on RUG Delver, and another 10 percent was Reanimator with Force of Will.








4. Thalia, Guardian of Thraben

One of the best reasons to play Maverick, Thalia, Guardian of Thraben also popped up in Sawyer Lucy's Top 8 Goblins deck as the only White card in the entire 75, and the reason is obvious. With Legacy's slim and sleek mana bases, Thalia can make a possible turn of Ponder, Brainstorm, Force of Will into Ponder go, or even just "Go." Tacking on a mana to Legacy's most prevalent spells, including the multitude of free counterspells that see play (especially number 5 on this list) can cause all kinds of headaches for blue players and, especially, RUG Delver decks.








3. Goblin Bombardment

There were so many cards we could have selected from Sam Black's innovative RWB Zombies deck, but we went with Goblin Bombardment because we haven't seen that card make a splash in any format for years (and years and years and years).

The combination of Bombardment, Blood Artist, Gravecrawler, Bloodghast, Bitterblossom, Lingering Souls, Faithless Looting and Cabal Therapy not only came out of the mad genius deck factory that is Sam Black's mind, it actually turned out to be one of the best decks on the weekend. Black fell in the quarterfinals, but not before his deck became the darling of the tournament. And for good reason. The deck was seriously cool, and based on people's reactions to it, expect to see more of Black's creation in the weeks to come.




2. Griselbrand

All of the talk coming into the weekend centered around Griselbrand and the crack that would be heard when it broke the format in half. Instead, the only sound the Demon legend made was the silence that surrounded its complete absence from the Top 8. Griselbrand was well represented on Day 2, but failed to boost a single player into the elimination rounds. Reid Duke, who started the Griselbrand revolution with a win at an open earlier this month, said he specifically stayed away from it this weekend because of all of the hate aimed its direction.

And indeed, hate did rain down. Not only was there graveyard hate aplenty, but decks that didn't even play white chose to run one or more Karakas to keep bouncing the legendary creature, making its lifelink irrelevant. And even if Reanimator did draw seven new cards, those cards were often more Griselbrands or more ways to get legends into play. Not exactly a winning strategy versus a Karakas.




1. Nimble Mongoose

Time and time again, Tarmogoyfs, Delver of Secrets and Snapcaster Mages fell to the wayside as RUG Delver decks fought through removal. Path to Exile, Submerge, Swords to Plowshares, Lightning Bolt, even Vapor Snag, all did work keeping the tempo deck's creatures off the board.

But not Nimble Mongoose. The least heralded creature in RUG Delver decks might just have been its most important card this weekend. Cheap enough to evade counters, large enough – at Threshold – to tangle with most anything, and, most importantly, completely untargetable.

It was easily the most important card for Champion Gaudenis Vidugiris as he worked his way through the Top 8, fending off the removal and bounce his blue white opponents threw at him and shrugging off the Goblins he dispatched in the quarterfinals. While Tarmogoyf gets all the press and Delver gets its name right in the title, Nimble Mongoose was key to RUG's dominance this weekend.

While it might require a little setup to hit hard, once a graveyard is stocked, there isn't much in the format that can stop the nimblest of mongeese. In fact, in the final game of the weekend, as Michael Majors handled every threat Vidugiris threw at him, it was Nimble Mongoose that was left standing when Vidugiris dealt the final points of damage.




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