Round 8: Nick Eisel versus Ed Fear

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Six people entered this round undefeated, and only three would emerge day one with perfect records. Two of these men were Nick Eisel and Ed Fear: the former looking for a second consecutive day one undefeated Grand Prix record, and the latter hoping for success to stave off pending retirement from the game of Magic.

Game One:

Ed won the opening die roll festivities and played first, dropping turn one swamp. Nick went one up on his opponent, using his first turn forest to bring out Birchlore Rangers. Nick’s hand consisted of some lands, some morph creatures, and Rorix. Ed flashed his hand to me, consisting of no answers to Rorix.

Ed Fear: “Would you like to swing with your guy? Block.”
Nick: “I don’t swing.”
Ed: “I wish you swung that way.”
Antonino DeRosa (at the next feature match table): “What are you talking about? We’re the attractive half of this table.”
Brian Hegstad: “We sure are.”

Ed then proceeded to blow up Dwarven Blastminer (face down) with Erratic Explosion. Nick traded Symbiotic Elf for Spined Basher, and went nuts with Sparksmith and a morph guy, while Ed held only Snarling Undorak.

Ed Fear: “My hand is like *Censored*.”
Nick: “*Censored*”
Ed Fear: “*Even more censored*”
Brian Hegstad: “Hey, watch your mouth, this is a family show!”
Ed Fear: “*censored, censored, and censored*”
Antonio (looks over and sees Bloodstained Mire in Ed’s graveyard and Dwarven Blastminer in Nick’s): “Hey, did he use the Blastminer to kill your sac land?”
Ed (with extreme sarcasm): “Oh yes. Somehow he managed to kill my sac land without me responding in any way shape or form."

Brian cast Rorix, dropping Ed to six life.

Ed: “Maybe I can draw my bomb and gain four life.”
Nick (laughs): “Take six”
Ed: “*Censored*”
Brian Hegstad: “No!”
Me: “Ed, you realize that every line of your dialogue so far has consisted of asterisk, censored, asterisk?”
Ed: “*Censored*--but it involved the words “a”, “the” and “is”.”

And the game ended on the next turn via the pit fighting legendary triple red casting cost legend.

Nick Eisel 1 - Ed Fear 0

Ed: “If I wasn’t lazy, I’d side in Lay Waste between games. But I’m too lazy. Maybe I’ll just draw better next game. (to Antonio) I can’t tell you how thrilled I am to sit next to you. You smell of musky Tuscany morning”
Antonino: “I do smell pretty funky.”

Game Two:

Ed began with Shepherd of Rot. Nick answered with Sparksmith, prompting Fear to swing for one, throwing his soon-to-be dead zombie across the table.

Ed: “I’m at twenty and now you’re at eighteen. I’m now, what I would like to call, winning.”

Nick started a board presence with a face-down dwarf, but both his creatures died to a generally unspectacular Infest. For the first time ever in an round eight undefeated match, Weird Harvest was cast for two (by Eisel). Nick tutored Rorix and Barkhide Mauler into his hand. Ed could only get Snarling Undorak and Ravenous Baloth.

With the board completely clear, Ed summoned Fallen Cleric, while Nick (stuck on five lands, three of them Mountains), revealed a hand of absolute gas with Pinpoint Avalanche, Barkhide Mauler, Starstorm, Rorix Bladewing, Erratic Explosion and Goblin Sledder.

Antonino (jokingly): “Ed, I hope you lose quickly so I don’t have to keep listening to you.”
Ed: “That’s too bad, cause some little boy has to keep listening to me.”

Barkhide Mauler hit the board, but Nick decided not to stop the incoming cleric. Ed followed up with Ravenous Baloth, while Nick continued to not draw land number six. Instead he cast Sparksmith number two and Goblin Sledder, further revealing the insane power of his deck.

Ed: “How many cards do you have left?”
Nick: “Four cards.”
Ed: “One of which may or may not be a dragon. I don’t have a dragon.”
Nick: “One of your cards may or may not be Bloodstained Mire.”
Ed (drops Bloodstained Mire from his hand onto the table. “Oops, did I do that?”
Nick (laughs)
Ed: “What, I got two Mires, one of them is foil.” (Drops Mire onto table again.)

Ed attacked with his two guys. Nick blocked the Fallen Cleric with both his goblins, and the Baloth with his Mauler. Ed then cycled Slice and Dice, prompting Nick to pump his Sledder to a 2/2. This killed every creature on the board after combat damage.

Ed: “Deal with my Unholy Grotto! Is it time for a big large dragon to hit me in the face?”

Nick dropped land number six, and casts Rorix, and swung for six.

Ed: “There’s rarely a better choice in the game of Magic than swinging with a large dragon.”

Ed’s cast Snarling Undorak and Krosan Tusker in consecutive turns, hitting with the pumper to bring the life totals to 18-11 in Fear’s favor.

Ed: “There’s no chance I’ll draw my Shock next turn and kill you.”
Antoninio: “It’s a race!”
Ed: “I hope I win.”

Nick brought big red into the big red zone, dropping Ed to twelve life. He took this opportunity to smash the Undorak with Pinpoint Avalanche. Krosan Tusker entered the red zone, while Ed drew Cruel Revival. This allowed him to smash Rorix to death, get back Fallen Cleric, and be ahead of the game by a life total of 12-5. Ed took the opportunity to get a swamp with the Mire, allowing him to cast Nantuko Husk. Nick cleared the board with a five point Starstorm after untapping.

Ed brought Fallen Cleric and Elvish Warrior into play, both of which died via Erratic Explosion and Shock.

Ed: “That’s it, I’m winning with my combo!”

Ed cast Doom Cannon naming zombie and played Wellwisher. His Unholy Grotto, with a graveyard full of zombies, forced a concession from his opponent.

Ed Fear 1 - Nick Eisel 1.

The two men shuffled up their seemingly pre-constructed decks, with Nick sporting the R/G “Fiery Dragon” deck against Ed’s “Zombies Alive!” creature feature. The two were genuinely having too much fun at the feature match table, with Ed hamming it up and Nick having a good old laugh throughout the entire match.

Nick: “I don’t know why you say your deck is bad. Double Cruel Revival, speed, and big fatties. What more do you want?”
Ed: “I made a mistake last game. Did anyone see it?”
Nick: “You mean attacking before you cast Slice and Dice?”
Ed: “Yeah, that was the mistake. I was hoping you wouldn’t block like you did, but you blocked exactly the way I didn’t want you to.”

Game Three

Nick opted to draw first. Ed’s opening hand consisted a Mountain, a Forest, and a bunch of creatures which he couldn’t cast.

Ed: “Who’s the smartass who sided out a land?”

Nick came out fast and furious, dropping Goblin Sledder, Sparksmith, and a morph creature on turns one, two and three. Ed could only cycle Krosan Tusker to get his first swamp. This allowed him to play Screeching Buzzard, which died horribly to the goblin shooter, costing Nick Weird Harvest. This cleared his boys for the attack, knocking Ed down to fourteen life.

Ed’s response was to play Broodhatch Nantuko face up, which gave Eisel pause. Nick contemplated his options, crouching his leg up onto his chair. Finally, he sent his morph guy into the red zone, netting two insects for Ed.

Ed’s board consisted of Swamp, two Mountains, a Forest, two insects and a Spined Basher (which died to Sparksmith). Ed’s hand consisted of double Elvish Warror, Ravenous Baloth, Doom Cannon, Snarling Undorak, and Shepherd of Rot. He finally drew a second forest, and played Shepherd plus Elvish Warrior. Nick, brought Spitfire Handler on board, shot down the Warrior for three (dropping himself to eleven) and entered the red zone for seven damage (reducing Ed to seven). Fear summoned a freshly drawn Nantuko Husk and his second Warrior.

Nick drew, played a fifth land, and showed me his hand of Starstorm, Butcher Orgg, Barkhide Mauler, and Slice and Dice. Nick sent Elvish Warrior to Huskland, which prevented him from taking the damage from his shot.

Nick: “I have to think. This is a hard attack.”
Ed: “My side is a lot easier to play. It’s being hit over and over again with a big salami.”

The turn ended as Nick played Barkhide Mauler, and prepared for a massive assault on the following turn. Hoping to staunch the flow of blood, Ed summoned Ravenous Baloth. Nick killed the Husk with his Sparksmith the following turn, and swung in for enough to reduce Ed to four, and to force Ed to sacrifice the Baloth. On the following turn, Nick won. His hand consisted of the second stringers Starstorm, Slice and Dice, and Butcher Orgg in the end.

Nick Eisel 2 - Ed Fear 1

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