Welcome to the arena. On one side we have the famed Dragonmaster from the US, Brian Kibler. On the other we have the famed Goblinmaster from the UK, Dan Paskins. Except this match both the goblins and dragons are fighting for Paskins as he’s running (unsurprisingly) Goblins with help from Rorix, Bladewing. Kibler’s blue-white deck is not without help though. He’s got Akroma, angel of a million abilities in his corner.
The matchup should be in favour of Paskins as his goblins should be too quick for Kibler’s blue-white control. Silver Knight is a key card for the American.
Kibler elected to go first and thought for a while before keeping his hand. It didn’t seem like Paskins had much gas though, or was holding forces back, as his only offence was a Sledder, Piledriver and Burrows to pump them.
The Piledriver was a big problem for Kibler though, his hand had been counter heavy and the turn two Piledriver was the last card he wanted to see. He was able to cycle a Decree of Justice to block for a turn, but then Paskins summoned the dreaded Siege-Gang Commander. Kibler didn’t have a Vengeance and so packed up his cards for game two.
Paskins 1-0 Kibler
Paskins sideboarded a little oddly here, replacing early game threats (Piledriver, Sledder) with the fatties (Menacing Ogre, Goon).
Game two saw Paskins take two trips to Paris. Unsurprisingly his hand was slow, a turn 3 Sharpshooter didn’t seem too threatening. The Goon that followed was a little more frightening. Kibler wasn’t fazed. Wing Shards sent that to the graveyard.
Paskin followed with the post combat Menacing Ogre, winning the bid 4 to 0. Wing Shards dispatched that as well. Paskins made another post combat haste monster – a Clickslither. The good news was he wasn’t running into Wing Shards, the bad was his monsters were acting like Hill Giants.
Kibler was in control here. Vengeance cleared the board and although Paskins got to get in a free hit with Rorix, Kibler came straight back at him with Akroma. Siege-Gang Commander gave hope of maybe being able to run round the angry angel only for that to be shut down by Windborn Muse.
Paskins was able to burn the flying propaganda from the skies, but it cost too many resources, especially as Kibler had a Discombobulate to counter one shock. Paskins threw away Rorix to deal 4 damage. It wasn’t enough.
Game 3 saw another slow draw from Paskins. When he didn’t make a play until a Siege-Gang Commander on turn 5 Kibler must have felt the match was going to go to him. He cycled Complicate on the first Commander, cast it to counter the second and then made threats of his own in the form of Silver Knight and Exalted Angel.
Paskins brought out a Menacing Ogre, but with the Angel in play Kibler was happy to bid big (6 to 3) to keep it small. Paskins followed up with a Clickslither to try and race.
Kibler hit 8 mana though. That meant Akroma, angel of game and match.
For game 3 Paskins had brought the early threats back in but hadn’t been able to see them. He explained his strategy against the other white decks had been to put in enough big threats to overwhelm them. Kibler’s deck had counters which made this strategy less effective. He’d been hedging his bets towards trying to play round the Silver Knight only to fall foul of the countermagic.
Brian Kibler beat Dan Paskins 2-1