Draft Report: Amonkhet Grixis Cycling (6-2-2017)

Amonkhet Draft - Grixis Cycling (6-2-2017)

Sometimes weird things happen in draft. Maybe the signals are hard to read. Or you determine your second color later than you’d like. Sometimes you get two Dread Wanderers, and two Drake Havens. And sometimes you open Hazoret the Fervent and get passed a Cut / Ribbons pick five in your third pack.

Amonkhet Draft List: Grixis Cycling (6-2-2017)

Creatures (14)
Hekma Sentinels
Shimmerscale Drake
Cryptic Serpent
Dread Wanderer
Ruthless Sniper
Grim Strider
Pitiless Vizier
Horror of the Broken Lands
Hazoret the Fervent

Spells (8)
Compelling Argument
Hieroglyphic Illumination
Scarab Feast
Splendid Agony
Wander in Death
Final Reward
Cut / Ribbons

Enchantments (2)
Drake Haven
Lands (16)
Painted Bluffs

On-Color Sideboard (11)
Supernatural Stamina
Nest of Scarabs
Painful Lesson
Wander in Death
Cartouche of Zeal
Magma Spray
Violent Impact
Deem Worthy


Deck Tech

Hazoret the FerventI called this Grixis, but in all honestly, it’s a blue-black cycling deck splashing red for Hazoret the Fervent and Cut / Ribbons. In addition to double Drake Havens, I was able to pick up two copies of Ruthless Sniper. In Amonkhet, most cards that care about cycling also care about discarding cards, which allows Hazoret to create drakes, shock your opponent and beat for 5 with haste.

The splash for red in this deck proved to be very valuable. Beyond having the power of a god, getting Cut / Ribbons into the graveyard usually ends the game. It’s surprising how often your opponent will forget you effectively have a Fireball with flashback in the bin, but then again, it’s hard to play around in the first place.

My single regret was that I did not go deep enough on 1-mana cyclers. This deck could use just about as many as it could hold. In most games, Horror of the Broken Lands became a 2/2 Drake, a -1/-1 counter and a card, all for 2B. It’s hard to argue with more of that, particularly since cyclers do a good job digging out Drake Haven.

Ruthless SniperFaith of the Devoted and one or two more Hekma Sentinels would have also gone a long way toward out-racing the faster decks. I was worried about having not having a lower curve, but Drake Havens and Dread Wanderers go a long way in terms of fending off those decks.

Overall, I was happy with how this deck performed. In a format dominated by 2- and 3- mana creatures, it is a ton of fun winning largely off the back of cycling. It just plays a little differently than the most common strategies in Amonkhet limited, and I doubt I will ever draft a deck quite like this again…

For those who want to take a deeper look into the draft itself, check out my pick order below, and feel free to let me know what you might change in the final build.

6-2-2017 Amonkhet Draft Pick Order