10/25/2011 LI: "Lessons from Santiago"

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This thread is for discussion of this week's Limited Information, which goes live Tuesday morning on magicthegathering.com.

Rats off to ya!

I hope that was a Tom Goes to the Mayor reference.
I can't even remember anymore how good this column used to be.
I would take Blazing Torch over Silver-Inlaid Dagger simply because the torch turns into a Shock when you need it to.
I don't usually post in these threads, I just wanted to give props for the Tom Goes to the Mayor reference. Rats off to ya!
Uh, that was short.

It would have been nice to see his green/white questions answered with whatever examples he had from the Grand Prix if only to flesh out the article. Since he didn't, I guess I'll open up the discussion of those with my own opinions. :P
1) Depends on the five drops. Guys like Angelic Overseer and Geist-Honored Monk are obviously great, but Gallows Warden is great, too, if you already have a lot of flyers, while other five drops just aren't that efficient (or big, except for Krallenhorde Wantons).
2) I like Bonds of Faith in a vacuum as it offers a bit more flexibility, but if you already have a lot of humans or you're looking for more quick creatures, then Avacynian Priest is going to fit better. Since they do different enough things, if I've got one already and have to pick between the two, I'd expect to take the one I don't have yet.
3) Avacyn's Pilgrim doesn't excite me in an aggressive deck unless there are important 3 drops you really want to hit - like a Daybreak Ranger or multiple Orchard Spirits and Voiceless Spirits. Otherwise the deck curves out fine without needing a random mana dork. I think it's at its best in a green/x fatties/werewolves deck that splashes white.
4) In a green/white deck? Not often. I'd rather have the 2 drops that are good when you cast them, or the other stuff (like Elder Cathar) that's good when it dies. Unruly Mob goes in a deck where it supports cards that are good on their own like Stitcher's Apprentice and Skirsdag Cultist.
5) Almost never, unless you've seen your opponent picking up multiple spirits and/or enchantments. I'd happily pick one up with a middling pick if I was light on removal or didn't have Silverchase Fox/Naturalize to deal with enchantments, but the odds of it being a blank are too high to ever be happy putting Urgent Exorcism maindeck.
6) Lumberknot is decent, but again, not in a deck trying to curve out and attack. Unless you've got some synergy to back it up, it just sits there far too often for far too long. A more midrange green/white, probably fine - but even then Thraben Sentry starts off bigger and goes much bigger faster after the first trade (not to mention only needs one colored mana, instead of two).
7) Blazing Torch, and it's not even close. Silver-Inlaid Dagger is excellent, but it's not removal. It's made even less close by a deck that wants to play creatures instead of sitting on Rebuke and doesn't necessarily have creatures that work particularly well with Prey Upon.

As for Juza's play...what if his opponent, knowing the existence of the other counterspell, decided to play around it also? Yes, playing the second Island was a mistake, and it's important to pay attention to details like that - but not running one of the biggest bombs in the format into a counterspell against a u/g deck that's likely to be light on removal seems like the right play no matter what.
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