Today we are going to look at two versions of the Blue Black Control archtype in the current standard format. Being a huge proponent of Control and Midrange type decks, I was very excited to see control show up at the Pro Tour. That being said, it really did not put up the numbers that I was hoping for. However, when you have some of the best minds in the game working on lists, things can change. Today we are going to look at my good friend Adrian Sullivan’s list , as well as Andrew Cuneo’s PT KTK list.
So to start with, we have Andrew Cuneo’s deck that he posted about on Channel Fireball and seems to have done quite well at the Pro Tour with. Let’s take a look….
Blue Black Control ala Andrew Cuneo
4 Polluted Delta
4 Dismal Backwater
4 Temple of Deceit
1 Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth
1 Bloodstained Mire
1 Evolving Wilds
1 Radiant Fountain
2 x Pearl Lake Ancient
4 Bile Blight
4 Hero's Downfall
2 Disdainful Stroke
4 Perilous Vault
3 Jace's Ingenuity
2 Murderous Cut
4 Dig Through Time
4 Jorubai Murk Lurker
4 Drown in Sorrow
2 Pharika's Cure
1 Disdainful Stroke
Now I’m not going to sit here and pretend to know more than Cuneo when it comes to blue decks because the guy is obviously a master but there are somethings in the deck that just don’t feel right. I feel that 3 Ingenuity in the deck is 1 too many because there’s a good chance you’re just going to end up drawing one in your opening hand and have it be dead weight. I also wonder if we’re not being aggressive enough with only 3 Thoughtseize. I know with the current metagame, Despise is probably better and the Thoughtseize belong in the board but still, I feel this is usually a 4 or 0 of in any control deck.
Pearl Lake Ancient does exactly what it’s supposed to do and I’m fine with that as a win condition but my fear is that it’s the ONLY win condition. In most other UW/UWB/UB decks , we usually have a secondary win condition and that is missing here. This is where I’d love to slam a Jace, Memory Adept into the deck but alas we don’t have him now in the current format.
In the sideboard, we see Jorubai Murk Lurker which I really like in the deck’s sb, but my big question is why dont we see any Gainsays? Seems pretty logical in this deck and it stops a lot of Jeskai spells. Even if it was a just 1 or 2 of, I’d be happier, but I’m also willing to test it out and see what comes of it.
Now onto Adrian’s deck…..
Blue Black Control ala Adrian Sullivan
Anyone who really knows me knows that I’m always a sucker for an Adrian Sullivan or Gerrard Fabiano decklist. Adrian has always been generous in providing lists to me and I usually try and test them out to help provide feedback where I can. This has led me going to a number of high level premier events with his 75 in my deckbox and except for GP Phoenix back in 2001 – I have never regretted it once.
Looking at this list, I like the Ashiok addition right away. Ashiok is really good by itself but in this format where you can end up using the 2nd ability to cast some giant monsters, its just more flexible than people give it credit for I think. The singletons in the deck are just a total “Adrian” thing. I mean for real, that’s his bag, bunch of 1 ofs, but those 1 ofs do WORK sometimes and I’d be interested to see how this deck plays out after some testing vs Jeskai Wins and the 2 or 3 Junk decks that made T8 of the Pro Tour.
Liliana Vess is a beating of a planeswalker and I had it in early versions of standard decks I was messing with. It’s not traditionally as powerful as other Planeswalkers but its not as situational as others think it is.
Again though, I want a second win condition and maybe that means incorporating either a Pearl Lake Ancient or Prognostic Sphinx into the main deck. I dont know, testing will tell.
I tend not to write these articles much but I really would appreciate honest feedback on this piece, so if you liked it , great, if not , tell me how to get better as I’d like to start posting more blog posts about decks and metagaming because it’s something I like to do but never took the time to do. Thanks!