There our hero sat. Drafting in the Top 8 of the largest Magic tournament ever. With a finals finish, he would make serious headway towards qualifying for the world championship. One pack in, he like where his Boros deck was going. That’s when it happened. He didn’t know it, but over the course of the next minute he would face the most publicly scrutinized decision of his entire life.
By now you’ve no doubt heard of #tarmogate. Or #goyfgate as the extremely unoriginals prefer to call it. Many pro players have cast rather harsh judgment on Pascal Maynard for basically rare-drafting in the Top 8 of GP Vegas, while the general consensus has been that the Tarmogoyf was the much higher EV pick.
There have been a lot of fallacious arguments with regard to the discussion of the pick, because, you know, people are talking. Some pose the question “would you have paid $500 to have Burst Lightning in your draft deck?” In reality, picking the Burst Lightning is akin to denying $500 for a first pick out of pack two. Money out of pocket is pretty different from money being offered, but that discussion isn’t terribly interesting either.
What the situation boils down to, is would you rather pocket a foil Tarmogoyf or give yourself the best odds to play in the world championship? As a commoner, it’s pretty clear that the Goyf is the right pick for me. As Pascal Maynard, well, he’s publicly admitted that he missplayed. That said, his play ended up being higher value than he could have possibly imagined.
If you haven’t heard, Pascal has put up the foil Goyf on e-bay, pledging to donate half of the final sale price to Gamers Helping Gamers. So, if you’re interested in owning a piece of Magic history, donating to GHG and Pascal, and have over $12,000 to commit to these ends then you can find the auction here.
Personally, I think that the Burst Lightning that he passed and then lost to in the semis has more value as a piece of Magic history, but alas, that one isn’t up for auction.