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Insider: Deck the Halls with Rotated Gruul Cards – A Christmas-Themed (But Nonetheless Relevant) Pickup List

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With Christmas coming up, I'm only going to discuss red and green cards today. That's the true way to show the holiday spirit. As it happens, the cards I'm highlighting today are all recently rotated. Coincidence? Eh, maybe a little.

I Saw Mommy Kissing Domri Rade

Domri Rade rotated from Standard and hasn't been heard much of since. Quick! Do you know Domri's current retail price?


At around $7 median, with some copies as low as $5, Domri Rade is almost certainly at its floor. The card was in the $15 to $20 range for most of its life in Standard, which makes sense, given that it saw lots of Standard play. But there are red-green aggro decks in Modern that have already played Domri, and he's a planeswalker. Except for unplayable ones like Tibalt, the Fiend-Blooded, planeswalkers don't go below $5.

In addition to Modern play, Domri is fine in casual formats like Commander and Cube. He's certainly not game-breaking, and a deck essentially needs to be built around him to make it work, but this is solid utility and card advantage in colors that don't usually get it.

There's nothing that indicates Domri will spike any time soon, but a high-placing appearance in a Modern event could certainly have an impact. I'm looking at this card as more of a trade target. It's something to pick up from trade binders, especially of Standard-only players, and will probably grow slowly over the next year or two.

Rudolph, the Hellkite Tyrant

Besides shocklands and Domri Rade, Gatecrash doesn't have a lot going on in the finance department, but Hellkite Tyrant seems low at around $1.


At the time of this writing, there's a -1 percent spread. My biggest argument for why this should not be so low is this card:


Five dollars is a lot of money for something that was once the bulkiest of bulk mythics. Although it's not as pronounced as five or ten years ago, the dragon effect is still a thing. Balefire Dragon is a mythic from a large fall set, whereas Hellkite Tyrant is a mythic from a large spring set that wasn't nearly as well received. I also believe that Hellkite Tyrant is more attractive to EDH players, given the high number of mana rocks typically played in the format.

Again, I'm not necessarily jumping the gun to buy these, as this will be a guaranteed slow grower. But grow it will, so picking them out of your bulk box or trade binders is definitely a good call.

Oh, Burning Tree, Oh, Burning Tree

I'm not going to lie. I started with Domri Rade because I really like the pick, but then I continued to go down the Gatecrash list based on Gruul cards being in the set. So that's why the three cards I've discussed so far are from Gatecrash.

But seriously, the set just rotated a few months ago, December is the lowest point for card prices except the summer, and the set didn't sell particularly well based on the information we have.

Burning-Tree Emissary was a big deal in Standard, but like Domri Rade, it has seen a little bit of Modern play as well. Frankly, fast mana effects are almost always busted, and Emissary seems like the perfect candidate to be one of Modern's next $5 uncommons.

I expect this to see an increase before either Domri Rade or Hellkite Tyrant. but it's not like you don't have any time. It's December, after all.


Young Pyromancer Is Coming to Town

Literally, it's coming to my town, because I just paused from writing this article to order my playset. It's about damn time I got on this, because I have been meaning to get a set since the card was printed (I didn't draft M14 at all, so it was absent from my collection).

Jason Alt called this as his pick of the week a few weeks back on Brainstorm Brewery, and I, for one, am grateful that the card hasn't spiked yet despite his excellent call. But now that I've bought my set, feel free to do the same, because this might not be Modern's next $5 uncommon—it might be Modern's next $10 uncommon.

That is, of course, assuming that Treasure Cruise doesn't get hit with the ban hammer. But even if it does, Young Peezy is seeing all kinds of play in Legacy, too.


Rockin' Around the Scavenging Ooze

Scavenging Ooze has been on my radar for months and months, which you already know if you read my articles. It was at a solid $7 at around rotation, and I thought that might be the floor, but I didn't feel super great about it.

However, I feel pretty good about the $5 Ooze is at now.


The card hasn't gotten a lot of attention since it rotated, but as maindeckable graveyard hate on an efficient beater, it will pretty much always be playable in Modern. Green decks have phased out of popularity somewhat lately, but they'll be back, and Ooze will go up. It will never hit the $40 it was before the M14 printing, but it will never be this cheap again, either.

Merry Christmas

That's it for today. Enjoy your holiday season!

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