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Deck Overview- Standard Azorius Midrange

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Last week I highlighted an Azorius deck from a Standard league that featured a bunch of Torrential Gearhulk as a deck that could break out at the Pro Tour. Torrential Gearhulk had a great weekend, as did blue and white cards on the whole, though the 9-1 decks from the Pro Tour ended up looking like this:

[deck title=Azorius Midrange by Steve Hatto]
[Creatures]
4 Thraben Inspector
4 Selfless Spirit
4 Spell Queller
4 Reflector Mage
4 Archangel Avacyn
[/Creatures]
[Spells]
2 Skywhaler's Shot
2 Negate
4 Gideon, Ally of Zendikar
4 Smuggler's Copter
3 Stasis Snare
[/Spells]
[Lands]
11 Plains
6 Island
4 Port Town
4 Prairie Stream
[/Lands]
[Sideboard]
1 Island
1 Bruna, the Fading Light
1 Thalia's Lancers
2 Gisela, the Broken Blade
1 Declaration in Stone
1 Immolating Glare
2 Fragmentize
1 Summary Dismissal
2 Void Shatter
1 Dovin Baan
1 Jace, Unraveler of Secrets
1 Ceremonious Rejection
[/Sideboard]
[/deck]

These decks look to follow the old Mike Flores' rule of "play as many of the best cards in the same deck as you can". Even if your exact configuration is wrong, the cards featured here offer a ton of individual abstract power:

I've seen it suggested that the popularity of Aetherworks Marvel likely contributed to this deck's success, as Spell Queller is exactly where you want to be against those decks. They have a lot of answers to spells, but fewer ways to deal with creatures.

My first impression is that these being the only 9-1 decks is more of an indicator of the Pro Tour metagame than of this sort of strategy's place going forward, though the data here most certainly should lead you to put these decks in your gauntlet. These decks have reasonable answers and very solid threats, so it's very hard to imagine that they will ever be objectively bad, and given the diversity of the Top 8 from the Pro Tour I am not expecting that a "best deck" will be discovered at least for a short while.

2 thoughts on “Deck Overview- Standard Azorius Midrange

  1. Yeah, it looks like this was quietly (maybe not so quiet) the best deck at the Pro Tour.

    I do agree with your assessment on how the deck is likely a byproduct of the PT – and to temper expectations for things to come. But, yeah this should be in everyone’s gauntlet. It can easily adapt to a variety of meta.

  2. I’ve been playing UW flyers since SOI standard, before Spirits were a thing. This deck is great because of two things: the flexibility that comes with Spell Queller (the best counterspell in standard) and the power of White, namely Gideon and Avacyn.

    Frankly, I’m just happy to continue posting good FNM results with the deck and proving that playing Aggro Spirits is not “Doing It Wrong”, no matter what some pros have said.

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