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Hello everyone and welcome back to part 2 of my Legacy Blue-Red Delver blueprint. Last time I took you from A to Z on how I landed on my specific list, and today is all about how to approach the top 5 matchups and improve your odds of winning after sideboard. However, let’s first take another look at the list:

Blue-Red Delver by Ecobaronen

Creatures (14)
Delver of Secrets
Monastery Swiftspear
Soul-Scar Mage
Stormchaser Mage

Spells (30)
Chain Lightning
Lightning Bolt
Vapor Snag
Daze
Force of Will
Brainstorm
Ponder
Preordain
Lands (16)
Scalding Tarn
Polluted Delta
Flooded Strand
Misty Rainforest
Volcanic Island
Island
Mountain

Sideboard (15)
Smash to Smithereens
Flusterstorm
Price of Progress
Surgical Extraction
True-Name Nemesis
Rough // Tumble

Miracles

One of the longest-standing top decks of Legacy

Counterbalance
Jace, the Mind Sculptor
Swords to Plowshares
Terminus

After the banning of Sensei’s Divining TopSensei’s Divining Top, Miracles found a way to survive which basically proves why it was correct to nerf it in the first place. There was a very dedicated group of people who refused to let their baby die and hats off to them! They succeeded and Miracles remain relevant especially in the Legacy Challenges.
You will quickly want to decide whether you can beat a TerminusTerminus or not. If you can, a hasty prowess creature that you keep in your hand can be a winning strategy. If not, go all in and cross your fingers. That’s still is a valid plan. Remember that they can’t float TerminusTerminus on top of their library as easily these days and playing a counter spell on a BrainstormBrainstorm can prove a great play.
After sideboard we will improve with some non-Swords to PlowsharesSwords to Plowshares-able threats and some counter magic to beat TerminusTerminus. Watch out for CounterbalanceCounterbalance as it can easily take over the game. Most of your draws will have to hope they don’t blind flip to counter your spells. However, some of your draws will have the luxury to use less important spells to check what converted mana cost they have on top.

Sideboard against Miracles

Sideboard Out (5)
Vapor Snag
Chain Lightning
Sideboard In (5)
True-Name Nemesis
Flusterstorm

 

Grixis Control

The other Tier 1 Legacy Control Deck

Snapcaster Mage
Hymn to Tourach
Kolaghan’s Command
Baleful Strix

The other top Control deck in the format tries to beat you with cheap removal to back up Snapcaster MageSnapcaster Mage and Baleful StrixBaleful Strix. Those creatures suck the life out of you slowly but surely. You want to deploy your hand as fast as possible for a few reasons. They run no sweepers and they play Hymn to TourachHymn to Tourach. This means that you want to get in a spot where they have a bunch of bad top decks and we have a bunch of creatures, burn spells and cantrips that find those. You will be favored in the games where they don’t have a Fatal PushFatal Push or Lightning BoltLightning Bolt on turn one. In these games, they will have to tap out and play into DazeDaze which can lead to some very one-sided games. Fire off your Chain LightningChain Lightnings when they don’t have double red open and note that any spell will “counter” the ShockShock part of Kolaghan’s CommandKolaghan’s Command on your prowess creature.
In games after sideboard we get to remove the playset of Force of WillForce of Will and trim on some situational cards while I expect them to have PyroblastPyroblast as their best sideboard card. I like two copies of Smash to SmithereensSmash to Smithereens to deal with Baleful StrixBaleful Strix and pressure them at the same time.

Sideboard against Grixis Control

Sideboard Out (9)
Vapor Snag
Force of Will
Chain Lightning
Sideboard In (9)
True-Name Nemesis
Price of Progress
Flusterstorm
Smash to Smithereens

 

Reanimator

As old an archetype as the format but faster than ever

Entomb
Chancellor of the Annex
Reanimate
Griselbrand

As with more or less any other deck in Legacy, Reanimator can be a tough matchup game one. They can produce a protected GriselbrandGriselbrand as early as turn one, so don’t feel bad if you find your self down a game. I will gladly Force of WillForce of Will their EntombEntomb to try and strand copies of reanimation spells in their hand. In situations where they had the opportunty to cast EntombEntomb and didn’t play it, I will Force of WillForce of Will their Faithless LootingFaithless Looting. This dynamic is still true after sideboard where we get more counterspells and the ability to interact with their graveyard. Note that Vapor SnagVapor Snag is a great card for dealing with reanimated Chancellor of the AnnexChancellor of the Annex or GriselbrandGriselbrand if they used ReanimateReanimate on it or are at a low life total from our aggression. They run little to no removal spells, so I like cutting the two drops to make room for disruption and rely on the one-drops to get the job done.

Sideboard against Reanimator

Sideboard Out (5)
Stormchaser Mage
Chain Lightning
Sideboard In (5)
Surgical Extraction
Flusterstorm

 

Grixis Delver

The Brother from another Mana

Daze
Delver of Secrets
Gurmag Angler
Young Pyromancer

The “DazeDazemirror match can be tricky to play because the games are so different from each other. With Blue-Red Delver you have the ability to close games quickly, but you should also be ready to fight an attrition war and win the game on turn 12 against its Grixis cousin. Fortunately we can answer most of their threats with Chain LightningChain Lightning and Lightning BoltLightning Bolt, but Gurmag AnglerGurmag Angler presents a huge road bump to stall out the game. Your MVP in this scenario is Stormchaser MageStormchaser Mage because of its evasion and ability to dodge Lightning BoltLightning Bolt as long as you hold up mana to cast an instant. Quickly figure out if you should push to close out the game early or go into StormchaserModeTM. Sideboarding in this matchup is quite difficult, but I like trimming DazeDaze no matter what because they tend to play around it anyway. Remove Force of WillForce of Will and rely on Vapor SnagVapor Snag to deal with Angler. Hope to kill off Young PyromancerYoung Pyromancer and his friends with Rough.

Sideboard against Grixis Delver

Sideboard Out (7)
Force of Will
Daze
Sideboard In (7)
Rough // Tumble
True-Name Nemesis
Flusterstorm

 

Eldrazi

The Colorless Chalice Manace

Thought-Knot Seer
Chalice of the Void
Ancient Tomb
Reality Smasher
Chalice of the VoidChalice of the Void on one charge counter is the enemy in game one, but if you can’t counter it, you can beat it with a quick hand and the help of Stormchaser MageStormchaser Mage. They will fairly quickly stabilize on the ground, so get in as much damage as possible with your 1/2 prowess creatures before you are relegated to only burn and flying damage. Ancient TombAncient Tomb damage can add up, so keep the pressure high and set up situations where topdecked burn means game over. Even though they have Cavern of SoulsCavern of Souls, you need to keep in all your counterspells because they are so good against many of their draws. We get to bring in answers for Chalice and also cut some low-impact cards that get hit by Chalice, so the matchup improves after sideboard.

Sideboard against Eldrazi

Sideboard Out (6)
Chain Lightning
Soul-Scar Mage
Sideboard In (6)
Smash to Smithereens
True-Name Nemesis

Chain Lightning

A note about the Sorcery Bolt

Chain Lightning

You’ll notice that Chain LightningChain Lightning gets cut a lot in these matchups, but I feel it serves an important role in punishing clunky draws game one. Once the opponent gets to cut slower cards and add cheap disruption after sideboard, burn three loses a lot of value.

If you need advice on a matchup that’s not in this article, feel free to reach out on Twitter @ecobaronen. Thanks a lot for reading!

 

 

This article was written by Andreas Petersen in a media collaboration with mtgmintcard.com

Andreas Petersen

Andreas Petersen

Andreas is probably better known as "ecobaronen" on MTGO. After 2nd place of Team Trios #GPMadrid playing Modern he's heading to his second Pro Tour in Minneapolis this year. Andreas has an opinion about every constructed format except Standard.