Analyzing the loss

I went 3-3 today . Now, by default this means I did better than some people, but since I didn't come in first place, there is a part of me that is just so very angry and so very much putting myself in last place. That is not constructive, but there is a part of me that is just so mad.

Okay, so what losses did I have. Let's look at the papers from today. I played Sultai. Not the best deck, so maybe that was a mistake? Should I be on Temur Black, just going for the power wins or trying to play the field with a deck that feels good against the field. I mean, I did go 50% wins, 50% losses, right?

Round one was versus Ramanup Red. I lost game one to them just blowing me out. I mulliganned, and they did too. I didn't know what I was facing until a Bomat Courier smacked me for one first turn. I returned fire with a Push when their second card was exiled, but I didn't draw any more removal and they just kept killing my creatures and playing more threats. Games two and three I used lifegain from Vraska's Contempt, Essence Extraction and Deathgorge Scavenger to stay alive. It didn't hurt that he mulliganned down to five game three. That can be bad for me if he draws into lands for a Hazoretand makes lots of plays, but luckily I got through. Win.

Round two was against Temur Black. Lost game one to standard Temur rushing. Servant into Rogue Refiner into Chandra into Vraska. It was a beathing. Game two I remove their first few threats and then snag a Glorybringer off a Gonti. I was lucky enough to hit my land drops and fifth turn Glory Bringer was something they could not recover from. Game three we went down to the wire but I eventually got a Hydra going and pushed through.

Round three was a loss to Four Color Control. Everything but green, which kind of feels like the best color currently, but that didn't mean much. I kept a hand with some removal and creatures which was usless and countered/removed in that order. Eventually a Gearhulk resolves when I don't have an Essence Scatter and he follows up with Scarab God.

Game two I play a creature, attack until he gets rid of it, play another. Try to force a Fumigate with a Hydra drop, and he does. Here comes my first big mistake I think. I play Scarab God with no protection. I should have wated for a Duress or a Negate, because he just Vraska Contempt's my God. Then again, he just was gaining card advantage and I couldn't keep a Glint-Sleeve Siphoner alive to draw off of it. Maybe he would have had more counters by the time I felt safe playing my God.

Round four was Temur Black again. Game one I just have Pushes for his plays and eventually he forfeits. Game two goes on a long time with him getting a Search for Azcanta to flip, but not being able to pull out a River's Rebuke or Nissa to kill me as I slowly poke at him with Gonti.

Round five is the mirror match, only he is packing mainborad Torrential Gearhulks. I draw three Scarab Gods but he has Vraska's Contempt for the first two and Gearhulks the Contempt back for the third one. After beating my face in, he says "Wow that was scary. Three Scarab Gods." I quipped back "But look who won." I feel like a dick and should have kept my mouth shut, but seriously, I know I was lucky to draw the same big threat three times, but it did nothing but time walk me and gain him six life. Game I mulligan twice. I really don't know what I did wrong here other than he got a draw engine going that I wasn't drawing any of my answers to. He just kept draw cards, plucking me for two and then removing my threats with Contempts and Extractions. My plan, he just got to do it.

Round six ended sadly. I'll do that first. Game two I had to mulligan three times, looked at the clock and just told him he could have the win. I really didn't want to play with a UB land and three green cards. I am sure I could have topdecked really good and had a game to remember, but sometimes you just want to go home.

So game one, I fucked up. Or did I? He has eight energy, a Whirler Virtuoso and two mana untapped. I plus my Vraska to 5 to make a Pirate, swing with Gonti to bring him to 8. Should I have left Gonti up until Vraska was higher? He used Harnessed Lightning on the Pirate, got 9 energy, made 3 tokens and then killed Vraska the next turn. Gonti got one more swing in before dying to an Abrade. He dropped a Hydra and that was game one.

With his energy so close to three tokens, I really should have protected Vraska, I am thinking. She is my constant source of creatures and removal at this point. Had I minused her again to take care of the Virtuoso, he would have to either live with two tokens, or kill Gonti with no energy up (Or he had the Abrade? I just didn't know.)

So I think haste got me in my losses today. Which again seems to be something I do when I start tilting. Which I have to get better aboute.

I went to another store I had some stuff to do at and ended up playing an Unstable League until last train. Those were some fun games. There's a promotion for doing five league games for a foil Unclaimed Territory, ten for a pack and thirty for a second pack. I've gotten in like thirteen games so far, and it's fun just jamming them out with Unstable's ridiculous cards. It was at least relaxing after a bummer of a tournament ending.

So think more about what the opponent might have. Play a little slower. Perhaps I should take a breath at the start of each turn and just look at things. Not take a minute or waste time, but just think about what is going on, what I can do and what my next card might let me do.