Round 15: Jin Okamoto vs. Jeroen Remie
Remie has had a great week so far, and needs a win here to all but guarantee a spot in the Top 8. This round, he's playing one of Japan's best, Jin Okamoto. Okamoto has missed Top 8 on tiebreakers on numerous occasions, and seems well on his way to finally playing on a Sunday at a major global event. He is playing a Japanese Goblin deck with insane card advantage capability provided by the Goblin Ringleader/Goblin Recruiter combo. With the help of his Goblin tutoring capability, he can even search up wacky, narrow yet powerful options such as Goblin Assassin. This may seem odd, but Okamoto will always have more creatures out than his opponents, and will be able to toss away 1/1s while his opponents will eventually lose anything from Akroma to Silver Knight.
Okamoto started off with a great draw, playing Goblin Lackey turn one, and then using City of Traitors to summon Goblin Matron, and search up a Siege-Gang Commander. The Commander came into play on turn two thanks to the Lackey, and Remie shook his head as he looked at Okamoto's incredible turn two board. Okamoto then played Goblin Ringleader, flipping another Ringleader, Goblin Incinerator, a Warchief and a Piledriver all off the top, and into his hand- Remie conceded right away.
Okamoto- 1 Remie- 0
Remie had a first turn Birds of Paradise, which died to Seal of Fire. A pair of Wall of Blossoms gave Remie a solid defense, while Okamoto summoned a Piledriver. A second Birds died to a cycled Incinerator, and Okamoto played Mogg Fanatic. Faceless Butcher dealt with the Piledriver, and Remie's board was definitely very favorable. Okamoto simply played a Lackey, while Remie cast his third Wall of Blossoms. Faceless Butcher attacked for two damage, and was joined by Yavimaya Elder.
Goblin Recruiter came out to stack Okamoto's deck, and a cycled Incinerator killed the Butcher, bringing back the Piledriver. Mogg Fanatic flew at the Elder, which was sacrificed in response. On the following turn, Okamoto attacked with all his creatures, and Smother killed the Piledriver. Okamoto then played Goblin Matron, found a Recruiter, and played it.
Remie- "Nice one Jin."
Okamoto had put the Goblins in the wrong order, and was now set back a turn as he rearranged his deck once again to set up the best possible Ringleader turns. Remie untapped and played Pernicious Deed, then sent the turn over. Okamoto played the Ringleader, getting a Sparksmith, Warchief, Matron and Goblin Assassin. The resulting attack dealt some damage through the walls, and Remie was in a pretty bad position. Even if he set off the Deed, Okamoto's Ringleaders were giving him more than enough resources. The second Ringleader got another four Goblins, including Siege-Gang Commander.
With a full board, Remie set off the Deed, and played another. The best he could do was blow up the world when the board got too scary, and follow up with Ravenous Baloth. Okamoto played Goblin Assassin, getting plenty of laughs out of the crowd and the players. In this situation, Remie would either need to sacrifice the Baloth and gain four life, or run the 50/50 and hope to keep it in play. If the flip wasn't in his favor, there would be no window of opportunity to sacrifice the Baloth. Both flips caused the creatures to die, and Remie came right back with another Baloth and Festering Goblin.
Okamoto still had plenty of Recruiter action to stay in the game, and Remie drew yet another Deed. This once again wiped all the Goblins off the board, leaving Okamoto to rebuild yet again. Remie wasn't out of gas, and played Yavimaya Elder along with Genesis. Okamoto simply exploded on his turn, playing a Warchief along with a ton of Goblins, and sent them all into the Red Zone. Remie blocked, and his Genesis and Elder died, but he went to one life point. Genesis let him bring back Ravenous Baloth, which came out to keep him alive and provide a blocker. This left Okamoto just short of enough damage to get through the Baloth and deal lethal damage. He played a Recruiter, picked up his deck, and saw that there were no Goblins left. With a bit of embarrassment, he scooped up his cards and went to Game 3.
Okamoto- 1 Remie- 1
Okamoto's Mogg Fanatic attacked for a point, then took down a Llanowar Elves. This was followed by Goblin Piledriver, and Remie had Birds of Paradise, along with Festering Goblin. Seal of Fire killed the Birds, and Okamoto played another Piledriver. Warchief came out a turn later, and Remie responded with Diabolic Edict, forcing one of the Piledrivers to die. Remie now had Treetop Village and Festering Goblin back on defense, nullifying Okamoto's attackers for the time being. A Ringleader came out with no Recruiter assistance, and pulled up an Incinerator and Warchief. Remie tapped out for Ravenous Baloth, so Okamoto summoned a Warchief and did nothing else. Remie's board improved even more with Pernicious Deed, and Okamoto cycled an Incinerator to get the Baloth out of the way. Seal of Fire dealt with the Festering Goblin, clearing the path for an eight damage attack.
With no fear of the Deed, Okamoto played a Prospector followed by Siege-Gang Commander. Remie set off the Deed, and Okamoto responded by sacrificing to the Prospector to make mana. This produced enough to allow Okamoto to throw four points of Commander damage to the dome, bringing Remie down to eight. A Ringleader later gave him a Commander, Ringleader and Recruiter. The only resources Remie had left were two Treetop Villages, and he attacked for six.
A Warchief and Lackey attacked back, allowing Okamoto to put the Commander right into play. Okamoto was at five, and Remie was at four. He attacked with both Villages, and Okamoto blocked with the Commander and the tokens, taking one trample damage in the process. Another Ringleader provided a Fanatic to kill a Birds that would have chump blocked, and Okamoto attacked for the win.
Final Result: Okamoto- 2 Remie- 1
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