First and Last by Tim Rivera

I remember the day as if it were yesterday, Wizards of the Coast announced its new tournament and a big grin came to my face.  They had announced that they were going to start running State Championships.  The first State Championship was Sealed Deck (Mirage Sealed Deck with 2 Vision Packs), with Top 8 receiving a new Sealed Deck.  The tournament was held at the one of the worst Casinos in Las Vegas, the Debbie Reynolds Casino (picture below). I’m sorry to tell you that if you missed your opportunity to see the great Debbie Reynolds Casino, you’ll never get your chance; it closed down days after the tournament.  


When the first state championship was held, there had two different divisions – juniors and seniors.  To play in the juniors you had to be younger then 18 years old, and at the time I was only 16.   All my friends (all of them were also under 18 ) had decided that they wanted to play in the seniors division.  I said screw that noise, I wanted the easy win so I decided to play juniors.  All my friends had decided that now they should play the juniors division with one goal, to stop me.  The only thing was that they couldn’t fight destiny.  I plowed through the field winning every match in the regular rounds.  Soon would come my first challenge of the day.  I played against Rob.  Rob is a machine….





Rob at the time was my number one nemesis.  He stopped me from qualifying for my first PT, only to lose in the finals.  It was my time for revenge.  After splitting the first two games, I was stuck on 3 lands and Rob was able to kill one thanks to a Goblin.  Luckily for me, I top decked one the following turn and that’s all I needed, as  99% of my spells had a cost 3 or less.  Rob then went on a sick run of drawing 5 lands in a row to go with his 7 he already had.  I then proceeded to bash the shit out of him. 



           After losing the game Rob blew up, he started cussing at me, yelled something about my three casting cost deck of doom, then he threw his deck at me.  I couldn’t believe it, and then 3 seconds he helped picked up all his crap and said he was sorry.  Once I had eliminated my main competition, securing the win was just a formality. 

Fast forward 11 years, wow I’m old…

The constructed State Championship had rolled around again, and during the week before the tournament I had no idea what to play, I probably switched my mind 50 times on what to play and decided on playing U/W Blink.  Below is my list:

Land, 4 Blinks, some guys that go good with Blink, counterspells.

Throughout the tourney I played a bunch of donks.  I lost one match throughout the day when I played the mirror.  He kept in cards that are terrible in our match-up, but of course I drew nothing relevant and lose to a Teferi.  IN the Quarterfinals, I was playing Venser to bounce suspended spells, which I later found out is not possible with Venser.  Neither my opponent nor myself knew that, but in the end I what could we have done after playing 5 turns that way.  In the finals I played against one of my friends named Skylar Gonzalez.   I wasn’t thrilled about the match, he was playing goblins, but I am 30-0 against Skylar in DCI rated matches, so I knew the State Championship was mine.  Throughout the match, Skylar was too distracted talking about Tummy sticks and I ended up killing him and his dream of ever beating me 2-0. 

Being the first and the last state champion for Nevada is awesome, but I’m really disappointed that they ended this program.  I believe it is the one fun tourney a year, and now it is gone.  I’ll forever be known as the first and last State Champion for Nevada. 











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