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Browse > Home / Strategy / Articles / Fish Five-0: Grixis Binder (Standard, Magic Arena)

Fish Five-0: Grixis Binder (Standard, Magic Arena)

A lot of you came by my stream asking for a video on the Grixis Binder deck I played so here it is and updated!


As you know, I built the deck on stream as a meme but I realized if I tuned it a bit, it could climb the ladder quite well. The deck can have absurdly aggressive curve outs but it can play the late game thanks to all of our Nicol Bolas cards.

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If you haven't heard about this card by now, get acquainted with it as I can't see this going anywhere even after rotation. The card itself is a powerhouse and is great early or late game. You'll win many games where you're flooded and both players are in topdeck mode. It also makes opponents think a bit more about combat as this can be activated more than once and gains deathtouch. This does everything you could ask for in a one-drop and pairs quite well with Spawn of Mayhem and Nicol Bolas, the Ravager as those cards on their own can deal 4 in the air which means it can sit back and reap the benefits until it's ready to attack. 

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This card is great as it incentivizes your opponents to block it with mana accelerants like Llanowar Elves which could slow them down. If this gets big enough, killing it could lead to the opponent losing or losing a big threat. It also has haste which is nice for killing Teferi, Time Raveler after they bounce it. This Zombie is a great card for the early aggression we're looking for. Just a reminder though, as this card is great on the play, if you're on the draw you can definitely go down some number if you think the opponent will have tons of defense early. 

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Lazav started off as a singleton mostly for meme value because he's one of my favorite commanders but I ended up doing so many things with him. He could turn into a Knight of the Ebon Legion or Thief of Sanity which put our opponents in a tight spot. Not only that, you can copy Dreadhorde Butcher to give him haste and watch him grow and then shift again when you need a better threat. I've made 5/5 Thief of Sanity and so on. A thing to note is that you can copy Nicol Bolas, the Ravager and not lose him as he's still Lazav so the legendary rule won't apply. Just don't use Bolas' activated ability as you will NOT get the planeswalker side. 

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Spawn is a newer addition and was really just my attempt at trying to fill out the curve as we were light on threats at the three drop slot. Yes, I'm aware he's a four drop but often times I'll be able to get him down on turn three. The fact that he's also a 4/4 makes it so it can trigger Knight of the Ebon Legion! The ability to also ping players and grow it is a tough line to walk but rewarding if done right. Yes, even against red decks you can use this as you can't really remove an Experimental Frenzy without committing to something like Aether Gust or Ugin, the Ineffable. How do we beat that and everything else in the format? Easy, remove the opponent! Spawn helps with our aggression gameplan.

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Last card I wanted to talk about is a new inclusion as it's really just for Scapeshift decks. With Scapeshift being super popular, this helps deal with that while also replacing itself as it draws a card. I'm running the maximum amount in this list but if Scapeshift does down, you can go up Ritual of Soot and prepare more for an aggro meta. This card shuts down the triggered ability of  Field of the Dead and isn't legendary so you can stack as many of these as you want so Teferi, Time Raveler will have a tough time bouncing all of them. Also, you get to draw more cards which is nice! 


The deck performed quite well outside of the few games we had mana issues. Grixis has always suffered from some mana issues as its spells are very color intensive. If you're not a fan of the four Blood Sun out of the sideboard, you can shave one to two and put in a Ritual of Soot and Ashiok, Dream Render but the Blood Sun feel great whenever you draw them as they replace themselves. If Mono-Red and Experimental Frenzy is super prominent for you, maybe even look into Aether Gust as a way to temporarily delay the frenzy while you beat down with your threats and eat away at their resources with Nicol Bolas, Dragon God! Hopefully this video helps out a bit so you can see how I sideboard.

Thanks for watching!

-Your Friendly Neighborhood AsianAvenger

Twitter: @TheAsianAvenger || Twitch: || Email:


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