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Much Abrew: Phyrexian Fight Club (Standard)

Hello, everyone! Welcome to another episode of Much Abrew About NothingThis week, we're heading to our new Standard format to see if we can get some flawless victories with Phyrexian Obliterator and fight spells! Phyrexian Obliterator is a really cool card. If our opponent ever damages it, they have to sacrifice that many permanents. The problem is that our opponents know this, which means they'll try their hardest not to damage our Obliterator. This is where our fight spells come in: if we use Bushwhack or Tail Swipe to fight one of our opponent's creatures with Phyrexian Obliterator, we essentially force our opponent's creature to deal damage to our Phyrexian Obliterator, in turn making our opponent sacrifice permanents equal to their creature's power, which can potentially be all of our opponent's lands, giving us the fabled flawless victory in Standard! Can the plan work? How many flawless victories and salty scoops can we get in Standard with Phyrexian Fight Club? Let's get to the video and find out on today's Much Abrew About Nothing!

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Much Abrew: Phyrexian Fight Club

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  • Record-wise, I've been playing Phyrexian Fight Club for fun because I really love making Standard players sacrifice their lands. Overall, across a bunch of matches, I have a 55% match win percentage with the deck, which is pretty good considering the larger-than-normal sample size.
  • As far as our Fight Club plan, it's pretty simple: find Phyrexian Obliterator and a fight spell, fight our opponent's biggest thing, and win the game! We have two fight spells in our deck, both with upside: Bushwhack and Tail Swipe. Bushwhack can be a one-mana fight spell, or it can tutor up a land, which helps ensure we never get mana-screwed. Meanwhile, Tail Swipe is an instant, which is huge. One risk of the Fight Club plan is that our opponent can potentially kill our Phyrexian Obliterator in response to the fight spell, which fizzles our combo. Since Tail Swipe is an instant, we can play Phyrexian Obliterator, leave up a mana, and wait until our opponent taps down (or tries to kill Obliterator) and fight in response to make our opponent sacrifice a bunch of permanents.
  • Speaking of Phyrexian Obliterator, outside of our fight spell combo, it's a strange card. In some matchups, it pretty much wins by itself (this mostly happens against green or red decks that can't kill Obliterator without sacrificing a bunch of permanents). In other matchups, it's pretty lackluster (against black and white decks that can easily kill it without damaging it). Thankfully, the Fight Club plan is good against pretty much any deck with creatures, so if we are in a matchup where Phyrexian Obliterator is likely to die, we often wait until we have enough mana to play it and fight with it right away, to minimize the risk of getting blown out by removal.
  • As far as the rest of the deck, it's a bunch of card draw, removal, and lifegain creatures to help us stabilize and stay alive while we are setting up the Fight Club combo. One of the deck's weird quirks is that, because Phyrexian Obliterator has so many black mana symbols, we're almost mono-black since we need pretty much all of our lands to tap for black mana, making it hard to play double-green spells. Thankfully, black is one of the best colors in current Standard, so staying mostly black isn't much of a cost.
  • A couple of quick notes on other new cards in the deck: Phyrexian Arena is risky. While the card advantage is nice, it is really, really bad if our opponent plays a Sheoldred, the Apocalypse since each card we draw with it will cost us three life. It might be better off in the sideboard for non-Sheoldred matchups. Glissa Sunslayer is sort of like a mini-Obliterator. It wrecks green decks and other removal-light decks since it is almost impossible to kill in combat, but against decks with black removal, it often dies without doing much of anything. It's harder to snowball that card advantage than it looks at first glance. Finally, Black Sun's Twilight was really solid and probably should be explored more in Standard. While it is slow in the early game, Standard is super grindy, and when playing against decks like Esper, Grixis, and Jund, having a removal spell that kills the opponent's best creature in the late game while also reanimating a Phyrexian Obliterator or Sheoldred, the Apocalypse is often a game-winning line.
  • So, should you play Phyrexian Fight Club in Standard? I think the answer is clearly yes! The deck is good and also hilarious. Winning games of Magic is great, but stealing your opponent's soul as they have to sacrifice all their lands is even better, and those are the kinds of wins that Phyrexian Fight Club offers!


Anyway, that's all for today. As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, opinions, and suggestions in the comments, and you can reach me on Twitter @SaffronOlive, or at

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