The Underlying Cards of Standard

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When you take a look at a tournament-winning deck list, there are often cards that you just skip over and accept as a normal part of the deck; maybe it’s just some kind of removal, or perhaps it’s just a regular control-esque card. However, if you start to look at a lot of deck lists, you’ll notice that some of the same cards keep showing up; sometimes these cards show up in the sideboard or as singletons in the main, but they’re there. These cards are what I like to call the “underlyers”; and underlyer is card that has (or potentially can have) a large impact on the environment without really showing it. This means that the card isn’t particularly flashy, but it’s there, and it shapes how you play. To get my point across, it would probably be best to just show you.

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