35: Mulligan Tips from Pro Player Andrea Mengucci

Andrea Mengucci is a cultured Italian man who has made it to the Top 16 in one Grand Prix as well as the Top 16 and Top 8 in two Pro Tours. We will definitely see more of him in the years to come.

Click to Tweet: I learned how to mulligan from Andrea Mengucci when he shared his story on MTG Pro Tutor today! Click here: http://bit.ly/mtgprotutor-ep35

First Set

Champions Kamigawa

Champions of Kamigawa

Favorite Set

Innistrad

Innistrad

Favorite Card

Bloodbraid Elf

What makes Magic: The Gathering fun for you?

You always have changing formats. From tournament to tournament the decks change drastically even though the cards in the set are the same.

Early Challenge

Keeping bad hands was Andrea’s early challenge. Just because you have a good spell, if you have one land you can’t keep the hand.

Learn how to mulligan to overcome this. In Limited your hand is the main concern in whether you mulligan or not. In Constructed, the match up is the main factor in your mulligan decision.

Level Up Moment

Finding someone who was at the next level and playing with him constantly helped Andrea improve.

He also watched tons of videos and learned from the pros and won a PTQ because of it.

Proudest Magic Moment

Making it to the Top 8 of Pro Tour Atlanta.

Andrea took control of the situation and asked Mike Sigrist if he could room with and practice with him for the Pro Tour. This friendship has helped Andrea grow.

Best Format

Standard.

The best results go to the player who practices the most. Follow the decks every week to stay ahead of what’s going on.

How to Choose a Standard Deck

Look at the decks that performed well recently and brainstorm their weaknesses. Consider what deck is best positioned to exploit those weekends.

Biggest Mistake Players Make

Not knowing when to mulligan.

Showing up with the wrong deck.

Watch your opponent. Do they think a lot during combat? That could mean a combat trick. Likewise, even if you don’t have a trick you should take a few seconds before passing priority so your opponent thinks you have a trick.

Card Evaluation Tips

First, lay out your decks and identify which cards can be strictly replaced by new cards. (This applies to all formats; Standard, Modern etc…)

Then identify powerful cards in the new set that are build arounds and build every Standard deck around that card that you can.

Sealed & Draft Tips

Pre-release: At a pre-release play your rares, even if they aren’t that amazing, so you can try them out and see what they do. The pre-release is not a big tournament that Andrea says “I need to win”. He just wants to test new cards.

Draft: Don’t pass a great card just because there are other good cards in that color. In fact, if you do that and that color doesn’t come back that means that you know how many other players at the table are in that color.

Take the best card regardless of color but lean more towards the color of your first pick.

How to Effectively Play Test

Know your opponent’s deck list and play around what they have. Track deck lists and identify the cards that always appear in a certain archetype and know them cold.

Playing with people in real life is better than playing online. When possible, go to your local game store and draft with real people.

Improvement Suggestions

When you’re first getting in, pick a deck and stick with it. As new sets come out just get the pieces you need in your colors.

Magic Resource

Channel Fireball

Andrea Mengucci’s Mana Base Article

Mana Base Article v2.0

Connect With Andrea

Twitter: @Mengu09

Like What You Hear?

If you like the show, head on over to iTunes and leave an honest Rating & Review.

Let me know what you like and what I can do better so I can make the show the best it can be and continue bringing you valuable content.

I read every single one and look forward to your feedback.

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