297: (Best of) Jon Finkel on How You Can Improve as a Magic Player

Jon Finkel’s prolific talents and sterling resume earned him the nickname “Jonny Magic” long ago. After a substantial hiatus, Jon Finkel returned to the Pro Tour and immediately demonstrated why he’s widely considered the greatest player of all time by winning PT Kuala Lumpur in 2008 and Top 8’ing PT Avacyn Restored and PT Dark Ascension in 2012.

Click to Tweet: I got a ton of value from Jon Finkel when he shared his story on #MTGProTutor! Listen here: http://bit.ly/mtgprotutor-ep297

Jon Finkel’s Desperate Ravings on Boosting Your Skill as a Magic Player

Jon Finkel’s prolific talents and sterling resume earned him the nickname “Jonny Magic” long ago. After a substantial hiatus, Jon Finkel returned to the Pro Tour and immediately demonstrated why he’s widely considered the greatest player of all time by winning PT Kuala Lumpur in 2008 and Top 8’ing PT Avacyn Restored and PT Dark Ascension in 2012.

First Set

Antiquties Antiquities (1994)

Favorite Set

272px-Innistrad_expansion_symbol.svg Innistrad (2011) – “Was the pinnacle of Limited set design.”

Favorite Card

Desperate Ravings

What makes Magic fun for you?

The depth of the game and the ability to add on to the basic framework through the expansions is what keeps Jon engaged.

Early Challenge

Not running enough lands in control decks and not playing 60 card decks.

Level Up Moment

Realizing that playing other decks outside your comfort zone can lead to growth and improvement as a player, not to mention better results.

Proudest Magic Moment

Making first Pro Tour Top 8 at Chicago in 1997

Best Format

Draft

Biggest Mistake Players Make

Not being open to playing the best deck. Not playing Magic with the intention to improve. You need to be conscious of what you play and how you play so you can improve.

 

Jon Finkel on How To Build a Team and Pick the Best Card

Jon Finkel’s prolific talents and sterling resume earned him the nickname “Jonny Magic” long ago. After a substantial hiatus, Jon Finkel returned to the Pro Tour and immediately demonstrated why he’s widely considered the greatest player of all time by winning PT Kuala Lumpur in 2008 and Top 8’ing PT Avacyn Restored and PT Dark Ascension in 2012.

Evaluation Tips

Rather than opening up the spoiler every week to see what’s new, Jon gets the best grasp on a new set simple by drafting it.

Limited Tips

In Sealed you’ll get powerful bombs that you really want to play but your deck will be less streamlined than in the draft.
If there are two good black cards don’t take a slightly worse red card because you “don’t want to fight for black”. Just pick the best card.

Team Building

Having a team is critical to improving. Find the best players you can but make sure you get along with them personally because you’ll be spending a lot of time with them.

Improvement

Take advantage of draft simulators. Rebuild packs with friends so you can draft. Beg, borrow and use proxies if you’re on a budget and need to test deck ideas.
Be critical of your plays so you can improve

Interview Links

MTG Salvation Spoilers

Connect with Jon

Twitter: @Jonnymagic00

Check Out Magic Story

Magic Story brings the lore of the Multiverse to life in an audio presentation never before heard in the Magic community.

Listen to Episode 1 here or on www.magicthestory.com

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