117: Nathan Smith Unlocks the Next 1%

Nathan Smith started playing magic in 2013, he played his first Grand Prix in 2014, and his first Pro Tour in 2015! He competed in the 2015 MOCS and in the last 6 Pro Tours, reaching the top 50 twice. He also has 2 Grand Prixs Top 8s. Last season he was a Silver Pro and has built off that to lock up Gold Pro status this season!

Click to Tweet: I got a ton of value from Nathan Smith when he shared his story on #MTGProTutor! Click here: http://bit.ly/mtgprotutor-ep117

First Set

Innistrad pre release

Favorite Set


Favorite Card

[draft]Gideon, Ally of Zendikar[/draft]

What makes Magic: The Gathering fun for you?

Nathan loves challenging himself and constantly seeking to improve by that next 1%.

Level Up

Having players he respects say “you’re not likely to make it” lit a fire in Nathan.
Players Nathan looks up to are Magnus Lantto (Ep. 57) and Oliver Tiu (Ep. 78).

Deepest Thing You’ve Learned About Yourself

Even though I try not to care it’s hard to remove yourself completely. Nathan learned he’s not a complete emotional robot. He has the dedication needed to succeed.

Biggest Mistake Players Make

Players miss sideboard.

Ask what does my deck struggle with? How do I board against that? What are they going to board me? Are they on the Play or Draw?

How to Effectively Prepare for a Big Event

Put in the right amount of effort when you have pressure. Care about how you prepare and how you play.

Improvement Suggestions

“Never give up, never surrender” Look for what you’re doing right.

Don’t be “crippled by the fear of failure”.

Sideboard Tips

Single copies of cards in your deck or sideboard are justified when you have a way to filter your deck and you’ll see a lot of your cards throughout the game.

Also, when you want a package of cards with similar effects but want to break them up for different matchups.

Magic Resource

Brad Nelson articles on sideboards.



Reid Duke.

Paul Cheon (stream)

LSV (stream)

Oliver Tiu (stream)

Connect With Nathan Smith

Twitter: @Pandabeast24

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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