MTG Grindcast

By MTG Grindcast

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The MTG Grindcast is a spicy new podcast focusing on competitive Magic: the Gathering, with special emphasis on the SCG Tour. Hosts Chris Castro-Rappl and SCG standout Collins Mullen break down all the latest decks, metagame shifts, and technology you're gonna need for whatever tournament you're playing in this weekend. Check us out, and happy grinding!

Episode Date
Look, this one's mostly about Assassin's Trophy
We've got some new spoilers! But really only one of them matters right now, when you get down to it. Is it vindicate? Is it abrupt decay? Assassin's Trophy is set to make an impact on every format, and we go along for the ride.
Sep 13, 2018
Reid Duke, Reactive Decks, and Return to Ravnica
This week! We're talking GP Reid Duke and how totally rad coverage was this past weekend. Slightly less importantly: we've got Guilds of Ravnica Spoilers! And since spoiler season is starting we're going to take some time to talk about the cards that are leaving the format, what holes we're trying to fill, and what we're looking for in spoiled cards. Come hang out!
Sep 05, 2018
The Spirit of Modern
Modern's moving faster than ever! With GP Prague and SCG Baltimore behind us we've got some new decks taking over the top tier of the metagame--are UW control, spirits, and hardened scales here to stay? And what's the deal with Vengevine? Plus we talk about making mistakes and how to respond to them. Come hang out! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music.
Aug 29, 2018
Be Better Today
A different kind of episode this week. We'll pick back up with your regularly scheduled hard-hitting metagame analyses next week, but this week we wanted to hit pause and talk about some of the stuff going on around the gamec, including cheating, the hall of fame, and some of the other issues that have engrossed the Magic community. Then, Collins shares a little of the story of his own Magic journey, and what the future holds for him. Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Aug 22, 2018
From Hardened Scales to Hard-to-Crack Metas
Fasten your seatbelts and harden your scales, because standard and modern are moving quick! But we're here to break the formats down and take a look at the latest tech popping up in tournaments all over the physical and digital realms. Plus: what to do when you feel like your metagame calls keep falling short, even while other people seem to succeed again and again. Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Aug 16, 2018
Pro Tour 25th Anniversary Special
Pro Tour 25th Anniversary is in the books, and the pros put on a bit of a show for us! From Turbofog to turbo street wraiths, and some Vengevines thrown into the mix (looks like Collins was right) we're breaking apart all the action from this weekend and trying to figure out what the heck CCR is going to play at GP Brussels this weekend. Come hang out! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music.
Aug 09, 2018
Modern Madness!
SCG Indy is over and done, and brought some huge changes to the modern format! So this week we're talking Militia Bugler, Wizard's Lightning, and Drogskol Captain. Plus we settle once and for all whether Jeskai Control is unplayable in Modern. Come hang out! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music.
Aug 02, 2018
Of Horses and Humans
This week we're talking two maindeck cards that completely transform tough matchups: Vine Mare in monogreen and Militia Bugler in modern humans. Plus looks at the latest in standard and modern and thoughts on when not to make the intuitive play. Come hang out! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music.
Jul 26, 2018
It's Easy Being Green
CCR managed to top 8 the MODO ptq this weekend with standard's hottest deck: Steel Leaf Stompy! Chris and Collins talk about its place in the meta and how to attack standard. Plus! Week one legacy results are in and we take a look at how everyone's getting along without their favorite mana elf and free peek. Come hang out!
Jul 20, 2018
And Featuring Zan Syed as Himself
Friend of the show Zan Syed took down SCG Atlanta with Infect, so we had to get him on! We talk tournament prep, from brewing strategies to learning new decks, dealing with disappointment, and what's next for team Lotus Box. Come hang out! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music.
Jul 12, 2018
On Probes and Poison Counters
Man, have we got some stuff to talk about today! From WotC's great decision to ban Gitaxian Probe and Deathrite Shaman, to WotC's questionable decision to invite Hearthstone streamers to an 8-man with 150k in prizes, this has been a busy week. Plus, we talk some modern, especially infect of both the BG and UG varieties. Don't miss out! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music.
Jul 05, 2018
Core Set '19 Constructed Set Review
M19 is all spoiled up, so you know what that means: Chris and Collins have a full constructed set review in one mega 3 hour episode! Find out which dragons and angels are going to take over standard, and which amulets you should refrain from putting into your modern sideboard. Grab a snack, get comfy, and let's review some cards!
Jun 28, 2018
Ironworkin' for the Weekend
Modern is getting fast. Real real fast. And Matt Nass is really, really good at going fast (is it the basketball shorts?) Join Chris and Collins this week as they talk Modern, including one particular hard working deck, Dominaria spoilers, and all the news to come out of the big GP Vegas weekend. Come hang out!
Jun 21, 2018
Standard and Spoilers and SCGCon oh my! (also modern)
SCGCon is in the books, and we're seeing some movement in both the invitational formats. Is chainwhirler's grip on the format starting to loosen? Can you play literally anything you want in modern? And what is the deal with this buy-a-box promo? Find out on this episode!
Jun 15, 2018
How to Beat Goblin Chainwhirler
...or, at least, how to try to beat it. With PT Dominaria in the books, standard has a new semi-psychotic overlord. Have his decrees made 1 toughness creatures completely unplayable? Are Chris and Collins trying to find a way to beat the three mana goblin, or are we just living in a chain whirled? Find out on this episode! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Jun 07, 2018
Pro Tour Dominaria Preview Show!
Pro Tour Dominaria is almost here! To prepare you for your viewing experience, Chris and Collins break down the pillars of Standard as they stand going into the tournament. From Monored to no-win-con UW control, and all the sizes of BR aggro in between we look at the basics of the format and the latest developments. Plus a quick runthrough of the draft format to help get you as hype as we are.
May 31, 2018
Teferi is Busted
Teferi is making himself known in both standard and modern, drawing cards, exiling permanents, untapping lands and even serving as a mind-numbing win condition. We take a look at last week's modern results and the rapidly evolving standard landscape, bringing you an up to the minute look at both metas. Come hang out! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music.
May 24, 2018
Snakes and Shadows: GP Birmingham and (finally) a Modern Episode!
CCR is back from GP Birmingham where he tells the story of barely squeaking into top 64 with...not the right deck for the weekend. Plus Collins shares how he's trying to break back into modern with a deck you might not expect (unless you look at the thumbnail for this episode). Come hang out! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
May 17, 2018
Vehicles and Vampires: Going Deep on Standard and Legacy
Fresh off of yet another Team Open top 8, Collins gives us the inside scoop on that Lotus Box build of WB that absolutely dominated this past weekend. Plus we talk about the slightly oxymoronic Slow Turbo Depths that Jody Keith played next to him all weekend and that CCR's about to take to a title in Birmingham. Come hang out! As always, thanks to Wave Sunray for our music.
May 10, 2018
The Dawning of Dominaria Standard
And it's live! Queues are firing and top 8s are battling, and the new cards are Domin-ating standard. The color white and UW control in particular look to be early winners. But they're beatable! Come hang out for our scintillating week 1 standard episode, and leave smarter than you started. Or. At least, with a little more knowledge about standard. Same thing, right?
May 02, 2018
Dominaria Constructed Set Review 2: Red, Green, Multicolored, Colorless, and Land
It's complete! Our monster constructed set review of Dominaria is all done. Come hang out and find out who's the best planeswalker in the set, who's whirling the most chains, and how many elves it takes to make a Llanowar elves. Ok, so maybe that last mystery is too tough even for us but we do tackle the constructed prospects card by card. Give us a listen! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music.
Apr 26, 2018
Dominaria Constructed Set Review: White/Blue/Black
It's here! The Dominaria spoiler is complete, so Chris and Collins are here to tackle it card by card. For Dominara we're trying a 2-part set review, entirely because the set is really sweet and not at all because we tend to ramble on and on about cool new cards. So sit back, relax, and let us tell you what cards are great and what cards are...speculative.
Apr 20, 2018
Hometown Hero: GP Seattle Legacy Champion Daniel Duterte!
Friend of the show Daniel Duterte ran the tables at GP Seattle, his only loss coming in the form of a concession to Steve Rubin in Round 15 so he could eat a crepe. We were lucky enough to snag him for an episode, where he talks tournament prep, getting into legacy, and how he fits Magic into his life. Come hang out, and maybe pick up a couple of Grixis Delver tricks and lunch strategy along the way! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Apr 13, 2018
Man, that's W.A.A.C: How far is too far?
Player interaction is one aspect of tournament play that sometimes gets pushed to the side in favor of metgame analysis and sideboard choices. But it's something we do every single match, and our choices in how we approach judge calls, die rolls, and communication with our opponents can affect the way your tournament plays out as well as your place in the community. This episode is definitely an oddball, so buckle up and enjoy! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Apr 06, 2018
Top 8's and Topdecks
Collins is fresh off of his third Team Open top 8, and we've got plenty to talk about! From being carried to the elimination rounds by 15-year-old Austin Collins, to the latest on MTGArena, to CCR's first tentative forays into legacy, there's something here for everyone! Oh yeah, and we talk about a bunch of rad new Dominaria cards too! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Mar 28, 2018
Just wandering if you knew about Yisan
Humans are on top of the heap again, winning GP Phoenix and taking a whopping 5 spots in the top 32. So this week we're talking modern, talking humans, talking Yisan the Wanderer Bard. Plus some MTG Arena talk and other news from around the ol' discussion sphere. Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Mar 22, 2018
We've got your post-unban modern here! Jund and Tron are out and about, though the SCG Dallas top 8 had some weirdos for sure! Chris and Collins break down the latest developments in that format and then dive into some Dominaria spoilers! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music. Find us at
Mar 16, 2018
Modern is Mind-bogling
It's been a big weekend! Butakov won the MOCS as well as our hearts and, perhaps more relevant to the show, we've launched our Patreon and website! So, just how afraid of Jund and Bogles do you have to be? And can it be right to run no removal spells in your standard deck? Come hang out as we explore all these questions and more. Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Mar 08, 2018
Torrential Gearhulk is the best card in Standard
GP Memphis is in the books, finally giving us a window into the post-ban standard format. Come hang out as we celebrate the existence of a real standard metagame with a breakdown of the cards and strategies you need to look out for. The night is dark and full of Vraska's Contempts, Torrential Gearhulks, and Scarab Gods, but we've got your back!
Mar 01, 2018
You know I'm all about that Jace (and Bloodbraid)
It's a brave new world! Chris and Collins break down all the recent developments in post-ban Standard and post-unban Modern. The Jacepocalypse hasn't come around quite yet...but is it coming? Let's find out together! Music by Wave Sunray For Coaching by Collins (R)(TM):
Feb 21, 2018
Jace, the Format Sculptor
Everyone's got an opinion on the Jace unban but we...we've got two! Chris and Collins break down how this unban looks and unpack the possible implications on the format. Come hang out and get salty with us!
Feb 15, 2018
Post-Pro Tour check in and Modern metagame breakdown
Collins is back from his first pro tour! While he didn't take it down, he's got some stories to share and we take a look at what's going on in modern now that the dust has settled a little bit. Come hang out! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music:
Feb 08, 2018
We've, uh, we've got more champs here
Our friends can't stop crushing these team events! Lucas Michaels, Jeremy Henry, and William Lo come hang out on the cast this week to talk about what it's like to win a team open while not wearing jerseys. Come join us!
Feb 02, 2018
The Champs are here!
Jon Rosum, Julian John, and Kevin King crushed the team open this past weekend and dropped by to hang out! This episode's got a little bit of everything, from missed triggers to mardu vehicles and even some inside information on dueling Marit Lages. Come hang out! Chris Vincent's article on winning Axion Now's Mega Modern event with Humans: Thanks to Wave Sunray for our music:
Jan 24, 2018
26: New New Standard and Rivals Limited
Oh no! All those cards in our standard decks got banned. Today Chris and Collins take a look at those bans and how the new standard format just might play out. Plus, we've been jamming the new limited format in preparation for some upcoming Grand Prix and we share what we've learned.
Jan 19, 2018
25: Rivals of Ixalan Constructed Set Review!
Our first ever full set review! Get a drink, fix yourself a snack, and put in your comfiest earbuds because this episode is a 3 hour monster. We go over every card we think will have a constructed impact and a bunch that...probably won't. Are merfolk real? Arrrrr the pirates seaworthy? Find out here! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music
Jan 12, 2018
24: Modern, Merfolk, and MTGRIX Spoilers!
New year, new episode! With the December lull finally over it's time to talk Modern in preparation for SCG Columbus. Plus, Rivals of Ixalan is looking spicier than expected, so join us for some hot takes on the spoilers so far. Finally, is Standard dead? Starcity Games seems to think so, so we throw in our two cents.
Jan 04, 2018
23: How to play from ahead (and some other Magic theory!)
After a couple of rad guests, CCR and Collins return to their roots: chatting about the Magical ideas that have been buzzing around their heads lately. This week: have you noticed that you play looser when you're ahead? That's percentage points that are ripe to be regained. We talk about how to do that: how to think about the game when you're ahead and how to start improving your decisions. Plus, some other Magic theory may or may not creep in at the edges. Come hang out!
Dec 21, 2017
22: Scotland's own Stephen Murray!
We're back this week with a pleasantly accented guest! Stephen Murray's played in nearly every World Magic Cup and has top 8'd twice but, most importantly, has held the title of Scottish National Champion for over a decade. He's here to fill us in on tournament prep, team ratings (spoiler, Japan is a Crush of Wurms) and playing Magic in Europe. Find more of him at @jechtmurray! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Dec 14, 2017
21: And Introducing Rio Trevathan!
Collins and Chris have known Rio for a minute, but this weekend he stepped into the limelight by becoming the youngest person to ever top 8 a Starcity Invitational! We spend this episode chatting with him about the tournament, what a 13-year-old does with 3 grand (hint, it includes buying more magic cards), and where he's going from here. Come hang out!
Dec 07, 2017
20: SCG Invitational Spectacular!
Collins is all prepped for the invitational! We go over his updates to modern humans (wait, is that a spoiler) as well as the strategy he's banking on to break the Temur mirror. Come hang out!
Nov 30, 2017
19: Modern episode! Oh, and some Rivals spoilers.
Modern episode! Ok, Collins's team made top 8 with him playing standard so we can't help talking about that for a little while, but the invitational's coming up so modern is back on the table. The meta's making some interesting shifts and reacting to humans, so we talk about where we want to be, and even philosophize a little about ways to be a good modern player. Plus! Black dinosaurs and multicolored fliplands: Rivals of Ixalan spoilers are starting!
Nov 23, 2017
Grindcast Ep 018: Everything's coming up Collins
With results from three GPs this weekend standard keeps chugging along, and we've got your ticket to ride. Whether your destination is energy, monored, tokens, energy, control, or energy, we're here to make sure you get where you want to go. Plus! Chris gets Collins to dish on what it's like being a grinder on the rise--or has he graduated to pro-in-the-making? Find out this week! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Nov 15, 2017
Grindcast Ep 017: I played Humans again this weekend. I still didn't lose a single match.
So, somehow Collins did it again, winning his SCG Regionals and an IQ in the same weekend and, uh, going undefeated. For anyone who's not tired of him winning, hear about the latest changes to Humans from the man himself, plus all the secrets to not dropping a match in three tournaments. PLUS, apparently there was a Pro Tour this weekend as well! We break down the decks and the standard format after PT Ixalan, just in time for Grand Prix Atlanta. Come hang out!
Nov 08, 2017
Grindcast Episode 016: The Champ is Here!
Collins spikes Cincinnati, and he does it in style! Undefeated on the weekend with a mostly brand new 5 color humans deck featuring more Ixalan cards than most standard lists. Come hang out with us as we break down the deck, the card choices (including 0 Collected Company!) and where to go with the deck from here. Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music:
Oct 25, 2017
Grindcast Episode 015: Zen and the Art of Drafting (Also nationals!)
This week on the Grindcast: Collins is fresh off of a deep run at nationals, missing out on top 8 only because of a very prepared Gerry T. We talk about his run, his deck choice, and his draft philosophy, both as applied to Ixalan and to Magic Limited in General. Tune in! Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music!
Oct 19, 2017
Grindcast Episode 014: Chris and Collins vs Worlds
So, standard's only three decks now, right? Don't bet on it, friends! On this episode we talk worlds and what we're excited to play at Nationals this weekend. Plus, Collins lets us in on a bit of a project he's got going in modern. Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music:
Oct 13, 2017
Grindcast Episode 013: Hostage Taker, Popeye, and the rest of the crew
Chris's trip to Germany delayed the upload of this episode a bit, but we swear his Peach Garden Oath prediction was made well before Huey's run even began. Popeye, pirates, and new standard on this episode of the Grindcast!
Oct 09, 2017
Grindcast Episode 012: Treasures from Magic Online
Ixalan is finally here! And we've braved the depths of Magic Online to bring you only the finest in standard metagame updates and limited analysis. Is Ixalan "the worst limited format of all time?" Uh, no, probably not. Are dinosaurs rampaging through standard? Find out on this weeks's episode! Thanks to Wave Sunray for our music:
Sep 28, 2017
Grindcast Episode 011: Exploring Ixalan
With Ixalan's release right around the corner, it's time to take an in-depth look at what's leaving standard and what we expect to see in the new format. Will it be all monored all the time? Or do the tribes of Ixalan have something in store for us? Plus we talk a little modern, including Goryo's Deathvine, which is an actual deck of Magic: the Gathering cards and not just a bunch of words strung together. Thanks to Wave Sunray for our music:
Sep 21, 2017
Grindcast Episode 010: Chris and Collins Enter the Arena, Plus Spell Pierce, Duress, and Opt, oh my!
It's been a busy week for Magic: the Gathering, and Chris and Collins are here with the hottest of hot takes on MTG Arena, the now-spoiled Iconic Masters, and some dope reprints and other spoilers from Ixalan. Listen up for literally all the info you need about these things. You do not need information from any other source. Only us. Thanks as always to Wave Sunray for our music:
Sep 13, 2017
Collins ramped his way to (near) victory in DC this weekend! On this episode we talked about the deck and the innovative sideboarding strategy that got him to the GP DC Finals, as well as the evolution of his understanding of the game that's helped get him to this point. PLUS Lightning Strike and some other cool cards from Ixalan! Thanks to Wave Sunray for our music:
Sep 06, 2017
MTG Grindcast Episode 008: Where is Eldrazi Tron? Plus, some dinosaurs walk the plank.
Chris and Collins are back! After a brief hiatus to grind some trails in the mountains, it's time for standard, modern, and way, way more importantly: Ixalan spoilers! We got pirates, we got feathery dinosaurs, what more could you want? Put us in your ears! Thanks to Wave Sunray for our intro music:
Sep 01, 2017
MTG Grindcast Episode 007: Jeskai Geist with Jonathan Rosum
Join us for a very special episode of the Grindcast, with celebrity guest Jonathan Rosum. Jon teaches us some very important lessons about love, life, and picking your spot with Jeskai Geist. Plus! We explore this weekend's insane top 8s, standard's godly new tech, and Collins reveals a deep, dark secret. Thanks to Wave Sunray for our music:
Aug 19, 2017
MTG Grindcast Episode 006: Valakut redux, metagame breakdowns, and a couple of cats
Here's Episode 6, full of hot takes and molten pinnacles. Collins took the Valakut deck from last week to an exactly 17th place finish at Syracuse, so we talk about his weekend, his matchups, and what changes he's going to make to the list going forward. Plus, modern and standard metagame updates and a look at some sweet new cats that may (or may not) be making the cut in a Death and Taxes list near you. Thanks to Wave Sunray for our music:
Aug 10, 2017
MTG Grindcast Ep 005: PT HOU special: Big Feels, Big Cheats, and Mono Red
Episode 5 is here! Join Chris and Collins as we talk PT HOU/PT monored and how we'd attack this hasty format we've found ourselves in. PLUS Collins has a spicy new modern brew for SCG Syracuse, and we talk about two important, and maybe even related, concepts: feelings and cheating. Thanks to Wave Sunray for our intro music:
Aug 03, 2017
Grindcast Ep 004: SCG Atlanta, Pro Tour Predictions, and how to MTGO
Welcome to episode 4 of the Grindcast, the spikiest podcast in all of central North Carolina. Join Chris and Collins as we take a look at the aftermath of SCG Atlanta and the changes to modern and standard that have come about since. Then stick around for our discussion of how to start making magic online work for you--from getting your first deck to figuring out your goals to choosing the events you want to play in. Thanks to Wave Sunray for our music:
Jul 28, 2017
MTG Grindcast Ep 003: HOU Standard Meta Analysis and WOTC Announcements
Trying to crack standard? Chris and Collins are here to help, with an up-to-the moment look at the rapidly evolving paper and Magic Online meta. Hear our thoughts on Monument, Mono Red and friends as we break down the matchups and strengths and weaknesses of each deck. Plus, hella WOTC announcements, affecting both local play and those pro tour dreamers among our listeners. We know you were waiting to hear our takes before forming your opinions, so wait no more! Thanks to Wave Sunray for our intro music:
Jul 20, 2017
Grindcast Ep 002: HOU Draft First Impressions and Standard Preview
Welcome to episode 2 of the Grindcast! Today Collins and Chris finish talking about the SCG Invitational, including a look at Team LotusBox's prep for the tournament. Then we dive into HOU limited generally and an in-depth analysis of the early frontrunner for best draft archetype. Finally, Collins shares some of what he and his team have uncovered about this brand new standard format in preparation for the Cincinnati Open! Thanks to Wave Sunray ( for our intro music.
Jul 14, 2017
MTG Grindcast Episode 001: Invitational Weekend and HOU Spoilers!
Welcome to the first episode of the Grindcast! Join Collins Mullen and Chris Castro-Rappl as they do their best to unravel the mysteries of Standard, Modern, and of becoming the most powerful wizard you can be. This week we're talking the SCG season 1 invitational and looking at the sauciest spoilers from Hour of Devastation. Thanks to Wave Sunray for the dope intro music!
Jul 07, 2017