Hey all! It’s been awhile, this past month has been crazy with London, San Jose Regionals and a pair of League Cups last weekend. I’m going to go over my experience at London Internationals, San Jose Regionals and reflect a little about Expanded. Then in the 2nd half, I’ll cover Zoroark GX paired with Fighting for Standard.

London

Looking back at London, I finished with an abysmal 5-3-1 record with Garbodor. I started off with a 5-1-1 record then basically my deck crumbled upon me during the last 2 rounds. Whiffing Day 2, Top 128 or Top 64 points really felt bad. In round 4, I lost to Noel Totomoch, an experienced Gardy player. My deck could not really respond to his fast start in game 1 and in game 2 I opened 3 Sycamore. Later in the game, I was dead drawing because I did not have any other draw options.

In my 2nd loss, I played against Teodor who got Top 8 at the tournament with Buzzwole/Lycanroc. My set was very close against him but I kept whiffing single card combos to win both games.

My 3rd loss was brutal. I was 5-2-1 and at this point, I wanted to at least get Top 64 to earn some points. I played against Golisopod/Garbodor which is a decent matchup. I pretty much bricked both games, seeing hands like Super Rod, Po Town, and multiple Garbodor while starting Lele. I felt pretty frustrated that I did not earn any points. But all I can do is blame myself. After looking what did well at the tournament Zoroark GX, Octillery and Oranguru were all seen in the decks that did well. My deck didn’t have any backup draw outside of Sycamore and N. This is the main problem with Garbodor decks. They are very vulnerable to N and are really inconsistent.

Learning from this experience, I think that I would recommend including some sort of ability based draw due to the lack of consistent Supporter based draw in this format. It is no wonder why Tord is the king of consistency and the best player in the game. As of now, I do not think Garbodor will be as good as it once was. Zoroark GX has completely taken its throne alongside Gardevoir.

San Jose

I honestly tested a lot more for this tournament than London. I wrote about this deck a month ago and made some minor changes to the list and added Acerola since it is very good to heal Zoroarks. Inspired from Tord’s deck and some Japanese lists, I added in Puzzle of Time. The Puzzles were incredible during the weekend allowing me to reuse more resources and pulling off really cool combos.

Six players played this list into Day 2 with a 1 to 2 card difference. Sam Hough, Colter Decker, Liam Williams and Ruben Cisca played Ghetsis instead of Sycamore. Bodhi Tracy played 2 Guzma and Ghetsis instead of the 2nd Battle Compressor and Professor Sycamore. In retrospect, we all should've cut the 2nd Field Blower for something else more impactful since Garbotoxin was non-existent. Below is the list I used.

 

Seismitoad/Zoroark Expanded

Pokémon (20)

  • 4 Zorua DEX
  • 3 Zoroark GX
  • 1 Zoroark BKT
  • 3 Tapu Lele GX
  • 2 Shaymin EX
  • 2 Exeggcute PLF
  • 1 Sudowoodo
  • 1 Alolan Grimer
  • 1 Alolan Muk
  • 1 Seismitoad EX

Trainers (36)

  • 2 Brigette
  • 2 Colress
  • 1 Professor Sycamore
  • 1 Hex Maniac
  • 1 Karen
  • 1 Guzma
  • 1 Acerola
  • 1 N
  • 4 Ultra Ball
  • 4 Puzzle of Time
  • 4 VS Seeker
  • 2 Choice Band
  • 2 Battle Compressor
  • 2 Float Stone
  • 2 Field Blower
  • 1 Rescue Stretcher
  • 1 Special Charge
  • 1 Computer Search
  • 3 Skyfield

Energy (4)

  • 4 Double Colorless Energy

 

As you can see I pretty much cut a single copy of Sky Field, Choice Band, Special Charge, Rescue Stretcher and Teammates for Puzzles and Acerola. Puzzles were pretty huge because it provided more versatility and let me use crucial cards such as VS Seeker. Puzzles are great with Zoroark GX because the deck draws so many cards.

Here's how my rounds went:

R1 2-0 W Gardevoir

R2 1-0 W Golisopod/Zoroark (Phinnegan Lynch)

R3 1-2 L Zoroark/Lycanroc

R4 2-0 W Raichu GX

R5 2-0 W Fire

R6 2-0 W Night March (Peter Kica)

R7  2-0 W Gardevoir

R8 ID

R9 ID

R10 2-0 W Night March (Peter Kica)

R11 0-1 L Wailord (Drew Kennett)

R12 1-1 T Zoroark/Lycanroc

R13 1-1 T Mirror (Sam Hough)

R14 2-0 W Night March (Brad Curcio)

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