#CMAskTheJudge Episode 136: Danse of Betrayal

Welcome to Episode 136 of Cardmarket's AskTheJudge series. Each episode includes a video that poses a question regarding the rules of Magic. Watch the video, comment with your answer, and then check your work below. This week's question is about stealing commanders and about the effects that may stop that.

Welcome to #CMAskTheJudge! This time we want to know what happens when you resolve Danse Macabre and your opponent has to sacrifice their commander. Do they have time to move it to the command zone before you can steal it? Comment on our video (or below) with your answer and then check whether you got it right or wrong!

danse macabre

Click Here for the Answer!


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Octania(24.07.2021 12:21)

So what does this mean in regards to a card like Tergrid? If I have tergrid out and somehow make my opponent sacrifice their commander, can i steal it?

My guess would be no since in that case the sacrifice and tergrid are two seperate triggers?

amrtina(25.07.2021 16:16)

@Octania correct, they are separate items on the stack, and SBAs are checked between them resolving, giving your opponent the opportunity to move the commander to the command zone instead.

PhilXan(23.07.2021 18:42)


Putting your commander into the command zone is part of State-Based Actions, and SBA's aren't checked within the resolving of a spell. (Interesting exception: putting your commander into the command zone when it would be put into your hand or library is a *replacement effect* instead, so it doesn't suffer from the same problem.)

Also, are we going to talk about the person who's playing a mono white Isamaru EDH deck?

trenjeska(23.07.2021 14:46)

So this also means that Commanders can be TUCKED again :D

Telmonen(23.07.2021 14:56)(Edited: 23.07.2021 14:57)

I found the June 7 rules change announcement and commander changing zones now seems to have two separate rulings.
First ruling handles graveyard / exile and the second ruling handles library and hand.
The graveyard / exile zone change was changed to be state based, but the library / hand zone change remains a replacement effect. So tucking is not back. :)
Https://mtgcommander. Net/index. Php/2020/06/07/june-7-announcement-on-dies-triggers/

Reya1987(23.07.2021 14:38)

So, just to be sure. With the new ruling, we have to fully resolve abilities and/or spells before anyone can decides to move his or her commander back to the command zone or not ?

For example with Living death: if there is a commander in a graveyard and a commander on the battlefield, we fully resolve Living death. We have now a commander on the battlefield and a commander in a graveyard. Before anyone receive priority, the commander on the battlefield could go back to command zone? And the commander in the graveyard can go to command zone as well ?

Telmonen(23.07.2021 14:52)

Yes, fully resolve the ability first.
With living death: When commander is put to the battlefield, you are not given a chance to put it to the command zone. The official answer given to this question seems to have a reference to the rules.
"If a commander is in a graveyard or in exile and that card was put into that zone since the last time state-based actions were checked, its owner may put it into the command zone. This is a state-based action."
So the player whose commander ends up in graveyard can choose to put it to command zone, but the player who had his commander resurrected does not get the option of putting the commander to the Command zone from the battlefield.

polpio(23.07.2021 10:13)

Hi ! So for the same reason if I get control of an opponent's commander and I also have a Thassa, Deep-Dwelling on my battlefield I can blink the commander, am I right?
Last time I did it my opponent decided to move it to the CommandZone instead.

Reya1987(23.07.2021 10:51)

When a commander moves from any zone to any other zone, it’s owner can decide to put it into the command zone instead.

So I assume that both Danse Macabre and blinking from Thassa won’t allow you to take control of an opponent commander.

Telmonen(23.07.2021 13:24)(Edited: 23.07.2021 13:29)

"When a commander moves from any zone to any other zone, it’s owner can decide to put it into the command zone instead."
This was the old ruling. There is no replacement effect anymore. When commander moves to the zone, it goes to the zone. (Graveyard, Exile..) But before anyone gets a priority (during state based actions) the owner of that commander can choose to put it to Command zone.
But while a trigger / spell is resolving, state based actions are not checked. The whole spell / trigger is resolved and only then will the state based actions be checked. So putting card to exile and then returning to battlefield, or sacrificing creatures and then returning one to battlefield are part of the resolution of a single spell / trigger.

(Ps: Polpio, With Thassa, Deep-Dwelling even if old rules were followed and the owner of commander put the blinked commander to Command zone instead of exile, you would still have gotten the commander back to battlefield. Old rules were a replacement effect. Instead of going to exile, the commander would have gone to command zone. But Thassa does not care. Thassa will put the card to the chosen zone and then return it back to the battlefield as a single trigger.)
But with the new rules this is not an issue, situation is now clearer. The commander goes to exile (or graveyard) and then returns from exile (or graveyard) as part of the single resolution. Then once the commander is back on the battlefield, then the state based actions are again checked but then it's too late already, the commander is on the battlefield and can't be put to command zone.

Reya1987(23.07.2021 14:31)

I assumed totally wrong! You explained the whole thing very clearly I think. It’s a very important thing to know actually. Thanks.

amrtina(23.07.2021 16:34)

I just came to sign everything that Telmonen is saying on this thread, you were faster than me :)

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