Data from Grand Prix Lyon: Who Beats Whom in Standard?
- Tobi Henke
We don't get much in the way of data nowadays. But the most recent Grand Prix in Lyon gave us some. For example, we can glean a little information about how the major deck archetypes of current Standard match up against each other. Who beat whom? Look here — there's insight inside!
This past weekend, France hosted a somewhat petite Grand Prix. 583 players came to battle in total, and 100 of them qualified for the second day. While we don't get a lot of data nowadays, the tournament organizer just released information on what decks the Top 100 players brought to the fray.
We can use this information in three ways …
Day 2 Metagame
For one thing, we might be interested in a breakdown. This one's simple: eighteen players on Temur Clover, seventeen each on Bant Ramp and Monored Aggro, ten on Temur Reclamation, nine on Rakdos Sacrifice, eight on Sultai Midrange, five on Jeskai Fires, and another sixteen picked some more minor archetype.
One big story here is that the red-green-blue Adventure deck built around Lucky Clover became the defining force in the Day 2 metagame. The other big story is that the Worlds-winning White-Blue Control almost vanished, earning only one player a spot in Sunday's rounds.
We might also be interested in win rates. The following includes all matches the Top 100 players completed across Day 1, Day 2, and the Top 8 but excludes byes:
- 10 Temur Reclamation players won 67.4% of 129 matches
- 9 Rakdos Sacrifice players won 65.8% of 114 matches
- 17 Bant Ramp players won 65.6% of 218 matches
- 18 Temur Clover players won 62.2% of 233 matches
- 5 Jeskai Fires players won 60.7% of 61 matches
- 17 Monored players won 60.4% of 230 matches
- 8 Sultai players won 60.2% of 103 matches
Finally, the Top 100 players completed 444 matches against each other. So we have 444 matches where we know what decks both combatants used and also know which deck won. As far as sample sizes go, this one's a tad on the low side. As you'll see, for the vast majority of pairings, we can't say that one strategy exhibited a meaningful advantage over the other.
Below, I'm using a very simple measure to differentiate results. For each record, I'm listing the probability to see a record at least this extreme if instead of casting spells players would do coin tosses. A lower probability equals a more meaningful result.
Temur Clover (18 Players)
- won 64.7% of 17 matches versus Monored Aggro (p=0.166)
- won 53.3% of 15 matches versus Jeskai Fires (p=0.500)
- won 54.5% of 11 matches versus Sultai Midrange (p=0.500)
- won 46.2% of 26 matches versus Bant Ramp (p=0.423)
- won 35.7% of 14 matches versus Temur Reclamation (p=0.212)
- won 25.0% of 16 matches versus Rakdos Sacrifice (p=0.038)
Temur Clover's 11-6 record against Monored may look impressive. However, the chance to get eleven or more heads when you flip seventeen coins comes to almost 17%. 11-6 suggests a likely positive matchup, but it's far from conclusive. Likewise, Clover players don't need to worry about their 5-9 performance against Wilderness Reclamation. Most other pairings came within one match win of fifty-fifty.
What is shocking, by contrast, is Clover's 4-12 defeat at the hands of Rakdos Sacrifice. In fact, it makes for the most meaningful result in the whole data set. If Temur Clover is the new top dog of Standard, then Rakdos appears to be the cat the dog owners need to be afraid of.
Bant Ramp (17 Players)
- won 100.0% of 4 matches versus Jeskai Fires (p=0.063)
- won 66.7% of 15 matches versus Sultai Midrange (p=0.151)
- won 53.8% of 26 matches versus Temur Clover (p=0.423)
- won 57.1% of 7 matches versus Rakdos Sacrifice (p=0.500)
- won 47.8% of 23 matches versus Temur Reclamation (p=0.500)
- won 44.0% of 25 matches versus Monored Aggro (p=0.345)
Bant had one solid result against Jeskai and one against Sultai Midrange that's barely meaningful, notably both positive. The rest, again, went about even.
Monored Aggro (17 Players)
- won 56.0% of 25 matches versus Bant Ramp (p=0.345)
- won 53.3% of 15 matches versus Temur Reclamation (p=0.500)
- won 50.0% of 12 matches versus Sultai Midrange (p=0.613)
- won 46.2% of 13 matches versus Rakdos Sacrifice (p=0.500)
- won 28.6% of 7 matches versus Jeskai Fires (p=0.227)
- won 35.3% of 17 matches versus Temur Clover (p=0.166)
Next to the losing record against Clover, Monored also took a minor beating from Jeskai Fires, losing five of seven encounters. A larger sample may have revealed a stronger tendency here. As it stands, the Clover pairing yielded the most relevant record.
Temur Reclamation (10 Players)
- won 100.0% of 4 matches versus Rakdos Sacrifice (p=0.063)
- won 64.3% of 14 matches versus Temur Clover (p=0.212)
- won 52.2% of 23 matches versus Bant Ramp (p=0.500)
- won 46.7% of 15 matches versus Monored Aggro (p=0.500)
- won 44.4% of 9 matches versus Sultai Midrange (p=0.500)
- won 25.0% of 4 matches versus Jeskai Fires (p=0.313)
Another deck, another instance of mostly even results. The only notable finding concerns the Rakdos matchup, which Reclamation won decisively.
Rakdos Sacrifice (9 Players)
- won 75.0% of 16 matches versus Temur Clover (p=0.038)
- won 53.8% of 13 matches versus Monored Aggro (p=0.500)
- won 50.0% of 8 matches versus Sultai Midrange (p=0.637)
- won 42.9% of 7 matches versus Bant Ramp (p=0.500)
- won 0.0% of 1 matches versus Jeskai Fires (p=0.500)
- won 0.0% of 4 matches versus Temur Reclamation (p=0.063)
Rakdos Sacrifice went exactly even against everything except Clover and Reclamation. Note how a 12-4 record is much less likely to be the result of pure variance than an 0-4.
Sultai Midrange (8 Players)
- won 55.6% of 9 matches versus Temur Reclamation (p=0.500)
- won 50.0% of 4 matches versus Jeskai Fires (p=0.688)
- won 50.0% of 8 matches versus Rakdos Sacrifice (p=0.637)
- won 50.0% of 12 matches versus Monored Aggro (p=0.613)
- won 45.5% of 11 matches versus Temur Clover (p=0.500)
- won 33.3% of 15 matches versus Bant Ramp (p=0.151)
Sultai Midrange doesn't seem to have any good or bad matchups. Even its 5-10 against Bant doesn't constitute proof to the contrary.
Jeskai Fires (5 Players)
- won 71.4% of 7 matches versus Monored Aggro (p=0.227)
- won 75.0% of 4 matches versus Temur Reclamation (p=0.313)
- won 100.0% of 1 matches versus Rakdos Sacrifice (p=0.500)
- won 50.0% of 4 matches versus Sultai Midrange (p=0.688)
- won 46.7% of 15 matches versus Temur Clover (p=0.500)
- won 0.0% of 4 matches versus Bant Ramp (p=0.063)
This concludes the look at the matrix between the seven most popular archetypes. I scoured the rest of the data for interesting additions, mostly to no avail. Jund Sacrifice went 5-2 against Monored and 1-4 against Temur Reclamation. At least the latter appears to be much in line with expectations if not conclusive evidence on its own. I don't know about Gruul Aggro's 0-3 against Bant, whereas Izzet Flash's 3-0 victory over Monored seems somewhat suspect.
Overall, the data showed very few trends. Fifty-fifty matchups abound in today's Standard, which is of course valuable insight itself. Among the seven most popular decks on Day 2 of Grand Prix Lyon, one can identify a reasonably clear winner in just three pairings, followed by another two that gave some indication of a likely advantage.
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not necessarily Cardmarket.