US Nationals Top 4: Darkrai/Giratina/Hydreigon Deck Analysis + Tournament Report

Hey CutOrTap nation, Liam here with my US Nationals report. I was lucky enough to finish in fourth place in a field of 1,105 masters, making it the largest Pokemon TCG tournament ever, at least outside of Japan. Today I want to give you a run down of my play for Nationals, some of the card choices, and my matches.

I played this deck at Nationals:

Pokémon -11 Trainers -35 Energy -14
2 Darkrai EX 4 Professor Sycamore 4 VS Seeker 10 Darkness
2 Giratina EX 3 N 4 Ultra Ball 4 Double Dragon
2 Hydreigon EX 2 Lysandre 4 Max Elixir
2 Shaymin EX 1 AZ 3 Trainer’s Mail
1 Latios EX 1 Hex Maniac 2 Float Stone
1 Hoopa EX 2 Enhanced Hammer
1 Yveltal XY 1 Fighting Fury Belt
1 Muscle Band
1 Startling Megaphone
2 Parallel City

I had been testing different dark-based Max Elixir decks for a while leading up to nationals, and was pretty sure I wanted to play Yveltal/Darkrai/Garbodor deck with Double Colorless Energy and the Fright Night Yveltal, but the results of the Origins Win-a-Trip event made me revisit the Darkrai/Giratina decks. Upon testing them a little bit more, I discovered they had a slightly better Waterbox match-up than Darkrai/Yveltal because of how attainable 180 damage becomes when some of your energy give you an extra 40 damage. I did most of my testing with Olliver Barr, who didn’t attend US Nationals, and Sorina Radu, who played the same 60 cards and finished in the Top 16. I didn’t make any last minute changes to the deck, and played the same cards I had sleeved up when I arrived in Ohio.

Specific Card Choices:

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