Malamar in Expanded

What’s up guys! Welcome to my first article for Cut or Tap. Since it’s my first article for this site, I’ll provide some background information about myself. My name is Jacob Chen, and currently I am a Junior in high school and live in Northern California. I was pretty successful as a Senior, and although I took a bit of a break, I decided to put a lot of time into the game this year.  I am also a part of the Silph Company, the number-4 ranked team in the US this season (according to Limitless TCG). I love deck building, and in particular rogues, which I play at pretty much every event. This season I have attended two Regionals, Portland (19th place with Gardevoir & Sylveon GX/Let Loose) and San Diego (10th place with Persian). Now I’m getting ready for Dallas. Enough about me, let’s get into why you guys are actually here.

Why Malamar is better than it sounds?

Most of you probably think Malamar can’t keep up with the speed of Expanded and that Garbotoxin may be too big of a problem. These reasons might cause the majority of you reading this to believe that the deck is not that good. However, the build in Expanded is far different from the build in Standard. Being able to utilize Mysterious Treasure and Ultra Ball makes the deck feel very smooth because it is a lot easier to discard Psychic Energy in comparison to Standard. Ultimately, this makes the turn-two attack very consistent which makes it able to contend with all of the top decks.

As the meta becomes more defined for Dallas, Malamar is beginning to feel very strong. After lots of testing, my team and I were able to put in the best techs that counter multiple decks at once. I really like this deck because of how well it can counter the best decks and how your opponent won’t know what attackers you run in Game 1, making it hard for them to formulate a game plan. There are two different variations of lists below. Following that, I will explain some card choices I made and then go over the match ups against the six most popular decks we will see at Dallas (it only takes one slightly unfavorable 😉 ).

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