Home > 2019/09 - Niagara Falls, ON, Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series > Round 3 Feature Match: Jesse Kotton vs. Victor Manuel Chavez

Round 3 Feature Match: Jesse Kotton vs. Victor Manuel Chavez

September 21st, 2019

Jesse Kotton is one of Canada’s best known Duelists, a two-time YCS winner with  Championship victories at YCS London and YCS Knoxville. Hailing from Vaughan Ontario just north of Toronto, he’s made three World Championship appearances and countless Top Cut showings.  He’s also slowly developed a running joke involving potatoes, which is why he sometimes attends events dressed like one.  Which he’s doing today.

Kotton’s opponent is Michigan’s Victor Manuel Chavez and both competors are playing Salamangreats, but there are some deciding differences between their builds.  One of the biggest is the use of Nibiru, the Primal Being; Kotton’s maining Nibirus today so he can have access to them in Game 1, a strategy that several Duelists adopted here this weekend. Nibiru’s proven to be a wildly popular card, but it’s even bigger than some expected here at YCS Niagara with copies selling out at the vendors this morning.

What’s it like playing with mained Nibirus?  What situations could that choice create?  Well, Kotton was about to find out.

The two-time Champion opened the first Duel with Flame Bufferlo, Enemy Controller, Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring and 2 copies of Nibiru, the Primal Being.  If that doesn’t seem like enough monsters to play Yu-Gi-Oh you’re correct; Kotton passed his opening turn.

Chavez Normal Summoned his own Flame Bufferlo and used it to Link Summon Salamangreat Balelynx to get Salamangreat Sanctuary.   He discarded Salamangreat Jack Jaguar and drew two cards with Bufferlo’s effect, then pitched Salamangreat Spinny, Special Summoning it back and using the effect of Salamangreat Fowl.  He attacked with Balelynx for 1000 damage thanks to Spinny, attacked for 1000 more with Spinny, and struck with Fowl for another 1800 damage. “Main Phase 2…” Chavez Link Summoned Salamangreat Sunlight Wolf with Balelynx and Fowl, then Set 1 to his backrow before trying to end his turn.  Kotton dropped Nibiru, the Primal Being and Chavez got a Primal Being Token in return for all of his monsters.

Kotton drew Salamangreat Roar and attacked with Nibiru to destroy Chavez’s Token.  He Set Roar and Enemy Controller.

Chavez Normal Summoned another Flame Bufferlo, Link Summoned Balelynx and activated Will of the Salamangreat.  He Special Summoned back Sunlight Wolf and Link Summoned Salamangreat Heatleo, drawing a bead on Kotton’s Enemy Controller, which Kotton Chained to Tribute Nibiru and take control of Heatleo.  Chavez ended and took the Heatleo back.

Kotton was hanging in there but just couldn’t get going with a stream of purely reactive cards. He drew Fantastical Dragon Phantazmay and Normal Summoned Bufferlo, Link Summoning a Balelynx and using its effect.  Chavez activated Ghost Ogre & Snow Rabbit in response and Kotton fired back with Salamangreat Roar.  He activated Salamangreat Sanctuary, used Balelynx to try and Link Summon another copy and promptly lost it to Chavez’s Solemn Strike.

Play was back to Chavez who activated his Will for Salamangreat Sunlight Wolf; when Kotton played Phantazmay Chavez blasted it with Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring.  Moments later he was swinging for game with Heatleo and Sunlight Wolf.

Jesse Kotton is literally a sad potato, stuck with a fist full of hand traps and little else in the first Duel. Victor Manuel Chavez makes all the right plays to take Kotton down in short order.

I’ll start,” announced Kotton as he shuffled his deck very, very thoroughly.  He flashed a grin: “Maybe I’ll get a monster this time!”

Nope.  Kotton’s hand this time around was Nibiru, the Primal Being, Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring, Salamangreat Roar, Flame Bufferlo and Will of the Salamangreat.  “This is crazy.” Kotton gave a groan. “Go.”

Chavez drew for his turn and activated Cynet Mining, discarding Salamangreat Spinny: Kotton negated it with Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring, and Chavez Special Summoned Salamangreat Gazelle to get to Salamangreat Balelynx. He searched his Deck for Salamangreat Sanctuary.  He Normal Summoned Salamangreat Foxy, whiffing as he revealed Infinite Impermanence, Flame Bufferlo and Effect Veiler from his deck,  then used Spinny’s effect to revive Spinny and Xyz Summon Salamangreat Miragestallio.  That drew out Kotton’s Nibiru and landed Chavez a Token with 2900 ATK.  “I’ll pass on that.”

“Oh, I drew a monster!”  Kotton ripped Salamangreat Jack Jaguar.  He played Flame Bufferlo into Salamangreat Balelynx and Chavez hit it with Effect Veiler.  Kotton drew two with Jack Jaguar, then Link Summoned with Balelynx and Nibiru for Hiita the Fire Charmer, Ablaze, taking Chavez’s Salamangreat Gazelle.  The Gazelle let him search his Deck for Salamangreat Roar, sending it to his Graveyard.  He discarded Spinny to bring it back and Xyz Summon Miragestallio, then used it to Summon Falco from his Deck.  He Link Summoned Salamangreat Sunlight Wolf and resolved Falco’s effect to set a backrow, then brought back Salamangreat Jack Jaguar and moved into his Battle Phase, attacking to leave Chavez at 3300 Life Points.  Kotton made Salamangreat Balelynx, Link Summoned for another Sunlight Wolf and Set two cards to his back row.

Chavez Normal Summoned Jack Jaguar.  He used it to Link Summon a Balelynx and Kotton got back his Bufferlo.  Chavez was on shaky ground against the two copies of Sunlight Wolf and it was all over a single Salamangreat Roar later.

Potato Power! Jesse Kotton battles back as fate gives him a slim opportunity to fight back in the second Duel, and he makes the most of it to win a commanding victory.  The third and final Duel would determine who would be moving on in a solid position, and who would be stuck with a 1-2 record.

“I’ll be going first,” announced Chavez.  Both Duelists wished each other good luck. Chavez opened with Salamangreat Jack Jaguar, Linked into Salamangreat Balelynx and used its effect to get Salamangreat Sanctuary, playing it.  He reincarnated the Balelynx and activated Jack Jaguar’s effect, then Link Summoned for Salamangreat Sunlight Wolf.  He Set one card to his backrow.

Kotton had Salamangreat Sanctuary, Will of the Salamangreat, Pot of Desires, Falco, Gazelle and Circle.  He activated Circle to search Salamangreat Foxy, then activated Pot of Desires to banish ten cards and draw two: Bufferlo and Cynet Mining.  He Normal Summoned the Bufferlo, used it to Link Summon Salamangreat Balelynx and pitched Foxy to draw Sea Archiver and Jack Jaguar.  He used Foxy’s effect to pitch Jack Jaguar, bringing back Foxy and drawing out Balelynx’s protection effect.

Kotton Link Summoned for Knightmare Phoenix: he pitched Sea Archiver and Gazelle, protecting his Phoenix effect with Gazelle’s ability on the chain.  Sure enough, it stymied Chavez’s attempt at a Ghost Ogre.  He Summoned Gazelle and used the Phoenix to destroy Chavez’s Set Twin Twisters. Kotton sent Salamangreat Spinny to the Graveyard, revived Spinny and brought up his Sea Archiver, and Xyz Summoned Salamangreat Miragestallio.  He detached Spinny from it to Special Summon Foxy from his Deck, Linked Foxy with Miragestallio to make a Salamangreat Sunlight Wolf, bumped back his opponent’s Sunlight Wolf and ate a Nibiru as he tried to enter his Battle Phase.

Kotton pressed on with Will of the Salamangreat to bring back his Sunlight Wolf, activated Salamangreat Sanctuary and then Linked into another Sunlight Wolf.  He played Jack Jaguar underneath it, got back his Gazelle and took a moment to consider his next move.  Chavez had two cards left in hand.  Kotton traded the Jack Jaguar for a Balelynx, Set a card to his backrow and activated Wolf’s effect, then ended setting another backrow.

Chavez drew to three cards.  He Normal Summoned Salamangreat Spinny, Linked into Balelynx and took a moment to check Kotton’s Graveyard.  He used Spinny’s effect to Special Summon it, Link Summoned Hiita the Fire Charmer, Ablaze to take Kotton’s Knightmare Phoenix with a Special Summon and tried to use it for the Link Summon of Mekk-Knight Crusadia Avramax, not realizing the Phoenix wasn’t valid since Avramax requires Link Materials Special Summoned from the Extra Deck (Phoenix had been Summoned from Kotton’s Graveyard).  Chavez attacked Kotton’s Sunlight Wolf with Hiita instead, then attacked over Salamangreat Balelynx with Knightmare Phoenix.  Nibiru attacked last to clear Kotton’s Primal Being Token.  Chavez Set a card to his backrow in the End Phase and Kotton flipped Salamangreat Circle to search Spinny.

Kotton used Will of the Salamangreat’s effect to revive and when Chavez tried to Ghost Ogre it, Kotton stopped him with a Balelynx effect. He searched Flame Bufferlo with Cynet Mining, Normal Summoned it and made another Balelynx, pitching Spinny to draw two cards with Bufferlo’s ability. He Summoned Gazelle, bounced it to his hand to Special Summon Salamangreat Falco and revived Spinny to Link Summon Update Jammer with Falco!  He took Chaves’ Hiita with Mind Control, then took back his Knightmare Phoenix with another Mind Control to Summon Borreload Dragon. He paired it with Update Jammer, attacked to take control of Nibiru and swung with everything for game!

Jesse Kotton fights his way back from a hopeless first Duel and a hand that was nearly as bad in the second, to win Games 2 and 3 of this Salamangreat mirror match and move on with a 2-1 record!