Home > 2019/11 - Pasadena, CA, Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series > YCS Pasadena: Pro-Talk with Dominic Couch

YCS Pasadena: Pro-Talk with Dominic Couch

November 24th, 2019

Dominic Couch is with us today, talking about being a pro Duelist. Coming from Aurora, Illinois, he has quite a history as a Duelist, going all the way back to his time as a Dragon Duelist.

Dominic finished at 25th place after Swiss today, using a Sky Striker Orcust Deck. He opted for the strategy because he felt it was similar to what he played at YCS Knoxville, where he placed 2nd overall. He has many other accomplishments as well, with ten total Top Cut appearances at premier events. As a Dragon Duelist, he made it to the Top 4 of the 2014 Dragon Duel WCQ.

Dominic Couch as enjoyed a lot of recent success as a Duelist.

So what’s life been like as a pro Duelist who started so long ago? Dominic told me how he stopped playing after his time as a Dragon Duelist. He got into football in high school but suffered a concussion that ended his sports career. That was a rough time for him, but he returned to Dueling with YCS Memphis last year. He didn’t perform well at Memphis, but he was still happy to have returned. “It was really great to travel for the first time for Yu-Gi-Oh! and stuff, and get away from everything. Pulled me out of my depression and got me social, out of the house.” He kept Dueling, going to the following YCS and WCQ events but not seeing great success. But he kept trying and made the Top Cut of the 200th YCS in Columbus. “It just felt so great to high five everybody from my local area.” He went to 2018’s YCS Pasadena after that, then made the Top Cut in the UDS Invitational in Las Vegas.

“That’s where it all changed for me. That’s where I got introduced to my friends now.” Dominic named a lot of Duelists, including Jesse Kotton, Max Reynolds, Aaron Furman, Manav Dawar, Hani Jawhari, and Cristian Urena. “UDS Vegas was the first time where I felt like I became a pro. We went to dinner, and it was the first time I felt like I did something outside an event, not just Yu-Gi-Oh!. We went to dinner, went to the strip, hung out, and didn’t just talk about cards. We became friends and I feel like those are friends for life.”

“Going to events and seeing friends that don’t live close, traveling; you get to escape reality. Making the Top Cut, getting Feature Matches, it makes you feel so good. I love the opportunities Yu-Gi-Oh! has made for me. I played well, practiced a lot, it was just so great. I love it. I wouldn’t give it up for the world. Now a year and a half has passed and I have ten tops. No wins yet, but I’ve come close.”

At the end of the day, one thing stands out. “Traveling around with friends, that’s what it’s all about.”

Dominic has had an amazing journey as a Duelist, and it’s only just getting started. Many thanks to him for sharing! Keep following the blog for more online coverage of YCS Pasadena!