How not to die, and other concerns

This past week or so saw two articles on concerning the current Extended season.
First up is Zaiem Beg’s article succinctly titled Beating Dredge. Mike Flores predicted early in the season that Dredge wouldn’t see a single win because it’s so easy to hate out…but following that logic, everyone apparently expected everyone else to either (1) do the hating for them or (2) decide Dredge was a bad plan, and few people ran hate. In his most recent Top8 Magic podcasts, Flores has admitted he was wrong — because he expected people to keep the hate in, anyway, knowing that Dredge is often the “worst case scenario” for what you might run into (and that would have kept Dredge out of top eights). As Zaiem explains in this article, you have to defend against Dredge, because if you don’t, it just wins.
Every time I hear someone say, “Well, I’ll just concede the Dredge matchup and have a strong chance against everything else,” or when they say, “I’ll just leave the hate out because everyone else will hate it out,” I cringe. If that’s your plan, I hope you won’t be too disappointed when you don’t win the PTQ.
It’s a deck, it’s out there, and even if you don’t think it’s that good because it’s too fragile, it will crush you if you are unprepared. It’s seeing a lot of play because it’s relatively cheap to build by Extended standards and it’s absurdly powerful.

The second article, by Kuan-Kuan Tian, has the rather anime-esque title Bubble Hulk: Evolution (“I liked the original Bubble Hulk, but this follow-up series just rehashes all the same ideas. Let’s watch I My Me! Strawberry Eggs instead.”). Bubble Hulk is a weird Protean Hulk / Reveillark combo build that tries to combo out into a one-turn win. In this article, Tian guides a friend through the playtesting of the deck against Next-Level Blue. You may not want to read the whole thing, but you should at least click through to page two and then scroll down. You’ll know when you’ve hit the funny bit.