Monday, March 17, 2008

Game of the Year 10th Place Critique

So another pick for me which falls in the category of not quite correct but not very far off and in a contest with as many contestants as this, something that I don't think should be especially distressing. After all, of the remaining games this is the one I myself would have ranked lowest so it seems pretty clear that my guidance has lead the judges to the right decision in some fashion despite it taking them a lot longer than I thought it would. Let's look at what they said.

Alex Shabalov: Basically what I expected as to his commentary, but I must note that this is probably my favorite nickname to this point.

Jennifer Shahade: I like her comment about the tactic 38. Bxh5 being found in a position that was inherently not tactical for so long, but I must confess I'm not sure what she quite means by "this game was so different".

Dennis Monokroussos: Once again Dennis plays the role of spoiler as the move everyone harps about from this game, 38. Bxh5, he points out might not have in fact been so great with Black having a strong reply. While when he pointed something similar out last week, it actually ended up surprising me that he even ranked that game as "high" as 14th place, he seems to follow the main majority opinion that it was a very good game by Smith on the whole and thus his ranking seems quite appropriate.

Robby Adamson: I am somewhat puzzled by his repeatedly saying "I wanted to rank this game higher" (something which it seems like he's said for at least half of the games), but he did seem to share my basic mindset about the game that there was nothing really earth shattering about it on the whole. While that point is likely valid, the majority of the other judges (quite reasonably) felt the quality of the game still demanded more.

Ron Young: "The Breyer can be cookies and cream, but sometimes it's a rocky road." Nice analogy as always.

Stay tuned for even more of this next week as we inch closer and closer to the especially interesting stages of this contest!

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