Friday, September 11, 2009

Week 2 Game of the Week

This year we have five judges for Game of the Week, each ranking their top five games. The games are then given from one to five points, based on these rankings, and whichever game receives the most total points wins the award. First place each week will receive a $150 bonus prize, second place $75, and third place $50. Our five judges are: IM Greg Shahade, FM Jim Dean, NM Michael Aigner, NM Jeff Ashton, and NM Arun Sharma. Click here for more details.


1st Place: GM Josh Friedel (SF) vs IM Marko Zivanic (DAL) 1-0

GM Friedel uncorked the beautiful 18. Nd5+!!, forcing the win of Black's Queen and soon after the game.

Jeff Ashton: Although a lot of this game is theory, it is nice to see someone get crushed for making moves like h5 and Bd6 (with a Pawn on d7). This game was very exciting and simple. Black made one very bad move: 16... Bd4. After that White got to chase Black's King around and capture all of Black's pieces. (1st place: 5 points)

Jim Dean: It almost seemed as if Friedel had prepared this entire game as he handed out a savage beating while just using a little over ten minutes off his clock. It turns out 16... Bd4 is a large blunder as Black cannot avoid the ugly sequence that follows starting with 17. Qh8+. (2nd place: 4 points)

Michael Aigner: After two weeks, Friedel's future opponents stand warned that he has a propensity to sacrifice Knights in the center! What better way to make up for last week's brain slip Nxe6 by promptly tossing away yet another equine?! The resulting game was elegant and spectacular, even if rather one sided and essentially over by move seventeen. Of course, that was not Friedel's fault. Nonetheless, I simply could not give the top ranking to a game that was almost completely previously played in Chessbase (Haker vs Budisin, Germany 1995), even if both players were supposedly unaware of it. (2nd place: 4 points)

Arun Sharma: Great attacking effort by Friedel, spurred by the very nice tactical sequence started with 17. Qh8+. I ranked this game highly mostly since it seemed that White basically played basically perfectly and the exquisiteness of the 18. Nd5+! tactical sequence. I am a bit surprised that it won though as Black did make a rather big mistake (in a probably already worse position) with 16... Bd4?, and for me the two games that I chose to rank higher, I felt the victor won in somewhat similar fashion, without any huge mistakes from their opponent. Nevertheless, I think this was definitely still a very worthy winner, not too dissimilar in form to Friedel's mentor, GM Christiansen's, Sicilian slaughter of Zivanic last year which won Game of the Year. (3rd place: 3 points)

Greg Shahade: I have to admit I'm a bit surprised this game won, given the immense horribleness of Black's 16... Bd4. White's attack after that was actually pretty simple, and I only ranked it so high because of the sheer violence of it (the King running all over the place etc.). I felt that all of the three games I ranked above it involved much more resistance by the opponent, and while Arun compares it to Christiansen vs Zivanic from last season, I think it's much different, as once the attacking sequence begins with 17. Qh8+ and 18. Nd5+, the game is pretty much immediately over and almost anyone rated above 1600 could find the follow up after those relatively simple moves. Again, I tend to like games like this, seeing as I did rank it in fourth place, but it was just a bit too quick and one-sided even for my sometimes barbaric tastes. (4th place: 2 points)

Total Score of Friedel vs Zivanic: 18 points


2nd Place: SM Marc Esserman (BOS) vs FM Ron Simpson (CAR) 1-0

SM Esserman tore open Black's position with 13. Rxc6! Qxc6 14. Nxe5, after which the numerous threats against f7, d5, and on the e-file were too much for Black to handle.

Jim Dean: This game had a Paul Morphy-like quality to it. I thought Esserman made a somewhat odd decision with 8. Nc3, but he certainly made it look good. One impressive feature of this game was that it seemed that Simpson didn't do anything horribly wrong or illogical but still wound up with a dreadful position after a long series of accurate moves by White. The final position is very depressing for Black in that there is no answer to the coming 23. Ra1. An excellent way for Esserman to come back after a Week One disaster. (1st place: 5 points)

Greg Shahade: I liked this game a lot better than the actual winner because it's not immediately clear that Black's moves were so horrible. White had to sacrifice the exchange, with the idea of then sacrificing a piece on f7, and it all leads to a pretty cute, yet long forcing variation with wins for White. I also believe that White's winning variation was much harder to see than in Friedel vs Zivanic. In the previous game you can see in like ten seconds that after 17. Nd5+ that the Black King will certainly be destroyed. In this game, it's not totally obvious that White wins instantly after 15. Nxf7, leaving himself down an entire rook. (1st place: 5 points)

Arun Sharma: Very impressive game by Esserman, sacrificing a Pawn for a powerful initiative right out of the opening and then utilizing it to brutal effect, essentially ending the game on move thirteen without any huge mistakes from his opponent. Simpson put up a valiant defensive effort afterward, but Esserman played the attack with great precision, allowing no opportunity for escape. (2nd place: 4 points)

Jeff Ashton: I'm not going to make any comments about White making up for last week's embarrassing episode against Mr. Zaremba or discuss things like "redemption". But ouch, it hurts to think about that game.

I will say that White played perfectly this game. The more I think about it, it doesn't make sense that this game should be ranked lower than Friedel vs. Zivanic. Unfortunately, we don't give out ties. Maybe 18. Nd5+ is more fun to watch than 13. Rxc6 and 15. Nxf7 ideas. I do know that both games followed a similar pattern:

1. White applies pressure
2. Black defends improperly
3. White attacks perfectly to win

Let games one and two be a reminder to all scholastic players out there: Castle to avoid a hassle! (NR: 0 points)

Michael Aigner: The lack of clear candidates for the brilliancy prize left me with a logjam of four games for fourth to seventh place in my rankings. Esserman's Fried Liver Attack in an obscure open Ruy Lopez line featured a nice double sacrifice, first on c6 and then on f7. However, neither move was profound or hard to find, unless perhaps my fellow judges never studied the Fried Liver line of the Two Knights Defense. I even ranked Esserman's teammate Krasik's game slightly higher, not because Krasik's game was objectively better, but rather his counterattack from an inferior opening was far more instructive to watch and required more than just two tactics at the end to win. (NR: 0 points)

Total Score of Esserman vs Simpson: 14 points


3rd Place: GM Jaan Ehlvest (TEN) vs GM Alejandro Ramirez (ARZ) 1-0

GM Ehlvest played the quiet but strong 38. Be2+!!, trumping Black's valiant save attempt of 37... Qxc2, to which there was no defense.

Arun Sharma: I must say that I was rather surprised that this game got relatively little love from the other judges, but I'm glad that it still managed to squeak onto the medal platform as I definitely think it was deserving of that in the least. It seemed like Ehlvest played a very, very good game throughout, building up his small advantage very effectively, allowing Black no real counterplay and then finishing the game with a nice tactical sequence. (1st place: 5 points)

Jim Dean: While I watched this game I kept thinking ... Ehlvest is really, really good. He builds a nice advantage with a Maroczy Bind structure and just keeps improving his position. He made it look easy versus a very strong player and fellow GM. (4th place: 2 points)

Jeff Ashton: It is very depressing to lose games like this. Black "had no legal moves" this game. It seems that Black didn't do anything horribly wrong. 27... Qc8 was kind of weak and 33... Bf6 could have been improved on, but it is very difficult to play Black in this game.

And let this game be a reminder to all scholastic players out there: Don't play the Black side of a Maroczy Bind formation when you are playing a strong Grandmaster, and if you do, ideas such as a5-a4 aren't as cool as they look! (4th place: 2 points)

Greg Shahade: I had this game in sixth place. Probably I could have ranked it a bit higher, but I wanted to give some love to some fourth board games. Ehlvest made it look really easy, kind of just slowly strengthening his position and then going for the kill when the moment arose. I just wasn't particularly inspired by any of it. It was certainly an impressive display, but the final sequence seemed pretty obvious and the rest of the game was just a slow build up. One thing that's for sure: Ehlvest is good at chess, especially in the USCL. (NR: 0 points)

Michael Aigner: I was also somewhat surprised to see this game ranked so highly by my fellow judges. I thought Black was holding on in a slightly worse opposite color bishop middlegame when he unwisely abandoned his Kingside with 31... Qa6 and 32... Qa4. The subsequent 33. f4-f5 break is hardly a surprise, and almost immediately Black is dead lost. If anything, this game was only a demonstration of Ehlvest milking a position until his opponent cracked. (NR: 0 points)

Total Score of Ehlvest vs Ramirez: 9 points


Other Considered Games (judges' scores in parenthesis)

9 points (Jeff 4, Greg 3, Arun 2):
GM Eugene Perelshteyn (BOS) vs IM Jonathan Schroer (CAR) 1-0

6 points (Michael 5, Jeff 1):
GM Pascal Charbonneau (NY) vs GM Gregory Serper (SEA) 1-0

6 points (Greg 4, Michael 2):
NM Craig Jones (CAR) vs NM Ilya Krasik (BOS) 0-1

4 points (Jim 3, Arun 1):
FM Bruci Lopez (MIA) vs IM Jan van de Mortel (CHC) 1-0

3 points (Jeff 3):
FM Andrei Zaremba (QNS) vs FM Shinsaku Uesugi (BAL) 1-0

3 points (Michael 3):
GM Nikola Mitkov (CHC) vs GM Julio Becerra (MIA) 0-1

1 point (Jim 1):
Rahul Swaminathan (PHI) vs Anna Matlin (NJ) 0-1

1 point (Greg 1):
Miguel Recio (MIA) vs Trevor Magness (CHC) 1-0

1 point (Michael 1):
IM Levon Altounian (ARZ) vs IM Ron Burnett (TEN) 1/2-1/2


Globular said...

Esserman gets the shaft AGAIN by the USCL! What do people have against this guy?

How can two judges justify not ranking this game AT ALL? Crazy.

Whatever... I'm amazed how often the league manages to make me incredibly angry. It's really uncommon for me, honest.


Globular said...

Especially when one of the judges who gave it zero points said "white played perfectly." I just don't get it.

Globular said...

I just remembered I'm not supposed to complain. Sorry, just trying to stick up for my team.

Ilya said...

Yeah its a bit odd...I " love" how one of the judges rambles on about Zaremba game which already was discussed and awarded in week 1 in the context of Essermans week 2 game and then gives Marc a big fat zero. It got me thinking if there isn't some personal history between the judge and Esserman.

Matt Herman said...

You beat me to it, Matt. Esserman-Simpson should have been the runaway winner. Jeff, how does a game go from outside the top five to "should have outranked Friedel-Zivanic", your top pick? Michael, the comment "neither move was profound or hard to find" misses the mark completely. Esserman's game didn't start on move 15 -- he had to calculate an 11 move, albeit somewhat forcing variation before he decided on Ra6. That the followup moves were "obvious" ignores the work needed to reach those positions. That Nxf7 is a sacrificial theme that's been played before does nothing to diminish the beauty or creativity of its most current usage. Furthermore, this wasn't as stereotyped as Bh7 sacs given no immediate mate and the need to see Qe6 and Ra1 or Re5 at the finish. Pascal played a great game, but that entire method of assaulting a scheveningen is known and, by eschewing the quicker nxe6, complicated the win. In Arun's words, Esserman conducted the attack "with great precision". Let's give the man credit where it's due.

Ilya said...

Seems to me, its no accident we have one whacko judge per year who seems to think this contest is about himself and his great eloquence rather than about the best games of the week.

RJ said...

The Friedel game was awesome. Too bad the judges are too narrow-minded to award well played endgames (Joel Benjamin). Do we live in an ADHD culture where everything has to involve checks and forks?

harvardmitshmuck said...

Why are mid-level graduate students making decisions on a field full of recent doctorates and seasoned professors?

chrissybear said...

and i thought my jokes were bad....
brilliant display by marc emulating the late paul morphy thru his thematic and tactial understanding of the innaccurate move order played by simpson and cool nerve finding all the right moves during his explosion behind enemy lines starting with rc6, marc did not win game of the week in my opinion due soley to the inexperience and prejdudice of the uscl judges who both awrded him 0 points, ps nice minuture josh

Anonymous said...

Ashton is an enviois little prick-- awful comments

fpawn said...

Hey all! Thanks for all the criticism. I promise to PO just about everyone before this season is over.

Matt Herman wrote the following about the Esserman game:

"The comment 'neither move was profound or hard to find' misses the mark completely. Esserman's game didn't start on move 15 -- he had to calculate an 11 move, albeit somewhat forcing variation before he decided on Ra6."

Really, an 11 move combination? The sacrifice of an exchange on c6 for a center pawn and bishop pair stands on its own merit. And then the 16.Nxf7 sacrifice is nice, but not too hard to see the next few moves until 20.Qf7+ wins the material back with interest. While I am sure Esserman saw the finale before taking on c6, that's just a testament to his potential and not to the game at hand.

Frankly, I had three games at the top for GOTW (23, 22 and 21 points) and then four more games in a close bunch for 4th through 7th (19, 18, 18 and 17). Esserman was in that second group. I chose to give my 4th and 5th place votes to Krasik (board 4's almost never get any votes) and to the draw Burnett-Altounian (nobody credits amazing defense enough these days).


fpawn said...

Correction: Exchange for KNIGHT and center pawn.

Anonymous said...

People need to stop look at ratings, titles, and cities. One of the best games played this week was that one where Illya Krasik beat that guy. Illya was Black. How can that game not be mentioned by ANY judge? Is there a rule that you have to be over 2500 to win game of the week or do you have to be from Boston or New York? Be fair and don't discriminate just because the rating isn't GM. Anyone can play like a GM if they really want to bad enough. I bet the judges didn't even look at that game since it's not worth their precious time.

Matt Herman said...

Michael, you're right that 11 = 8 + 3. The fact remains that Esserman played a "perfect" game that rivals any in USCL history for energy and precision. Perhaps Nf7 is an easy combination, but you still have to see not only Qe6 but Ra1 or Re5 at the end to justify it, unless you like being a rook down on spec. The same comments about "easy moves", however, could be made about Pascal's game.

I share your frustration with lower board games not getting proper recognition and Ilya definitely had a phenomenal performance.

fpawn said...

I completely agree that board 4 games are too often overlooked for GOTW. I actually thought there were three quality board 4 games this week. I gave my 4th place to Krasik and considered Matlin for 5th place.


Anonymous said...

I think that Esserman's game was much better than the rest. Understanding the themes of taking on c6 to remove the best defender and then sacing on f7 is a clear indication of a great mind.

I don't think that enough people realize how well Simpson played and how Esserman had to break down an exact defense. It is not clear at first that Nxf7 works in all variations (and indeed, it doesn't work as well after Qb6 instead of Qc5).

Bottom line, Marc's game was something truly special, and I feel like two judges didn't see just how special it was. To not rank it among the top 5 games seems soft to me.

Kolb Raymond said...

Even a novice can make the distinction between Esserman’s beautifully calculated attack displayed in his game against Simpson and a game where few tactics were used. The latter was certainly not the case in this week’s apparently “second rate” game of the week. Ashton’s tactless comment about Marc’s previous game “But ouch, it hurts to think about that game” is downright offensive and he should perhaps think before he makes such a remark. Furthermore after stating that Marc played perfectly and that he couldn’t give a tie for first place with Friedel’s game is rather comical, as Ashton didn’t award Marc any points! Ashton’s hostility towards Marc should not be tolerated by the USCL any longer, as Marc is not receiving adequate recognition for his hard work and vast improvement over the past two years. The clear discrepancy between Shahade’s, Sharma’s and Dean’s rankings compared to that of Ashton’s and Aigner’s shows how three judges truly appreciate talent and tactical strength opposed to two, blind patzers who choose to express their personal distaste and envy for Marc Esserman’s skill, worried about his inevitable rise to the top of American chess.

Anonymous said...

Wasn't RaymondK esserman's handle on icc ? Doubt its a coincidence, way to put heat on em judges, go get em kid. Marc game shoulda won period. Cory

Globular said...


Thanks for explaining your opinions here. I have less of a problem with your choices because they're consistent with your comments. I think they're wrong, but I'll leave it to others to argue why.

What I still cannot understand is why Ashton's ranking of the game is so completely opposite of his comments about it!? When I first read his comments, then saw "0 points" underneath it, I swore there was some sort of error. So... WTF? Please explain yourself Ashton!

I would like to point out that this is not some silly, "just for fun" contest. The USCL is an important piece of the chess scene in the US, and many of these players are working extremely hard to become professionals. Winning GOTW can have a measurable positive effect on a player's career. Not winning it because of poor decisions by a non-professional judge who doesn't appreciate his or her actions would be a shame.


Jeffrey Ashton said...

Hey everyone. I am glad there is so much interest in USCL. I am really into it.

First of all, the USCL is not scandalous like some are making it out to be. It is a wonderful organization run by geniuses.

I have nothing against Esserman. I don't know him. I have never played him and I am pretty sure I have never met him. I have seen him before (I think). That's more than I can say about the vast majority of the league. That is why I was selected as a judge. I don't care who wins or loses. Greg believes in the old saying: "If he doesn't hold a grudge he would make a good judge".

Marc Esserman is a very talented chess player. He must be a very classy guy judging by the amount of support he has. He played well in his last game and his praise is well deserved. It's great to have players like him participate in USCL. I hope my comments did not offend him to the point of retiring. This would be bad for the league.

I am surprised that people are so intrigued by Michael and my no-vote. People should relax a little bit! There are bigger problems in the world. Again, the USCL is probably the least scandalous thing in the world.

I can understand the confusion with my no-vote: my words were inconsistent with my actions. I regret my choice of words slightly but I stand by my vote 100%

Maybe I should have said this instead: "That game just didn't do it for me. I guess it was kind of cute. Overall.. meh." Apparently that is the only way to comment on a game that you no-vote.
Sorry to Marc and fans of the game. I liked the other games more. I think the other games are very good. This game is not the same as the Friedel game although I did draw some parallels in my commentary.

Let me explain more:

We are asked to comment on all games. I wanted to say something nice about everyone. If I didn't have anything nice to say, I would have said nothing at all. I also felt it would be a good way to balance out the criticism of his previous game.

The "ouch" comment was definitely not a compliment but a joke. I think there are many more insulting comments made in G rated 3D movies that families with young children enjoy.
But I confess, I really did not feel any pain thinking about that game. My "ouch" was not a true reflection on emotional or physical pain.

If I did offend Marc with my commentary I apologize. If I offended any of his fans out there... I really can't apologize and mean it.
If Marc is upset, I'm guessing that he is not as upset as his fans are.

Jeffrey Ashton said...

Part 2

Having 5 judges is good. Maybe next year we can have people text in their answers to Greg. If there is a whacko judge, there is a better chance of justice being served with more votes.

I admit, the "USCL giving ties" comment was careless. I definitely did not want to give it a tie since it did not make my top 5 list, although maybe it could have tied with my #5 pick (it was close to being in my top 5). Also I really believe that the process we use where ties don't happen is a good one. If I could do it again, I would have said "On most weeks this game probably would have done better."

By the way, I said things about Zaremba that weren't so nice. I said (and still think) he "luck-boxed" his way through a lot of the tactics when he won GOTW. Where are all the Zaremba fans? How come no one cares about poor Zaremba? He got robbed this week in my opinion and on top of that he got extremely disrespected last week by me. The words "luck-box" might lead to false impressions that damage his marketing potential. He should sue me for libel. Doesn't anyone care about Zaremba?

There was some high quality chess played this week. The USCL is designed to create very exciting play.

The Perelshteyn game was great. Maybe it should have done better. Take another look at it if you have a chance. Also a side note, keep your eye on the White bishops.

The Ehlvest game and Charbonneau games were well played and interesting.

Zaremba's game was underrated. I can't believe no one else voted for it. Qb2-Qa3-Qb2-Qd2 was nice.

One last random thought:
It's pretty hard to win game of the week back to back. Maybe there should be extra incentive for achieving this. USCL could offer a very large bonus prize for winning GOTW back to back. That might add a reality show element when a teammate starts "forcing" their games to be interesting. It will definitely create incentive for that strong player to play again the following week and motivate the fans to pay closer attention to the league.

By the way bonus points for anyone who suspected that the "grudge/judge" thing is not an old saying at all.

I will try to check the comments and respond at least once a week. Until I see you later, enjoy the USCL! Thanks for your support.

Elizabeth Vicary said...

I’m glad Matt has broken the ice here, because I’m also really offended that I didn’t win. Where are my nice, praiseful comments, JEFF ASHTON?

Arun Sharma said...

As amusing as many of these anonymous posts are (unfortunately some might not know which I'm speaking of as they have been deleted, and I suppose it's easier to find them amusing when they aren't directed at you), this is getting a bit out of hand. Greg and I always have felt that we want people to express their opinions here whether they are negative or positive etc. which is why we allow anonymous comments.

However, this lenience was not meant to be an avenue to merely insult people while hiding behind your computer in order to do so, and that seems to be what it has become to a large degree.

So from now on, anyone who wants to post anonymously: you're going to need to say something constructive in regards to the topic at hand, not just merely insult someone involved if you want your comment to not be deleted. If you at least sign your name to your post, we will be reasonably tolerant to most comments even if it's mostly designed to insult someone.

Jeff said...

Elizabeth: You call that a Caro-Kann? I would say it is a Caro-Kann't. You smell bad, however, your game should have won first place. It is unfortunate that we can't have a place higher than 1st place. But ouch, just thinking about the Esserman game hurts.

fpawn said...

Sorry, rumors of some personal vendetta against Esserman are greatly exaggerated. I never played against him and we haven't even been at the same tournament since 2007. Even then, I don't recall speaking with him. Most significantly, Esserman and I share a love for a certain controversial opening as black. (Note: 20% of 1.d4/c4/Nf3 games have featured this opening in rounds 1+2.)

vince said...

you guys should try stepping on a tennis court with marc the guys serve easily exceeds 140 mph

Carl LaFond said...

I heard the man got railroaded very early in the morning. Maybe Esserman is interested in an annuity policy?

Alex Lenderman said...

If it was for me I think Esserman deserves 1st place and Ehlvest deserves 2nd place. They were both excellent games, Esserman's game was a little bit more excited and creative, that's why it would go first place for me.

Anonymous said...

It is quite shocking to me that the Ehlvest-Ramirez game did not win this week. Here everyone is blabbing about Esserman and how he is getting shafted, while really its someone else who is getting the shaft. It is clear to me that the Ehlvest game will only be appreciated by those who have some sort of rudimentary understanding of chess, while the Esserman game can be appreciated by everyone because it is just pure violence, while the Ehlvest game was violence AND art. Maybe next year Greg Shahade will come to realize that we need STRONG judges, not mentally challenged 2200s. We all know Greg is a slow learner, but we must hope for the best.

John Bartholomew said...

Some of these comments are just ridiculous. Especially by the Boston homers, who always seem to think that there is a league-wide conspiracy against them.

GOTW is a fun, subjective contest. There isn't a lot of money at stake. It's mostly something to keep interest up between matches.

There were a lot of excellent games played this past week and probably 3 or 4 of them could have legitamtely won. Some people went way overboard in criticizing people who volunteer (emphasis) to be judges. Greg and the judges secure sponsorship, devote their time, and write extensive blogs for USCL fans to enjoy and all they ever get is hate.

Ilya said...

Lol, I actually stayed out of this one for the most part. Yet, I see Bartholomew has to show up and try to insult an entire city, seems to me this is completely uncalled for. If I were Marc and if I read what Ashton wrote( the first part) I am sure I would be offended too. I was told by someone today who used to play him blitz in the Boston area that this guy is indeed a "whacko/weirdo", therefore corroborating my initial suspicions.
I'd like thank all those who complimented and voted for my game and I hope to annonate it once I get my laptop back from repair. However, I still believe that Marc got robbed this week. True, this contest is very subjective and that makes it fun and unpredictable. Unlike, John Bartholomew, I am pretty sure Greg is happy no matter what kind of tone this discussion adopts so long as it produces comments and arguments. One idea for next year is to have two rounds of voting, one round for all games and 2nd round for a smaller number of games, where each judge may have to recalculate his score, another idea is to drop bottom scores.

John Bartholomew said...

Ilya, I think even you and I can agree that Bostonians complain about more things in the USCL than the rest of the league combined. Fair statement? Sorry I called out your city.

Anyways, Jeff Ashton is far from a "whacko/weirdo." He's actually a really nice and personable guy who has a lot of friends in the US chess scene. It's unfair to attack him over some volunteer work he does for the USCL.

Ilya said...

Jeff Ashton: I'm not going to make any comments about White making up for last week's embarrassing episode against Mr. Zaremba or discuss things like "redemption". But ouch, it hurts to think about that game.

Ok, let me ask you a question what does this comment have to do with week 2 GOTW juudging contest???????????? Unless, this person really wanted to hurt someones feelinga over something that happened previously and make himself the center of attention... Get off the pills dude....

Alex Lenderman said...

Both Ilya and John are right in this case. I like Ilya's idea about two rounds of judges and for them to be able to rethink their opinions. But on the other hand, the judges do volunteer and they should be more appreciated, without them there would be no such contest. Everyone shows an effort, that's what matters. Marc is a great player and I am sure eventually he will win GOTW. He has a bright future ahead enough; bright enough not to have to worry about USCL judging.

Anonymous said...

Most players, managers relayers tds also volanteer so does that mean they can do or say whatever pleases them ?

Brian P said...

I posted and got deleted. Comments like these make Boston the team to root against. Every good storyline needs a villain. Finally a villain exists in the USCL. It is nice to have a team to root against . Ilya be aware that your efforts might be causing your teammates embarassment. Marc has said nothing. It is best for his image to not associate with your blatant negativity. I have no idea if the strong players on your team share your sentiments.. I still want them to lose all because of their fans and few teammates. Go NY.

Globular said...

Go right ahead and hate us. We'll just keep on winning.

Anonymous said...

I seriously doubt they care which team you root for boston ny montreal etc... If you have such strong feelings a. You got a boring life with nothing to do and b. You are hooked on uscl. Both of which are positives from their standpoint. I wouldn't be suprised if the villain gets encouraged if not asked directly to do his thing. Use your brain dude. Samuel

Rihel said...

Perhaps there does need to be two judging rounds. There are a lot of league games for the judges to go through. It is therefore not too surprising that even spectacular games get initially overlooked by the judges-- with a cursory glance, maybe a masterpiece looks too one-sided, for example. After whittling it down to some candidates, the judges could make a revote on a narrower field-- this would give them more time to appreciate the creative subtleties of the contender games. More importantly, it would mean that scores for clear contenders wouldn't get so lopsided by a 0 rating by any judge.

It reminds me of the football AP poll, when local fan/reporters try to artifically raise their local teams by ranking them #1 and ranking the consensus teams a lot lower.

In that case, it isn't that fpawn has a bias against Marc per se, it is that fpawn clearly favors San Fran. He might also have residual Stanford/Harvard feelings, as well.....

bp said...

globular: the problem is that we are displeased with your behavior away from the chess board. your lower rated players ilya and yourself are the PR of your team it seems. i have to wonder if your top boards have your attitude.

over many years of following american chess I have come to appreciate jorge and larry without ever knowing anything about their personality. if i for whatever reason assume that the whole team acts the way you do ("go ahead and hate us attitude") then I lose respect for them. maybe jorge and larry dont want people praying for them to lose at the local tournaments otuside of uscl.
having boston pride is good. this is not the nba. when one person acts like a joker that can kill rep.
it is unfair to them for a few low rateds to destroy the reputation they have built over several decades. they are professionals. they know better than to go around and insult volunteers who are helping promote chess even if it is with perceived justice. if they were to voice their opinions they would do so in a classier way. even if judges did hurt them by saying bad things they would not stoop to their level. they have class. im smart enough to realize they are not the same as you but i have been around for a long time. others will just assume boston is 100% jerks.
also, you have kids on your team. in professional sports veterans act as role models for rookies who are 22 and 18 at the youngest. you have what seems to be elementary or junior high school aged kids playing. they deserve fans. they are still innocent and should not be around such poor role models.

Anonymous said...

Wow, Boston goes 0 out of 4.
That's Karma. If this were basketball I would say "the ball never lies." Why let weak 2200s play and not Esserman? Was he too upset that he didn't win GOTW? LOL!
Esserman could have won GOTW with a 12 move draw since the judges probably feel they owe him one.

Anonymous said...

haha, karma indeed. maybe if the boston players spent more time working on their chess rather than crying about how they were cheated out of game of the week this wouldnt have happened