Sunday, November 13, 2011

IM Marc Esserman unconditionally retires, again



Greetings once again USCL fans,


As many of you witnessed live last Wednesday, the Boston Blitz's championship hopes suddenly slipped away in a fashion worthy of some great tragic play. What started out as a rout for the Blitz became a disaster. For the victorious New York Knights and their fans, the dramatic turnaround ushered in feelings of euphoria. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!'s filled the screen, and we could hear the shouts of joy in the Big Apple all the way from New England. For the sore "drawers," (I mean losers), it was all heartbreak, despair, and an unavoidable feeling of sporting injustice with the win oh so tantalizingly close. Surely, even the most hardcore haters of Boston shed a tear that night for their fallen enemy.

But before we relive the action and bathe in the spectrum of human emotion, I would like to pay tribute to a few fallen warriors in other parts of the country who walked away winners even though their teams ultimately fell short of the goal. To the rising Dallas Destiny star IM Conrad Holt, for his unbelievable score of 9 from 10 against FMs, IMs, and GMs. To Philadelphia's sensational talent William Fisher, for an amazing 9.5 from 10 on Board Four, shattering all USCL winning percentage records. This performance only adds to his other feat -- raising his rating from a class B player to near Senior Master in under two years! And, of course, to my teammate and manager, Jorge "the Bull" Sammour, for his second +2830 performance in five seasons. If it were not for Jorge, we would not have even made the playoffs, and the fans would have been deprived of the spectacle that was Boston vs. New York 2011 Quarterfinals. And now, since history is written by the losers, without further ado, here, we, go.


SM Matt Herman (2426) vs NM Vadim Martirosov (2329) [B30] 11/9/2011






















Boston's rock, NM Vadim Martirosov, had conducted a fine game up to this point, methodically outplaying New York's hyper-aggressive SM Matt Herman. With Boston already up 2-0, and in need of only a draw to secure a semi-final birth, the match was as good as over. In fact, an overjoyed Boston teammate had already sent team management a congratulatory text message while watching at home. So, when a mate in three appeared on the board, no one doubted that New York's season would be over in three moves.

43... Rh3+! 44. gxh3 Be1+ 45. Kg5 Qg6#

Vadim almost grabbed the Rook, ready to drop the hammer on h3 and seal New York's fate, but then, out of the corner of his eye, or in the figment of his imagination, he envisioned that after 45... Qf6, Herman's King escapes his stalking Queen via g4. In time pressure, he therefore quickly discarded Rh3+!. The rest is too painful to dissect in detail, so I will briefly summarize. Vadim, with the pressure cooker tightening, missed a few more wins, then, tragically, sacrificed his Rook on the wrong square and resigned soon after. At this point, you just knew that New York would secure the draw. The roaring internet crowd, who moments ago were calling for Herman's head, now rose up against Vadim and viciously began rooting for the underdog. Even if Krasik objectively had a theoretical draw on Board 4 to save the team win, no force could prevent the mob's lusting for a dramatic, come from behind New York draw. And, like any good bread and circus, they gorged upon the league's greatest "villain". For those readers who feel I am simply trying to inject more excitement into a mere chess match, I promise you, I am not exaggerating. The battle truly waged this fierce, between both Boston vs. New York, and Boston/New York vs. the Crowd.

Let us take pause then, catch our breaths, and look at some calmer, less intense Quarterfinal league action from years past.

1-0



GM Julio Becerra (2615) vs GM Hikaru Nakamura (2759) [B29] 11/11/2009


1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nf6!?






















3. e5 Nd5 4. Nc3 e6 5. Nxd5 exd5 6. d4 Nc6 7. dxc5 Bxc5 8. Qxd5 d6

(8... Qb6! Would be more in the spirit of this enterprising gambit. The rarest of the three Black defenses which bears Nimzovitch's name remains far from clear!)

9. Bc4 Qe7?






















Now Black is lost. He had no choice but to continue with the forceful 9... Be6.

10. Bg5! f6 11. O-O-O+- dxe5 12. Rhe1!

And Black resigned thus ending the "battle" between all-time league MVP Becerra and the country's biggest superstar since Fischer. This game, curiously enough, was also the shortest in league history, if of course we do not count the infamous "traffic-gate" affair from last year's League Championship between my friends Chase and Galofre which unfortunately ended in 0 moves due to Galofre's car trouble.

With all due respect to Super Grandmaster Nakamura, he probably wasn't giving it his 110%. After all, in the US Chess League, games are not USCF and FIDE rated -- ah yes, those precious, all important numbers that determine so much in our game, including which 1% of the country's FMs, IMs, and GMs get to occupy the exclusive US Closed Chess Championship every year. Instead, your favorite combatants are only fighting for personal and city pride. Therefore, losing in twelve moves is far more admirable than spilling one's guts in the arena for the pleasure of the raucous mob. Such was the brutal fate of my teammates, V. Martirosov and I. Krasik. But, after three days of drowning ourselves in collective sorrow, we must move on. After all, time indeed heals all wounds. Let us try and heal now, by celebrating one of the brighter spots of "Black Wednesday", although it was for naught.

1-0



IM Marc Esserman (2554) vs GM John Fedorowicz (2523) [B33] 11/09/2011


1. e4 c5 2. Nf3!? Nc6!





















John immediately improves over our Week 3 encounter. He now intends to decline my Morra gambit with 3... d3, when Black has a much more flexible structure than before, having not committed to e7-e6. He could then adopt a Scheveningen, or a Dragon...

3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4?!

One question mark for stupidity, and another for originality. As the informed few are well aware, I only know how to play the Morra gambit, so I boldly, or foolishly, head into unfamiliar territory. I would have gladly unleashed the unsound Morra and lost a Pawn for nothing, but John is a dogmatic decliner and does not want the free pawn, like so many of you these days. So instead, I planned to sacrifice a pawn a little later for chaotic complications, on move 18 to be exact.

4... Nf6 5. Nc3 e5!?

Some of you may want to know if this entire game was prepared/memorized beforehand, and I will gladly answer. Since Grandmaster Fedorowicz has not played the volatile Sveshnikov variation of the Sicilian since 1991 in the database, I knew for sure going into the match that he would surprise me with it, and therefore focused all of my pre-game energies on this anti-positional yet dynamic defense. After 6...e5!?, Black creates gaping holes on the key d6 and d5 squares, but sends my proud Knight packing for the hills. If White wishes to keep up the initiative and secure the d5 square, he must give up the Bishop pair. This is the strategic justification behind the opening variation, a system Grandmaster Sveshnikov pushed upon the resistant chess public until they finally appreciated the creativity of his radical idea. Today, the Sveshnikov remains one of the most popular aggressive responses for Black in the Open Sicilian.

6. Ndb5 d6 7. Bg5

I am fighting for control of the d5 square, but my Knight is still badly offside.

7... a6 8. Na3 b5 9. Nd5 Be7 10. Bxf6 Bxf6






















The battle lines have been drawn -- Black with his two Bishops but backward d-pawn, and White with his strong centralized Knight. In the coming moves, I will bring my sad a3 Knight to e3, where he will assist his brother on d5.

11. c3 O-O 12. Nc2 Bg5 13. a4 bxa4 14. Rxa4 a5 15. Bc4 Rb8






















As all of these moves are logical, they have been played 100's of times over, 1112 in the database, to be precise. Now White has a choice. Should he permanently defend his Pawn with b3, or tie his Rook down to the defense with Ra2? Naturally b3 is the more common move, but Ra2 is a retreat of far reaching beauty.

16. Ra2 Kh8

Black aims to break with f5, so the King must sidestep the White Bishop.

17. Nce3

But if Black strikes with f5 now, then after exf5 he will have to recapture with the Bishop, and White's central Knights remain undisturbed. Thus, Fedorowicz supports the f5 break with g6 first. Kasparov did the same in 2005, in the final year of his professional career, against Anand.

17... g6 18. h4!






















Ponomariov uncorked this deep sacrifice against Kramnik a month before Kasparov's game against Anand, although it had appeared far earlier than that. At a glance, the Pawn thrust looks extremely dubious, and as we move forward, it only gets more and more ridiculous!

18... Bxh4 19. g3 Bg5 20. f4!

A King's gambit inside a Sveshnikov!

20... exf4 21. gxf4






















21... Bh4+ 22. Kf1 f5 23. b4!

A King's, and now an Evans Gambit, inside a Sveshnikov. At last the idea of Ra2 is revealed: starting at move 17, White spends five of the next six moves clearing the path for his Queen's Rook to the Kingside by force! The coup leads to a forced win.

23... fxe4 24. Rah2 g5






















Still all "theory." Later in 2005, Kramnik grew tired of defending the Black side, and took the reins for White vs. Van Wely. After 25. b5 Ne5! Qd4 the position grew unclear, and although White won, proving an objective advantage is far from obvious. GM Fedorowicz was most definitely aware of these games.

25. Ke2!!+-

This adventurous King walk, however, refutes the entire 17... g6 main line variation of the Sveshnikov. The key to the solution, like a great chess problem, contains multiple points: a) By unpinning the King, I threaten fxg5, ripping apart Black's defenses b) The threat of b5 now takes on even greater significance, as Ne5 now simply hangs a piece c) Black has no immediate punishing counter attack against White's showboating King, as axb4 axb4 opens up the a1-h8 diagonal for White's Queen to do her mischief. gxf4 is quickly met by Rxh4, and the natural Bg4 is obviously impossible, as it hangs a piece. Fedorowicz chooses the most logical defense, guarding his vulnerable h7 pawn with Rb7 and giving the defense some air. However, the counter-intuitive Rf7 and Qf8, lining up for a defense of the Black King and an attack on the f-file, is actually Black's best try in this lost position.

25... Rb7

25... Rf7! 26. b5 Qf8!, White now must fear the f-line, as 27. fxg5?? Rf2! leads to ruin, and 27. bxc6 Rb2 is another scary sight! But now, the final point of Ke2 appears, a calm, dare I say, "positional" walk to the Queenside! 27. Kd2!






















And Black's creative counter measure fails. The position now degenerates into a wild wild west shootout. Here are some bloody highlights: 27... Bd7 (27... gxf4 28. Rxh4 fxe3+ 29. Kc1 $1 Ne5 30. Nf6! (A triple barrel on h7!) Bf5 31. Qh5!! (A quadruple barrel, and the decisive Qxh7 and mate in a few cannot be stopped without catastrophic material loss.) 28. Kc2! (Stopping any Rb2 tricks once and for all, and its open season on the Black King. 28... Nd8 29. fxg5 Bxg5 30. Qd4+ Kg8 31. Rxh7!






















Rxh7 32. Ne7# would have pleased the crowd.

26. b5!

Black has no choice now but to sacrifice the Knight for dubious compensation. If he retreats to a7 or b8 he gets mated brutally in multiple ways.

26... Ne5

(26... Nb8 27. Qd4+ Rg7 28. fxg5! Bxg5 29. Rxh7+ Kg8






















30. Nf6# (30. Ne7#) (30. Rxg7#) (30. Qxg7#))

27. fxe5 dxe5 28. Qb1

Black still has a puncher's chance, and after Rf4!?, sacrificing another exchange for three connected passed pawns and open lines to my King, I would need extreme accuracy.

28... Qd6

(28... Rf4! 29. Nxf4 exf4 30. Qxe4!





















Slicing through the jungle -- the only path to victory. 30... Re7 (30... fxe3 31. Rd1 Qf8 32. Qe5+ Rg7 33. Rf1 Qd8 and among a few wins, Qd4 is simplest, and Rf7, allowing Qd2+, is mate in 15. I leave you to work out why!) 31. Rxh4! The artistic conclusion to crown the refutation. 31... Rxe4 (31... gxh4 32. Qxf4! And I emerge from the chaos a full piece up while the attack still rages.) 32. Rxh7#)

29. Qxe4 Rbf7 30. Rxh4!






















This thematic exchange sacrifice clears the path to the Black King at last, a trail White had been blazing through the h-file since the 18th move.

30... gxh4 31. Rxh4 Rg7 32. Bd3

While I thought that 25. Ke2!! was my original novelty, I received a shock when my teammate, FM Griego, informed me that 25. Ke2 had been played once in a game of 2200's and below, and in addition a few games of correspondence chess as well. I simply did not believe him and lost a few dollars on a gentleman's bet. But please, no one tell the Commissioner, as gambling is against league rules, and I do not want to face suspension. I must confess, this is a very good way to make money off me, as, like Tal said, "I smoke, I drink, I gamble, I chase women, but correspondence chess is one vice I do not have." If you would like to immerse yourself in the theoretical debate and delve into abstract questions like "what is a novelty?", I refer you to the following message board: http://www.chesspub.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1320893863/7


1-0



Good old Ke2, the hallmark of the romantic style! The King, oblivious to danger, plows forward into the center, taking on the entire Black army by himself. And this in a game which teaches us to castle safely to the side. Naturally, this was not my first experience with Ke2.

NM Marc Esserman vs NM Craig Stauffer [B02] 3/9/2000


1. e4 Nf6 2. e5 Nd5 3. Nc3 Nxc3 4. bxc3 g6 5. d4 Bg7 6. Bd3 c5 7. Nf3 O-O 8. h4 d6 9. h5 Bg4 10. hxg6 fxg6






















Both sides have played the opening rather dubiously, and now I sank into an hour's thought. If Rxh7 Kxh7 Ng5 wins easily, but Black interposes with Bxf3, and the attack fizzles. Therefore, the solution is obvious to us ... I hope I didn't give it away!

11. Ke2!!??

Two exclams for the freshness and creativity of youth. And two question marks for the ignorance and naivety of, well, youth. Again, as in Esserman vs Fedorowicz, White clears the h-file for decisive action (Rxh7, Qh1, and Bxg6 is threatened). But of course, he forgets to castle! Is Ke2 sound? Start your engines to find out, although they might explode.}

11... d5?

Black locks the center in the very moment when he should have opened it up somehow. After all, my King is there. Of course, the looming threat of Bc4+ and some mayhem on the h-file troubled him to take such action.

12. Rxh7! Kxh7 13. Qh1+

Unnerved by the madness of Ke2, Black loses his composure and hangs a piece. However, even Kg8 could not save him.

13... Bh5

(13... Kg8 14. Bxg6 Bxf3+ 15. gxf3 Rf6, a desperado. 16. Qh7+ Kf8 17. Bh6 Rxg6 18. Qxg6 Bxh6 19. e6!






















There is no escaping Ke2.)

14. Qxh5+ Kg8 15. Bxg6 Rxf3 16. Qh7+ Kf8 17. Bh6 Rf7 18. Qh8#!






















Ironically, in a bizarre twist of fate, this game was analyzed in a summer 2000 Chess Life, over 11 years ago, by ... can you guess??? Those of you who guessed wrong, fess up. Those of you who guessed right, you know who you are. That's right, GM John Fedorowicz himself!

1-0



To conclude the Ke2 theme, I offer you a beautiful mate in 3 by the brilliant 19th century American problem composer Samuel Loyd. No hints!























As the year comes to a close and the drudgery of the offseason looms, I hope that the players and the Commissioner can come to a respectable agreement to avoid a future lockout. In the meantime, I will catch you up on the state of current modern chess theory before I bid farewell. Chess changes quickly these days, and we must keep up to speed.

GM Alexei Shirov (2705) vs GM Vishwanathan Anand (2811) [B12] 6/2/2011


1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 Bf5 4. g4??






















Last year, I uncorked this lemon against IM Tegeshuren Enkhbat, winning with a great swindle after g4. According to IM Mark Ginsburg 4... Be4 wins for Black as White's Rook hangs. Enkhbat returned the favor with 4... Bd7??, which was also the blunder of last season, hemming in the light squared Bishop. The whole point of the Caro-Kann, after all, is to keep the light Bishop outside the Pawn chain, unlike the cramped French defense.

4... Bd7!!

But what a difference a year makes! In June 2011, Anand proved all the doubters wrong, essaying Bd7, locking his Bishop behind his Pawns, and crushing Shirov in 17 moves. Perhaps Anand knew something we didn't, after all, he is World Champion. And why on earth is Shirov playing this lemon 4. g4??}

5. c4 e6 6. Nc3

The moment of truth. Unlike Enkbhat, who went down after Ne7, Anand unleashes a furious game changing novelty.

6... c5N!!






















And now Black threatens to win the Rook on h1 via Bc6, but this time from a safe distance. The tension in the center is also ready to blow in White's face. But then, after this quick defeat, I heard Shirov played 4. g4?? just this week against GM Paligras and won. Perhaps Shirov won simply because Paligras responded with Ginsburg's 4... Be4 instead of Bd7!! I just don't understand, and so we move on.

0-1



IM Marc Esserman (2450) vs GM Loek van Wely (2686) [B21] 8/4/2011



1. e4 c5 2. d4! cxd4 3. c3

After my win over Van Wely, more and more bold souls are playing the controversial Morra Gambit, which some say loses, and others, that it wins by force. Some folks even believe it draws.

3... dxc3






















This move is VERY NECESSARY. Grandmaster Loek Van Wely is a man of principle, a man who never shies away from a challenge, from a duel. Thus, even though many view him as a strictly positional player, you can also argue that he is also a man from the 19th century's romantic era, and for this I have the utmost respect for him. However, when GM Alejandro Ramirez annotated this game in this month's Chess Life, he argued that "this move [dxc3] is unnecessary," that 3... Nf6! is best, and mused "why do people take on c3. It will remain a mystery to me?" Alejandro my friend, I must now poke some more fun at you in good humor while answering your question. When Lady Gaga calls your name in her famous hit single ALELLELELLEALLELELELELandrjo, she is singing to the Alejandro who takes on c3, not the Alejandro who meekly declines with Nf6. I believe this answers the question to the best of my abilities.

4. Nxc3 Nc6 5. Nf3 e6 6. Bc4 a6 7. O-O Nge7 8. Bg5 f6 9. Be3 Ng6 10. Bb3 b5 11. Nd5!






















And I went on to win the best game of my career. Unfortunately this contest occurred outside of the USCL, or else I would have had a fighting chance for game of the week, if, of course, the position was not still "theory. " Later analysis has now shown that Black can possibly equalize by force from this position in a complicated King and Pawn endgame around move 50, so I am thinking of giving up the swashbuckling gambit for less analyzed alternatives. If anyone has any ideas please let me know. Thank you all for another great season, but I'm afraid it is now time for me to announce my unconditional retirement from the US Chess League. Unconditional. I'm simply Fed up. Until next year!

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34 comments:

Ilya said...

This Beccerra-SmallWilly game is a true USCL classic,I hope it was analyzed by Kasparov in great detail.

Anonymous said...

Some fight rightly for pride, others fight for ratings points. Some play out of love and loyalty, others for fame and fortune. Mr Esserman does well to applaud the former and ridicule the latter.

Our game needs more noblemen.

Anonymous said...

As one of Marc Esserman's many female fans, I can assure you all that this opening was, in fact, not prepared ahead of time. He asked me which opening he should play twenty minutes prior to the match. He gave me three choices: the Smith Morra, Open Sicilian and other. I told him to play the Open Sicilian. He did. And he won, much to my delight.

E Mevs said...

Highly entertaining and informative article! Who would've thunk it, Marc writes like he plays chess. This style will be sorely missed. Perhaps the uscl will begin to appreciate it when they no longer possess it.

Anonymous said...

I witnessed the savage Ke2 at the US Masters in 2000. 11 years later, it seems as if Esserman's abundance of opening blunders still remains. It's a wonder he's been able to gain any rating points.

Anonymous said...

"As one of Marc Esserman's many female fans" lol Get this Napoleon Dynamite out of the league, take the rest of his ratbag cohorts with him. Go Knights!

Anonymous said...

Esserman vs Fedorowicz 22 (66%) Esserman and Bostons egos go too far making their narcissism that more comical.

Nadja Benaissa said...

As another one of Marc Esserman's many female fans, I can back up that girls first story about him not preparing that extensive line. Trust me he has far better things to do with his life than prepare twenty moves in advance, I just wish haters would stop hating and people would believe in his genius, please just validate his intelligence someone. Thank you, that is all.

Anonymous said...

I am Marc's #1 female fan, and I have many things to say. First off, I promise to the entire USCL community that Marc does not waste his time finding game-winning novelties in the Sveshnikov, as many have pointed out before, he has for more important people and things to do instead. For example, this blog post is a brilliant piece of writing, encompassing what the entire chess league represents in a digestable manner for purely recreational players like myself. Typical of a classy Harvard alum to write with such wonderful grace. He certainly is in the wrong place, and Marc you know it to be true, why are you hanging with guys like Ilya who will only bring about hatred, from Game of the Week judges for example. Not to mention that his inability to draw that NY kid with white or draw that endgame, which ruined your chances to showcase more of your brilliance. You are making a mature decision to leave the USHML (US Hating on Marc League), but if you ever decide to return, play for New England- I hear they are closer anyway. And who knows, by then it might be the USCL again.

Anonymous said...

This guy is like Brett Favre of chess. Not that he sends pictures of his junk to women's cellphones. He just keeps retiring and coming back.

Anonymous said...

How come no one is paying attention to Marc's analysis, everyone is talking some bullshit about this and that. I thought Marc's analysis of Becerra -Nakamura, was eye opening

Professional Computers built cheap said...

Oh Fans! Oh fairweather freckled feinting fantabulators! You all claim you are his #1, (#2 & #3? Are you available? Call me) female fans, but where were you when he was 2250... 2300... 2350...when he endured the brutal hazing of the Elite Harvard Chess Finals Club...when he could not get a contact high at will from his teammates...before having the honor of becoming a chronic cheater, in which he dared to brazenly consult top theory written down IN HIS OWN MIND...when the secret code embedded in the orchestration of The Luzhin Defense soundtrack was decoded by his fully autistic brain, allowing him to play the best moves against hapless GM's regardless of position....when d4 was synonymous with f5 (e.g. being lost) (except when he beat Shulman with it). When he had to write, painstakingly, looking up each word in the dictionary at a time, spelling it out in pawns and rooks if he had to, on a paltry dual core Intel, and turning in his papers about Russian feminism on a weather-beaten 8x8 canvas. When he lived in cramped, messy headquarters of a few thousand square feet, rather than the infinite expanse of the entire outdoors which he now calls home. Have I said too much? In so many ways, I have, yes, yes, I have, and yes. For I am but a clown.

Moderator, this cannot be moderated. It is the very essence of extreme. Extreme this post immediately.

(Call me.)

Anonymous said...

Dear Ilya (A.K.A. Female Fan 1 and 2?),

I tire of you calling our chess club a dungeon, please learn some manners.

Anonymous said...

P.S. I am not the same person as #1 female fan

Anonymous said...

I long for the times of Julius, Julius if u can hear me please come and set the record straight

Anonymous said...

Im New to uscl so maybe I don't understand but how can y lose on a draw, that goes against all chess principles.

Seldon Uribe

Jokerjr said...

I never realized until this article,how USELESS nakamura is to have on a team! He only plays to entertain his so-called "fans"!. What fans? This guy has an ego for what? Because he has some moron on icc with the handle nakaisgod give me a break! If the golden boy doesnt have better things to do he plays and doesnt even take it seriously. He just embarrasses himself, getting crushed by becerra and owned by bhat! Lets not forget about the steller one game played this year. Its a joke the way this guy conducts himself, yet criticizes everyone else!

Professional Computers built cheap said...

Which chess principles does it go against? The principle of relentless attack (USCF S.3(501)c), the principle of unmitigated nastiness (USCF 2.1p3, BCF 4.0A, 6.3, 9-10), the principle of diluvian self-hatred (FIDE a-3.xix, USCF 1a, 2b, 3c), the principle of wanton corruption (FIDE I.1, II.7, III, IV-XXXVI), the principle of craven political fearmongering (USCL 1-17, #A3-C12, Ch. 26-98), or the principle of slovenly bureaucracy (IRS A-Z, USCL pp 1-1000, The Collected Works of Shakespeare)?

Fan of Good Chess said...

I'm glad to see that IM Esserman is retiring. We need fewer players that regurgitate moves from their computers and more players that play real chess.

On a related note, it was refreshing to see that Esserman did not win GOTW. Simply refuting the main line of an opening should not win a prize, especially with a move so simple as Ke2.

Anonymous said...

To the other chick claiming to be "Marc's #1 female fan", get a life. We all know he can write and we all know he can play chess, so give it a rest will you? But nice usage of an English thesaurus to find the most nauseating ways to suck up to him! Keep talking, though. Someday you'll say something intelligent and then maybe Marc will pay attention to you. In the meantime, Nakamura is always accepting applications for pointless female fans.

Elizabeth Vicary said...

and all I had to do was ask!

Anonymous said...

Is it just me or have the fans finally responded to game of the week polls which has been dormant all season.And its a strong vote of no confidence to the new 2 judge system implemented by the league. In my humble opinion Shulman's game just blew, there were 5-6 games this week more worthy.

Tony Cortizas, Jr. said...

Here is a photo of Marc on the fateful playoff evening...

https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/NFk8ITysBkgwHOGTAMs9aw?feat=directlink

ChessAdmin said...

1. Hilarious.

2. People can actually learn something from these annotations. Among other things, not to always believe annotations.

3. I think this is a smurf account record for chess blog comments. Or maybe I just read the wrong blogs.

Anne Biderman said...

It really is unfortunate that a few players can brand a team to an unlikable status. After what I've seen I'd have to say that the New York Knights have somehow seized the title of most villainous over Boston after their "spokesperson" fueled by a certain disgruntled GM, who currently can't win a game, went on a rant.

The fans usually like cheering for the underdog, especially with a knockout Lineup that Chicago can produce, but I see Chicago favored by a landslide, both by fans, and common sense combined.

I'd be curious to see who is more disliked in the league Boston or New York?

chess cynic said...

"Curiouser and curiouser...":

A few comments re Sunday's Championship contenders: Chicagosevan's Blaze??? Though characterized by league officials as "President of Operations" for the Chicago Blaze in yesterday's USCL mention of his radio interview, Mr. Muradian presents himself as Team Owner and has assembled one helluva machine in his almost-as-good-as-a-USCF-Executive-Board-seat run at the title (http://www.chicagoblazechess.com/about-us/leadership). Is there something I'm missing or are USCL franchises truly for sale? And speaking of egos, New York Knight's manager Irina Krush has quite the challenge facing her in devising Sunday's Championship lineup. Two of her three Board 4 regulars (Bodek and Williams) are slated to be in Brazil for the World Youth Chess Championships, with the third (Gershenov) to be in Texas for the K-12 Nationals. Unless a remote connection is in the works, that leaves Ms. Krush to "man" Board 1, with Fedorowicz, Herman, and Pressman on Boards 2-4. Chicago's ability to field their GGGg lineup will be similarly challenged with littlest-g Schmakel also listed among the Texas pre-registrants. An OTB-challenge in the Lone Star State, perhaps?

With respect to Ms. Biderman's question, I'll take New York over Chicago any day (if only to disown the o(w)nerous ones), but'd much prefer an Esserman afternoon...

Anonymous said...

do we have to say it three times? its been said once... julius g.... julius g

Anonymous said...

WOW, NY is so screwed, no kiddies to man board 4, Krush on 1 not a good sign for NY. Chicago must be aware of this.

Anonymous said...

an esserman afternoon. sounds like something i could really go for

Julius G said...

I really liked the last Blitz lineup, I think if you played that lineup against NY ten times Boston would come out with 7 wins. Just unfortunate, Vadim Martirosov was always, Jorge Sammour-Hasbun really ran wild, Marc Esserman is always a favorite, and Ilya Krasik is still my favorite player. I don't think New York has the best team to go up against the stacked Chicago Blaze, so just like my earlier blog predictions, I think Chicago Blaze will win easily, but will they really, after it's all said and done they are still named the Blaze. If the Applesauce were in the finals I might let them off the hook, but lets face it, Blaze sounds like some sort of aerobics program, it also sounds like an old Gladiator, you know why, because there was a Blaze in the American Gladiators, and she wasn't even good. Why not just disgrace your city all together and name yourselves the Chicago Zap. Does anyone remember the Aprils Fools edition of American Gladiators when after the Swingshot they had to run through one of three doors with a Gladiator behind one, I think it was called the BreakThrough & Conquer? Anyhow, on that edition, they had the competitors family members hog tied behind each door, so when they broke through they saw like their nine year old kid crying asking if their love was worth less then five thousand dollars in cash prizes, or their wife struggling through knots with waffle iron burns on her face, anyone remember that, I hope not because I just made that up.
I apologize for my long absence but I've been working down at the docks day and night, with the bad economy the bosses are not afraid to fire any of us for even missing a day so all the employees feel obliged to come to work even while ill, and transmit communicable diseases to co-workers; It will lead to even greater absenteeism and reduced productivity among other workers who try to work while ill, but they don't care. It's sad to see so many tough and burly longshoreman now suffering with the Collywobbles.

Julius G said...

What else, oh, I started setting up a few toilet cams as a leisure hobby, but it sort of backfired. I never knew how common the blumpkin was until this month, have we really become that bored as a nation that you have to sneak into an a McDonalds to give your loving soulmate a blumpkin before meeting up with friends and family. Imagine having oral sex and someone dressed in an Uncle O'Grimacey costume popped in holding Shamrock Shakes and dropped it in slow motion at the sight of it all, if you have to look up Uncle O'Grimacey I'll wait, it will make the visual better trust me. While we wait for those people, whats with all the ugly clitoral hoods ladies, it's like floppy canoe paddles, are all of you deformed these days or something, it's gross, I'm keeping the lights shut off next time I have sex, I ain't looking at those hoods.
Well another year has come and gone, not too much controversy. Everyone is playing the politician roll, putting on a good face. I suppose I can be nice as well, so before I go I will give GM Giorgi Kacheishvili some advise I think he might find useful. First what you do is separate a section of your horse's mane to be pulled, about three or four inches. Take the remaining mane, if you think it will be in the way, and secure it with either a clip or large rubber band, put the other mane aside. Take the section of mane that you are pulling in one hand, holding the longest hairs in the section. With the comb, comb the hair in the opposite direction of growth, upwards, towards the neck, so that most of it bunches up. Take the unbunched part and wrap it around the comb, giving it a good, firm pull where you want to shorten it so that the hair is pulled out at the roots. Brush the entire section again, and repeat until all of the hair in that section is the desired length. Repeat with the rest of the mane, making sure to brush it out every so often to verify that it is even in length. Remember to praise your horse for being so patient!

Anonymous said...

Juilius, Im sure there is something I missed in your deep-rooted symbolism of Kacheshvilli's advice but could be kind enough to elaborate, for us fools?

Anonymous said...

Yo! What's up Catdog!!! Nakamura ain't got no clue??? Hey Esserman? Tell #10 in the world, if he don't got no clue, he better ask somebody!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh my