-1

Edit on opinion-based close vote: It's most likely. 1 of my assumptions is wrong. I mean to ask which of the assumptions are wrong. However, if none of the assumptions are wrong, then I think this could be an answer like

None of the assumptions are wrong. Beyond this is speculation.


TL;DR Liren hasn't been doing so well this past year. However, Hikaru, Fabi & Nepo are not near retirement and can easily beat Gukesh (no offense), so why don't Hikaru, Fabi & Nepo buy out Liren from playing so the 3 can have have a playoff to face Gukesh?


To be more explicit:

  1. Assumption: It doesn't say on Wikipedia, but I just assume the 2024 classical WCC will be approximately 1 million USD / euro per player just like last time (2m divided 60-40 or 55-45).
  2. Observation: Liren would've retired if Nepo won last year and hasn't been doing so well since winning the classical WCC. [ Update 2024Jun03 at 2024 Norway Chess - Liren blunders mate in 2 to Magnus. ]
  3. Guess: From (2), Liren is unlikely to win if Liren were to face Fabi, Nepo or Hikaru... but luckily maybe Liren still has chances to win now that it's Gukesh (no offense), but still.
  4. Assumption: In case candidates winner or classical WCC drops out, there will be a playoff between the 3 tied for top 2 - Hikaru, Fabi & Nepo, i.e. Hikaru wouldn't automatically be the replacement on just score tiebreaks.
  5. Assumption: Re (1) & (4), it is legal under FIDE & civil laws for Hikaru, Fabi & Nepo to buy out Liren in that each will pay Liren 333,333 to drop out. It is also moral, ethical, etc.
  6. Assumption: Re (1) & (5), Hikaru, Fabi & Nepo are able to stake 333,333 given Nepo & Fabi are already staking 1m USD to play each other, Nodirbek & Hans in a 4m USD 15+0 tournament
  7. Assumption: Hikaru, Fabi or Nepo will almost definitely beat Gukesh.
  8. Guess: Re (6) & (7), Hikaru, Fabi & Nepo will consider 333,333 a worthy investment for 1/3-chance to play for the title (and 1m USD). (Btw, they could even agree that the winner of the 3 pays the other 2 off after playing the WCC. So the winner of the playoff is playing just for the title. Idk. Lol.)
  9. Assumption: It's not the case that: FIDE realises this and knows by (3) and (7) they'll have a more exciting match this way, and so 'asked' Hikaru, Fabi & Nepo to not buy out Liren.
  10. Edit to add: Observation: The 2026 candidates regulations breaks, I think, a 2 decades old tradition of that the runner-up of the classical WCC doesn't get a full candidates spot (cf classical WCC still does get full championship privilege to defend 1v1). (I say 'full' because the runner-up does get some other privileges in a circuit or something.)
  11. Edit to add: Guess: Based on (10), I think FIDE knew from the start that Liren would either lose or drop and so wouldn't want to give Liren a candidates spot. To me, a buy out of Liren now in the 2024 classical WCC is in the same spirit as that the 2026 candidates tournament is breaking such a tradition for the runner-up. If Liren is so worthy to compete the 2024 classical WCC, then I'd think, if Liren were the runner-up, that Liren should be worthy enough to be a full wildcard in the 2026 candidates.
  12. By (8), (9) & (11), I ask: Question: Assuming all the above are correct, why don't Hikaru, Fabi & Nepo buy out Liren after w/c the 3 have a playoff to face Gukesh? If not, then which parts are incorrect, and why?

Update: Btw this was discussed on reddit r/chess on 2024Apr21 (penultimate day of candidates I guess) by sanschefaudage

FIDE didn't plan real tie breakers for second place of the Candidates

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  • 1
    Gukesh probably wouldn't agree. Also Liren doesn't have the right to sell his place in the match. Commented May 31 at 16:39
  • The day something like this happens, which is completely unsportsmanlike, is the day I stop watching professional chess. Commented May 31 at 18:30
  • @LeonardBlackburn I wonder if you consider it sportsmanlike / sportshumanlike to push through defending a title when you've been performing really badly lately and rather than bowing out with grace? I think of Chuck McGill from Better Call Saul/Breaking Bad... wow and only now i realise i got my idea from BCS/BB where chuck is liren and then howard is i guess fabi/nepo/hikaru. lol.
    – BCLC
    Commented Jun 1 at 11:17
  • @RemcoGerlich Why'd Gukesh disagree in facing a more worthy opponent for the title?
    – BCLC
    Commented Jun 1 at 12:13
  • 1
    @BCLC: and I wonder how you come to the conclusion of any of the ones you mentioned is "more worthy" than the one who has actually managed to win the title.
    – bakunin
    Commented Jun 1 at 13:18

2 Answers 2

4

FIDE has regulations that say what happens if the World Champion declines to play in the match: the #2 of the Candidates plays instead. That is what let Ding play in the previous match, after all.

So if the three were to pay Ding to not play in the match, they wouldn't get to play a playoff, but instead the #2 of the Candidates would play.

That is Nakamura -- the tiebreaks for the non-first place are 1) Results in tie-break for first place (but there wasn't any), 2) Sonneborn-Berger (Nakamura has 46, Nepo has 46, Caruana has 44), 3) Total wins (Nakamura has 5, Nepo has 3).

There would not be a playoff.

But, paying competitors to remove themselves from competition may run into other rules (e.g. around sportsmanship), and could get them banned instead. Then Praggnanandhaa is the clear #5.

2
  • i'm not talking about any under the table stuff but really a FIDE sanctioned deal. if it's illegal then cite the source. if it's legal then explain why. ok so your explanation is hikaru only. What is your source please for 'FIDE has regulations that say what happens if the World Champion declines to play in the match: the #2 of the Candidates plays instead.' ? that was the case for 2023 but i don't see 2024.
    – BCLC
    Commented Jun 1 at 12:20
  • Updated the post to include that 2026 candidates doesn't give full candidates spot to the 2024 WCC runner-up. What do you think of this? It sounds to me like they're already saying they don't want Liren. They have to give Liren a wildcard in the 1v1 finals because such championship privilege is a huge tradition. But runner-up is kinda big tradition too. Yet they're breaking it. Why? To me, a buy out of Liren is in the same spirit as not having the runner-up of the 2024 WCC in the 2026 candidates. If Liren is so worthy for 2024 WCC, then why no 2026 candidates wildcard for 2024 runner-up?
    – BCLC
    Commented Jun 1 at 14:45
1

I can see why Ding Liren could want to sell his spot for a million dollars. Avoid having to do endless prep for many weeks etc.

Regarding the points above

Ethical and legal concerns: While it may be theoretically possible for players to buy out another competitor in a tournament, it would likely still violate FIDE regulations and ethical standards. FIDE has many rules in place to prevent such arrangements though to be fair I can't off the top of my head know of any for this particular case. But they can and would probably intervene if this happened.

Unpredictability of chess: Making assumptions about players' future performances based on past events or perceived trends can be unreliable. Chess is a highly dynamic game, and players' forms can fluctuate for various reasons. Gukesh played really well in the candidates and Nepo, Hikaru and Fabi would probably hesitate to gamble $300k like that. I think I read somewhere that fabi made around $300k in prize money the whole of last year. So it would be a whole years salary.

Financial considerations: Assuming the financial details of tournaments and players' willingness to invest in buyouts overlooks the complexities of chess sponsorship, prize structures, and individual players' financial situations.

In addition I believe that players who have reached this level of competition are intensely competitive and reject the notion of advancing through monetary means. They prefer to earn their victories through skill and dedication, which is a significant factor in their success thus far.

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  • no offense but did you use a chatbot to answer this? i think this is against the rules
    – BCLC
    Commented Jun 1 at 12:14
  • No, don't know why anyone would do that, what would one even gain by doing that 😅 Commented Jun 1 at 13:24
  • ok i guess. 1- fabi is betting 1m USD in 15+0 rapid tournament. why wouldn't fabi bet 300k? 2- how are they advancing through monetary means when they can easily beat liren or gukesh? peak gukesh vs peak fabi or nepo is 1 thing, but gukesh today vs fabi or nepo today? come on. fabi tied with magnus in classical. nepo beat magnus in 2019 WFRCC and the 2022 WFRCC. nepo might've drawn w/ magnus in 2021 classical WCC if magnus didn't cheat by touch move in game 9
    – BCLC
    Commented Jun 1 at 14:21
  • Updated the post to include that 2026 candidates doesn't give full candidates spot to the 2024 WCC runner-up. What do you think of this? It sounds to me like they're already saying they don't want Liren. They have to give Liren a wildcard in the 1v1 finals because such championship privilege is a huge tradition. But runner-up is kinda big tradition too. Yet they're breaking it. Why? To me, a buy out of Liren is in the same spirit as not having the runner-up of the 2024 WCC in the 2026 candidates. If Liren is so worthy for 2024 WCC, then why no 2026 candidates wildcard for 2024 runner-up?
    – BCLC
    Commented Jun 1 at 14:45

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