Magnus Carlsen just reached a rating of 2889.2 today. Considering the way that Elo works, inflation and deflation and relative strength of Carlsen, I was wondering whether it is theoretically possible for him to reach Elo 3000? If so, is it practically possible?1
1. I know my second question is a bit opinion based, but I actually want to know your opinions!
The average Elo rating of the e.g. top 10 players in the world is rising every year. I think that the relative distance between the number one rated player and the other 9 players in the top 10 becomes relevant in this context. This distance can be estimated by subtracting the average of the ratings of the 9 players (ranked 2-10 in the world) from the rating of the top player (today, Carlsen) and dividing this by the rating of the top player.
Increasing this distance is difficult for the top rated player, because every new game played by the top player has a certain amount of risk and uncertainty. I think that Carlsen will have a hard time reaching an Elo rating of 3000 exclusively by increasing the distance to the players ranked 2-10. Yet, if the relative distance stays the same of the following years and the average rating of the top 10 continues to increase, then it is definitely possible for Carlsen to reach Elo 3000. The second ranked player at that moment would probably have around Elo 2950.
Theoretically, yes very much so, if Carlsen organised a 100 game match between himself and a 2100 rated player(who he theoretically has a 99.99% chance of beating in each game) and for each win he'd get a rating gain of one elo (by Fide calculations), then that'd be a 100 elo gain putting him at say 2977 or thereabout...so all he's got to do is organise a 150 game match.