27

Carlsen is being criticized for his preparation with white, particularly e4. He knows that Caruana is going to play the Petrof yet nevertheless Caruana equalizes effortlessly. Carlsen appears to have no new ideas in this opening. Since there is no more important competition he could be saving novelties for it tells us he has no novelties. No novelties = poor ...


27

Carlsen crushed it, made almost no mistakes whatsoever in rapid. It is as if he was playing at classical time controls. Chess is about not making mistakes. If your opponent doesn't make mistakes then you're only going to get a draw even if you play like an engine. He did play good moves as well. Example on move 37 the position is a draw but he gave himself ...


25

There are a combination of answers to this question. I will answer in what is, in my opinion, descending importance. It's just boring now. Initially this was a case of human pride. A few decades ago it was a commonly held belief that no computer could ever perform at the master level or beat a grand master. It quickly became apparent that this was not the ...


22

Game Over: Kasparov and the Machine is a decent enough documentary on the subject. The coverage does kind of imply that Kasparov was grasping at straws abit. Like a typical World championship match there was a lot of behind the scenes tactics going on from both sides. My feeling is that you only have to look at the ascent of Anand and other chess players ...


21

Carlsen is 21 years young and is currently the highest-rated player in the world. He scored a win against Karpov and a draw against Kasparov at the tender age of 13 (Reykjavik Rapid 2004), and was the second youngest player to become a grandmaster (at the time he did it). Things like that are enough to brew confidence, garner world championship expectations, ...


21

Is the tournament leading to some consensus on how good/bad Carlsen's decision was? Not quite. As others have pointed out, Carlsen's decision was based on factors outside that one game. With a stronger position and a large time advantage, Carlsen most likely could have won game 12, but Caruana had just tied Carlsen in 11 consecutive games, several of which ...


20

The Candidates will be held in Berlin, Germany, on 10-28 March 2018 (source). According to FIDE's Rules & Regulations for the Candidates Tournament of the FIDE World Championship cycle 2016-2018, the following will qualify, in order of priority: 1. The loser of the previous World Championship Match -- Sergey Karjakin. 2. The 2 finalists of the FIDE ...


20

Is the tournament leading to some consensus on how good/bad Carlsen's decision was? No. Consensus on Carlsen's play and decision has already been reached, I would suggest. Psychologically Carlsen made it clear in the post match interview that his goal before this game was a draw to reach the rapid playoff where he thought (correctly) that he was strong ...


18

One of the Russians (Filatov?, maybe even Karjakin himself?) brown-nosed to the media that every match is 50-50 odds on the face of it... But more seriously, Carlsen's rating has consistently been 2850 plus/minus a small amount (20) for some time now, while Karjakin has been more volatile, currently 2775 (near his career best 2788 of July 2011). So I think ...


16

There are two levels at which this can be answered, I suppose: what were the personal motivations for offering/agreeing a draw, and what were the objective features of the position that grounded the decision? I think you're asking mostly after the second, but I've read many comments lately voicing frustration with agreed draws in this match, so I hope you ...


16

Taking a look at the comments in your link, I came across a post quoting GM Edmar Mednis: A move which was invariably given two exclamation marks - 14.Nb1!! after the game. May I respectfully suggest that if Spassky had proceeded to lose this game it would have read 14.Nb1?? If we look at the nature of the position, it should be apparent that ...


16

Magnus Carlsen drops out of World Championship cycle (contemporaneous chessbase.com article) Largely he didn't like the format (knockout matches rather than round-robin tournament). Carlsen wrote a letter to FIDE explaining why he skipped the Candidates Matches, quoted in part below: After careful consideration I’ve reached the conclusion that the ...


16

my feeling is that Caruana lost the game, more than Carlsen won it. Whenever two players play a game without making any errors the result is a draw. Most games have lots of errors and it is usually the player who makes the last error who loses. As far as I can tell, Carlsen didn't make any winning!! or distinctly good moves Not true. Carlsen made many ...


15

There have been some shorter ones, for instance Kasparov-Kramnik (2000), game 7, draw in 11 moves. http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=1252046 Kasparov-Anand (1995), game 18, draw in 12 moves. http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=1241980 Karpov-Kasparov (1984), game 29, draw in 13 moves. http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=...


14

From a purely positional point of view, 18...Nxb6 would have been a terrible mistake, as it would have allowed white to then forcefully trade the light squared bishops with the immediate Bg4 move, leaving exposed all the light square weaknesses that black has created with the d6-e5-f4 setup. These weaknesses (created holes) would then have been permanently ...


13

Carlsen is criticized because he's in a defense position (he's defending his title, and doesn't need to win all games), and people want to see crazy games with new things, as simple as that. While I must admit that this kind of games are pretty boring, we cannot "hate" on him for having poor preparation. He's not there to entertain people.


12

I just wanted to add a bit more to Ed Dean's Answer. These are some fun facts: In October 2005 he took first place at the Arnold Eikrem Memorial in Gausdal with eight out of nine points and a performance rating of 2792 at the age of 14. When Carlsen was 18 years old, he became one of the few people in history to have an Elo rating over 2800. Carlsen ...


12

Draw by mutual agreement is not allowed before move 30. But a draw by threefold repetition can be claimed at any point if it occurs.


12

Game 1 of the tiebreak: http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=1937923 37 Rc7 is a brilliant endgame move under time control, that induces the opponent to make the mistake 37...Kxe4. There were few other options for Carlsen, v.i.z., 37. Kh3 or 37. Rb4. You can see the evaluation jumps couple of points from +0.3 to +2.1 even though materially Caruana ...


11

Kasparov's reason for that statement may be no deeper than this: The current rating list does give a concrete, factual basis for his assessment, though it is certainly something with which others might disagree. Current world #2 Levon Aronian, for one, made a point of contradicting Kasparov: "I don’t think [what Kasparov said] is true. The player that ...


11

Nimzovitch. NimzoIndian Defense: 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 Nimzovitch Defense: 1.e4 Nc6 Nimzovitch Attack: 1.Nf3 d5 2.b3 (1.b3 is the Nimzo-Larsen Attack) Nimzovitch Variations: Sicilian Defense: 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nf6 Queens Indian Defense: 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Ba6 Falkbeer Counter-Gambit: 1.e4 e5 2.f4 d5 3.de5 c6 Falkbeer Counter-Gambit: 1.e4 ...


11

I'm way late to the party here, but would nevertheless like to mention the contributions of the seventh world champion (and my favorite player) Vasily Smyslov. Here are some of his many eponymous systems and variations in major openings: The Smyslov system in the Grünfeld Defense: 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 d5 4. Nf3 Bg7 5. Qb3 dxc4 6. Qxc4 O-O 7. e4Bg4,...


11

One of Anand's strengths relative to Carlsen is better opening knowledge, and Anand also had the better analysis team. (UPDATE: According to Carlsen in a recent interview, his team of seconds during the Chennai match consisted of Hammer, Fressinet and Eljanov.) To repeat openings was a natural match strategy for him, trying to turn the match into an opening ...


11

After 18 ... Qe8 the bishop on b6 is attacking thin air and isn't very annoying. After 18 ... Nxb6 19. Nxb6 the knight on b6 is very annoying indeed. The a8 rook is forced to a7 and black's pieces are becoming uncoordinated. After 18 ... Nxb6 19. axb6 Rxa1 20. Qxa1 black is in trouble. White's b6 pawn is looking dangerous, black's b7 pawn is going to come ...


10

Off the top of my head, there are a few players with multiple openings named after them: Tarrasch Tarrasch Variation against the French Defense Tarrasch Opening against d4 (with ...d5 and ...c5) the Open Variation in the Ruy Lopez is technically the Tarrasch Marshall Marshall Gambit in the Slav Marshall Gambit in the Ruy Lopez Marshall Defense against ...


10

Chess isn't popular because all major tournaments make it lack emotion. For some reason, all major tournaments are those of classic chess, that is, with high quality games that last 5 hours or more. The outcome of these high quality games at the highest play level is most typically a draw. This is totally broken and does not have a chance to make it to ...


10

There is no real definite answer for this question. Many people have floated different theories, most of which borrow bits and pieces from each other. It is quite possible that his mental struggles just got the best of him or that he lost interest after attaining the summit of the game. Psychologically, it must have been hard to cope when you get the ...


10

At the very least we know that in 1992 a man that looked and sounded like an aged version of Bobby Fischer played Boris Spassky in a match, and won it. Assuming that this old man was actually not Fischer, we must think of plausible alternatives for who it possibly could've been. What old man besides Bobby Fischer will look like Bobby Fischer and be able to ...


10

By far, the biggest blunder in all world championship is absolutely 32.Bb4?? played by Chigorin in the 1892 match. He threw away the win and the match, landed himself to mate in 2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Chess_Championship_1892 A piece up, Chigorin should have won after 32. Rxb7 (32...Rxd5? 33. Nf4 forks the black rooks).[1] Instead the ...


10

It will not show how good or bad Carlsen's decision was - humans play and assess differently from computers; there are positions that are extremely easy for computers, but terribly difficult for humans and vice versa. So a computer evaluation of ~+1 might not give any chance for a human win and in many cases a position with equal computer evaluation is an ...


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