Don't Just Check

Don't Just Check

NM CoachJKane
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8 days ago

Hi Chess Friends, I was happy to play a nice combination in a recent blitz game, which got me thinking about an important attacking theme. First, see if you can find black's winning combination below. The move that struck me there was...

A Blitz Ode to Capablanca

A Blitz Ode to Capablanca

NM CoachJKane
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27 days ago

Hi Chess Friends, I played a blitz game this evening, which followed a key strategic theme from a famous Capablanca game. Since I'm a chess mortal, and only had three minutes, my game was messier than Capa's masterpiece, but I still think it's f...

Old Coach Still Has New Tricks

Old Coach Still Has New Tricks

NM CoachJKane
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Oct 7, 2018

Hi Chess Friends, A busy work schedule and fatherhood have kept me from playing much lately except for a few online games. That's why it was nice to find a few fun moves while teaching a lesson and then playing a blitz game today. The bl...

One Minute Mating Attack

One Minute Mating Attack

NM CoachJKane
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Sep 13, 2018

Hi Chess Friends, It's not often you get to play a more or less correct game in 1 minute. That's why I particularly enjoyed the following mating attack today. I hope you do to. It's a waste of time to analyze one minute too deeply, but ...

The Hustler Trap Strikes Again

The Hustler Trap Strikes Again

NM CoachJKane
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Sep 4, 2018

I was given a nice opportunity tonight to play one of my favorite opening traps. It's a particularly memorable one to me because I first played and discovered it in a game in Washington Square Park in New York City. Since then I've had it a few ti...

A Stylish Blitz Attack

A Stylish Blitz Attack

NM CoachJKane
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Jul 10, 2018

I've mostly only had time for the random 1 minute game lately, so the few blitz games tonight felt almost slow. I'm not in serious chess shape right now, but I was able to play a very brutal and mostly accurate attack, so I thought I'd share. Enjo...

So Much Wrong Here

So Much Wrong Here

NM CoachJKane
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Jun 23, 2018

Can you spot everything wrong with this picture? It's a still from Luke Cage Season 2, episode 1. I'm pretty sure that character is supposed to know how to play chess.

Tricky Blitz Tactic

Tricky Blitz Tactic

NM CoachJKane
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Jun 21, 2018

I'm still on fatherhood induced leave from slow chess, but I've been playing more on chess.com recently to stay in shape. I was pretty happy with my ability to calculate through this messy blitz game today. Can you find the right line for black? ...

My Tricky Blitz Openings

My Tricky Blitz Openings

NM CoachJKane
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Jun 16, 2018

Hi Chess Friends, Watching the Grand Chess Tour final rounds today, I started thinking about the openings that I've had some success with in blitz. As a relatively new father, these quick games are mostly what I have time for these days, so t...

Echoes of Euwe

Echoes of Euwe

NM CoachJKane
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Apr 5, 2018

I taught a lesson on pins yesterday and covered a couple of positions that many chess players seem to struggle with. Pins aren't only used to win material, but also to keep opposing pieces stuck for numerous moves. One of the most famous moves in ...

The Stranded Knight

The Stranded Knight

NM CoachJKane
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Feb 27, 2018

Hi Chess Friends,   A recent game by Magnus Carlsen reminded me of a tactical motif that I’ve missed in a couple of tournament games. I don’t know of any chess literature on the topic, so I thought I’d give a brief intro...

A Precise Attack in Bullet

A Precise Attack in Bullet

NM CoachJKane
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Oct 6, 2017

I've fallen into the bad habit of playing too much one minute chess recently. The one saving grace is it occasionally leads to some nice games just because of the volume. Here's one of my better efforts from today. Enjoy!

Endgame Tactics Time

Endgame Tactics Time

NM CoachJKane
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Aug 29, 2017

Hi Chess Friends,   Tonight I had a talented student of mine play out a few endgames to practice converting good positions with the clock ticking.  On his first try with one ending he found a key sacrificial idea, but played it too early and en...

A Silly Game with a Cool Finish

A Silly Game with a Cool Finish

NM CoachJKane
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Jun 8, 2017

Tonight, after I taught an online lesson, I played a few blitz games on chess.com. The game below was the most fun of the bunch. I didn't play great, but I really enjoyed the mating tactic at the end. I hope you do too.  

Proud Chess Coach Moment

Proud Chess Coach Moment

NM CoachJKane
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May 1, 2017

Hi Chess Friends, I don't have anything exciting to report from my most recent tournament games, but I do want to show a recent game by a fifth grade student of mine. He recently gained 100 points in a 4 game tournament by beating three higher ra...

My Chess Super Bowl

My Chess Super Bowl

NM CoachJKane
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Feb 7, 2017

Hi chess friends, This past Sunday, while many other Americans were preparing for the Super Bowl, I played in the first round of the Northern Virginia Chess League against Grandmaster Jesse Kraai. In our previous meeting in the league he beat me ...

My 9 Year Old Student Vs. Bobby Fischer

My 9 Year Old Student Vs. Bobby Fischer

NM CoachJKane
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Jan 31, 2017

A student of mine recently lost a couple of tough games in the Dragon, so we analyzed the famous game, Fischer - Larsen (1958). Fischer analyzed it in his "60 Memorable Games" and Kasparov built on that analysis in his Great Predecessors series.  ...

Pawn Power Lessons From the GM

Pawn Power Lessons From the GM

NM CoachJKane
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Jan 15, 2017

Hi Chess Friends, One of my favorite things about playing on sites like chess.com or ICC is that I can occasionally play quick games with some of the current and former top players in the world. In the last few weeks I've seen former World Champi...

My 2016 Year in Review

My 2016 Year in Review

NM CoachJKane
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Dec 24, 2016

Happy holidays chess friends, 2016 was an eventful year for me chess-wise, so I thought I'd take a look back at some of the highlights. Learning experience of the year: Playing a tournament game against GM Jesse Kraai. I correctly suspected t...

Check Your Blind Spot

Check Your Blind Spot

NM CoachJKane
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Nov 21, 2016

Hi Chess Friends, One of the most common topics I touch on when teaching chess classes and individual lessons is the importance of examining forcing moves (checks, captures and threats). These are the moves most likely to completely alter a line ...

Blitz Chaos

Blitz Chaos

NM CoachJKane
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Nov 4, 2016

Hi Chess Friends, Today I hung my queen in a blitz game against a friend. Rather than resigning, I figured I could rely on the fast time control and my rating edge to give me at least some chance to recover. I ended up playing an interesting comb...

Wilkes Barre for the Right Reasons

Wilkes Barre for the Right Reasons

NM CoachJKane
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Oct 11, 2016

I've been too busy with work the last month to play seriously or blog, but I was inspired by a chess word in the news today. There was a big Trump rally in Wilkes Barre PA, which I hadn't even realized was a place. I had only known it as the Ameri...

A Nasty Trap From the State Quick Championship

A Nasty Trap From the State Quick Championship

NM CoachJKane
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Sep 7, 2016

Hi Chess Friends, I posted some of my games from the recent Maryland State Quick Championship in my previous blog post. I left the most interesting tactical moment as a puzzle, which no one answered, so I'll leave it here. My opponent, playing wh...

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