Why are there so few knockout tournaments?

Why are there so few knockout tournaments?

GM gmjlh
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Jun 11, 2018

Once again draws are in the news, but Karjakin’s comments to Norwegian paper Aftenposten have largely gone under the radar. He addressed format, rather than point-scoring, anti-draw rules or player’s motivation: “If we were playi...

Is Fischer Random really free of opening theory?

Is Fischer Random really free of opening theory?

GM gmjlh
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Feb 8, 2018

I think the Nakamura-Carlsen match organizers have made a big mistake. Fischer Random has been hailed as a chess variant without opening theory, but the decision to have double games – the same position twice, just changing the color –...

An insider's view on the Fide Grand Prix

An insider's view on the Fide Grand Prix

GM gmjlh
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Nov 30, 2017

The Fide Grand Prix of 2017 has come to an end, with Grischuk and Mamedyarov earning well-deserved spots in the Candidates tournament. I was lucky to get a spot in the series, and compete against the very best in the world. These are my thoughts o...

Thoughts on broadcasting rights

Thoughts on broadcasting rights

GM gmjlh
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Nov 15, 2017

"Agon wants people to pay for chess moves. Why aren’t the players uniting," asks some of the top chess twitter personalities. I think the simple reason is that many top players agree; that to commercialize chess, organizers need to create mo...

Random pairings - is this going to be a thing?

Random pairings - is this going to be a thing?

GM gmjlh
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Sep 23, 2017

We got some excitement in the world of chess on Friday! I was one of those who hadn't read the 2017 Chess.com Isle of Man regulations, and was taken aback by the announcement of Caruana-Kramnik as a 1st round pairing. Like most people, when f...

Hammer brings class to chess streaming

Hammer brings class to chess streaming

GM gmjlh
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Sep 15, 2015

I'm a newbie to the chess streaming scene - but having followed various Danny Rensch broadcasts for the last couple of years, I got an idea what it's about: It's who screams the loudest, makes the biggest mistakes, has the best trash-talk. Forge...

The toughest challenge

The toughest challenge

GM gmjlh
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Feb 5, 2013

There's a standard moment in most feel-good movies: At some point everything works out, and all your dreams come true. I kinda had that moment recently, when I was told the organizers of the NorwayChess tournament wanted me in it. In December, I ...

Staying sharp

Staying sharp

GM gmjlh
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Aug 17, 2012

My life changed drastically the fall of last year. I got accepted to Oslo City College - their bachelor's degree in journalism. All of a sudden, going to tournaments had to become rare - so I got a problem: How would I get to play as much chess as...

Elusive secrets of success

Elusive secrets of success

GM gmjlh
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Aug 7, 2012

People often ask me how they can become better chess players. I tell them it's important to play a lot (for instance on chess.com's live server!) and read chess books - simply enjoy working on your chess.But I find my answer to be very superficial...

A queenside sacrifice to beat the King’s Indian

A queenside sacrifice to beat the King’s Indian

GM gmjlh
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Jul 1, 2012

The King’s Indian is one of the most complicated openings in chess. White focuses his attention on the queenside, trying to advance his pawns and create dangerous outposts for his pieces. Black on the other hand tries the exactly same thing – but...

The Importance of Swift Redemption

The Importance of Swift Redemption

GM gmjlh
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Jun 13, 2012

In the recently concluded World Championship match, there was one moment more important than the others: Game number 8, in which the eventual winner Anand won a quick victory. In post-match interviews, Anand credited that game as the most importa...

Work and Play

Work and Play

GM gmjlh
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May 6, 2012

For many people, chess is work. It's what they do. There's pressure to perform your very best - always. Otherwise you'd be letting yourself down. And there's no tougher judge than yourself. At least I know I'm really hard on myself for losses.But ...

Rocking live chess

Rocking live chess

GM gmjlh
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Mar 31, 2012

You sit there with tension in your shoulders, an intense glare and focus on what you are doing. Your opponent made an unexpected series of moves, and you realize you're lost. You'd love to get a break - take a timeout, but your opponent strikes yo...

Visiting St. Louis

Visiting St. Louis

GM gmjlh
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Aug 28, 2011

Read this and other entertaining stories at my blog, www.gmhammer.wordpress.com/blog. Right after I had attended an event in Dubai, I got on a plane headed for London Heathrow. My ultimate goal was St. Louis, Missouri, and the US Chess Championsh...

The Truth About Magnus: MC2460!

The Truth About Magnus: MC2460!

GM gmjlh
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Apr 1, 2011

Though nothing disappoints me more than to reveal the devastating, and perhaps career threatening, secrets of my fellow countryman Magnus Carlsen, the time has come to clean out my closets. When Magnus Carlsen told me last week that he plans to ...

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