PRO Chess League Dream Team

PRO Chess League Dream Team

IM dpruess

If you could pick any 4 players from the current PRO Chess League season, and put them together on a legal (2500) lineup, what is the strongest team you could make? What would be the Dream Team that could 90% defeat the Gnomes, Snowballs, Chessbrahs, and Archbishops?

I'm curious what you think. Below, I'm putting forward 5 squads that I thought of. To do so, I relied on the [admittedly inexact] data from this article:

Imperfect, because there are a few missing games, and because I've also discovered that some players performance ratings have been lowered by wins against lower-rated players. In other words, if you left out all of Wesley So's wins against board 4s, his performance rating would be 10 or 20 points higher. But it would be some agonizing work to clean this data up for all the top players, so I'm going with the data I have.

In figuring what would be the best squad, I'm using the 2017 PRO League performance rating average of the four players.

Team 1 Rating Perf
Li Chao 2700 2877
So, Wesley 2700 2842
Nico, Zwirs 2368 2576
De Vreesse 2229 2428
Team average 2499.25 2680.75

Li and Wesley are a good start to any team  :-P

Team 2 Rating Perf
Li Chao 2700 2877
Wesley So 2700 2842
Ghasi, A 2455 2637
Rosenthal, N 2136 2341
Team average 2497.75 2674.25

Here you could up the average performance rating by 9 points by playing Alexandre Bacrot in place of Nicholas Rosenthal, but I'm going with the player who has shown his performance over twice as many games, and stronger opposition. Especially with a board 4, it's harder to keep up a performance over many games against stronger opposition.

Team 3 Rating Perf
Li Chao 2700 2877
Wesley So 2700 2842
Dhulipalla, B 2327 2541
Francisco, R 2271 2461
Team average 2499.5 2680.5

A lot of people will not be aware of these boards 3 and 4, but they have played a bunch of games, and my math claims this team would be insane!

Team 4 Rating Perf
Li Chao 2700 2877
Noritskyn, N 2479 2608
Ghasi, A 2455 2637
Nico, Z 2368 2576
Team average 2499.75 2674.5

The opposite of sacrificing board 4! You could substitute Wesley So for Li Chao, losing 9 points of team average performance rating, but getting a player who has shown that performance over twice as many games. I'd probably take Wesley now that I think about it.

Team 5 Rating Perf
Li Chao 2700 2877
Jones, G 2665 2778
Dhulipalla, B 2327 2541
Perez, F 2298 2518
Team average 2497.5 2678.5

2500+ on board 4 (better than the average for the league), and still 2750+ on the top 2. Of note that Gawain Jones had some incredibly clutch playoff performances for his team.

Let me know what you think in the comments :-)

This process also sparked some speculation about the MVP question-- we notice a few of the same faces popping up in Dream Team after Dream Team: Li Chao, Wesley So, Dhulipalla. I would imagine they are in contention for MVP.