Canty Conquers Trash-Talking Trent

Canty Conquers Trash-Talking Trent

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FM James Canty III conquered IM Lawrence Trent in the semifinals of the 2022 IM Not A GM Speed Chess Championship presented by on Friday. It was a clash of two giants of competitive spirit over the board and beyond where Canty's tactical abilities and speed chess confidence eventually shut down Trent's bold banter and continuous comeback attempts.

The next IMSCC match is the final between Canty and IM Eric Rosen, date and time TBD.

How to watch?
You can watch the 2022 IM Not A GM Speed Chess Championship on You can also enjoy the show on our Twitch channel and catch all our live broadcasts on The games can also be followed from our Events Page.

Live broadcast of the match, hosted by GM Jeffery Xiong and IM Levy Rozman.

Blitz 5|1: Trent 2.5-5.5 Canty

For Trent vs. Canty, the mind games began long before the players made any chess moves. Hours before the match, Trent posted on Twitter, saying: "I've got to hand it to you, James. You've done really well to get this far. Great performance... But your journey stops here.

 Great performance... But your journey stops here.

-Trent's pre-match banter to Canty

Trent's bold words set the tone for the fierce duel ahead, and game one gave us a preview of the explosive clashes to come between these two creative, fighting styles.

Canty gained an early advantage, crashing through on Trent's kingside. Trent responded practically, keeping his king in the center, allowing Canty to win pawns on the kingside, and building up his own counterattack on the queenside, creating an immensely double-edged position with both kings surrounded by enemy pieces.

When the game suddenly traded into an endgame and ended in a draw, commentator IM Levy Rozman exclaimed: "What just happened?"

In game two, Trent scored the first victory of the match by discovering a unique way of trapping Canty's rook, a stunning shot that used Black's own side of the board against him.

Canty struck back with a shocking first win the next game, coming back from being down a queen after Trent promoted first but overlooked checkmate.

Canty turned this into a three-game winning streak, capping it off with a victory in his signature tactical style.

Canty reached the 3+1 segment with a three-point lead. 

Blitz 3|1: Trent 5-3 Canty

Trent won a fairly convincing first game, hunting down several of Canty's queenside pawns and promoting in the middlegame.

Canty responded the next game by slicing through Trent's kingside.

In game four, a couple of unfortunate moves greatly turned the tables against Trent. He overlooked a double attack and then mouse slipped when trying to recapture a bishop, immediately turning an equal position into a losing one.

Likely tilted from the game before, Trent blundered in the next. Despite this, Trent continued to fight, narrowing Canty's lead with a three-game winning streak, including a tactical victory in the last game of the segment. 

With this, Trent came back from an earlier four-point deficit to enter the 1+1 bullet segment only down one point.

Bullet 1|1: Trent 4-6 Canty

Trent's comeback continued as the bullet games started, capped off with a victory in game two, which commentator GM Jeffery Xiong described as "too chaotic, even for bullet."

With this win, Trent tied the score for the first time since the 5+1 portion! As Rozman declared: “It’s a new match with 17 minutes on the clock!"

It’s a new match with 17 minutes on the clock!

-Levy Rozman

The next game was the most fascinating of the segment. Canty promoted an extra queen but Trent nearly survived by hiding his centralized king around his pawns and knight.

When Trent dropped a knight in a winning position in game six, he had three must-win games ahead to stay in contention. 

Trent won one game, but in the next, Canty sealed the match victory with a clean win in a triple minor piece ending. 

The key to Canty's victory was his creative and astute tactical abilities in fast time controls. 

In the players' interview, Canty shared his reaction to his opponent's pre-match tweet as Trent laughed in amusement: “He posted it while I’m at the gym in the middle of doing some leg extensions—mid-leg extensions! I see it, and I’m like, ‘Wow, oh that’s how it is.’ So I had to hurry and get out of the gym. He cut my gym time short, so I was already mad. I couldn’t get him out of my head, honestly.”

He cut my gym time short, so I was already mad.

-James Canty III

Canty earned $778.85 in prize money for his victory while Trent took home $221.15 for his efforts.

Canty also shared his thoughts on his upcoming finals match against IM Eric Rosen: "He's going to be all nice and cute. That's how he gets you. You think he's all nice and 'oh no, my queen,' and then he destroys you... I see past it. It's not happening."

I see past it. It's not happening.

-Canty on the antics of his upcoming opponent, Rosen

All Games - Quarterfinal

IM Speed Chess Championship 2022 Bracket


The IM Not A GM Speed Chess Championship (IMSCC) is an online tournament where some of the world's strongest IMs and other invited players compete in a series of speed chess matches. Each match consists of a 5+1 blitz segment, a 3+1 blitz section, and a 1+1 bullet portion, and the player who scores the most points wins the match. In the event of a tie, players play a four-game 1+1 match to decide the winner. If the tie persists, an armageddon game with a bidding system decides the winner.

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