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Seattle Sluggers Fill Up On Blitz Specialists

Seattle Sluggers Fill Up On Blitz Specialists

Jan 4, 2017, 3:30 PM 0

The Seattle Sluggers are a speedy and tactically aware team. With four grandmasters and a host of lower-board talent, they are capable of quick knockouts in what is shaping up to be one of the toughest divisions, the RED Division.

The first thing you'll see with the Seattle Sluggers is the four grandmasters they have recruited to hold down their top four boards. GM Gabriel Sagrissian is rated 2670 and is one of the stronger grandmasters playing in the PRO Chess League. Sargissian's style is more that of a strangler than a slugger. He has wins against many super-grandmasters with incredible positional squeezes. Here he outplays GM Yu Yangyi with a classic execution on the open file.

Behind Sargissian is GM Tigran Petrosian. He is sure to be familiar to Chess.com viewers from his victorious qualification and ensuing Blitz Battle with Magnus Carlsen. Many were surprised by Petrosian's qualification, but those in the know were not, citing his blitz renown online. If Petrosian's rapid skills are on par with his blitz skills than he may provide super-grandmaster skills at a significant rating discount.

GMs Giorgi Margvelashvili and Viktor Mikhalevski round out the grandmaster contingent. Mikhalevski is sure to be one of the most fun grandmasters to watch. His best games collection is simply packed with beautiful sacrificial and adventurous play. Here he is playing the role of a trickster.

IM Georgi Orlov, FMs Roland Feng and Bryce Tiglon, and NMs Kyle Haining, Daniel He, and Anthony He round out the team, providing excellent roster flexibility to this powerhouse of a squad. They are all sure to be contributors. We are particularly eager to witness the talent of Feng, who has many scholastic credits to his name, but tho one that may be most relevant to the PRO Chess League is his two Washington state blitz championships, won while in middle school!

Roland was also Washington's youngest-ever National Master until his teammate, Anthony He, broke his record, achieving the title at the age of 11 years, 3 months, and 20 days.

The PRO Chess League welcomes the Seattle Sluggers!

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