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Boris Gelfand vs Hikaru Nakamura
"I Am the One Who Naks" (game of the day Mar-14-2014)
World Team Championship (2010), Bursa TUR, rd 5, Jan-09
King's Indian Defense: Orthodox Variation. Modern System (E97)  ·  0-1


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Given 26 times; par: 33 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 8 OF 9 ·  Later Kibitzing>
May-11-11  bronkenstein: <McClain recommends this as one of the best games of 2010 in his January 2, 2011 NY Times chess column.>

I dont believe that Gelfand would agree , his POW is prolly closer to ´What a blunderfest junk ! Damn kid blitzed me out!´ :)

Jun-16-11  DrMAL: I think this game was one of the best of 2010. 21.d6 tries to improve over 21.Bg1 at some risk, and 22...Nh4 (instead of 22...gxh2 or 22...h4) is an even riskier counter to sac on g2. At this point 23.hxg3 limits black to 23...fxg3 where 24.Be3 afterwards gets some advantage for white. Like many times in chess the threat of a sac is met by "be my guest" and 23.Re1 white's second best move invites it.

However, instead of playing mandatory 24.Kxg2 for some small advantage, white gets greedy with 24.dxc7 a losing mistake (24.hxg3 also loses). Black's advance on white's king is simply much more meaningful than material gain.

25.Bxb6 is slightly better than 25.Qxe1 but this does not matter, it is all over in the hands of Nakamura who brilliantly plays the absolute best move from then on. The game is very instructive for lower level players as well as for Gelfand!

Jun-16-11  sevenseaman: Amazing good play by Naka. Naka - Carlsen is coming up in the Bazna Kings tournament. If Naka can come up with something similar to what he cameoed in this game, he has a chance.
Jun-21-11  DrMAL: Seems Naka got a bit overly ambitious and imprudent in the game he lost. Great play by Carlsen, exciting chess! :-)
Premium Chessgames Member
  piltdown man: A Grandmasterly performance.
Jul-16-11  qqdos: The position after Naka played 19...g3 - Isn't that a sight to gladden the heart (for sore eyes) of the most ardent KID addict. Those menacing K-side pawns with lurking Knights, Queen, KR and QB all lined up for the attack! What more could you ask? Who agrees that the WK is irredeemably vulnerable here.
Jul-18-11  qqdos: <DrMAL> I agree that 21.Bg1 is safer (and better?!) than 21.d6. When Gelfand did play 22.Bg1 Nh4! may have unnerved him, then 23.Re1 Nxg2! provoked the losing move 24.dxc7?? <Gilmoy's> comments are spot on. Naka (win, lose or draw) certainly gives outstanding value in the KID - see, also in this line, his "overly ambitious" 2009 victory against Beliavsky, Amsterdam (Rising Stars).
Jul-19-11  DrMAL: I think it's worth mentioning how little this opening variation has been explored and how many different good possibilities there are. Top GMs often follow their own chosen variations for awhile, making innovations as they get popular and others tend to imitate them, usually quite blindly.

For example, on move 11 for black, the CG database has only 84 games. 64 of these choose 11...Nf6 which, after 10...f5 seems consistent and has produced OK results statistically. Yet, there are many choices here and the top engine does not even evaluate it within best 8 after 39 billion positions are computed:

Houdini_15a_x64: 24/67 3:00:38 39,009,128,577
-0.29 11. ... a5 12.cxd6 Nxd6 13.b5 Bd7
-0.33 11. ... Bh6 12.Rb1 a6 13.Nc4 Bxc1
-0.36 11. ... fxe4 12.Ndxe4 Nf6 13.Nxf6+ Bxf6
-0.40 11. ... Kh8 12.f3 a5 13.bxa5 dxc5
-0.40 11. ... b6 12.f3 a5 13.cxd6 Nxd6
-0.42 11. ... h6 12.f3 fxe4 13.fxe4 Rxf1+
-0.43 11. ... Bd7 12.Rb1 fxe4 13.Ndxe4 Nf5
-0.47 11. ... Rf7 12.f3 c6 13.Nc4 cxd5

Interesting how 11...Kh8 second most popular is in here but another choice that may also look promising 11...f4 is not either. Good reason to be creative instead of merely following top GMs. It seems the position is best served by some prophylaxis.

This game follows the line most popular among top GMs today, until move 16, where H-bomb chooses the second most popular move 16...dxc5 with only four other games in the GC database (nine for 16...Bf8 and one for 16...Ne8). For grins, I checked with Houdini which evaluates 16...Bf8 and 16...dxc5 at around -0.7 and 16...Ne8 at around -0.9 as the three best for black all with fairly solid advantage to white.

Both players focus consistently on their plans and white remains ahead. 23.hxg3 would have maintained this but 23.Re1 was played now the game is even. I kibitzed about the rest.

<qqdos> I agree about Gelfand reacting, but doubt he saw all the ramifications of 24.dxc7 or he would not have played it. As far as "the WK is irredeemably vulnerable" after 19...g3 I disagree. White is still ahead here. Even after his mistake 23.Re1 the game still evaluates after 24.Kxg2 as equal. Of course, it's a LOT easier with no clock running, no crowd watching and a computer to bring in for help LOL.

Oct-31-11  KingsGambit73: @elohah,

this is certainly not rubbish. Even computers nowadays fail to understand kings indian structures completely.

After 24. Kxg2? Rg7 25. dxc7 Qe7 and black is better.

Mar-19-12  Kinghunt: I've done quite a bit of analysis on this game, and I have to say, I think Nakamura's sac is actually sound. I've seen a lot of posts saying that Gelfand missed lines to refute it, but I challenge anyone to give a line yielding better than equality for white.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Ss17405168: What about 29.Nxb6?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Ss17405168: Nevermind, I got it. Tarrasch(Rybka)
explained it. 29.Nxb6 is answered by
29...Qxf3+. Sorry.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: Good thing Black's queen had the Gold Protection Package from Nakacare.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: I really like all black's zwischenzugs threatening mate on g2 while his queen hangs in the balance.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ajile: OK the pun is from Breaking Bad correct? Please tell me this is from the monster best ever in the history of television series.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: Yes, a very intense show. Here it is:
Mar-14-14  Chess for life: Yes, definitely Breaking Bad. Great pun.
Mar-14-14  notevenbad: Such a clever pun. For once i'm not dissapointed
Mar-14-14  RedShield: Another weak pun.
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: <RedShield> Thats an understatement: its not even a pun at all, just another infantile play on words
Mar-14-14  RedShield: You're wrong, bur let's agree on one thing: whoever submitted it is a silly motherpunster.
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: <RedShield> In my book, a pun is a 'play on words'; but a 'play on words' isn't necessarily a pun. Perhaps my standards are too high
Mar-14-14  RedShield: <The pun, also called paronomasia, is a form of word play that suggests two or more meanings, by exploiting multiple meanings of words, or of similar-sounding words, for an intended humorous or rhetorical effect.>

Naks for Nakamura and for knocks supplies the required two meanings. You, of course, believe that one of the meanings should have some logical connection to the actual game in question. Compare with this minor masterpiece: I Nyzhnyk vs A Graf, 2012

Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: <RedShield> 'Sinking of the Graf's play' is excellent since it "completes the loop" referencing back to the game and chess in general. "Naks" is missing this reference to chess and the actual game, and so lacking this foundation, flounders in the sea of childish 'play on words'
Mar-14-14  Ratt Boy: It's a very clever pun.

Strained, butt clever.

As for Naka's game? I was just playing it through superficially, and was stunned by 24…♘xe1. I exclaimed, "Whaaat?" and my wife came running. She was disappointed that it was "just" a chess game (like there would ever be something more important).

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