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Best Games of 2017
Compiled by tpstar

The Best Games of 2017 contest was held on the bgitw chessforum in January 2018. Voting operated under the standard rules; kibitzers could select up to ten database games in order. Ten points were awarded for a #1 choice, nine points for #2, eight points for #3, and so on down to #10 which earned one point. Games required at least two nominations to make the final list. After all of the votes were tabulated, this Game Collection will stand as our choices for the Best Games of 2017.

Game of the Year honors went to former World Champion Viswanathan Anand for his sparkling win over Fabiano Caruana ending with a creative cross-pin and Pawn promotion motif. Ding Liren finished Second with a sharp Queen sacrifice against Jinshi Bai, then every Black piece attacked the White King. Levon Aronian was Third defeating World Champion Magnus Carlsen with an exchange sacrifice followed by attacking a weak square complex. Vladimir Kramnik placed two games in the Top Ten: a brilliant Rook sacrifice for three connected passed Pawns on the Queenside against Pentala Harikrishna at #4, and two exchange sacrifices to beat Matthias Bluebaum at #10. Three games tied for Fifth: Yifan Hou sacrificing her Queen for two pieces against Borya Ider, Bu Xiangzhi upsetting Carlsen at the World Cup, and AlphaZero over Stockfish grinding out a won endgame (the first computer contest to ever make the Best Games list). Wesley So finished at #8 (or #6, depending how you view it) with a nice sacrificial win against Jeffery Xiong during the U.S. Championship. Chinese prodigy Wei Yi was #9 with a quick Sicilian Poisoned Pawn crush over Yinglun Xu, and Russia's Ian Nepomniachtchi came in at #10 overcoming Li Chao with an inspired Kingside attack after a Bishop sacrifice.

14 voters nominated 88 games.

1) I Think It's Your English (54 points)
Anand vs Caruana, 2017 
(A29) English, Four Knights, Kingside Fianchetto, 29 moves, 1-0

2) Redlining (41 points)
J Bai vs Ding Liren, 2017 
(E21) Nimzo-Indian, Three Knights, 32 moves, 0-1

3) Levitra (31 points)
Aronian vs Carlsen, 2017 
(D45) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 35 moves, 1-0

4) Rook Out! (28 points)
Kramnik vs Harikrishna, 2017 
(C78) Ruy Lopez, 42 moves, 1-0

5) Private Ider-Hou (20 points)
B Ider vs Yifan Hou, 2017 
(A47) Queen's Indian, 52 moves, 0-1

5) Electric Bu (20 points)
Carlsen vs Bu Xiangzhi, 2017 
(C55) Two Knights Defense, 36 moves, 0-1

5) You Can Call Me Alpha (20 points)
AlphaZero vs Stockfish, 2017 
(C11) French, 52 moves, 1-0

8) Wes Side Story (19 points)
Xiong vs So, 2017 
(E06) Catalan, Closed, 5.Nf3, 31 moves, 0-1

9) The Royal Wei (13 points)
Wei Yi vs Yinglun Xu, 2017 
(B94) Sicilian, Najdorf, 21 moves, 1-0

10) Nepo Man (11 points)
Nepomniachtchi vs Li Chao, 2017 
(C42) Petrov Defense, 29 moves, 1-0

10) Krambake (11 points)
Kramnik vs Bluebaum, 2017 
(A06) Reti Opening, 35 moves, 1-0

11 games

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