Monday, October 16 IM Valeri Lilov The Power of Center (strategy, middlegame)
The center is the most important area of the board in chess. Controlling it means improving your piece effectiveness and speeding up while attacking. Learn how to do so in IM Lilov’s instructive video!
Tuesday, October 17 IM Bill Paschall The Rise of the Italian Game, Part 4 (opening, strategy)
In part 4 we see a top battle where White essays the topical a4 idea and Black reacts with a5….rather than the standard a6 rejoinder. Aronian plays very aggressively and riskily with 7…d5, forcing white to abandon his strong point on e4. White later gains the bishop pair, but Black’s mobile center provides him with compensation. The jury is not yet out on the topical variation featured in this recent game.
Wednesday, October 18 FM Dennis Monokroussos Crushing the Modern (tactics)
In this battle of teenagers, White takes on “Tiger’s” Modern and plays to crush it. Black could have survived, so the opening isn’t refuted, but he was under incredible pressure early on, and despite being a strong grandmaster he was helpless against White’s sacrificial deluge. White win a gorgeous game
Thursday, October 19 GM Leonid Kritz A Crazy Game by “Crazy” Super-GMs (tactics, endgame)
A very interesting game in which Aronian presented an outstanding idea to develop his rook via h4 by move number 10! Many tactical and non-standard variations here, but unfortunately Nepo steered into an unhappy endgame way too early.
Friday, October 20 IM David Vigorito A Simple Twist on Well Known Line in the King’s Indian (opening, middlegame)
In this game I face my old teammate from the US Chess League, Sam Shankland, now one of the top players in the US. We follow a game Carlsen-Radjabov, but Sam surprises me…by simply castling. I still managed to equalize the game, but then I gradually get outplayed in a somewhat sloppy game. Still, the game shows that if you trust your openings you can deal with surprises, even against top players.
Monday, October 9 IM Valeri Lilov The Power of Piece Activity (strategy, middlegame)
Piece activity has always been a challenging concept to most intermediate chess players. In his new lecture, IM Lilov presents an instructive game to show the subtleties of coming up with a flexible pawn structure and strong piece activity.
Tuesday, October 10 IM Bill Paschall A New Idea for Black in the Grunfeld Stockholm Variation, Part 1 (opening, strategy)
A fascinating new line with 4…c5 has appeared in recent grandmaster practice in the Stockholm variation of the Grunfeld. This new line is a revolutionary and aggressive idea which creates many new ideas and possibilities for both sides in this important variation. In part 1 we see Ponkratov’s approach with the positional continuation 6.Nxd5, which keeps white’s pawn structure intact.
Wednesday, October 11 FM Dennis Monokroussos Disenchantment in the Opening: The Unromantic Evans Gambit (opening, tactics)
When we think of the Evans Gambit, we generally think of 19th century brilliancies. Or maybe if we’re of a more modern bent, then of Kasparov’s nice wins with it 1995. But while it’s easy to be enchanted by such brilliancies and want to go out and create our own, the reality is somewhat more harsh. If Black has spent a few minutes with a computer or at least checking the database, the resulting positions are far less glamorous, and it isn’t even clear who is going to have the harder time proving equality. In this game, Artur Kogan refused to go into one of the more modest variations, preferring to attack at any cost. In this game, “any cost” meant getting mated by move 20, so beware, gambiteer!
Thursday, October 12 GM Eugene Perelshteyn Instructive Way to Handle e5 Push in the Accelerated Dragon (opening, strategy, tactics)
How does Black handle the typical e4-e5 push by White in the Accelerated Dragon? Watch this video to find out and learn the key concepts. In additional, watch and learn how Black increased his advantage with simple improving moves. Try to find nice tactics as well!
Friday, October 13 GM Bryan Smith A Complex Struggle in the Berlin Endgame (endgame)
A paradoxical positional decision by White in the Berlin endgame shows a recent development in humanity’s understanding of this mysterious variation.
Monday, October 2 IM Valeri Lilov Kramnik’s Positional Masterpiece (strategy)
The positional era of chess started in the early 20th century and soon became the most important era in chess. One of the greatest chess players, Vladimir Kramnik, showed this once again in his latest masterpiece against a strong chess master.
Tuesday, October 3 IM Bill Paschall Petrosian on the King’s Indian Attack, Part 7 (openings, strategy)
Petrosian gives a master class on positional play. White gains an advantage in development and coordination and never looks back.
Wednesday, October 4 FM Dennis Monokroussos Disenchantment in the Opening: The End of 3…b5 in the QGA? (openings)
In chess and elsewhere, it sometimes turns out that a clever and beautiful idea has a fatal flaw. Finding the flaw may not be easy, but once it’s spotted the idea must be retired. This may be the case for the line 1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.e4 b5, intending an exchange sacrifice. It has been trendy since 2014, but this game, along with the companion game Huschenbeth-Haast, may have put it out of business.
Thursday, October 5 GM Leonid Kritz How to Play Against 5.Bf4 in the Queen’s Gambit Declined (openings)
In this game, Nakamura shows a very solid way how to kill White’s opening play in the Queen’s Gambit Declined with 5.Bf4. He easily equalizes the position, and only a tactical miscalculation allows white to get a full point.
Friday, October 6 GM Eugene Perelshteyn Carlsen’s Surprising a-pawn Push Eliminates Dreev from World Cup! (openings, strategy, tactics)
World Champion Magnus Carlsen never fails to surprise us! In this game he plays a4-a5-a6 and wins easily, eliminating an experienced GM Dreev from the FIDE World Cup. Learn how to play like the World Champ!
Monday, September 25 IM Valeri Lilov Fischer’s Teenage Mastery (opening)
Bobby Fischer is hands down the most popular world champion in history. His ability to defeat the unbeatable Soviet grandmasters in the 70s, as well as his dominative play brought some of the best classical games we can learn from today. What was Bobby when he was still young before he became the legendary champion? Did he play positional chess or more tactically? IM Valeri Lilov will show you one of Bobby’s most memorable games in this lecture. Don’t miss it out!
Tuesday, September 26 IM Bill Paschall The Rise of the Italian Game, Part 3 (opening, strategy)
Carlsen plays the Giuoco with an early a4 and the plan of Na3-c2, a relatively new idea in this opening. White also gains a spacial advantage with a4 – a5 and in the center gains control with d3-d4. White achieves virtual zugzwang in the endgame and Black is forced to lose material as White’s pieces are too dominant.
Wednesday, September 27 FM Dennis Monokrousos No Draws With the Petroff (opening, tactics)
Description: It wasn’t that long ago Petroff’s Defense was the scourge of 1.e4 players, at least at the professional level, and indirectly one for the chess fans who watched them. Now it’s the Berlin that has taken the palm, and which has sent the world’s elite scurrying off to the Italian Game. But that’s the subject for another day. The Petroff still has its loyal advocates, especially in China, but if White finds more brilliant ideas like the one Nepomniachtchi did in this game they may join the rest of the worldwide exodus to the Berlin. Nepo’s prep was fantastic, and he won a beautiful game as a result. Enjoy it in its own right, and as a weapon in the anti-Petroff arsenal.
Thursday, September 28 IM David Vigorito The Dzindzi Indian Repertoire V (opening, endgame)
We continue looking at the famed Dzindzi-Indian by examining a straightforward fianchetto for White that I dug out of my archives. This is a decent idea, but White must be accurate. In this game, White tried to play it safe rather than fighting for the initiative, and he ends up in a worse endgame.
Friday, September 29 GM Bryan Smith Coffeehouse Chess, Part 10 (tactics)
In the latest edition of ‘Coffeehouse Chess’, GM Bryan Smith shows a spectacular game played between GMs Alexander Shabalov and Alex Lenderman, which showcases Shabalov’s tactical genius.
Monday, September 18 IM Valeri Lilov Importance of Center and Space (strategy)
In a recent tournament game, the Dutch Grandmaster Erwin L’ami proved how to effectively combine the two most important concepts in strategy: Center and Space. Tune in to IM Lilov’s lecture to learn more!
Tuesday, September 19 IM Bill Paschall Petrosian on the King’s Indian Attack, Part 6 (openings, strategy)
Black plays passively against the KIA and White gains a serious space advantage on the kingside. White exploits the weak dark squares in the position and attempts to then gain a spacial advantage on both sides. Petrosian then breaks through decisively with a temporary piece sacrifice and a powerful king.
Wednesday, September 20 FM Dennis Monokroussos Breaching the Gates of the Vienna Variation (tactics)
The Vienna Variation is one of the sharpest options available to Black against 1.d4, and when Black plays sharply it’s especially important to be precise – one mistake can be fatal. That’s what happened in this 2016 game. White gambited a pawn and then a piece for two pawns for a very dangerous attack. Black had one way to survive, but to find it and work it out over the board (rather than on one’s engine in the comfort of one’s study) was asking a bit too much of Black. She didn’t manage it, and lost a very nice game.
Thursday, September 21 GM Leonid Kritz An Unusual Najdorf Line (openings, strategy)
Great game by Hou Yifan, who strategically outplays Navara without giving him a chance. She introduces an interesting opening construction with a long (queenside) castle where you would not think it makes sense, but at the end of the day her plan completely pays off.
Friday, September 22 GM Eugene Perelshteyn The Power of the Attacking Knight Outpost (strategy, tactics)
We all know that rook is better than a knight. But never underestimate the power of the attacking outpost! In this game, White shows how a knight can dominate a rook. Watch and learn and try to find a nice bonus tactic in the end!