Chess.com USCF Online Blitz rated tournament decent result

It says 22 players, but that doesn't include the 12 who dropped out.

I got as high as 1888 blitz rating points before I lost to a lower rated player knocking me down around 30 points.  Overall I had a net gain of 6 points.

It sure would be nice to break 1900.


Stockfish 10 vs. Stockfish 9

When Stockfish 9 came out, I did a speed chess round robin between Stockfish versions 6, 7, 8, and 9, and all the games were draws except for the games played by Stockfish 9, which won all its games against the older versions of the engines.  That is a significant difference.

I analyzed one position with Stockfish 9 and the new version 10 running at the same time.   After 5 minutes, Stockfish 10 was thinking 1 ply deeper in the same position..  Is that significant?   Probably.  For most positions the engines would be very similar, but being able to think half a move deeper than your opponent usually makes you unbeatable, because you already see all the variations that your opponent is going to think about.

Both programs ran at roughly the same number of nodes per second.  Given that this is a 27-28 ply search, achieving 1 ply deeper probably means that 10 has to eliminate about 3% of the variations that 9 looks at, by my calculation.  This could also mean that 10 has a weakness that 9 doesn't.  Or this could mean that 10 has a better evaluation function, leading to more variations being eliminated.


Third Place in the USCF Online rated speed tournament was a surprise.

There were some higher rated players who dropped out before the final round, probably because they lost to the top player with the monster rating.   It says "17 players", but that doesn't include the 18 who dropped out before the final round.

I had a couple of games that I really should have lost, but won anyway.  I made many errors, but so did my opponents.  This happens sometimes in speed chess.  My last round opponent literally had me in a mating net and threw it away.


USCF Online Quick rated ICC tournament. I'll take what I can get.

>   4.5 john2001plus
>   4.0 jyokela
>   3.5 mrneale buglet
>   3.0 IAlwaysWin aslan777
>   2.5 weakfish BIRDSMAN
>   2.0 getRooked chessnvd saikolli
>   1.5 Acheyos
>   1.0 LarryDavidson55
>   0.0 Celtruler
>    __________  __  ______  _   __________  __   ____ _    ____________
>   /_  __/ __ \/ / / / __ \/ | / / ____/\ \/ /  / __ \ |  / / ____/ __ \
>    / / / / / / / / / /_/ /  |/ / __/    \  /  / / / / | / / __/ / /_/ /
>   / / / /_/ / /_/ / _  _/ /|  / /___    / /  / /_/ /| |/ / /___/ _  _/ 
>  /_/  \____/\____/_/ |_/_/ |_/_____/   /_/   \____/ |___/_____/_/ |_|
>    Congratulations john2001plus and Thanks to all :-)

The only really challenge was against IAlwaysWin who is a USCF 2100+ rated Expert.

[Event "ICC tourney 1543 (12 3)"]
[Site "Internet Chess Club"]
[Date "2018.11.17"]
[Round "4"]
[White "IAlwaysWin"]
[Black "john2001plus"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ICCResult "White forfeits on time"]
[WhiteElo "1732"]
[BlackElo "1731"]
[Opening "RĂ©ti opening"]
[ECO "A05"]
[NIC "QP.11"]
[Time "18:17:49"]
[TimeControl "720+3"]

1. Nf3 Nf6 2. e3 e6 3. b3 b6 4. Bb2 Bb7 5. c4 c5 6. Be2 Nc6 7. O-O Be7 8.
Nc3 O-O 9. d3 d5 10. Rc1 d4 11. exd4 cxd4 12. Nb5 e5 13. Nd2 a6 14. Na3 Nd7
15. Bf3 Nc5 16. Qe2 Nb4 17. Bxb7 Nxb7 18. Nf3 Nxa2 19. Ra1 Nc3 20. Bxc3 dxc3
21. Nxe5 Bxa3 22. Rxa3 Qd6 23. Raa1 Rfe8 24. f4 f6 25. Qf3 Nc5 26. Nc6 Nxb3
27. Rae1 Nd2 28. Ne7+ Kf8 29. Qh5 Nxf1 30. Qxh7 Qd4+ 31. Kh1 Rxe7 32. Qh8+
Kf7 33. Qh5+ Kg8 34. Rxe7 Rf8 35. Qg6 f5 36. Re8 Qf6 {White forfeits on
time} 0-1  

Position from last night

This is not the most deep position in the world, because White is already winning, but I think that the method that I used to finish the game is somewhat interesting.


Eric Schiller Dies at 63: "Will be Remembered for His Love of Chess" - US Chess

I met this guy at the National Open around nine years ago.  Compared to other professionals he was extremely nice.  He briefly looked at one of my games and recommended a chess book. 



[Event "Casual blitz"]
[Site "Kroger"]
[Date "Oct 29, 2018"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Steve Sims"]
[Black "John Coffey"]
[Result "0-1"]

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Bg5 Bb4 5. e5 h6 6. Bd2 Bxc3 7. bxc3 Ne4 8. Qg4
g6 9. h4 h5 10. Qf3 c5 11. Bd3 Nxd2 12. Kxd2 c4 13. Be2 Nd7 14. Nh3 f5 15. Nf4
Nf8 16. Rab1 Qe7 17. Rh3 Kf7 18. Rg3 b6 19. Bxc4 Bb7 20. Bd3 Rc8 21. Nh3 Nh7
22. Rxg6 Kxg6 23. g4 hxg4 24. Qxg4+ Kf7 25. Bxf5 Rcg8 26. Qh5+ Kf8 27. Bg6 Nf6
28. Qf3 Rxh4 29. exf6 Qd6 30. Rg1 e5 31. Ng5 Rxg6


Tennison Gambit

Click here for 16... Kb8.
Click here for 16... Kb8.
Click here for 16... Kb8.
Click here for 16... Kb8.
Click here for 14... Bd3.
Click here for 16. Re1.
Click here for 16... Kb8.


Budapest Gambit


My best tournament result.

I didn't remember what year the tournament was, but I found it.  I got a draw against soon to be Grandmaster Igor Ivanov and came in second.

This was a time when I felt like studying tactics was really helping me.  Just looking at my rating progress, I went from 1800 even to 1927 in just 5 months, but it would take another 9.5 years before I would hit 2000!

There were a few other good results in recent years like ..

and getting the Expert trophy at the class championship a couple of times.   Of course, winning the senior championship 3 times didn't hurt either.



Carlsen's secrets: How does he do it?

"There is an equal position on the board, and the opponent thinks: this is dead drawn. I can play almost anything and there is nothing he can do. But Magnus plays on, seeking complications, setting up threats. He is narrowing the margin required to hold the draw. Soon his opponent is thinking: why is he still playing – I can hold a draw with any of these three moves. Then: I can hold with this move and with this move. And then: I still have one clear way to hold a draw. And under the strain of constantly having to solve deep and complex problems, more often than not the opponent will crack. Magnus wins not because it was in the position, he wins because he is Magnus."


Facebook post from 2 years ago.

I have been playing chess seriously for 42 years, so in the 2016 Open Chess Championship when I play an 8 year old who plays almost as well as me, I get nervous. I am also amazed. I was playing 8 year old Luke Ye from Missouri.

There are some gaps in my chess opening knowledge, because chess is nearly infinite, and you can't know everything. Earlier in the week I tried to fix one of my gaps in my knowledge by studying a game played by world champion Magnus Carlsen in the French Defense. When I played the kid, he followed the world champion game closely, which by itself made me nervous, but he also started an attack against my kingside sooner than I expected. I was not quite prepared for this. Before the game I had asked Luke's dad if the kid had coaching, which he had, which means that some master or Grandmaster had taught him to play a certain way against the French Defense. I had the sense that the kid was following some sort of script by wrote, where he had been coached that if you put your pieces on specific squares then you can checkmate your opponent. Around move 15 he started an attack against my kingside and I spent over 20 moves defending. The kid was relentless. He just kept pursuing the idea of checkmating me on the kingside, somewhat to his detriment because it allowed me to be stronger on the queenside. I had my own plan, which took a long time to implement, but my plan was to weaken his pawn structure and trade the pieces down to an even king and rook endgame that was technically winning for me, which is what happened. I had figured that no matter how strong this prodigy might be, he wasn't going to be as strong as me in the endgame.

The two of us had spent spent about 75 minutes each on the first 25 moves. This is about the point that I felt that the game was turning in my favor, so I was able to move more quickly after that.

My opponent's 37nth move was a disaster. When I saw him reach for the pawn I thought "Don't do it!". He played such a good game up to that point, I didn't want to see him throw it all away on one bad move. I was winning anyway, but there was still a little bit of fight left in the game that would have been fun to play out. Instead he made a mistake and the game ended very quickly after that.

It is nice to win a game after a couple of tough losses. I now have 4.5 out of 8. At the very least I will finish the tournament with 4.5 out of 9. I don't think that the last round pairings will be kind to me; I will most likely play someone stronger than me, but I will give it my best effort. It would be very nice to get a draw or a win which would put me over 50%.

[Event "2016 US Open Chess Championship"]
[Site "Indianapolis Indiana"]
[Date "2016.08.07"]
[Round "8"]
[White "Ye, Luke"]
[Black "Coffey, John"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "C11"]
[WhiteElo "2012"]
[BlackElo "1741"]
[Annotator "Coffey,John"]
[EventRounds "9"]
[TimeControl "90+30"]

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. e5 Nfd7 5. f4 c5 6. Nf3
Nc6 7. Be3 Be7 8. Be2 O-O 9. Qd2 a6 10. O-O b5 11. Qe1 b4 12. Na4 cxd4 13. Nxd4 Nxd4 14. Bxd4 Bb7 15. Qg3 Qc7 16. Bd3 g6
(Better is 16... Bc6 but I was worried about... 17. f5 Bxa4 18. f6, but then black can play Nxf6 19. exf6 Qxg3 20. hxg3 gxf6 21. Bxf6 Bc5+ 22. Kh2 Bd6 which prevents Rf4. That would have been really hard to calculate out in the game.)
17.Qh3 (If 17. f5 exf5 18. Bxf5 Nc5 19. Nxc5 Bxc5) 17... Bc6 18. b3 Bxa4 19. bxa4 Bc5 20. Bxc5 Nxc5 21. Qh6 Nxd3 22. cxd3 Qc5+ 23. Kh1 Qd4 24. Rad1 Rac8 25.
Rf3 f6 26. Rg3 Rc7 27. Qh3 f5 28. Qh6 Qf2 29. Rg5 Rg7 30. Rg3 Rc8 31. Rg5 Qxf4 32. Rxg6 Qxh6 33. Rxh6 Rg6 34. Rxg6+ hxg6 35. Kg1 Rc2 36. Ra1 a5 37. a3 b3 38. Rb1 b2 39. Rf1 Rc1 0-1



This is subtle, but I like subtlety.  It is not a very hard position, but initially I had a hard time wrapping my head around why one move is better than the other.   However, it is all about tempos and weak pawns.


How To Learn a Chess Opening. IM Valeri Lilov

I watched this video live. You could make a drinking game, tea in my case, out of every time he says, "This is really important."

Seems to me that the video is light on content, but has a few useful ideas.