Saturday, December 24, 2011

New Blog to Check Out: "On The Road to Chess Improvement"

Hello readers. My friend Kuberan Naganathan recently started a new blog: In the few posts he wrote so far, he shared a few of his recent games and his views regarding computers and cheating. I recommend you all check it out. 

Monday, December 19, 2011

2 Free Online Bob Weir Shows Wednesday Night!!!!

Good News! : I have the perfect way to celebrate the end of my exams tomorrow. On Wednesday night, Bob Weir and his trio "Scaring the Children",along with TRI, is doing two free shows at 6 and 9 PM:

Tune in Wednesday, December 21 at 6 PM and 9 PM PST for a special Psychedelic Christmas present from Bob Weir's trio "Scaring the Children" and TRI!

The show will be FREE, but you must sign up to be a member on our website. It will also require a promo code.

To watch the show, simply follow these steps.
-Click event Psychedelic Christmas
-Click "Buy Now"
-Enter promo code to keep event FREE:
jolly for 6pm
merry for 9pm
** Make sure you use these codes or you will be charged **
-Click Checkout
-Login or Sign up
-Go to your purchases to watch event.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Guns N' Roses to be inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!

It has been announced that the Guns N' Roses will be one of the 2012 inductees to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. While they aren't the most talented band, their stage presence is pretty amazing and they put on great shows. In 2006, I enjoyed seeing them with a few old friends at Madison Square Garden. 
Guns and Roses
Their fellow inductees, of less interest to me, will be  the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Beastie Boys and the Small Faces/Faces. 

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Another week, Another Pretty Good Outing at the Boylston: Back over 2200:)

Some of my greatest chess results have happened in my spur of the moment tournaments. Just the other night I was on the phone with my friend Rob Guevera, congratulating him on his recent tie for first at the National Chess Congress U 2200 section, and we talked about the fact that I haven't been playing as much recently. While my relative inactivity is due to tons of school work and the job search, we agreed that along with making  a tournament schedule in advance, it has likely made be more consistent as a chess player. Despite our agreement however, my body woke me up at 7:20 today just in time to run to the 7:51 commuter rail to make the Boylston on time for the 1st round of today's Quad.... While I didn't make too much progress on my papers, I played pretty well and jumped back over the magic 2200:)

For the second week in a a row, I played the infamous FM Chris Chase. I'm still in the clear (-) against Chase, but fortunately minimized that minus score by 1. In a Reti, I relatively easily equalized and successfully launched a quick attack which ended in him having to sacrifice his queen to avoid forced mate!
In the second round, I played Robert Perez, whom I have recently struggled against a few times at the Waltham Chess Club.. Fortunately, this time I did a little better drawing. However, white the white pieces and a relatively dry position from a closed position, there's nothing to ride home about, Anyways: here it is:
After chickening out for a quick draw in the last round, I let Perez get clear first in the quad 2.5/3. I finished with 2/3 and picked up 27 pts though... Ill take it.
In other interesting news, while I was waiting for the shuttle back to Brandeis I was amused to see that Occupy Harvard has caused the yard to be closed to the public: 

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Rabin' s Somewhat Sucessful Return to the Boylston Club

While I procrastinate a little more from all these final papers I have to write, I'll prove to my readers that this blog hasn't become a USCL predictions blog and that I haven't fell out of the blogosphere.

In other news, I played at the Boylston Sunday for the first time since the summer in the 2011 Greg Hager Memorial and tied for first with FM Christopher Chase. Other than our fought-out round 3 draw ( see below), we each beat three lower rated opponents. One notable player though was the fellow Brandeis King Killer Adam Grossack  who is severely underrated at 1175 and beat an 1800 in the first round. Most of you probably don't know he is a national bridge champion---- Skills will transfer over to chess!

Here's my madness (OK. not quite) against Chase. In short he played a sideline which led to a pretty level endgame early on. I played a little too passively and gave him a slightly better game but he never had any serious winning chances.

Play online chess

Friday, November 18, 2011

Rabin's Prognostics of The End of the End: The 2011 USCL Championship

As Mr.E predicted last Sunday, we shall see a NY-Chicago final! Surprisingly, Chicago did not bring out there monster GGGg 2500+ lineup. Furthermore, NY faced difficult missing almost 1/2 of their roster (Fedorowicz, Bodek, Williams and Gershenov) thanks to the World Youth and K-12 Nationals.  Thanks to Chicago however, JFern who technically isn't eligible to play, was agreed to be able to play..... Without further ado, lets answer the golden question: "Who shall the 2011 USCL Champions be?

Board 1: GM Mesgen Amanov vs GM Giorgi Kacheishvili:

Amanov has had a solid season all season long and has the white pieces. However, last week he faced a minor setback when he lost with the white pieces to Conrad Holt, showing he is isn't entirely invincible with white. Kacheishvili had been playing well too until he suffered two consecutive losses in the last week. However, with a nice rating edge and a dynamic style with the black pieces, I sense a victory for Kacheishvili in either a complicated Nimzo Indian.

Board 2: IM Irina Krush vs GM Dimitry Gurevich

Both  players have had high performance ratings this season and had a 66% score, despite the fact  Krush played 3 games, when Gurevich played 6. While Krush, has a miniscule rating edge, Gurevich's GM title definitely counts for something. I see Gurevich equalizing relatively easy and the game eventually ending in a peaceful draw.

Board 3: IM Angelo Young vs Matthew Herman

This game is a close call as a well established IM who has had a consistent season with a fantastic 5/6 score and 2624 performance rating faces a topsy-turvy player Herman who divides his time working hard at a hedgefund (, swindling 2300s to help qualify NY for the finals ( and tagging GMs left and right ( . While it depends what mode Herman is up to, Ill give Young the nod here to pull out a win, as he has the white pieces and will likely obtain a small edge and try to grind Herman down.

Board 4: John Fernandez vs Gopal Menon

NY's chances on this board largely depends on if Fernandez is in shape. With the exception of the Bermuda International this past February, he hasn't played a tournament since 2006, when he unfortunately beat your loyal blogger in a long theoretical battle at Steve Immit's somewhat ridiculous Insanity at NYs home-site the great Marshall Chess Club. For those crazy chess maniacs around the the NY area, this another one of those all-night chess fests coming up as we await 2012! Anyways back on track, I unfortunately have to predict Menon to win with a rating edge and more recent tournament experience.

Thus, to be objective, I unfortunately have to predict Chicago to win 2.5-1.5 and win the 2011 Championship. Come on Knights, please prove my prediction wrong!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The End is Looming: The 2011 USCL Semi Finals!!!!

The Subway Series: The Mighty Manhattan Applesauce vs the Nauseating New York Knights 
With last week's swindle against Boston, NY appropiatlely gets the quality of "nauseating"
GM Stripunsky- GM Kacheishvili 1/2-1/2 They drew three times in USCL history- why not again?!
IM Krush-Bartholomew 1-0 Krush drew two games thus far this season with black and shall prove her point with the white fellows!
FM Mandizha-"GM" Pressman 1-0 I hate to predict against the "gm" but with white, I forsee Mandizha increasing his mini winning streak to 3 games
Williams- Black 1-0 Two schoolmates who were mentioned together in the NY Times duke it out for what will likely decide which team will move on to the championship. With the white pieces and a more solid style, I'm gonna go with Williams winning.

and Krush and Williams will lead NY to a 2.5-1.5  victory!

The GGGg Dominating Chicago Blaze vs the Underdog LA Blaze
Too be honest, I think with draw odds, even LA's best lineup wouldn't be so great, but with this surprisingly u2400 line up,  I think LA's chances are grim.
GM Shulman- GM Khaciyan 1/2-1/2 I don't expect Shulman to push too hard due to match conditions
IM Amanov-GM Friedel 0-1 Close call as Amanov has an incredible 100% score with white but I predict he'll go a little too crazy here due to draw odds and Friedel will earn the full point
GM Gurevich-WGM Abrahmyan 1/2-1/2 similar logic to Shulman-Khaciyan
Lu-Schmakel 0-1 There's no stopping the "5-0 perfect" Schmakel!

and Chicago will win 3-1  too challenge NY in the Championship!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Who Shall Remain Supreme in the 2011 USCL Eastern Division?: Quarterfinals Edition

Okay...... My margins we're quite off last night. As a matter of fact I predicted both match points wrong but with my friend named "Draw Odds" I guessed the two teams who were fortunate enough to qualify for the semi-finals: the Chicago Blaze and LA Blaze. Game points wise I was at 4/8: 50%.

The Surprising Division Champs the Philly Inventors vs the Power Hungry Manhattan Applesauce
GM Panchanathan- GM Stripunsky 1/2-1/2 Its a hard call as Strip won with with black in week 9. However, numbers wise I don't think he'll lose again.
IM Bartholomew-FM Bartell 1-0 They drew their week 9 encounter.... This time with draw odds on the table, Bartholomew will be hungry for the point!
IM Bonin-FM Mandizha1/2-1/2 The Bone said it himself: he'll be fine with a draw!
Black-Fisher 0-1 There's no stopping Fisher's dominant (8.5/9) record... To boot, he also went 5-0 in last weekend's Eastern Team Championship

and a drawn match 2-2, will send Philly to its first semi-finals!

The Real Deal that is Bound to Send Criticism My Way:): The NY Knights vs the Bahstan Blitz 
 GM Kascheisvili-Sammour 1-0 Last time, Sammour pulled of an upset, but Georgi is still a favorite!
IM Catdog Esserman vs HOF Fedorowicz 1/2-1/2 another Morra declined shall lead to peace!
Herman-Martirosov 1/2-1/2 Herman is overall a stronger player than Martirosov but has some trouble against him (0-2 in the league)... Lets take baby steps to build back his score-- draw this time!
Krasik-Bodek 1-0 Krasik is angry he lost a dead-won game in their last encounter: Rematch time!

and another drawn match 2-2 sends NY to play Philly for a third time in 4 weeks!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Beginning of the End of the 2011 USCL Western Division: The Quarterfinals

The Back to GGGg Status Chicago Blaze take on the Challengers: The Dallas Destiny
GM Shulman- GM Chirila 1-0 Shulman's win against Molner last week shows he is serious business!
GM Sadorra- GM Friedel 0-1 At first I was going to say draw here, but with draw odds, Sadorra will push too hard.
GM Amanov-GM Holt 1/2-1/2  I'd give Amanov an edge but I don't think he'll push too hard after Holt equalizes
FM Xiong-Schmakel 0-1 There's no stopping the 4-0 Schmakel

3.5-.5 seems like too big of a margin... I'll take some moe and say Chicago will win 3-1!
( I made a small correction here as I meant to say Amanov would draw Holt)

The Other GGGg team the SF Mechanics Seek to Overcome LA Vibe's Draw Odds
GM Wolff-IM Matikozyan 1-0 Wolff is historically stronger with white and has a nice rating edge!
IM Amanov- GM Bhat 1-0 Both have had great seasons so far.... I'm gonna go with my first instincts and say Amanov will score an upset!
GM Kraai-IM Abrahamyan 1-0 GM Kraai will go for a slow positional grind.
Kavutskiy-Byambaa 1-0

thus, as the white pieces score 100%, a drawn match 2-2 will say good bye to SF's season

Monday, October 31, 2011

Who Shall Play Chicago in the Championship: The End of the 2011 Regular Season for the East

Tonight the Western playoffs were decided: Chicago, LA, SF and Dallas... However, too be honest as I claimed a few weeks ago, I honestly don't think any of them have a great chance against Chicago, assuming they will show off their dominating 2512 line up: Shulman/Friedel/Amanov/Schmakel throughout......... (That's my take- Please try to convince me otherwise!)

The New Joisy Knockouts Seek to Play Spoiler Again Against the Serious Business Bahstan Blitz 
GM Benjamin-GM Perelshteyn 1-0 was a toss-up to me between Benjamin winning and drawing and Perelyshteyn hasn't played much lately...
IM van de Mortel-GM Gulko 1/2-1/2
IM Kapengut-Krasik 1-0
Mosiyenko- Matlin 1-0
and NJ shall be a spoiler again! NJ Wins 2.5-1.5

My Chums the NY Knights Seek to Take Over the #1 Spot From the Impressive Philly Inventors
GM Charbonneau-GM Erenburg 1-0 a toss-up between two strong dynamic GMs but given Charb's impressive win against Akobian, I think he'll continue his winning ways!
FM Bartell-IM Krush 1/2-1/2 ( there won't be too many complications here- quiet queen-pawn opening)
Herman-IM Bonin 1/2-1/2
Fisher-Gershenov 1-0 (they drew two weeks ago but with the white pieces, Fisher should be a favorite: Prove me wrong Ben!)
and a Drawn Match 2-2 will give Philly the 2011 Eastern title

More Spoilers : the Carolina Cobras take on the Ever-so-solid Manhattan Applesauce 
I truly was excited for Carolina, when they started this season 2-2 showing they had a contending team.. Hopefully next year  they'll get some more recruits and make the play-offs again.
IM Schroer-IM Milman 0-1(why go against last year's result between ex-teamates?!)
IM Bartholomew-FM Korley 1-0
FM Simpson-FM Mandizha 0-1 Mandizha will want to prove him self after 3/4 draws and Simpson is a wild player who will give him winning chances!
Prilleltensky-Jones 1/2-1/2
and with a moe in mind, Manhattan will win 3-1 contending for a play-off spot

And Yet Another Spoiler Team The Baltimore Kingfishers Duel The NE Nor'easters
GM Margvelashvili-GM Shankland 0-1
IM Hungaski-IM Enkhbat 1-0 ( A repeat of last year's result!)
Defibaugh-FM Bournival 1-0
Brattain-Zimmer 0-1
and the Baltimore Kingfisher's will succeed in being spoilers as we shall see a Drawn Match 2-2

Thus we shall see in the playoffs 1)Philly 2)NY 3) Manhattan 4) NE
Yup that's right we shall see a Subway Series in the quarterfinals!!!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

How the West [will be] Won on!: The 2011 USCL Finale Part 1

Live or Let Die: The Dallas Destiny and the Miami Sharks Duke it off for a Critical Playoff Spot
GM Chirila- GM Becerra 1/2-1/2 Becerra will equalize in a theoretical Ruy Lopez.....
GM Sadorra- FM Rodriguez 1-0
IM Holt-FM Pelaez 1-0  Pelaez has shocked me in previously but I'm gonna go with the rating favorite
Rosenthal-Xiong 0-1

With a moe in mind, The Dallas Destiny shall win 3-1.... till next year Miami

The Other Play-off Contender the SF Mechanics vs the Spoilers: The St Louis ArchBishops 
 For the second time in three weeks, St Louis threatens to place Naka on board 1 and changes their line up: Perhaps a Hollaween taunt?
GM Kraai- IM Vojinovic 1-0 With the white pieces and last week's GOTW under his belt, Kraai's chances are good!
FM Banawa- IM Naroditsky 0-1
Liou-Eckert 1-0
Karlow-Rumph 1-0

Since SF shall be hungry for a play off spot and has a big rating edge no moe  here.... SF wins 3-1

The Smoothly Sailing Chicago Blaze vs the Ever-so Desperate Arizona Scorpions
With last week's loss, Chicago has come back with a strong line-up (but is still saving its heavy 2500+ lineup for the playoffs!)
GM Shulman-IM Molner 1-0
IM Altounian-IM Felecan 1-0 Felecan will go for complications and end up down too much material!
IM Young-FM Adamson 1-0
FM Atoufi-Menon 0-1

and Chicago says goodbye to Arizona's season as Chicago Wins 3-1... no moe of here because Arizona will play desperate to win-- no draws

The One game with Little Play-off Implications : The LA Vibe vs the Seattle Sluggers
WGM Abrahamyan-IM Orlov 1-0 Very close call between two tacticians: Tatev has the momentum!
FM Milat-FM Casella 1-0
Kavutskiy-WGM Rohonyan 1/2-1/2 Kavutsiky won their 2010 encounter... Now is time to make peace!
Feng-Lu 1-0 Don't much about either of these kids but Feng surprised me with a few upsets this season

and Seattle wins 2.5-1.5 (disclaimer: last week an anonymous commented I've been predicting against LA too much... Maybe perhaps so but with a low avg 2278 this week, its hard to go in their favor)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Destined Results of the 2011 USCL Season's Penultimate Round Part 2

My success (or lack of it)  of my predictions last night was somewhat strange.. Usually I score higher on match points than game points.. This time around however, I predicted 11/16 game points right and a mere 1/4 match points accurately... Shall I fare better or worse for tomorrow night? - We shall see!

First off, we have The Too Little Too Late NJ  Knockouts vs the Dominant NY Knights
When NJ is finally eliminated, they produce a super solid team: a little too late
GM Benjamin-GM Kascheishvili 1/2-1/2 Kashi won last time but with black it'll be another draw!
GM Fedorowicz- GM Fishbein 1/2-1/2 a relatively boring GM draw here: less exciting then Benj-Kasch:(
FM Shen-Herman 0-1
Williams-Wu 1/2-1/2 (Williams has a miniscule edge, but Wu is playing awesome in the MCC championship---- I think he'll equalize out of the opening and neither side will push for much.

and the the final verdict is Herman helps NY win 2.5-1.5 setting up a critical match next against against Philly to determine the Eastern champion!

The still Shanklandless  NE Nor'Easters vs the Absolute Desperate to win Carolina Cobras 
IM Vigorito- IM Schroer 1/2-1/2
FM Korley- IM Yedidia 1/2-1/2
FM Bournival-FM Simpson 1-0
Jones- Goldberg 1-0 ( nothing personal Ben!- extra motivation to prove me wrong!)
and a hard fought match is mutually detrimental: Drawn Match 2-2 

The Even Steven Teams Fight to go in the Positive: The Dallas Destiny vs the SF Mechanics
IM Bercys- GM Bhat 1/2-1/2
GM Kraai- GM Sadorra 1-0
IM Holt-IM Pruess 1-0
Rumph-Lapedz 0-1 As far as I can tell Rumph isn't so active anymore Lapedz is rapidly improving.

and.............The Dallas Destiny wins 2.5-1.5

The Weakened St. Louis Archbishops vs the Relatively Balanced Seattle Sluggers
Naka threatened to play but with him out, St Louis's chances look pretty dim this week 
GM Finegold- FM Cozianu 1-0
FM Mikhailuk- Karlow 1-0 ( 400 rating pts+ white= win)
Rich -Sinanan 0-1 (300 pts+ Sinanan dynamic with black=win)
Kelley- Hua 1-0
And Seattle will slide to victory with a 3.5-1.5 margin (moe). St Louis would need miracles to pull of an upset For either of these teams to have objective play-off chances next year I think they need new recruits... Right now they have all their eggs in one basket: Naka and Akobian and respectively.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

The Expected Results of the 2011 USCL Penultimate Round: Part 1!

The Co-Leading Philly Inventors take on the Trailing Manhattan Applesauce 
GM Panchanathan-GM Stripunsky 1/2-1/2
IM Bartholomew-FM Bartell 1/2-1/2
IM Bonin-FM Zaremba 1-0 I underestimated Jay the last two weeks predicting draws.. This week he's going for the FULL BONE!
Smith -Fisher 1-0 I had Fisher drawing Black but with the late lineup change and time odds I'll give Fisher the point! (However the expected match result does not change!
and all in the end the Bone leads Philly to victory 2.5-1.5 (moe here)

The Caught up Boston Blitz take on the Still Slacking Baltimore Kingfishers
SM Sammour-GM Kaufman 1-0 In the battle betwen the wild tactician and computer, the human style shall take precedent!
IM Enkhbat- IM van de Mortel 1-0
Martirosov-FM Zimmer 1/2-1/2 They drew in last year's Semi-Finals and they'll draw again!
Schoch-Krasik 1-0
and Boston will go back into the (-) as Baltimore shall pull of an upset 2.5-1.5

The Close to Even Miami Sharks take on the Light Version of the Chicago Blaze 
 Chicago had enough winning at least for now and finally produces a soft line-up. Don't be fooled though: the other GMs will be back for the Playoffs though!
GM Becerra- GM Friedel 1-0 ( Becerra has perfect score against Friedel in league history: Psychological Edge)
IM Young- FM Rodriguez 1-0
FM Pelaez- Rosen 1-0
Shmackel-Rosenthal 1-0
and an all decisive games will lead to a Drawn match 2-2

The Arizona Scorpions Look to keep their Playoff Hopes Alive against the LA Vibe
IM Molner- WGM Abrahmayan 1-0 Mac=BEAST enough said.
Gupta- IM Altounian 0-1
FM Adamson-Kavutskiy 1-0
FM Yanayt- FM Atoufi 1-0
and Arizona will remain in the game as Arizona shall win 3-1 ( no moe of here!)

Friday, October 21, 2011

Rabin Returns to NY for the Weekend: World Famous 4RGT!

I am in NY for the weekend for tonight's Tedeschi- Trucks Band concert... Post on that to come up soon.

Here's one of my games from last night against GM Kekelidze. I sacked a pawn in an interesting line of the Queen's Indian and had my fare of chances at one point... At one point, he agreed I was likely winning but in the final mutual scramble, I tried to simplify into what I thought I was an equal endgame without many winning chances for either side.. However unfortunately, the GM begged to differ and convincingly took out the whole point...

I won my three other games and tied for the 3rd and the u2200 prize with Leif Pressman, Edward Kopiecki and Vladimir Polyakin. GM Kekelidze drew IM Bonin in the last round in a long struggle that led to an opposite-colored bishops ending to tie for first.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Rabin's Perception of the 2011 USCL Season's Week 8: Part 2!

In pure match points, I was PERFECT last night 4/4.... With a little bit of luck:) I only got 6/16 match points.
The Rather Successful Comeback Kids aka. the NE Nor'easters vs the Rather Desperate NJ Knockouts

IM Hungaski-GM Benjamin 1/2-1/2 I'm expecting a relatively quiet Caro- Kann draw
IM Kapengut-IM Vigorito 1/2-1/2
Cherniack-Ng 1-0
Matlin-Fikiet  0-1

and New England will survive, ending NJ's playoff chances as with a moe, NE will win 2.5-1.5!

The Middle of the Pack Manhattan Apple Sauce vs the Strikingly Distant Baltimore Kingfishers
IM Vovsha- GM Margvelashvili 0-1
GM Kaufman-IM Schneider 1/2-1/2
FM Zaremba-IM Enkhbhat 1-0
Yang-Prilleltensky 0-1

and Manhattan will solidify a third place position as Manhattan will win 2.5-1.5

The Unpredictable Miami Sharks take on a Ridiculously Watered-down St. Louis Arch Bishops
If it was one of the Amateur Team Championships, St. Louis would have a decent team... wrong event
GM Becerra-FM Banawa 1-0
Cao-FM Olivera  1/2-1/2 I'm thinking Olivera will leave the game = as his teammates have big edges..
FM Rodriguez-Karlow  1-0
Hua-Rosenthal 0-1
and Miami wins 3.5-.5: Any reader knows I rarely predict such big margins but with such a big rating gap, its seems likely.

The Dallas Destiny vs the Relatively "Weak" Chicago Blaze Duke it Out
Chicago's team is by no means weak at super strong 2456 but is slightly weaker than previous weeks. 
GM Chirila- GM Friedel 1/2-1/2 ( Friedel won't push as a match draw clinches the division)
GM Gurevich-IM Holt 1-0
FM Kiewra-Rosen 1-0
FM Dean-FM Xiong1/2-1/2 ( same reasoning as Chirila-Friedel!)
and Chicago's "weak" team clinches the Western division with a Drawn Match 2-2!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

We are 8 miles (weeks) High!: Rabin Predict's Wk 8 Part 1!

The Battle for the Top: The Solidly Performing Philly Inventors vs My Homies: The NY Knights!!!
GM Panchanathan-GM Kacheishvili 1/2-1/2 Panchanathan is a rock who won't get any real advantage against Kaschi out of the opening with his Reti or similar opening but Kaschi won't push any further!
GM Charbonneau- FM Bartell 1-0 Charbonneau will win after wild complications in an advanced Caro
IM Bonin- "GM" Pressman 1/2-1/2 These players have amazingly played each other about 130 times otb. It is the Bone himself who gave Pressman the "honorary GM title"- if your gonna be a GM, your gonna have to be be bad the the Bone!  Anyways' I'm gonna go with a draw here since both players are relatively solid in the league and in the last 12 months, they have 7 draws out of 13 games!
Gershenov-Fisher 0-1 Fisher will take advantage of some unsound sacrifice- Thats 7-0 for Fisher!

and at the end of the night, Philly and NY will be tied for 1st as there shall be a drawn match 2-2

Two Teams Fight to Even up Their Scores : The Carolina Cobras vs The Boston Blitz
IM Schroer- GM Sammour 0-1 I often have trouble predicting games between strong solid IMs and GMs but if there's one GM in the league that is good at mixing up positions for the win, its Jorge! 
FM Griego-FM Korley 1-0
FM Simpson- IM van de Mortel 0-1 He beat Simpson with black pretty convincingly last year in 26 moves- why not again?
Mosiyenko-Jones 0-1

and with a moe in mind, the Boston Blitz will keep their playoff hopes as Boston will win 2.5-1.5

The IM storm (3 IMs!) SF Mechanics vs the Slightly Behind Arizona Scorpions! 
IM Naroditsky- IM Molner 1/2-1/2 Mac seems to be crushing anyone who crosses his path with white and making peace with anyone good player as black!
FM Banawa-IM Zilberstein 1/2-1/2
IM Pruess-Adelberg 1-0
FM Atoufi-Liou 1-0
and Arizona shall remain slightly behind as we will see a drawn match 2-2 

 The Teams with Inverse Scores face off: The Seattle Sluggers vs the LA Vibe 
IM Orlov-IM Matikozyan 1-0
IM Amanov-FM Mikhailuk 1-0
Sinanan-WGM Abrahayman 0-1
Kavutskiy-Feng 1-0

and with a moe in mind, LA will win 2.5-1.5 leaving Seattle in the black

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Rabin predicts the 2011 USCL Season Week 7 Round 2

Tuesday night's prediction's weren't too shabby. I predicted 2/4 matches and 11/16 game points correctly. Furthermore, I predicted NY-NJ and LA-Miami(despite their last min changes) perfectly.

The Slightly Above Par Manhattan Apple Sauce vs the Comeback kids: The NE Nor'easters
IM Milman- IM Hungaski 1-0 in the battle of two GM strength IMs, I think the one with a better season so far is gonna win!
IM Vigorito-IM Vovsha 1-0 Vigorito is going to win with a long grind after a theoretical Gruenfeld duel!
FM Mandizha- Cherniack 1-0 Farai is just a beast!
Fikiet-Black  1-0

and 4 decsive results will lead to a Drawn Match 2-2. The last time, I predicted a drawn match with all decsive wins, Manhattan drew NY with all draws, so let's see what will happen:)

The Baltimore Kingfishers and Carolina Cobras Fight to See Who Can Go Back to an Even Score

GM Kaufman-IM Schroer 1-0 These players drew in 2007, when Larry was "mere" IM, This time they'll repeat their 2010 result: Mr. Rybka wins!
FM Korley-IM Enkhbhat 1/2-1/2 Enhkbhat will equalize relatively easy but nothing more
Defibaugh-Simpson 0-1
Jones-Zimmer 1-0
and Carolina pullls off a slight upset with a 2.5-1.5 margin, equalizing its score

The Absolutely Dominant Chicago Blaze vs the San Francisco Mechanics
I said it a few weeks ago- I'll say it again. The Blaze is hand's down the strongest team in the league now.
GM Shulman-GM Bhat 1-0
GM Kraai-GM Amanov 1/2-1/2
IM Young-IM Naroditsky 1/2-1/2
Byambaa- Schmackel 0-1
With a moe in mind, Chicago wins 2.5-1.5 to obtain an astonishing 7-0 score and assured playoff spot

The Slightly Behind the Game Arizona Scoprions vs the Slightly Ahead of the game Dallas Destiny
IM Molner-IM Bercys 1-0:two strong IMS who both used live in the NY area: Mac is currently on a tare.
IM Holt-FM Banawa 1-0
FM Adamson-FM Kiewra  1/2-1/2 pretty much a toss-up but they had two decisive games in the past leading to an even score- why not draw this time?!
Xiong-Adelberg 0-1
and both teams will be tied in the middle of the pack as Arizona shall win 2.5-1.5

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Erab's take on the 1st 1/2 of the 7th week of fun in the USCL 2011!

The 2011 USCL season is winding down as the teams stiffly compete for playoff spots! 

The "Bad" Boston Blitz in the middle of the pack vs the Leader of the Pack: The Philly Inventors
GM Perelshteyn-Erenburg 1/2-1/2- two rock gms
FM Bartell- IM Jan van de Mortel 1-0 ( going with my first instincts here: wake up guy and go for a win!)
Martirosov- IM Bonin 1/2-1/2 a game between two rocks usually leads to a half bone!
Fisher-Krasik 0-1 I'm going with my gut here and will predict the board 4 mvp will finally fall to the league's trash talking mvp

and Philly slows down, letting NY take first, as there shall be a Drawn Match 2-2

The King Killing NY Knights takes on their "foreign" neighbors the New Joisy Knockouts
GM Kacheishvili- GM Benjamin 1-0 In three USCL Games, these solid gms have three draws- i think its time for Kachi to go for a nice long positional squeeze.
IM Ippolito-GM Fedorowicz 1/2-1/2 The Fed shall equalize and offer a draw relatively early on
Herman-Ng 1-0
Wu-Bodek 1/2-1/2

and NY takes 1st the in the East as with a moe in mind, NY Shall win 2.5-1.5!

 The LA Vibe seek revenge against last year's loss to the Miami Sharks
GM Khaciyan-GM Becerra 1/2-1/2
FM Olivera-IM Matikozyan 0-1
WGM Abrahamyan- FM Rodriguez 1-0: last week I very much regrettably predicted Rodriguez would lose when he had a very nice Catdog Esserman style Morra win. However, with black I objectively don't like his chances much here. But surprises happen so we shall see!
Rosenthal-Lu 1-0 toss up here between two players I underestimated in the past

and in the long run, Miami's playoff chances will be slim as LA shall win 2.5-1.5

Two teams - Their Big Guns Duke it Out: The Seattle Sluggers vs the St. Louis Archbishops
FM Cozianu- GM Finegold 1/2-1/2 ( close call between Finegold winning and drawing)
IM Vojinovic-FM Milat 1-0
Sinanan-FM Eckert  1-0
Ruan-Feng 1-0 ( complete toss-up, gonna go with rating and white pieces as an indicator)

and St. Louis shall keep microscopic chances of making the playoffs as St. Louis wins 2.5-1.5 


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Civil War Part 2

I did pretty....pretty....pretty....pretty...pretty....pretty..pretty... pretty.. good last night. ( name the reference for Rabin brownie points:)) Game points not so much: 7/16 but Match Points Yes: 3/4

Before I share reveal Rabin's great prophecies for tomorrow night, I thought I'd mention something about  Klein's incident last night against Holt. I think if it was clearly a mistake that he resigned (which it obviously was since he had sufficient compensation for just one pawn( not a lot of material), he should have been granted permission to continue playing. For next year, this policy should definitely change.

Without further ado:

Last Year's Division Champs Fight to Stay in the 2011 Race: The Miami Sharks vs the NE Nor'easeters
GM Becerra-IM Hungaski 1-0
IM Yedidia- FM Olivera 1-0
FM Rodriguez- FM Riordan 0-1
Fikiet- Alvarez 1-0
With a MOE in mind, NE beats Miami again with a  2.5-1.5 margin!

The Unstoppable(?!) Chicago Blaze vs the Average Joe Baltimore Kingfishers
GM Amanov-GM Margvelashvili 1-0
IM Enkhbat- GM Gurevich 1/2-1/2 (Enkhbat white against any 2400+ in USCL=draw)
IM Young- Defibaugh 1-0
Schoch- Menon 1-0 and Schoch remains a solid contender for bd 4 all-star with a 4/4 score!
and Chicago wins yet again: 2.5-1.5

The Underdog St. Louis Arch Bishops vs the Somewhat Surprisingly Super Strong Philadelphia Inventors ( yay for alliteration:)) 
GM Finegold- GM Panchanathan 1/2-1/2
FM Bartell-FM Banawa 1-0
Cao-IM Bonin 1/2-1/2 Given  a good match situation on the other boards, Bonin shall play it safe and go for the 1/2 Bone!
Fisher- Hua 1-0 Fisher's record so far= phenomenal, playing his lowest rated opponent yet, he shall remain 100%
and the final answer is.......... Philly wins 3-1!

The Statistically Identical from both sides of the US face off: The SF Mechanics (3-2) vs the Manhattan Applesauce (3-2) with average ratings this week with a mere 7 pt difference 
GM Wolff- GM Stripunsky 1/2-1/2 On a side note, if you haven't seen it yet, check out an interesting article from Thursday's New York Times about the relationship of finance jobs and chess, which also mentions the USCL participant Matthew Herman
IM Milman ( another chess/finance wiz)- IM Zilberstein 1-0
IM Pruess- FM Zaremba 1-0
Prilleltensky- Sevian 1/2-1/2
and both teams maintain a plus 1 score in their perspective divisions as the match shall be drawn 2-2

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Mr. E's take on Interdivision Week: Let the Rumbles begin!!

Before we start, lets just give it up for the YANKS!!!!!!!!!!!!  SHIP IT DETROIT!!!!!!! WORLD SERIES CHAMPIONS 2011 HERE WE COME!!!!!!!!!! 

First off, we see The Roller Coaster Carolina Cobras vs the 2 GM strong Dallas Destiny

Dallas must have been influenced by the likes of NY, Chicago, St Louis etc... putting up 2 GMS.. Don't think they ever did that before- feel free to correct me on that one:) 

IM Matros -GM Chirila 1/2-1/2 A few weeks, not knowing Matros,  I incorrectly predicted he'd lose to the GM strength Milman... That time he was black... Having white he should hold down the fort.
GM Sadorra- IM Battaglini 1-0
FM Klein-IM Holt 0-1 Holt's been playing monsterly this season with a 3.5 score and GOTW to boot
 FM Xiong- Mabe  0-1 Mabe has a dismal USCL history with 0-3, all with the white pieces.. With a rating edge and the white pieces, he's gonna show some power.

One for the West: Dallas wins 2.5-1.5 

Love (or Hatred?) at first Sight: The Boston Blitz and the Arizona Scorpions Duel for the 1st time
Boston is likely going on tilt here after two losses putting in a sub-par line up
GM Christiansen- IM Molner 1-0
IM Altounian- FM Griego 1-0
Krasik-FM Adamson 0-1
FM Atoufi- Mosiyenko 1-0
That's two for the West: Arizona wins 3-1 (I'm relatively confident in my predictions so no moe here)

While the Yanks will be handing the Tigers their 3rd consecutive Defeat, the NY Knights Shall Hold No Forces Back against the Seattle Sluggers

GM Charbonneau- GM Akobian 0-1 (Prove me wrong Pascal!)
IM Orlov- GM Fedorowicz 0-1 Fed= big Yankee Fan as the Yanks win, Fed will follow suit!
Herman-Kelley 1-0 With a new Jewish year and a nice mention in the NY Times, Herman will get a nice new fresh start!
Feng-Gershenov 1/2-1/2

Mi Amigos the NY Knights shall take the lead in the East as they win 2.5-1.5!

Another Blind Date: the Under-performing NJ Knockouts meet the So So-performing LA Vibe!!!
 GM Benjamin-GM Khaciyan 1-0
WGM Abrahamyan-IM Ippolito 1/2-1/2
Sherer- FM Casella 0-1 ( I'm surprised NJ couldn't find someone closer to 2000)
Kavutskiy-Matlin 1-0
and my prediction is forced to change:  The LA Vibe win 2.5-1.5

And the West shall unfortunately defeat the the East 3-1 

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Rabin's Prognostics for Week 5: Part 2

Monday Night, I did not fare to well with only 1/4 match points and a mere 5/16 game points correct. Let's see I if I can redeem myself through my predictions for tomorrow night!:

First of all we see the subway series in which the World Famous NY Knights take on the 2nd rate NY team the Manhattan Apple Sauce
I will be mainly watching this match, on a Boltbus from Boston to NY!

GM Kascheishvili- GM Stripunsky 1-0 These top level NY GMS duked out two draws the in the last two years in USCL... Both of those times Kaschi had the black pieces. Now Kaschi take order with white.
IM Vovsha- IM Krush 1-0
"GM" Pressman- IM Mandizha 0-1 (close call knowing both players well)
Smith- Gershenov 0-1
In a match with all decisive games, the result will be peaceful : Drawn Match 2-2 

The City of Brotherly Love's Inventors vs the Balanced Baltimore Kingfishers 

GM Erenburg-GM Kaufman 1-0: Erenburg shall prove him self worthy of playing on a different team.
IM Enkhbat- FM Bartell 1/2-1/2
IM Bonin- WGM Foisor 1-0: In the words of Jay himself, he's gonna go for a full bone!!
Defibaugh- Fisher 1-0 a tough call between the likely two strongest board 4s in the league but my instinct said Jared would win (the white pieces help out his cause)
but at the end of the night, Erenburg and the Bone shall lead Philly to win with a  2.5-1.5 victory

The Bullet-proof Chicago Blaze vs the Hikaruless St. Louis Arch Bishops 
Unfortunately for St. Louis, Hikaru is too busy drawing the likes of Ivanchuk and Anand in St. Paulo and not playing in the league... ( Shows the problem of putting all their eggs in one basket)

GM Friedel- GM Finegold 1-0
IM Vojinovic- GM Gurevich 1/2-1/2
IM Young-FM Eckert 1-0 Eckert has shocked me of times in the league so far, but its hard to predict him to score against one who is 200 points higher rated and has the white pieces..
Karlow- Schmakel 0-1
With a margin of error in mind, Chicago will win 3-1 Can anyone stop Chicago?!

The Balanced Bunch that make up the SF Mechanics vs the Akobian-led Seattle Sluggers 
With Akobian back in town, Seattle has prospects, but as we shall see, probably not enough to handle the Mechanics:
GM Kraai- GM Akobian 1/2-1/2 Kraai is quite a rock with the white pieces- he never lost a game with white in USCL history--- if Seattle wants to win, Akobian may have to deal Kraai his 1st USCL loss with white.
FM Mikhailuk-IM Naroditsky 0-1
IM Pruess-Kelley 1-0
Golub-Sevian 1-0
And the Sluggers shall face a difficult time making the playoffs as San Francisco shall win 2.5-1.5

In other new for those of you observing Rosh Hoshanah: !לשנה תטובה

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Rabin's Predictions for the End of the First Half of the 2011 USCL Season: Part 1 !

The Under-performing New England Nor'easters take on the veteran New England team  the Boston Blitz
GM Shankland- Sammour Hasbun 1-0 Last week, I underestimated Shanky's abilities... this week I shall not, with the white pieces, he shall bust out some nice novelty and smoothly win from a nice opening advantage.
IM Catdog Esserman- IM Vigorito 1-0: Advanced Caro, Morra?! Not sure what, but I'm sure Catdog will have something up his sleeve... GOTW material?- just maybe
Cherniack-Martirosov 1/2-1/2
Krasik-Goldberg 1-0
and for the first time I all season I predict a win for Boston leaving NE with very minimal play off contention: Boston wins 2.5-1.5

The Also Under-performing NJ Knockouts take on the Balanced lined up Carolina Cobras
GM Benjamin- IM Schroer 1-0
FM Korley-FM Hansen 1-0
Shen-FM Simpson 0-1
Jones-Wu 1-0 Despite Wu's GOTW last week, Jones' large rating edge and white pieces will rule.
and Carolina get back to their winning ways after two consecutive losses as with a margin of error in mind, Carolina shall win 2.5-1.5

The Arachnida vs Sharks: The Arizona Scorpions vs the Miami Sharks
IM Molner- GM Becerra 1/2-1/2
FM Rodriguez- IM Altounian 0-1
IM Ginzburg-Hernandez 1-0
FM Palaez- Mateer 1-0
And the Scorpions shall keep their playoff hopes alive as Arizona wins 2.5-1.5

The Dallas Destiny bring out GM Chirila against the Desperate-to-Win LA Vibe
GM Chirila- GM Khaciyan 1/2-1/2
IM Amanov- IM Bercys 0-1
WGM Abrahamyan-Vaidya 1-0
Lu-Labedz 0-1
and with a MOE in mind, The Dallas Destiny shall win 2.5-1.5!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Second Half of Week 4!

I didn't do too bad tonight... 2/4 match predictions correct and  9/16 game points correct:) Let's see how I shall fare Wednesday night!

The Secondary New York Team the Manhattan Applesauce duke it out with the other side of the Hudson River: The New Joisy Knockouts 
GM Stripunsky- GM Benjamin 1/2-1/2 These GMS have an even score in USCL history.. In 2007, Benjamin outplayed Stripunsky with the white pieces. In 2008, they had a relatively boring draw and in 2009, Stripunsky brought home the full point with the black pieces. It's time for another draw!
IM Berezovsky-IM Bartholomew 0-1 I know absolutely nothing about IM Berezovsky, as he doesn't even have a USCF rating, but he must be out of practice.
IM Mandizha- FM Hansen 1-0
Wu- Black 1/2-1/2
All in all, Manhattan cruises to victory with a 3-1 score

The Unpredictable Carolina Cobras vs My Homies: The New York Knights
 IM Schroer-GM Kacheishvili 0-1 Giorgi shall seek revenge for his disappointing loss to Schroer which led to GOTW in last year's week 7 and stir up some nice home preparation.
GM Fedorowicz-FM Korley 1-0
Simpson- Herman 0-1 Considering the fact that in the last two years, Simpson had 15/15 decisive games with his crazy style, and Herman shall seek to re-raise his self-esteem after a sub-par start for this season, I can only see a good result for him Wednesday!
Williams- Jones 1/2-1/2
Without further ado, with a moe in mind, NY Shall win 3-1 

The St Louis Arch Bishops Dying to Get On the Scoreboard vs the So-far Sub Par Arizona Scorpions
GM Finegold- IM Molner 1-0
IM Altounian- IM Vojinovic 1/2-1/2
FM Eckert- FM Adamson 0-1
FM Atoufi- Karlow 1-0
and the Arch Bishops shall remain with a big 0 as Arizona wins 2.5-1.5 ( Where in the world is Hikaru Nakamura?!)

The Middle of the Pack The LA Vibe take on the Perfect Chicago Blaze 
Without Chicago's GGGg line up, the LA Vibe stand a chance, but let's see how much of one....
GM Khaciyan- GM Shulman 1/2-1/2 Shulman opened his USCL career last year with a GOTW win over Khaciyan but that was with this white pieces.. This time I predict a quieter game and a draw to boot.
GM Amanov- IM Amanov ( the Battle of the Amanovs although not related ) 1-0
WGM Abrahamyan- FM Dean 1-0
Menon-Lu 1-0 ( don't know either player so I'll go by rating on this one)
Unfortunately for LA, Chicago is still a favorite, only being a GGgg team, as Chicago shall win 2.5-1.5

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Rabin Predicts Week 4: Part 1!!!

The Boneing Philly Inventors( with the great Bone) vs The Tail-ending NE Nor'easters 
GM Erenburg- the Brandeis Judge GM Shankland 1-0 (Sam please prove me wrong!!)
IM Hungaski- FM Bartell 1-0
IM Bonin- FM Bournival 1-0
Brattain-Fisher 0-1
And the Nor'easters shall remain in the dark as Philly win with a 2.5-1.5 margin (Margin of Error)

The Middle of the Pack:The Baltimore Kingfishers vs the Sub-par Bahstan Blitz 
Perhaps the Blitz got a little cocky this week with a sub-par lineup as they are leading the East.
GM Kaufman- FM Griego 1-0
Martirosov- IM Enkhbat 1/2-1/2
Defibaugh- Krasik 0-1
Gu-Schoch 0-1

Baltimore wins 2.5-1.5!! 

Miami with GM Becerra back vs the Ever-strong SF Mechanics 
GM Becerra- GM Bhat 1-0  These players drew the two times they played, once in 05 and once in 08. This time I think Becerra will out play Bhat in a long positional struggle
GM Kraai-FM Rodriguez 1-0
Hernandez- IM Naroditsky 0-1 Perhaps Hernandez could pull of an upset here as he did surprise me last week when he beat WGM Rohonyan, but I'm gonna give the IM an edge here... Rohonyan did after all make a somewhat dubious sac on f7.
Byambaa- Alvarez 0-1
And the final answer is...... a tied match 2-2

The Last night duel of the Night: The Akobianless Seattle Sluggers vs the Talented Dallas Destiny
IM Orlov- IM Bercys 1/2-1/2
GM Sadorra-FM Cozianu 1-0
NM Sinanan- IM Holt 0-1
WFM Labedz-Kelley 1-0 ( It's a little ridiculous that Labedz is now 2387- soon to be over 2400 as she beat two 2300s and 3 2500s in a row at the Southwest Open and is only rated as 2141.)
With a margin of error in mind, Dallas shall have a smooth 3-1 victory 

Chess and music readers alike, stay tuned for my review of Roger Daltrey's killer show in Boston last night!!!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Rabin Guestimates the Results for Week 3 Part 2!!

Monday night I did Ok..  a lackluster 6/16 game pts correct and 2/4 match pts correct: 50% I'll take it.

My Home-team the New York Knights Looking for a Juicy 3-0 vs My Old Teammates The Bahstan Blitz 

GM Kaschi- Sammour 1-0: Last year Sammour beat Kaschi in a wild tactical melee that was GOTW material.. This year though, Kaschi has the white pieces and Sammour will never quite equalize out of the opening and slowly get outplayed.

IM Catdog Esserman- GM Fed 1/2-1/2: Morra? Morra?- just maybe.. Catdog has been quite a beast  in the league but take note this his first USCL game ever against a GM...  Fed won't go for a complicated Morra and the game will end in peace.

Herman- Martirosov 1-0: Back in 09, Herman lost to Martirosov as white--- with two years, comes 200 rating points for Herman and he will sure be trying hard to even up the favor as he will likely outplay Martirosov in another Rossilimo Sicillian

Krasik-Bodek 1-0 : As Bodek makes his league debut, I predict he will face a hard time against Krasik, who steer the game away from main-line theory, which Bodek knows very well.

All in all NY wins 2.5-1.5 to dominate the East 3-0!!

The New Joisy Knockouts and the City of Brotherly Love Inventors duke it out to avoid the tail-end of the East 

GM Benjamin-GM Erenburg 1/2-1/2
FM Bartell-GM Gulko 1/2-1/2
IM Kapengut-IM Bonin 1/2-1/2
Fisher-Matlin 1-0
and Philly leaves NJ in the hole, winning with a 2.5-1.5 margin 

The Two-time Champs the Dallas Destiny vs the Tail-ending St. Louis Archbishops
If St. Louis, wants to start winning, they need some more help from Hikaru...
IM Bercys- GM Finegold 1/2-1/2
FM Banawa- IM Holt 0-1
FM Kiewra- FM Eckert 1-0
Hua-Xiong 0-1
With a margin of error in mind, The Dallas Destiny shall win 3-1.

Last but not least, we see the California Civil War: the LA Vibe vs the SF Mechanics

GM Khachiyan-GM Bhat 1/2-1/2 
GM Kraai- IM Amanov 1-0
FM Casella- Liou 1/2-1/2
Sevian-Kavutskiy 1-0 : complete toss up to me, but I'll say Sevian wins with white  

SF wins 3-1....m.o.e....2.5-1.5

And for the music bit, please download from Itunes Clapton and Marsalis's new live album from their 2011 show at Lincoln Center Asap as it is just amazing! (Review of the album to appear on the blog soon after I listen to it some more)


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Let the streak Continue: Week 3 Predictions Part 1 ! ( and a music update:))

I did pretty awesome for last Wednesday... I guessed %100 correctly for match points and 12/16 (75%) correctly for game points. Let's see if I can keep it up for Monday night:)

First things first, we have the duel between the Silly named Manhattan Applesauce vs the Surprisingly Strong Carolina Cobras

IM Milman-IM Matros 1-0 I don't know much about Matros, but I saw he had a few good recent results.
IM Battaglini- IM Vovsha 1/2-1/2 Battaglini makes his league debut but he has extensive experience playing for Haifa in the Israeli chess league... With white he is rather solid.
IM Bartholomew-FM Klein 1-0
Mabe- Black 1-0

And at the end of the night, Cobra's fantasy streak ends as Manhattan wins 2.5-1.5

The NE Nor'easters trying to get back on track vs the Baltimore Kingfishers in the middle of the pack

GM Shankland-GM Kaufman - it feels good to call my fellow Brandeisian  a GM this year:) 1-0
IM Enhkbat-IM Vigorito 1/2-1/2
FM Bournival vs Balasubramanian 1-0 Last year they drew with the same colors  but I predict this time Bournival will come through with the win
Schoch-Brattain 1-0

NE shall get on the scoreboard as they win 2.5-1.5 

The Seattle Sluggers vs the Miami Sharks duke it out without each teams' heavy hitters ( Akobian and Becerra perspectively) 

FM Cozianu- IM Moreno Roman 1-0
FM Rodriguez- FM Mikhailuk 1-0
WGM Rohonyan- Hernandez 1-0
Alvarez- Kelley 1-0
Tied Match 2-2 

The Ever Dangerous Arizona Scorpions take on GGGg ( i.e the Chicago Blaze) 
Although, Arizona now has a rather dominating 5-1 record against Chicago, Chicago's GGGg style team is just too heavy: perhaps USCL should make a rule for next year against stacking 3 GMS on one team- Please comment on your opinion)
GM Barcenilla vs GM Shulman 1/2-1/2
GM Friedel- IM Molner 1-0
Adelberg- GM Amanov 0-1
Schmakel- Thompson 1/2-1/2
Chicago wins 3-1

For thy non- chess playing readers, here's a music update:) September, 16 I'm seeing Roger Daltrey play the entire Tommy album at BU's Agganis arena!

Next up on the agenda is Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi at the NJ Performance Arts Center on Octomber 21!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Rabin's second round of 2011 USCL Predictions!

I'm only going to explain a few of my predictions this week for the sake of time...

Tuesday's Matches

The finally beaten New England Nor'easters vs the Good Guys (The New York Knights) 

IM Vigorito- GM Kaschi 0-1 
GM Charb- IM Yedidia- 1-0
FM Riordan- Pressman 1/2-1/2::  The great "GM" Pressman makes his USCL debut.. He shall have some solid preparation for Riordan and for a long time defend a slightly worse position to hold a draw. 
Williams- Goldberg 1/2-1/2 
With a margin of error in mind, as Williams- Goldberg is a toss-up, the NY Knights will give the Nor-easters their second loss with a score of 2.5-1.5!

The battle of the revitalized teams: Philly and Carolina
 Both teams are revitalized this year and have much more potential than in the passed. However, things aren't looking to good for Carolina with the time odds they face..
GM Erenburg- IM Schroer 1-0... (You never though as Schroer did woe the crowds last week beating Fishbein) 
FM Korley- FM Bartell 0-1
FM Dehmelt-FM Simpson 1/2-1/2 
Jones-FM M. Shahade 1-0 
Philly wins 2.5-1.5 

St Louis( with Hikaru back!) vs the smooth LA Vibe 

GM Nakamura- GM Khaciyan 1-0 (time odds for Hikaru speed Nakamura--- no difference) 
FM Casella- GM Finegold 0-1
Cao- Kavutskiy 1-0
Yanayt- Ding 1-0
With Hikaru in town, St Louis is no doubt a strong contender: St. Louis wins 3-1

The Vicious Arizona Scorpions vs the Seattle Sluggers (w/o guest slayer Akobian) 
Perhaps, influenced by Akobian's draw last week, he's not making the trip tomorrow. 
GM Barcenilla- Cozianu 1-0 ( Akobian was needed here) 
FM Mikhailuk- IM Aldama 0-1
Adelberg-Sinanan 1/2-1/2
Feng-FM Atoufi 0-1 ( too big of a rating gap) 

Arizona wins 3-1..Margin of Error.....Arizona wins 2.5-1.5

Wednesday's Matches

Bahstan vs Manhattan*
*Before I go on with my predictions for this match, I want to make two things clear to all: 
1) I'm trying to be as objective as possible with my predictions and not siding for which teams I am rooting for and hope the players do not take it personal whether I predict they win, lose or draw
2) Although as I previously pointed out publicly I am currently disappointed with the Blitz, I neither hold any grudges with nor blame any player for anything

Anyways, without further ado: 
Sammour- IM Milman 0-1
IM Bartholomew- IM Esserman 0-1
IM Van de Mortel- IM Mandizha 1/2-1/2
Black-Mosiyenko 1/2-1/2 (On a side- note, please check out a nice article about James Black's celebration party this past weekend for becoming master on Vicary's blog: Congrats James!!
Another Drawn match at the end of the night

Baltimore  and New Joisy Fight to Get a Point of the Scoreboard 
GM "Rybka" Kaufman-GM Gulko 1/2-1/2
IM Ippolito-IM Enkhbat 1-0 ( with a higher rating, the white pieces and a 1-0 record in the USCL against Enkhbat it's hard to predict against Ipppolito)
Defibaugh- A.Shen 1-0 
Wu- Shoch 0-1 
Baltimore wins, leaving NJ in the black with a  2.5-1.5 margin. 

GGGg Chicago vs the Underpar Miami Sharks
Chicago's 3 GM team is just a little ridiculous of course brining back memories of the 2008 USATE team GGGg, which featured GMs Izoria, Perelshteyn, Dzindhi, and a little 300 rated kid.
GM Shulman- FM Olivera 1-0
FM Rodriguez- GM Friedel 0-1
GM Gurevich- Alvarez 1-0
Allen vs  Freitag( g) 1-0
Chicago wins 3-1 ( if Miami has any chance of holding Chicago the match to a draw, Allen must must win, and one board 1-3 needs to score an upset. Chances are though, I can see them at best getting one draw out of the 3 boards)

The Old-time Rivals The SF Mechanics and the Dallas Destiny Duke it Out 
GM Wolff- IM Bercys 1/2-1/2
IM Holt-GM Kraai 1/2-1/2
Naroditsky- Kiewra 1-0
Zorigt- Byambaa 1-0
Just Another Hard-fought Drawn match!!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

First USCL Predictions of 2011

Ok- so I skipped predictions for Monday Night as I have not blogged for a while... This year I am no longer as USCL player, rather a curious onlooker:) I am proud to say that I'm officially a New York Knights fan again! I will openly say that I'm slightly disappointed at the Boston Blitz for not giving me a chance to redeem myself for having a bad season last year (.5/2), but that's their call..... LETS GO KNIGHTS!

Lets get the ball rolling: Here are my Predictions for Wednesday's matches!

My old compatriots (The Boston Blitz) vs the Reigning champs ( The NE Nor'Easters):

After the NY International, my respect for Hungaski quadrupled-- 8/9=heavy.... Hungaski wins.
FM Griego  hasn't played competitive chess for a few years... IM Vigorito wrote 3 books in the last 3 years.... Vigorito wins.
Battle of the Rocks on 3... Martirosov and Cherniack both had solid seasons last year... Martirosov had more bd 3 experience though and has the white pieces so I'm gonna say Boston gets the point here.
Fikiet and Gu is really a toss up, which very well might end up deciding the match.. I'm gonna go with Fikiet as he has a long trip from CT and will be more hungry to play and has the white pieces
At the end of the night,  the reigning champs will open their season with a victory by a 2.5-1.5 margin.

The Rejuvenated  Carolina Cobras vs The always strong NJ Knockouts 
Schroer is solid but Fishbein is a strong GM and will be hungry to win in his USCL debut and prove him worthy to his GM teamates Benjamin and Gulko.... Fishbein wins in along positional struggle.
NYer Korley vs experienced IM Kapengut... Korley is a great contribution to the Cobras as he starts at Duke... He's had a good summer of chess and Kapengut is pretty solid.... I predict a draw.
Simpson and Shen: neither had a particularly good season last year and will be trying to redeem themselves... At the end of the day I predict experience will win here giving Simpson the point-- really toss up though. Matlin will have her work cut out for her against the ever strong bd 4 Craig Jones... If she plays well she can redeem last year's loss to Jones but I give Jones the nod to win again...
All in all, the ( finally higher rated ) Cobras to win 2.5-1.5 !

The Baltimore Kingfishers vs My Rebeloved New York Knights
The Battle of the Georgians: I do not know much about Margelashvili and Kaschi is higher rated... Yet Marge has white... I predict draw!
Fed with white+ lower rated opponent = money 1 point for NY
Defibaugh is sharp  but Herman is a killer on board 3: His extreme rating gains in Europe as seen in Chess Life recently were just too impressive... One more point for NY
Williams vs Balasubrumanian... Gonna take a long shot that Williams goes for a  minimal risk game and draw is the end result.....
NY wins by 3-1---(margin of error)---  2.5-1.5

The St Louis Arch Bishops( w/o Hikaru) vs the Longtime good SF Mechanics 

The Arch Bishops are considerably weaker when Hikaru isn't playing..  Both Finegold and Kraai are pretty solid GMs and are very close in rating----- draw at the end of the night.. Gotta give  newly minted IM Naroditsky and IM Pruess nods for wins being a clear rating favorites... Lets say things don't go perfect and they score 1.5/2 ... Bd 4, at least in my view, is a complete toss up... I'll go on a whym and predict Sevian wins with white.... All in all, the SF mechanics shall win 3-1 

The Seattle Sluggers w/ their mighty guest killer Akobian vs the hot Chicago Blaze 

Like the Arch Bishops, the Sluggers rely on Akobian making up a trip to Seattle- Fortunately for them Akobian is coming to the rescue tomorrow. He shall travel far and beat the ever solid Gurevich. Thats 1 for Seattle. Felecan shall see Akobian slowly grinding Gurevich and play sharp and shall upset Cozianu a good win but not over his horizions as he upset Shulman last year, good enough for GOTW material. Kelley is new to the league but I saw him analyze in Vegas two years ago... still he's a severe rating underdog-- gotta give the nod to IM Young... He may have underperformed last year but I expect him to revive his awesome results in 08 and 09 this season. In 4 tournaments Rosen gained 100 rating points, (3 in practice, as he lost a few in one--- Thats Heavy... Rosen wins ......With Margin of Error in account, the Chicago Blaze shall win 2.5-1.5

Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Smörgåsbord of Stuff- My Return to Blogging

I last blogged a month ago on a rather high note reviewing Sir Paul's excellent show. Since then, life has been good- I have been a Ramblin man traveling pretty much non-stop. Speaking of which, one sad tidbit as I will not get to see Greg Allman play in Lowell next week as I was hoping to. Unfortunately, he canceled the last several shows of his 2011 tour due illness. Feel Better soon Allman.
Early morning on July 17th I flew to Buffalo NY, where I spent a week doing the camp. While there, of course I had to eat some original Buffalo wings:) I went with my coworkers Alanna Brian and Abby to quote on quote "the home of the original [Buffalo wild wing]", Anchor Bar. 

Sunday, July 17, 2011

SIR PAUL ROUND 2 Review Along with a Wee Bit of Chess

Hello all from Buffalo, NY.  I just landed a little while ago as I will be teaching here for a week, before I head to Rochester followed by the suburbs of Boston. Without further ado, I give you my brief review of Sir Paul's excellent concert at Yankee Stadium.
So two years ago, I saw Sir Paul perform the first concert at Citifield. Although it likely was the best concert I have ever been to, although compared to the Cream Reunion in 2005, it was a close call, it had to be in the silly Mets Stadium.. This time around though,  on the 2nd night of the "McCartney on the Run tour", it was in the best baseball stadium in the world:) LETS GO YANKEES!

Sir Paul began the excitement as he walked on stage and rocked out "Magical Mystery Tour", a song I appreciate more than "Hello, Goodbye", which he opened up the Friday night show with. Speaking of which, I generally like to see the previous setlists before the show but only quickly glancing at them just to see the general gist of what to expect. With Sir Paul though, no matter what you know what your getting: a bunch of the top Beatles hits always including "Yesterday", "Get Back", " Back in the USSR", among a few others, and a few solo hits, always including "Live and Let Die", " Band on the Run". His similar shows have ups and downs: you always know what your getting, but the setlists can get a little dry. As I saw Sir Paul two years ago, I realized he repeated alot of the stories I thought were very interesting two years ago. For example, after playing a cover of "Foxy Lady" after playing "Let me Roll it", as he did two years ago, he rementioned how Jimmi played "Seargant Pepper" two days after the album was released and how he asked Eric Clapton to come on stage and tune the guitar.

Despite the repetition in the setlist though, McCartney was amazing playing old hits that aren't usually played like "I will", " ob-la-di-bla-da" and "I Will". Even more exciting though was when he played " The Night Before", a song the Beatles never played live before and in fact "the night before", Friday night was the first time Sir Paul played it.. Too top things off though, was during the first encore when Billy Joel came up to help him play " I Saw Her Standing there".
Now for those chess readers, here's a little bit of chess: another one of my games in the World Open, in which I outplayed my opponent in a typical Maroczy Bind fashion:

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Rabin's Success in the City of Brotherly Love: Part 1

Here is part one of my World Open review, dedicated to Ringo Starr as today is his 71st!! birthday.

Here's a video of Sir Paul playing "Birthday" for him last year at the show I was at at Radio City!:..... Speaking of which---- next concert on the list: Sir Paul at Yankee Stadium July 16- I'm excited!

A year ago, loyal readers might recall I just visited the World Open as a tourist hanging out the last day with time to meet up with a Brandeis friend, watch a few July 4th festivities and watch the open section......... This time around, things were different. I did not my USA chess traveling get in the away from Philly.. Friday the 1st, I took a train directly from DC to Philly to begin the 5 game set of G/45 crackation( as Polly Wright (Castling Queenside) would call it) that starts the three day schedule of the tournament.

In the long run, things went my way as I tied for 2nd with Levy Rozman, Ricardo Perez-Billinghurst, Andrew Ryba, Anthony Parkerand Michael Yuen as we each picked up $2532. However, such winnings were not without controversy as first place Joshua Mu may have likely taken a deal with his last round opponent, in which his opponent who was a half point by would dump the game if Mu would give him a 40% share of clear first. There was no clear evidence that Mu accepted the deal and congratulations to him in the case that he didn't, but it is widely accepted that his opponent offered the deal and should be banned from USCF. If you do know anything about the offer, please do inquire me or CCA directly.

Anyways, here is likely my best game from the tournament, certainly the most important in the tournament standings, as I beat David Justice, who was then tied for the lead with Anthony Parker.

More to be continued... I'm headed to Harrisburg, PA next week, followed by a tour of upstate- NY- Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Return of Rabin's Adventures!

In the words of Kurt Vonnnegut, "So it goes": I have officially stopped my almost 3 month hiatus from the blogosphere. I have been extremely busy although that is  no valid excuse. On June 6th, I returned from Tel Aviv, where, as many of you know, I lived for 5 months while studying at Tel Aviv University. Then, after spending 6 days in NY, I twas in LA from June 12-17.  It was nice visiting Cali for the first time and hanging out with some Taglit-Birthright friends whom I haven't seen since the trip...I can't believe its been almost three years since the trip.  After LA though, I have been spending this week in Pottstown, PA. Old readers may remember exactly a year ago while I was here after spending a weekend in Allentown and excited about getting into the Brandeis business major. Yup, not much exciting going on here. ... I am looking foward to Arlington, VA next week followed by the World Open in Philly.... I get some time off, and what I do?:::: TRAVEL MORE. I'M AN ADDICT I KNOW.

Tel Aviv was truely an amazing experience, which I will blog more about in the future. For now, here's a list of important points:
1) It was awesome living half way across the world from home, taking a break from my ":regular" college life in the 'great' land of Waltham
2) It was nice actually seeing places in Israel for more than a few hours at a time as I did on Taglit.
3) I enjoyed becoming better friends with some of the ex-soldiers who were on my Taglit trip.
4) I met some awesome internationals ( mostly Americans though) who were on OSP.

Anyway enough ranting for 1 post.... Heres one game I played the same day I arrived to NY.... Yes, I was insane to arrive in NY from Tel Aviv at 6 AM NY time and that night head out to White Plains to play a tournament.. Fotunatelly things went my way actually bumping my rating back over 2200 as I tied for first in the Quad with the usual nemesis Leif Pressman.  Without further adue, I show you my first round madness with the great Michael Amori:

Check back for more of Rabin's adventures soon!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

New "Electric Unplugged " Version of Layla!

I haven't blogged in a while although I have a lot about Israel to say.. I went on an TAU trip to the South this weekend... I have a bunch of photos, which I will share soon. Anyways, one of the highlights of the trip was jamming in the hotel at night with some of the people on the program and medics from the trip. With one of the medics, I discussed the song "Layla" as we played for it a while. With that in mind, here's a new version I heard of the song that Clapton played in Singapore last month. As one youtube user aptly described it, its an "unplugged electric version".

In the end of May, I am highly considering going to London to see him with Winwood!!.. I saw them in New Jersey in 2009, when they were incredible.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

More Tel Aviv/Upcoming Excursion to Haifa

In short, life has been still busy but very good. I've met a bunch of American and other international friends through the overseas program. If I have any regret, its that I haven't met as many Israelis I wanted to. One thing I didn't realize until a few weeks before I got here was that only the Fall semester internationals and the one's who study all year round live with Israelis.

However, the TAU's student union has a cool Buddies program where they pair TAU students with internationals. I had dinner with mine, Yuval, the other night and he's gonna introduce me to more Israelis. Also I've reconnected with one of the ex-soldiers who was on my Taglit Birthright trip. Speaking of which, registration for summer trips is coming up soon: any of you Jews 18-26 who haven't been on an organized trip, nows your time! 10-day free trip- absolutely no cons.

Next week, I will be playing in my second Isreali tournament up in Haifa. My Ulpan friend and I will stay one night and I might stay an extra one... Any advice on places to stay, food, stuff to do etc would be appreciated. I was there for a few hours on Birthright but clearly thats not enough.

Until next time, here's a photo of a funky sculpture/ writing tool that is part of the Diaspora museum on campus. I haven't been around the museum yet but thats definitely on my bucket list:)

Friday, February 4, 2011

Overdue First Israel Post!!!!!

So its been almost 3 weeks since I've arrived in the Holy Land and until now, I've yet to make a blog post. Life has been busy. Ulpan 4 days a week is tiring and having class on Sunday is something to get used to.

Last Sunday, (יומ ראשון ) I played in my first Israeli chess tournament at the Isreali Chess Federation's headquarters in Ramat Aviv.... yeah thats the same area as my university (only a 10 minute walk away). It was a little bit of a roller coaster.. I started out well beating two strong masters. I lost a tough game against a strong IM Dan Zoler. I then beat an expert giving me a solid 3/4 score and a chance to likely tie for first as Zoler gave up one draw already. Things were looking good for me as I was up two pawns in the last round against another expert but then hallucinations kicked in and I hung a queen... At the end of the day though, I tied for 4th place and won 150 shekels, double my entry fee and about $30 profit. Here's my up and down first round game against FM Ari Axelrod:

A funny little tidbit was the way I recorded moves kind of ridiculously. I bought an Isreali scorebook: hence לבן (white) is on the left, rather than left of שׁשחור (black). I didn't know the names of the chess pieces in Hebrew so I wrote in English but right to left:Yesterday I studied the names of the pieces in Hebrew so I shall try to record in Hebrew the next tournament I play here. Much more to come later but for now are some of the few photos I've took since I've been here:
I just had to show this awesome quote Jack Bruce said in an interview for Uncut Magazine, which also has a incredible 40 year celebratory article on the Allman Brothers. On that note, I downloaded Gregg's new album that I previously mentioned on the blog on Itunes and he's still got the blues down pat!!!!

Last Monday, the Overseas Program organized a group trip to Jerusalem. It was cold and raining but it ended up being a great time. We saw a 3D Time Machine Movie, ate lunch at the Shuk ( which has a ton of cheap food,clothes, jewelery, luggage..... etc you name it), toured the Old City a bit, and enjoyed a nice dinner buffet before heading back to Tel Aviv. Unfortunately, I didn't have my camera with me but here's a shot of the Old City from my I-pod.
More Shall come Soon!!