Monday, September 3, 2012
Rabin's Predictions for the 2012 USCL Season Opening NIght!
Roll up, roll up for the Magical Mystery Tour! Step right this way! Roll up for the Magical Mystery Tour that is the 2012 USCL season. This year we said “goodbye” to the Chicago Blaze and hello to the Connecticut Dreadnoughts. “You say 'Goodbye' and I say “Hello, hello, hello.' I don't why you say 'Goodbye', I say 'Hello, hello, hello.”.....
OK, enough corny Beatles references; let's get to business: See Rabin's predictions for the opening of the Eastern division tomorrow night!
Last Year's Semifinals All Over Again: The Subway Series between the Manhattan Applesauce and New York Knights
GM Romanenko-GM Gelashvili 1/2-1/2 These Georgian GMS are scary but Romanenko is particularly solid, especially with the white pieces.
GM Lenderman- IM Milman 1-0 While Milman has been busy working long hours on Wall Street, Lenderman has been taking advantage of the Samford fellowship- Gotta give him the edge!
FM Zaikov- FM Bodek 1-0 While Bodek is higher rated, Zaikov is scary in league play. When he played for the Cobras in 2010, the last four consecutive weeks, he beat IM Krush, IM Lapshun, FM, soon to be IM Bartell, and IM Fernandez! I'm sure he'll want to have a good start for Manhattan.
Checa- King 0-1 Checa is a solid player for his age and will do his best for his league debut. However, at over 2300, King is a monster board 4. He will be one of Manhattan's greatest assets this season.
and the Manhattan Applesauce will get revenge: Manhattan wins 2.5-1.5
*Disclaimer: As I'm working for Chess in the Schools this year, I wasn't sure at first whether I'd root for the Knights or Applesauce. I ended up deciding rooting for the Knights, as I did since the league started except for my 1 year tenure on the Blitz, but these predictions as is all of mine are as objective as possible.
My Old Teammates the Boston Blitz vs the New Guys: The Connecticut Dreadnoughts
SM Sammour-Hasbun- GM Hess 0-1 In a tactical slugfest, the young GM, Yale student will come out on top.
GM Kekelidze- IM Zierk 1-0 As I said before, these Georgian GMS are scary!
FM Gulamali- WIM Yuan 1-0 I don't know much about either of these players but I'll go by Gulamali's rating edge and the white pieces.
Chandran- Hanks 1-0. Chandran is an up and coming youngster who is higher rated in this match!
And the Dreadnoughts end their USCL debut on a high note: Connecticut wins 3-1
The Two Teams with Newly Drafted GMs Duke it Out: The New Jersey Knockouts vs the New England Nor-Easters
GM Stripunsky- GM Ivanov 1-0 At the time this article is being written, Ivanov is pressing Stripunsky on the white side of a Caro Kann in Albany. Tomorrow, Stripunsky will have the white pieces. Stripunsky also typically does better than Ivanov in quicker time controls.... I give him the edge.
FM Bournival- IM Kapengut 1-0 Pure Instincts here!
FM Shen- FM Chase 1-0 Instincts again!
Goldberg- Wu 0-1 Wu, who recently came back from a few weeks of chess in Hungary, is more in shape than Ben... However whenever I predict Ben to lose, he wins, so we'll see what happens!
And New Jersey shall take the fame: NJ wins 3-1.
Last but not least, the Philadelphia Inventors take on the Baltimore Kingfishers
GM Erenburg- IM Enkhbhat 1-0 GM and white pieces- enough said.
IM Paikidze- SM Fisher 1-0 I never heard of Paikidze before this year's rosters went up, but with the “idze” at the end of her name, I knew she was another Georgian! Fisher was a beast for Philly last year, but that was on board 4; let's see how he'll make it on Board 2.
Gorman-Defibaugh 1/2-1/2 Defibaugh shocked the crowds this past July in the first round of the Washington International when he miniatured GM Azarov with the black pieces. If he plays like he did then, he's likely to win. Gorman is a pretty solid player though; something tells me this game will end up in peace.
FM Zimmer- IM Costigan 1/2-1/2 two pretty solid players which a bunch of draws in previous seasons.
And Philadelphia and Baltimore shall have the only draw of opening night: Drawn match 2-2
Stay tuned for Rabin's predictions for the Western Division's opening night, coming to a blog near you soon!