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Old August 15th 03, 11:22 PM
LeModernCaveman
 
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Default Another voice on Fischer

A lot of opinions get bandied about on this forum concerning Bobby
Fischer
and Garry Kasparov, and their um, quirks. A lot gets said about whether

or
not they were good champions (or if they, in fact, still ARE champions --

I
think it's like a lifetime title, but that's another thread). All the
ballyhoo aside, I just really liked Andy Soltis' final paragraph this

month:

"So, is it worth rediscovering Bobby? Yes, if only to recall what it was
like when matches were won by 6-0 and tournaments by 11-0 -- and when the
'greatest player in the world' wouldn't dare offer a draw in a favorable
position, just to avoid losing."

Nice words. Now I'm sure people on both sides of whatever debate they

feel
is pertinent will profess their opinions here again, but I have to say

that
these words really mean something to me, and take me back to when I was
still in awe of one man's dominance of a sport ...

Maybe in 30 or 40 years, Tiger Woods will be thought of just like Fischer

is
now. Today, he's thought of as Fischer was then, as far as ability goes
(obviously, attitudes and actions of the two are quite dissimilar; I only
address the awe-factor as the premise for this discussion). I don't see
Tiger taking the paranoid (or however one wishes to describe them) ideas

to
such an extreme. But we didn't think Bobby would, either. I am just

really
enjoying the flood of memories I'm getting of the one guy who could bring
the Soviets to their knees. God, that was awesome. And you can never

take
that away from him. He was the far and above all-time 'better than his
peers,' and still all-time #1 in my opinion.

I would love to have seen the peak Bobby taking on the peak 'Blue' or
'Junior.' What a riot!

sandirhodes


Capablanca was the most dominant player who ever lived.

He lost only 35 times in his life.

Other dominant champions included Morphy, Steinitz, Lasker, Alekhine, and
Kasparov.


Capa didn't lose much, it's true. But he drew an awful lot. Each of the
rest on your list has their own merit. My opinion stands, as I was there to
watch it. It was awesome.


The 1924 New York Tournament was awesome.

Fischer beat up on a bunch of nobodys: Spassky, Petrosian, Taimanov, Lombardy,
Evans....not that impressive. Paul Keres was probably the strongest player
Fischer ever faced, and he gave Fishcer major headaches. Had absolutely no
respect for his alleged opening prowess.

I studied almost nothing but openings for four straight years and began by
copying Fischer's repertoire. 6. Bc4 against the Sicilian is lame, and he
never could handle the Winawer or Caro-Kann very well. Players were too scared
of what he might show against the Marshall Attack, but they would have scored
well against that one as well.

The trick to beating Fischer was to play the opening like Kasparov would, or
Karpov. The 1975 match would not have been a foregone conclusion, had it been
held.

Fischer is the strongest American player ever, with Morphy second, Marshall
third, and Reuben Fine fourth. He is not the strongest player ever in the
world. My list would be this:

1. Capablanca
2. Alekhine
3. Steinitz
4. Tal
5. Fischer
6. Kasparov
7. Lasker
8. Botvinnik
9. Nimzowitsch
10. Marshall

My favorite quote from Alekhine was when he said someone had written that he
didn't play a move because he didn't like closed positions. Alekhine then
showed a mate in six and said "I didn't play this move because I DON'T LIKE
BEING CHECKMATED!"

He kicked the **** out of Capablanca and was the only player ever to do that,
which makes him #2.


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