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  1. Forum
  2. General Chess Discussion
  3. Carlsen Retains World Title After Tiebreak Massacre

@cerulean Hard to say. In my opinion he was alluding to how classical chess is increasingly being dominated by openings. A small edge in the opening is enough to win in classical time control for players of this caliber. And similarly a drawish opening will end up a draw extremely frequently. So in some ways the world championship is becoming more about who did a better job of memorizing computer analysis than which player will be able to play better 'by hand'.

But in rapid, and especially blitz, this whole game changes since it's so much harder to avoid mistakes. So the opening plays a much smaller role, and the skill of the players plays a larger role. And I'd imagine it's certainly far easier to memorize reams of computer analysis than it is to stand toe-to-toe with Magnus in unfamiliar positions!

@OhNoMyPants Interesting comments. Thanks!

#28 @LolikBolik While the word "faith" can have a religious meaning, it's also a perfectly valid synonym of "trust" and "confidence" without religion being involved - and that's what it means in this context.

It seems that WC format was long known for both players. First classical, then rapid, blitz and armagedon. Obviously Caruana didn't prepare for rapid part. Perhaps he should have trained with Vishy (World rapid champion 2017) on that one.
Tie-breaks before match wouldn't change a thing, because 99% tie-breaks would be won by Magnus, meaning he has only to draw 12 rounds, play safe, do not risk anything, and his opponent would have to take risks, which Magnus should somehow miss... It is discussion morelike "Oh can't win WC title, so let's change the rules".
For me this WC wasn't boring at all, perhaps because of my chess level, most of the positions looked complicated. Besides that, I would rather see Carlsen - Aronian or Carlsen - Mamedyarov WC match, those two contenders are extremely tactical and interesting to watch.

What was the rapid time control? No one has said, either here or in the original blog post.

„Rapid“ tie-break is the most classic approach, changing the rules (chess960, stalemate win...) is by far worse and not „classic“ at all. It‘s just a bit quicker but more or less the same. The difference is overrated.

Power = Work / Time

(hope I got that right)

Both were happy to play 12 draws and go into tie break.
If tie break is acceptable, then they could have done without the classical.
I would have no tie break and if a match ends 6-6, then none is world champion and both are referred to the next candidates' tournament to crown the new world champion.

Not really. Games with longer time controls are more interesting because both players take more time to make better moves. Power = Work × Time
It takes work and time to find very good moves. Perhaps the time controls should be even slower to give both players even more time to find even better moves. Just let them play each game with time control of 8 hours per side, no increment. They should be able to find best possible moves and make fewer draws. Play 16 hours and rest 8 hours between the games.

#37 like Nakamura said, it would be weird to have a world champion who is not strong in rapid and blitz. Magnus Carlsen is the best player in the world. He obviously read and understood the rules before the match. He chose a winning strategy to maximize his chances to successfully defend his title. Fabiano Caruana is a very good classical player. It's better to avoid taking any risks, and try to draw all the classical games because losing is very unpleasant. Fabiano Caruana is also a very weak rapid and blitz player and the rating difference indicates that he has zero chance against Magnus Carlsen. Magnus Carlsen was completely confident of the outcome of tie breaks so he did the best possible thing. One solution is to have tie breaks before classical match, the result might have been different.

Strange are the people who claim: "Right now, there are two equally strong players in classic chess - there should be no world champion at all this time."

Have you ever heard such an outrageous statement before, in any other sports?

Probably, it's too complex to figure it out in a classic match alone. But the rapid gives MC even more than an edge. So, "the better player needs less time" as a friend of mine always states with a twinkle.