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  1. 20 Jul '12 14:24
    Wondering what the general opinion is of Gata Kamsky. Is he very popular in his home country and elsewhere? I have read that his father was rather too pushy, but obviously that wasn't the son's fault.
  2. 20 Jul '12 20:39
    As far as I know, he's very well respected in US chess circles (source: I play in major US tournaments occasionally, although at a much lower level) and is viewed as sort of our elder statesman, especially when compared to Nakamura.

    I doubt that the Russians have much of an opinion, given that so many people defected from the Soviet Union.

    Other top players, I think, view him in the second tier of the elite; a noticeable gap behind the top 5 and not a serious contender for the world championship any more but certainly a tough opponent and a worthy invite to super-tournaments.

    The only person I know of that has a highly negative opinion of him is Nigel Short (see here: http://www.chessninja.com/dailydirt/2006/10/kamskyshort-19942006.htm), a situation where Short has a pretty legitimate complaint IMO.
  3. 21 Jul '12 13:08
    Originally posted by greenerpawn
    Wondering what the general opinion is of Gata Kamsky. Is he very popular in his home country and elsewhere? I have read that his father was rather too pushy, but obviously that wasn't the son's fault.
    Are you Kamsky? Serious question. Also what do you think is his "home country"?
  4. 22 Jul '12 00:21
    Originally posted by enrico20
    Are you Kamsky? Serious question. Also what do you think is his "home country"?
    No, I'm not Kamsky.

    I meant the USA.
  5. 22 Jul '12 07:23
    Only Kamsky or his dad would think he is "popular". From a google search :-

    The latest scoop for Inside Chess was a controversial interview with Gata Kamsky and his father in which Seirawan and Kasparov were attacked in no uncertain terms, as deliberately hindering the youngster's progress towards the world title. Kamsky was remarkable by his absence from the 1990 Olympiad, despite being the highest rated US player. What was the story?

    S: "Essentially, Father Kamsky has a severe image problem. He's a very tough street man who's had a great deal of hardship in his life and now he's fighting for the best for his son. In doing so he's truly alienated those who would like to have helped him, including myself. As far as the Olympiad team was concerned, he was invited to play third board and refused with the statement: First or nothing. This caused a great deal of happiness amongst the Americans who celebrated the fact, not that Gata would not be here but that Rustam would not be here. We felt that Rustam's presence would be divisive. So, much as we admire Gata's playing ability, we're equally disturbed and offended by his father.

    Fortunately the decision not to have Gata on top board has nothing to do with me; it's the result of a formula that came out of my dispute with the USCF in 1984: a mixture of FIDE and USCF ratings averaged over a two year period, as well as current ratings, which dictates who is invited and in what order."

    F: He tells the story of the dinner, hosted by Kamsky's American sponsor, stockbroker James Cayne, at which Gata was struck by his father.

    S: "He'd figured the kid needed a helping hand, so he'd written out a cheque on the spot. Then Rustam and Gata were invited to this beautiful social occasion. Mrs Cayne came in furs, decorated to the max. Gata translated everything word for word, as Rustam speaks no English. At some point Rustam was unhappy with the translation and - whack! A resounding backhand across the face of young Gata. Mrs Cayne says 'have a lovely evening. In polite company you do not strike your children; goodnight.' End of sponsorship.

    Is Gata a happy person? Impossible to say. He has no friends. At some point, he will mature and try to break the hold his father has on him. That situation is going to be a tremendous explosion and the question will be: who gets killed? I also see a terrible psychological scar for this young man if he does not achieve his goal of being world champion.">
  6. Subscriber Marinkatomb
    wotagr8game
    22 Jul '12 07:40
    Originally posted by enrico20
    Only Kamsky or his dad would think he is "popular". From a google search :-

    [b]The latest scoop for Inside Chess was a controversial interview with Gata Kamsky and his father in which Seirawan and Kasparov were attacked in no uncertain terms, as deliberately hindering the youngster's progress towards the world title. Kamsky was remarkable by his absence ...[text shortened]... his young man if he does not achieve his goal of being world champion.">
    [/b]
    Wow, what an interview! Is Kamsky in the next Olympiad? Still has the rating for it. 🙂
  7. 22 Jul '12 15:32
    Originally posted by enrico20
    Only Kamsky or his dad would think he is "popular". From a google search :-

    [b]The latest scoop for Inside Chess was a controversial interview with Gata Kamsky and his father in which Seirawan and Kasparov were attacked in no uncertain terms, as deliberately hindering the youngster's progress towards the world title. Kamsky was remarkable by his absence ...[text shortened]... his young man if he does not achieve his goal of being world champion.">
    [/b]
    I don't doubt that it was very unpleasant to compete with him in the early-mid 90s, before his retirement, but I was under the impression that we were talking about him since his comeback, which his father has had no part in.
  8. Standard member Thabtos
    I am become Death
    22 Jul '12 16:08
    Gata a.k.a. DarkNolan has a pretty strong support base online. I like him a lot and have told him as much.

    He doesn't whine like a baby a' la Nakamura, even though Nakamura gets 10 times more press in Chess Life (the awful periodical published by the USCF). For a couple of years, Gata had the higher rating, was U.S. champ, and was a WC candidate, and Chess Life devoted the majority of it's stories about Nakamura winning some random open tournament in the U.S..

    I like his style of play, and he also has the distinction of being the only player ever Kasparov used the French against (albeit via transposition.)
  9. 22 Jul '12 16:48 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Thabtos
    Gata a.k.a. DarkNolan has a pretty strong support base online. I like him a lot and have told him as much.

    He doesn't whine like a baby a' la Nakamura, even though Nakamura gets 10 times more press in Chess Life (the awful periodical published by the USCF). For a couple of years, Gata had the higher rating, was U.S. champ, and was a WC candidate, and Che on of being the only player ever Kasparov used the French against (albeit via transposition.)
    I'm not pro-Nakamura/anti-Kamsky or vis versa but Nakamura is the 2012 US Champ not Kamsky. Also Kamsky's 2010 US Championship win was under the controversial Armageddon system (a draw results in a win for black).

    http://blogs.riverfronttimes.com/dailyrft/2010/05/gata_kamsky_wins_us_chess_championship_armageddon.php

    Only someone in Kamsky's circle (friends/fanboys etc) would describe him as "popular".
  10. Standard member Thabtos
    I am become Death
    22 Jul '12 18:34
    Originally posted by enrico20
    I'm not pro-Nakamura/anti-Kamsky or vis versa but Nakamura is the 2012 US Champ not Kamsky. Also Kamsky's 2010 US Championship win was under the controversial Armageddon system (a draw results in a win for black).

    http://blogs.riverfronttimes.com/dailyrft/2010/05/gata_kamsky_wins_us_chess_championship_armageddon.php

    Only someone in Kamsky's circle (friends/fanboys etc) would describe him as "popular".
    Well, Kamsky also was US champ in 91 and 2010, so I don't think you can really call his skill as a player into question. You can argue that one "lucks out" when they win one championship, but that argument strains credulity when talking about a 3-time winner.


    And between 2010 and the end of 2011, Nakamura got way more press from ChessLife than Kamsky, and if you want to argue that point, I'll be happy to pull those godawful issues out of my birdcage and reference them.
  11. 22 Jul '12 19:08
    We are not interested in your pansy magazines, you can keep them for your night-time entertainment. My sole concern is Kamsky's popularity or lack of. Had he lost the 2010 final via the same Armageddon system he would have flown into a tantrum.

    Kamsky senior's antics (anyone heard of Topalov's manager Danailov) hardly add to Kamsky's popularity.
  12. 22 Jul '12 19:17
    Read for yourself this interview in 2007

    http://susanpolgar.blogspot.co.uk/2007/07/shorts-take-on-kamsky-from-montreal.html

    Q for Nigel Short:

    You played a bitter match against Gata Kamsky in the early 90s. You are due to play him (Gata) on Thursday. What are your feelings about this?

    Nigel Short:

    What can I say? I have been playing chess for a very long time. My match against Gata Kamsky was by far the most unpleasant experience I ever had in my career. In essence Gata Kamsky won this match by cheating. His father threatened to kill me during the match. It was a very ugly incident. It had to be reported to the police. He (Rustam Kamsky) had to be pulled off me actually. So, quite frankly, I would rather not see him (Gata) But its not up to me, the organizers decide who is to participate. This is not my business. Gata Kamsky, if you talk to him now, I am sure you will find him to be a polite person. But its like someone who was part of a gangster group, and he would very much like to forget about these unpleasant parts of his past when he went everywhere with his father – who is nothing more than a thug. In other sports if you had a situation where a member of a delegation threatened to kill one of the players, and don’t forget Rustam Kamsky was a boxer, and, as far as I understand, had been in prison for such offenses, you would have an automatic disqualification, but for various reasons that didn’t happen. I am sure Gata Kamsky would like to forget about the influences of his father, but he benefited from it at the time. If I win this game it will give me more satisfaction than anything else.
  13. Standard member RJHinds
    The Near Genius
    22 Jul '12 19:47 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by enrico20
    We are not interested in your pansy magazines, you can keep them for your night-time entertainment. My sole concern is Kamsky's popularity or lack of. Had he lost the 2010 final via the same Armageddon system he would have flown into a tantrum.

    Kamsky senior's antics (anyone heard of Topalov's manager Danailov) hardly add to Kamsky's popularity.
    Gata Kamsky is not popular with me. 😏

    P.S. His USCF rating is only in the low 2800s.
    His FIDE rating is even worse 2744 at present.
  14. 23 Jul '12 01:13
    I saw him in person in Montreal in 2007. He seemed to be a nice guy.

    The real problem was his father in the 1990s. His father seems to be out of the picture now. However, Emil Sutovsky who was a member of the Kamsky team for the Topalov match in 2009, wrote in Europe Echecs magazine that Kamsky still had family problems during the match, although he didn't give any details about it.
  15. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    23 Jul '12 01:20
    Originally posted by greenerpawn
    Wondering what the general opinion is of Gata Kamsky. Is he very popular in his home country and elsewhere? I have read that his father was rather too pushy, but obviously that wasn't the son's fault.
    I think he still owes me $20.