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Leko vs Nakamura

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It's Leko against Nakamura in a Fists of Fire event! Really. [Thanks to J Good.]

Update: Nakamura won on a TKO in just 54 seconds!


Looks like a fairly serious violation of the "no punching a man while he's down" rule.

Oh, the irony! :-P


In a real fight, I suspect that the chess Leko might kill the chess Nakamura given the difference in size.

You had be going there for a while.

Mig I can't believe you actually linked to sherdog.com. It's like all my pastimes are becoming one. Truly spooky.

Nakamura got big and muscular in the past couple of months! (smile)

I used to follow mixed martial arts and despite the 54 seconds, a lot of "chess fighting" took place. It appeared that Leko tried to used Muy Thai leg kicks to set Nakamura up for a ground battle. He tried to work from the guard position(on his back) and it appeared that on at least three occasions, he was going for a triangle choke or an arm bar.

A triangle choke is deadly if you can get your legs around the guy's shoulders and neck and pull one leg down as a lever across the back of the guy's neck. That's a quick 1-0 ... tap out! Fortunately for Nakamura, he avoided those "chess-like" tactics (unlike 300-pound Dan Severen against 180-pound Royce Gracie in UFC).

I wonder if Hikaru will get any ideas! One can actually learn a lot about chess by watching mixed martial arts. Lateral thinking!

I don't follow what I now know is called MMA, but I actually saw that Severen-Gracie fight years ago. A friend of mine in Argentina had a half-dozen videotapes someone in the States had sent him of "Ultimate Fighting" events and that was one of them. I'd already heard of the Gracies, a fighting family who are legends in their native Brazil.

That fight with Severen was boring for a long time but the finish was worth it. After being squished on the ground up against the corner and pounded for twenty minutes, Gracie, still from his back, slowly worked his legs up and choked the guy using his gi, legs, and forearm. Amazing. Nakamura has his tenacity, if not the jiu-jitsu.

A chess analogy...

In one of the earlier UFC fights, the slender Royce Gracie took on this 250-pound muscular Hawaiian brute named "Kimo." Kimo was wired up and came at Gracie like a freight train. Kimo actually pummeled Gracie throughout, but Gracie, who struggled to get Kimo on the ground, went on his back with legs scissored around Kimo's torso. Kimo bent over to throw punches, but Gracie grabbed Kimo ponytail while bloodying his eye with rabbit punches. Kimo finally got out of Gracie's guard (minus the ponytail), grabbed Gracie from behind and tried to slam him, but stumbled against the ropes and they went down on the ground (Gracie's domain). After Gracie manuevered his body (like a skilled middlegame manuever), he got a hold of Kimo's arm using his gi to stop Kimo from slipping away, rolled over (while holding the arm) and executed an arm "keylock." Kimo weakly tapped out to prevent a shoulder dislocation.

Gracie got a vicious beating, but it shows that one simply cannot overpower an experienced and wise opponent. In chess, how many times have we seen a hedgehog formation violently beat back a violent kingside attack? The MMA battle of striker vs. grappler is as interesting as a battle of contrasting styles on the 64 squares... Remember how Tal used to lose consistently to Korchnoi? Amazing.

Pride is better than the UFC, those Japanese know how to put on a show.

The greatest Gracie victory I saw, was when his opponnent tapped out, standing up, with Gracie hanging upside down after his arm.

I'm sorry I can't remember his opponents name, he was a Kung Fu artist who had trained with Gracie.

Well those where the days, UFC is now a parody.

I remember that Gracie fight... it was an arm bar (I believe).

I like the concept of MMA because again... it resembles chess so much. I remember seeing Tank Abbott (street fighter) lose to Donald Frye after beating him to a bloody pulp. Abbott knocked the 200-pound Frye down with a straight right!! Tank rushed in for the kill, but slipped. Frye, who was still on the ground, got behind Tank and sunk in a rear naked choke. Tank tried to squirm out twice, but eventually had to tap out. It was so disappointing to see him lose like that. It's like getting a crushing position in chess and then blundering a piece. After seeing Tank lose that fight the way he did, I promised myself never to become over-anxious in a winning chess position.

I wonder how many chess players look at mixed martial arts (or boxing) and draw lessons from these battles.

I remember that fight too, but to be honest, I've never been a fan of Tank Abbot, although he is a fascinating character. He ended up beeing a bit uh...passive...late in his career, and that did not harmonize with his style.

The strategy of Gracie Jiu Jitsu is applicable also in chess. You look for your opponent to expose a weakness (typical a limb or the neck), then you attack that weakness with all you got, like Royce Gracie did in the aforementioned fight.

This may result in you ending upside-down (all your pieces are hanging), but if your attack was well timed and performed, you will soon see/feel/hear your opponents hand.

We're on a chess site, discussing martial arts, and we're not even off topic! To our excuse, Mig started it all :)

Not that anyone is interested, but I've dug up the name of Gracies opponent. The fight took place during UFC2, 1994, against Jason DeLucia.

This is the chessNINJA.com, isn't it, or have I got all this wrong...?

I'm not a big fan of Tank's either, but he added intrigue and tested trained fighters. He even beat skilled fighters (e.g., Hugo Duarte) and should've beaten Frye. I remember Tank knocked one guy cold and the guy crumpled to the floor like a pretzel.

Tank reminds me of FM Emory Tate in chess... fierce, powerful and a predator. If you can avoid getting knocked out (or mated) from an all-out relentless attack, you stand a good chance at winning. However, Emory is a much better chess player than Tank is a fighter.

Tank's vulnerability can be seen against technicians like Maurice Smith who chopped him down with Muy Thai leg kicks after Tank got tired. Can you believe big, bad Tank resigned the fight from leg kicks??

I agree... Gracie was the ultimate chess player. One fighter said that fighting Gracie is like fighting spaghetti one minute and a boa constrictor the next. Which chess player does this describe? The late Tigran Petrosian? Kramnik? Maybe Leko? (no pun intended) That would be one hard chess player to beat!

Funny, at this particular event in the english broadcast the announcer referred to "MMA as the Chess of the sports world." I then remarked, "I thought it was the other way around." ;)

"Funny, at this particular event in the english broadcast the announcer referred to "MMA as the Chess of the sports world." I then remarked, "I thought it was the other way around." ;)"

That 'chess is the mma of the nerd world'? lol jk.. But yes, as I watch ufc right now, it is chess of the sports world. Always having to think 3-4 moves ahead and when you get the perfect chance, attack and destroy. Excellent comparison. Im sure a lot of chess practitioners are fans of mma and vice versa...

Jujitsu was developed to give a man with a disadvantage in strength and size a chance to defeat his greater opponent.A position is gained where a body part is isolated and ganged up on by the attaker, and is now able to overwhelm the body part.Games like the Immortal show over and over where just enough material is used to defeat the opponent.The opponent has a much larger army but the extra strength is not in the area of combat and therefore has no bearing on the outcome of the battle.

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    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on February 22, 2005 3:03 AM.

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