Great Players Teaching Good Players


Dan has known how to troll me since he first got here, and he hasn't lost his touch:


Hey Doc, this is completely random, but apologies as I don't have a way to reach out more directly :P

I wanted to see if you had come across this Gary Kasparaov Masterclass (very high production online course) about chess. No idea how great of a specific learning experience it would be, but based on what I know about you, the cost might be worth it solely for the entertainment value. Give a watch to the trailer at least. Here's the link:


Very familiar with the approach, with the format which is popular in chess, and with Kasparov himself at least in terms of his reputation.  Like Mo Dawg would be familar with Lee Trevino, let's say.

Anybody who put the necessary time into this course would become a much better player.  Kasparov uses "the Russian training system" which methodically focuses on weaknesesses, not strengths.  It's a life lession; we get good at 18-foot side shots and so we practice those the rest of our lives, not crossover dribbles or boxing out.  A golfer gets good at his 1-wood and so spends 75% of his time on full shots off the driving mat, rather than sand shots.  Nobody is more guilty of this than Dr. D.  :- )  Any system which knocks us out of "studying what we're good at" is a good thing.


The course is targeted to 1300-1700 players, so, the top 30 or so high school players.  It's like Hisashi Iwakuama offered to come give 20 lessons to your local fringe All-Star high school pitcher of limited talent.  Also, there is little or no interaction with GM Kasparov; it is not 20 lessons targeted to the player's needs; it's a pre-recorded DVD series with no tailoring to invididual strengths or weakenesses.  To get Kasparov to work with you personally I think the going rate is $20,000 per hour or so.  :- )

So imagine Fritz Kriesler offering to pre-record 20 violin lessons for chldren of modest talent.  The main benefit, IMHO, is if it inspires them.  The things that Kriesler could do, relative to the #2 player in the world, might or might not be something that is relevant to the player of modest gifts?


I've always been firmly convinced there is a difference between a great TEACHER (Vic Braden, Timothy LeVay, Cyrus Lakdalawa) and a great PLAYER -- who is spending about 70% of the time reminding you of his own position in the game!   ... which makes the Mariners so lucky to have Edgar Martinez - the intersection of greatness and humility.

As we all know it tends to be the backup catcher and the backup second baseman who leaves his mark as a manager; Bill Belichick himself didn't even play much.  One exception to this was Larry Bird.


Kasparov's chess course looks like a whale of a lot of fun, and his lessons would be fun and cool, though I'm not convinced he could teach you as much as a non-titled player taking $20 an hour on the internet.

From a Mariner standpoint, the takeaway IMHO is that teaching and communication comprise one set of skills, super-elite playing ability another set of skills.  Could be wrong.  :- )


Again, if you like the program and you enjoy the program, it might inspire you to scour the material for hidden bits that make all the difference in your development.  Grandmaster Peter Biyiasis, many time Canadian champion, was said to have attained GM strength with nothing more than Bobby Fischer's "60 Memorable Games" and a book on Rook Endings.

My $0.02,

Dr D



Now that our WC hopes are basicallly done done, can we just play Vogs at 1B or DH for the next 10 games.....just to see his stuff?  I like Alonzo, but let's look at the kid.  What's Alonzo going to be going for after this season, $7M per?  $9M?  $10M?

Let's see what the kid has and if Tacoma was good for him.

RockiesJeff's picture

Finally getting a few minutes to get on here. Sorry for the silence but been extra busy coaching the high school golf team, trying to make some extra to offset the extra mortgage-like payment from Obamacare and just plain tired, getting old - the results compounding from car accident years ago! 

Keith, I got to sit with Vogs parents at an AAA game here against the Rainers. Very nice people. I hope the best for Vogs. Looks like he has great hand/eye....and hope the M's have a healthy year ahead of them!! 

Bat, thanks for being there for Jeremy. Frustrating summer after an excellent spring. 

Hope the Huskies can kick the Buffalos all over Boulder tomorrow!!!

Have missed you all!

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