2004 MVP 
GM Hikaru Nakamura

    Nakamura had an incredible year. He has established himself on the International scene. This is the 2nd White Knight Award for Hikaru Nakamura. In 2003, it was a great honor to give him the United States True Grit award.  In 2004 he showed his true grit by getting to the 4th round at the 2004 FIDE Knockout. He had an incredible run. Nakamura ousted Alexander Lastin (RUS), Aleksej Aleksandrov (BLR), and Sergey Volkov (RUS). Nakamura was finally ousted by a Michael Adams, who ranks in the top 10 of the world.  Nakamura then when on to win the 2005 US Championship. He was a front runner from the start of the championship. He won the title in an incredible tie breaker against Alexander Stripunsky.

     Nakamura was not done yet, he then went on to decisively defeat fellow wonder kid Sergey Karjakin in a 6 game match in Mexico. It was an exciting match between two shooting stars of the chess world. Nakamura won 4 games, lost one and drew one. Lets not forget it was Sergey Karjakin who defeated World champion Vladimir Kramnik in a blitz playoff game at Dortmund in 2004.  Nakamura at 16 years of age, has a very bright future ahead of him. Without question, Hikaru Nakamura is the United States Most Valuable Player. 

     I can see an International MVP in the future.  Mr. 3 time US Champion GM Alexander Shabalov made the following comment "Hikaru Nakamura, though I still think he needs a little work in this area (concentration). If he does solve it, none of us will have a chance." Hikaru likes history and math. That doesn't surprise me one bit, both are necessary components of a good chess player. He is also a very good tennis player.  His goal is to become World Champion some day. In a recent interview, Nakamura make the following MVP type remark, when he said "there is  no point to accepting draws."

 Other  accomplishments in 2004
 First place at Western States Open
 First place at the NY Masters 
 2nd place at the 32nd World Open - .5 points behind Varuzhan Akobian

 Nakamura also made his presence known in the international area. 
 He place 4th place at 2004 Corus GM B group
 He also finished 1.5 points from first place at  the 2004 Reykjavik Open. He took 23rd place out of 77.

 This reporter expects to see Nakamura on the 2006 US Olympiad team

The showdown in Mexico - Nakamura vs. Karjakin
US Championship in San Diego
2004 FIDE KO in Libya
Nakamura vs. Stripunsky- rapid showdown that decide the 2005 US Championship

Hikaru Nakamura - Chess Reporter

2003 MVP Award