Hans Niemann publicly blaming Hikaru Nakamura. Is it payback?
After a couple of loud days full of tweets, streams, and drama, Hans Niemann decided to respond to his critics and directly ask Nakamura’s comments on his late interview, and – maybe – his apology.
You know what happened! Magnus Carlsen lost with white against Hans Niemann in Round 3 of the Sinquefield Cup 2022, withdrew from the tournament, tweeted a video of Mourinho titled “If I speak, I am in big trouble”, Nakamura immediately streamed saying: “I think Magnus believes that Hans probably is cheating”, revealed that Chesscom has banned Hans for 6 months from any money prized tournament, and it was right then when the majority of social media community started straightforward accusing Hans for over-the-board cheating.
After Round 5, Hans had the opportunity to respond to his critics thoroughly, explaining even his accent! “So all these things saying that I’m faking an accent, and that I’m putting on some façade, that is like the most ridiculous thing ever said, and anyone using my new-found accent to make any conclusions about anything chess-related is absolutely insane. I live in a suitcase for the past 2 years, I don’t spend any time in America, I only speak to chess players who have bad English, so maybe think, maybe I’m a product of my environment.” Hans said.
On his g3-Nimzo, Hans explained that Magnus plays the Catalan quite often lately, saying: “It’s not a miracle, it’s actually me being extremely tedious and going through every single possible transposition or line that he could play in the Catalan.”
To justify his post-game mistake at the interview he said: “After the games, first of all, you’re extremely tired, and it’s extremely difficult sometimes to recollect the things that you’re talking about, the moves, the variations. It’s not like I’m coming in here full of energy, and especially in the analysis, sometimes you just simply just miss things. The notion that I simply can’t speak about chess at a high level is completely ridiculous. I’m a very intuitive player, I made a gut call to play Qg3, and it paid off. Even if you look at the pattern of my games, I’m clearly missing many, many chances and it’s extremely human chess.”
On cheating online Hans admitted that yes, he has cheated online, when he was 12 and in random games when he was 16. “I made this mistake. I was confronted by Chesscom, I fully admitted, and I stopped playing Chesscom. Now what I want people to know about this is that I’m deeply, deeply sorry for my mistake and I know that my actions have consequences, and I suffer those consequences.”
Hans also shared a very important moment in his life, when he saw Magnus, his hero, for the first time. “When I was 8 years old Magnus Carlsen came to an exhibition in California and my mom took me there, or maybe I was 9, I’d just started playing chess, and he was doing a blindfold simul and there was an option to bid on it. When they were bidding on it, it got to $1000, and became too much, and my mum was, no, no, if you really want it, we’ll do it. She was ready to make a financial sacrifice so I could play. And I said, no, no, no mum, one day I’m going to play him for free, and instead I got a signed big chess piece, and that happened.”
Hans summed up, highlighting how important chess is for him: “Just before I go, I thank you guys for giving me the chance to speak and I’m sure many people are going to be seeing this and I just would like to hope that everyone keeps an open mind and understands that chess is my entire life and I have sacrificed everything for this game and I’m willing to do anything to improve myself and to improve at chess, so I’m sorry but chess is everything to me, so that’s all I need to say.”
After that, Hans tweets are talking directly Nakamura, suggesting to first watch his whole interview and then accuse him for cheating.
After a long silence, Hans tweets again, this time tagging Hikaru and asking if anyone is going to take accountability for the damage they’ve done.
A bit later, Hans tweets again saying that Hikaru is playing the victim now, after he said on one of his streams that “They’re going to blame him for this whole situation”.
Meanwhile, people keep unsubscribing from chesscom due to the – as they call it – unfair decision to delete Hans, and they’re also asking Magnus and Hikaru to apologize.