This Saturday, four new teams will enter the PRO Chess League Summer Series. The Armenia Eagles, Moscow Wizards, and Mumbai Movers each will be looking to earn a spot in the Summer Series Championship. Alongside the Eastern Division heavyweights, the Sao Paulo Capybaras will be looking to make the most of their PRO Chess League debut.
PRO Chess League pundits have struggled to pick a clear favorite to win the group. While Armenia, the 2018 PRO Chess League champions, was initially considered a lock for the playoffs, fans have favored the three other teams in the group—especially Sao Paulo. That makes Saturday’s Group C Live Club Matches particularly important as teams look to get a head start in the standings.
2019 PRO Chess League Summer Series | Group C Standings
While teams will be counting on their star players, they will also be counting on you, the fans, to help them progress to the Summer Series Championship! To help your favorite teams make the cut, make sure to join their clubs and play in this Saturday’s Live Club Matches.
Armenia Eagles vs. Mumbai Movers
Saturday, July 13, at 7 a.m. Pacific
Why Armenia wins: The Eagles look to reassert their PRO Chess League dominance in this Summer Series after a disappointing showing in San Francisco. To open the group stage, Armenia faces the Mumbai Movers, a team they have beaten four times in the past two years. While the Eagles have the fewest fans in the Summer Series, GM Zaven Andriasian, touting a career 114 games, will be the most experienced PRO Chess League player on Saturday.
Why Mumbai wins: For the Movers, this is it. After another painful playoff loss to the Armenia Eagles, Mumbai knows that this Saturday might be their best chance yet to upset their PRO Chess League nemesis. General Manager IM Nubairshah Shaikh is counting on GM Farrukh Amonatov and, more importantly, his larger fan club to beat the Eagles. If the Indian side can knock off Armenia, their chances of making the playoffs are quite strong.
Moscow Wizards vs. Sao Paulo Capybaras
Saturday, July 13, at 9:30 a.m. Pacific
Why Moscow wins: PRO Chess League pundits have been picking General Manager GM Vlad Dobrov‘s side as a potential Cinderella team in this year’s Summer Series. The Wizards enter Group C after a largely successful debut season in 2019, which includes earning a playoff spot in the Eastern Division. This week blitz specialist GM Boris Savchenko will represent Moscow as his team looks to upset the newest dark-horse pick to win the Summer Series.
Why Sao Paulo wins: The PRO Chess League’s newest team is already proving to be a dangerous force in Group C. On top of having the best fan growth in the Summer Series, Sao Paulo’s recent signing, GM Alireza Firouzja, makes the Capybaras an instant title contender. Hundreds of fans are ready to play for Brazil’s first-ever PRO Chess League team, making Sao Paulo the favorite, even without General Manager GM Krikor Sevag Mekhitarian in the lineup.
Predicting the PRO Chess League Summer Series Champion: Fan Take With IM David Pruess
Each week Chess.com will reach out to streamers to make their picks for the Summer Series Championship. IM David Pruess (@dpruess) is this week’s featured streamer as Chess.com’s main host for the PRO Chess League Summer Series.
Pruess is a regular host for Chess.com’s top events like the PRO Chess League, Junior Speed Chess Championship, and the ChessKid Games. When David is not commentating, he can be found streaming on his channel, twitch.tv/dpruess, often covering the San Francisco Mechanics:
When asked about his picks for the PRO Chess League Summer Series Championship, Pruess gives this insight:
“Lots of exciting teams in the Summer Series! As I write this, I’m excitedly awaiting the debut of the Sao Paulo Capybaras, who I expect to be a powerhouse, eventually earning a second seed in the Series Championship. But when it comes to the Championship, it will be the familiar top teams of the 2019 season that will have what it takes to win. Again. The vagaries of seeding cause Saint Louis and Chengdu to face off in the quarterfinals, which will be the match to watch, as the winner will go on to win the Summer Series Championships.
Group D will also be special to watch with the biggest overall fan base of any group, which will probably mean some huge club matches! The Blizzard will probably have to settle for third and the Twitter Vote to get their place in the Summer Series Championship, but once there, they could make a run out of it—till they hit a Final Four team.”
IM David Pruess’ Bracket:
Disagree with Pruess’ picks? Make your picks in the comments and play in the PRO Chess League Summer Series this Saturday, July, 13 at 7 a.m. Pacific. To watch the official coverage, visit Twitch.tv/chess and follow the channel to get notifications for the Summer Series.