Hikaru Nakamura versus Magnus Carlsen produces bullet classic

Hikaru Nakamura versus Magnus Carlsen

There is no bigger rivalry in chess today than Hikaru Nakamura versus Magnus Carlsen. And its latest renewal did not disappoint chess fans watching from around the world.

The two chess greats met once again, this time in the grand finals of the 2023 Bullet Chess Championship. It was just as epic a clash as fans have come to expect, and the winner was wholly deserving.

Nakamura defeats Carlsen in Bullet Chess Championship

The 2023 Bullet Chess Championship ultimately saw Hikaru Nakamura defeat Magnus Carlsen in the finals. It was a hotly contested match between the two. Nakamura took an early lead and at times led by several games. But Carlsen, rated as the world’s top player and several times the world’s chess champion, would not go down without a fight.

Carlsen pushed his way back into the match, tying Nakamura and forcing a six-game overtime period. The two went back-and-forth there as well, but Nakamura never faltered and ultimately beat his rival by a score of 17-15.

Hikaru Nakamura versus Magnus Carlsen is without a doubt the biggest rivalry in the game, and this match was a great reminder as to why. The bullet chess format, which saw each player given only 60 seconds to make their moves with no time added, produced lightning-quick matches that were so fast, the computerized evaluation of the games could hardly keep up.

Nakamura has long been known as a particularly strong player in faster time controls, but he may now be in his best overall form regardless of format. He has elevated his classical chess ranking to #2, trailing only Carlsen, and his dominance in faster time controls remains.


Carlsen’s form has at times been questioned following his decision not to defend his world champion title, but he has made clear in this event and some others that he’s still capable of playing at the game’s very highest level.

Fans are already looking forward to the next time they’ll see the great Hikaru Nakamura versus Magnus Carlsen rivalry renewed.

Author image

Written by Jared Wynne

Jared Wynne has been covering gaming and esports for the past two decades. He's a former competitor in Counter-Strike, and still counts it among his favorite games along with RPGs like Baldur's Gate and Mass Effect. He studied journalism at the University of Texas at Austin, has been published at such outlets as The Daily Dot and The Esports Observer, and is the former Editor-in-Chief at You can find him on Twitter / X at @JaredWynne.

diablo 4 lilith

Diablo 4 developers on patch 1.1: “We know it’s not fun”

All of the Zelda games on Switch, and which ones are best