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GM Davorin Kuljasevic - Mastering Piece Trades - Video 2

Opening: :

Player(s):

In the previous chapter, we discussed the fundamental principle of trading worse pieces for the opponent’s better counterparts. In this one, we will take this idea one step further to discuss the importance of trading the opponent’s key piece.

What is a key piece? It is a piece that has the greatest strategic importance in a certain position. Depending on the position, it can be:

  • A piece on a strong central outpost
  • A piece that ensures a certain type of advantage for the opponent
  • The most dangerous attacking piece
  • The king’s key defender
  • The key defender of a certain positional weakness
  • A piece that blocks the passed pawn, etc.

As you can see, there are many ways a piece can exert great influence in a certain position, but the common denominator is this: if we imagine that piece is gone, the opponent’s position will deteriorate. Since a piece trade is one of the least costly ways to achieve this, once we identify the opponent's key piece, we might want to prepare a move or a maneuver to trade it

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