7 Best Chess Opening Traps in the Scandinavian Defense

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In this video lesson, GM Igor Smirnov talks about the 7 best chess opening traps in the Scandinavian Defense. A lot of you have requested us to do a video on this, and so here it comes!

The Scandinavian Defense follows the opening moves 1.e4 d5, which is a very common choice of opening for those below a 2000 rating. A lot of chess players like to play this opening because it’s a bit tricky. In this video lesson, GM Igor Smirnov will be sharing with you the traps that you can use either for White or for Black and, therefore, you can use them regardless of the color you are playing.

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#IgorNation #ScandinavianDefense #ChessTraps #OpeningTraps #ChessOpenings


  1. Thank you! Very helpful and abstract really…think outside the box

  2. How about @14:04, Na4, followed by Bb4, to counter c3.
    Or even QxBg5 instead of Na4.
    Wouldn't Black get out on top materially at the end.

  3. Hey GM, I just wanted to say thank you so much, I get so annoyed by getting pushed around by this and your videos have been soooo helpful 🙏🏼🙏🏼

  4. 4:26 if they don’t move their rook it’s checkmate with knight to c7

  5. 6:41 why it would be a end game bcs black can escape that check and potentialy capture knight? Can someone explain?

  6. By far the most common response i get is Qe5 check. Not mentioned here unless i missed it.

  7. Thank you for all the content you make. This channel is one of the best to come to for openings I find tricky to play against

  8. In the 2nd trap, the queen could have gone to C5. Then after losing his rook in the fork, he can immediately pick up the bishop and likely trap the knight as well.

  9. In the second trap isn't there knight to d4

  10. At4.43second there was opportunity to chqmate byB7C

  11. Regarding the line you give at the 10:00 mark you might wish to add a couple of comments. First it isn't at all clear why black simply can't snag the b3 bishop with 6…Na5. The sacrifice 7. Bxf7+ is unsound so where is white's advantage after any move and the subsequent Nxb3? lichess does list 6…Na5 although it's only the 4th choice with 9 games in the database. According to Stockfish 15.1 white can eke out a minuscule edge (<.5), but I find that suspect as black has no structural defects and keeps the bishop pair. A GM might squeeze out a win with white, but practically speaking this can easily go wrong for a novice/beginner playing white. Secondly you might wish to comment on 14. Rd1 Qxg5 (black gives the queen back hoping to enter a survivable ending a piece up) which is a much better try than the immediately losing 14…Be7. At first glance my gut feeling was that black is still lost and indeed that is the case, but this could easily go off the rails for a novice/beginner who is confronted by 14…Qxg5 for the first time. Play would continue 15. c3+ Ke3 16. O-O threatening Rf3+ Ke2 Rd2+ Ke1 Rf1#. 16…Qxf4 fails to Rfe1# so black will soon be mated as all other alternatives fail. You present an enterprising line which makes good study material for beginners, but like many of your openings it is predicated on a specific move order which could easily be sidestepped by the opponent. So in a sense you're presenting "hope chess". In this specific instance black could easily find the innocuous 6…Na5 without even analyzing too deeply so your line is not a good choice for a novice/beginner who can easily find themselves adrift in unfamiliar waters. I do recommend your content to my students though with the caveat "trust but verify". 🤔

  12. 20:11 B-a5 wins B's queen for two minor pieces which is not as good as winning a whole rook but hey, won queen!

  13. Can u please analyze if white plays d5 directly instead if A3 ataquing the knight? It's one of the last traps where the white queen gets trapped.

  14. What if after the Q takes the pone, we move it to E6?
    It is very risky but I was able to check mate a few opponents in 7 moves.
    Would be interesting to look at those variations.

  15. Your teaching style is just insane. Please continue making videos like this. I am addicted to this channel and also binge watch your videos everyday.

    You are the most legendary chess coach on youtube.

    Keep it up

  16. 20:10 After Kd8 Ba5 wins a queen followed by Nxb7 or am I missing something?

  17. You’re a fantastic chess player Igor, I watch and learn new tactics and has improved my chess playing especially with players pulling the old schoolers mate on me they come off second best. Thanks Igor

  18. My oppenent always checks me with his queen after Nc3. How do i play against this?

  19. 18:35 the correct move is to take the bishop with the rook, if he takes the king it is mate in 4

  20. At 13:49
    you say that Black cannot do anything against c3#,
    but actually can play Nd5, and postpone the "end",

    these are the suggestions of Stockfish, this ending is amazing
    (both players play the best moves, if Black does not play like this, the checkmate comes sooner):
    … Nd5, c3+ Nxc3, bxc3+ Ke3, 0-0 Nd4, Rfe1+ Ne2+,
    Kf1 Qxg5, Rxe2+ Kxf4, Kg1 Kd5, d4+ Kf5, Rf1+ Qf4, g4#

    So White sacrificed the queen in move 9,
    and then after this "chase", in move 24,
    after 15 moves without a queen (!) White can finally checkmate Black,
    it's one of the fanciest end of a match. 🙂

    However, I think no human can calculate that, only an AI can do this. 🙂

  21. 24.06
    What if white plays Pawn to d5 instead of pawn a3

  22. I'm so sick of patzers throwing there d5 pawn out like this. It's so amateur. I always punish them.

  23. U never cover if your play black and scandi defense and white passes your pawn instead of capture

  24. 28:01 on the last trap. Why black doesn't push pawn d4 to d5? Many of these traps rely on the opponent playing the worst possible move.

  25. In my elo they give me a check always after they take with the queen..What to do after that?

  26. Think at 24:06 it's important to point out what happens after d5 immediately …b5 is a tricky move to find.

  27. Probably one of the most annoying opening defenses. Thanks Igor!

  28. You take up to much time to explain and this is not of use at all.

  29. These traps are so amazing till I fail everyday to expert level computer chess but I continue to sturdy them because I first began playing chess in oknawa Japan in 1971 ,my teacher who knew these traps would beat me unmercifully and now in 2023, I can't believe I have actually found these secrets.Well I consider them to be secret because I simply haven't discovered them in all these eventhough I have beatened all my opponents except one, the teacher,a Marine by the last name Berg from California.Thank you and all the others for sharing these valuable secrets with me and payday I intend to purchase a chess library 🤣

  30. I think youtube viewers dont properly study to their own level and watch things like this to make themselves feel like they are a higher level without it having any practical applicability

  31. thank you so much for that first trap!

  32. Great tactics. But what if you are black?

  33. Sir, at the time 4.30, when black takes the promoted queen, white can mate by playing knight c 7 check. It is not just a piece more, it's a mate in one ! 4:30

  34. Sir, at 11-40 no need to sacrifice the queen, as no chance of mate. At 12-34 white has better take B x Q. No need to give a check by knight E 4. Because knight E 5 is already under threat by the king. If black takes B by rook, White can take Knight by Knight. Black rook will be in danger by knight. So, black takes knight. Now white can take Black's Bishop. If black takes Bishop by knight, White's Bishop and Knight are in danger. Save the knight by pawn. Now black can't take Bishop by knight because then knight into knight.. check and white gets the rook. Black's Bishop on D 1 is still not safe.

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