RZA To Defend His Chess Championship in Anaheim This Weekend

Categories: WTF

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If you ever pegged RZA as someone who played chess, the kind of player willing to take on all-comers at a tournament of the game of kings, then congratulations--you're a better judge of character than I am. Let that sink in for a second...RZA of Wu-Tang Clan is participating in the Chess Kings Invitational at the Anaheim Business Expo, a celebrity chess tournament this weekend. Just when you don't think the story can get any better, it does.

The rapper will defend his title in an eight-man speed chess tournament (whatever that means). RZA won the first HHCF (Hip-Hop Chess Federation) heavyweight title belt in 2007. Who knew chess had weigh classes, let alone championship belts?! Incredulously, this sounds like something that should be broadcasted on the Ocho (remember that channel in Dodgeball?) at minimum, maybe even Pay-Per-View.

RZA isn't the only celebrity who will be throwing down in the tourney. Other rappers including Dilated Peoples' Rakaa Iriscience, Mike Relm, DJ Rob Flow, and Quadir Lateef are also slated to participate in the event.



All of this boils down to who knew there was such a prominent chess scene in the hip-hop community? Before this, the only chess player I ever heard of was Bobby Fischer, and it has been well documented about his own personal demons, but knowing that, one can't help but shake his or her head with disbelief at this event. What's next, country singers racing horses? Better yet, what about rock bands owning sports teams? Oh, wait. While all seem unlikely, stranger things have happened, like Elvis hanging with Richard Nixon.

"I am looking forward to the upcoming chess battle at the HHCF Chess Kings Invitational in Los Angeles," the man who played Samurai Apocalypse in Californication said in a press release. "To those knowing I have to defend my belt, get ready to protect ya neck."

If that doesn't warm your heart, I honestly don't know what will. While this comes as a surprise to me, apparently the rapper has had his own chess app since the end of 2011. I never would have thought a member of Wu-Tang would be a master chess player. Then again, I'm probably stupid to think otherwise knowing the Tao of the Wu and all.

The silver lining of the event is that it's for charity. The funds generated from this event will go to public schools in Los Angeles. So if you're bored this weekend, head down to the event and hey, you may experience something you never have before. And since when is that a bad thing?


See also
10 Punk Albums to Listen to Before You Die
10 Goriest Album Covers
10 Most Satanic Metal Bands

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76 comments
Maze714
Maze714

Let that sink in for a second...Daniel Kohn has no business writing about Chess or Hip Hop! hmm

Maze714
Maze714

This reads like an "article" from The Onion.  Unfortunately, the joke is on the author this time.

Revel Sims
Revel Sims

36 chambers. it's all there if you were listening

lgonzalez714
lgonzalez714

Damn the OC Weekly never gets it right with Wu-Tang, they write this article so damn awestruck and ignorant. The most basic research will tell you several Wu members play chess - Including Rza's cousin GZA . This likely holds true to other hip-hop groups, but this is the 2nd glaring example I see from them specific to Wu Tang, and frankly It's embarrassing. Please guys make us look good. 


Respectfully yours, 

Larry

Donnie Weis
Donnie Weis

If you read his book you'd know chumps

Root Mel
Root Mel

Would like to go love chess

Kat Lai
Kat Lai

Dylan James DeBrickishaw Winchels haha this is awesome

Victor Ramirez
Victor Ramirez

Wu-tang clan ain't nuttin to fuck wit! There's no place to hide as I step inside the room

CJ Saavedra
CJ Saavedra

"El Saavedra Position" RZA knows what's up with Chess Boxin'

Richard T. Hagen Jr.
Richard T. Hagen Jr.

Nic Hall Won't let you down nark. I got to brush up on my skills at chess.com!

Nic Hall
Nic Hall

Richard T. Hagen Jr. defend that title nark.

Fernando Acevez
Fernando Acevez

Wu........ I bet h he drops a freestyle while spanking doods.

Erik R. Winston
Erik R. Winston

Who knew??? Anyone who's down with the Wu!!! Bong! Bong!

John Wareham
John Wareham

If you know any details about Wu Tang Clan and the group's fascination with martial arts, his being good at chess shouldn't surprise you. On top of that, RZA is pretty cerebral with his thoughts and words

Emerson Hemendes
Emerson Hemendes

the RZA, the GZA, ol' dirty bastard, inspect dah deck, raekwon, the chef, u-god, ghostface killah and the method!

Maze714
Maze714

+1.  What passes for 'journalism' these days is laughable.  If the 20- "writer" of this article did ONE scintilla of research, he would have known that the overwhelming majority of RZA's production is heavily-laden with chess references...there's like 18/album for his cousin, GZA too.

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