Nakamura won the match 3–1, further cementing his reputation as one of the best blitz players in the world, despite having not been invited to the 2009 World Blitz championship. Clearly Novikov did not see this brilliant tactical shot as he used up most of his time trying to come up with a good move. Nakamura skipped the Chess World Cup 2009 in favour of the London Chess Classic in December 2009. Kc1 Bd6~~ After the game, when I analysed with Novikov, he suggested this line. In the end he had to settle for a losing endgame down an exchange. In November 2009, Nakamura participated in the BNbank blitz tournament in Oslo, Norway. He reached the final by winning all 12 of his games. 2 and reigning World Blitz Champion Magnus Carlsen. Although he drew with the black pieces against eventual winner Magnus Carlsen and with white against former world champion Vladimir Kramnik, Nakamura failed to win a game during the tournament and ended in seventh place out of eight. I did not find anything which was winning for White, and I think that Black is at least even in this position if not better. Nakamura began 2010 playing first board for the United States at the World Team Chess Championship held in Bursa, Turkey. who won the 2011 edition of Tata Steel Group A and represented the United States at five Chess Olympiads, winning a team gold medal and two team bronze medals.
In May 2014, when FIDE began publishing official rapid and blitz chess ratings, Nakamura ranked number one in the world on both lists. Nakamura qualified for the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004, contested in Tripoli, Libya, and reached the fourth round, defeating grandmasters Sergey Volkov, Aleksej Aleksandrov, and Alexander Lastin before falling to England's Michael Adams, the tournament's third-seeded participant and eventual runner-up. Chess Championship (held in November and December 2004), scoring seven points over nine rounds to tie grandmaster Alex Stripunsky for first place. On June 20, 2005, Nakamura was selected as the 19th Frank Samford Chess Fellow, receiving a grant of ,000 to further his chess education and competition. Nakamura defeated Stripunsky in two straight rapid chess playoff games to claim the title and become the youngest national champion since Fischer. Nakamura finished the tournament without a loss and, in the seventh round, defeated grandmaster Gregory Kaidanov, then the nation's top-ranked player. Following that victory, Nakamura played a challenge match dubbed the "Duelo de Jóvenes Prodigios" in Mexico against Ukrainian grandmaster Sergey Karjakin and defeated his fellow prodigy, 4½–1½. In the same year he won the 16th North American Open in Las Vegas.