Let’s have a closer look at the Magnus Number data!
This plot shows the distribution of the Magnus Number:
Don’t be fooled by the logarithmic scale: 54.2 percent of the chess players do not have a victory path to Magnus Carlsen. For those who do, the values of the average and median are 5.86 and 6 respectively, while the largest Magnus Number is 28.
At first, the average and median seem lower than you might expect. However, the theory of six degrees of separation can be applied to the Magnus Number too.
During his reign as world chess champion, Magnus Carlsen has played 523 FIDE rated games, using standard time control. He won 193 of them, lost 34 games and made 296 draws, which corresponds to a score of 65.2 percent. Needless to say that, in those games, Carlsen had to face serious opposition, as the vast majority of his opponents were fellow chess grandmasters and world top players!