Nicholas Menalaus MacLeod was a Canadian chess champion. In addition to winning the Canadian championships in 1886 and 1888, he also became famous for participating in the simulcast against Emanuel Lasker (1892). The future world champion Lasker suffered his only loss against MacLeod. The King’s Gambit was also played in this game, although only in the rejected version.
A knight move in the MacLeod’s Defense (1. e4 e5 2. f4 exf4 3. ♘f3 ♞c6) is considered a waiting maneuver, much like Fischer’s defense is based on a pawn move on d6. It is not one of the most used variants of the King’s Gambit, as the knight will be exposed to attack by White’s central pawns too soon.
So, why did I analyze this game? It demonstrates several mistakes both players did in the opening phase (along with the better alternative suggestions), and shows several nice attack patterns. The importance of open files and diagonals is very significant there as well.