Originally Posted by Dire
What I always see is bad players will often just more or less give up after getting beat down. They'll start moving very quickly doing nothing but shuffling pieces waiting for the inevitable. A good player will start fighting harder than ever where one mistake will be enough to turn the tables.
I strongly agree with this, because fighting in worse positions is most of what got me from being an 1800 who thought he could play like an expert to actually being an expert. In a recent tournament, I was worse at some point in every game, and was often way down on the clock as well, but went 5-1 to finish tied for first, including a game in which my opponent (actually, my highest-rated opponent of the tournament) missed a pin on his queen when I had about 35 seconds to his 35 minutes.
I also had a game at the end of last year where I dropped a pawn against a 2177 almost right out of the opening, but he traded into an endgame with queens and bishops of opposite color where I had the winning chances despite still being down a pawn. Of course, I aimed at this endgame once I saw the possibility. I didn't play it as well as I could have and he had some drawing chances, but in the end he lost on time in a lost position with less than 30 seconds (plus the all-important 5-second delay) on my own clock.