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Showing content with the highest reputation since 01/20/2019 in all areas

  1. 25 points

    Personal Announcement

    I've got a couple of you on Facebook that would have seen this already. Just wanted to share it so everyone here is on the same page. I have every intention of keeping my usual level of VHL activity but obviously that could change so we'll see how things go. I just wanted you all to know about it.
  2. 21 points

    Happy Birthday VHL!

    Happy Birthday VHL!  For any of you who are unaware, today, Thursday July 18th, 2019 marks the 12th anniversary of the VHL opening its doors, all the way back on the original Invisionfree forum that many sim leagues used back in the day. A lot has happened over the years, as nearly 100 of you described last year.  With our birthday comes the annual tradition of gifts for all the league’s members, in exchange for a small amount of work, of course. This year, we are asking all of you to come up with at least three creative player names* to be used in replacing the bots in the sim, including at least two skaters and one goalie. If you'd like, you can specify which league and/or team the name would go on. As a reward, you will receive 12 Uncapped TPE, as well as a Doubles Week to be used with a Point Task submission in the next month**. The ones we like the best will be used to replace the generic "TEAM C1" names currently in the sims.  *Please remember that the league does not condone the use of slurs or foul language in the naming of its players. **Uncapped TPE and Doubles Week must both be claimed by the week ending August 18th 
  3. 18 points

    Board of Governors Re-Structuring

    As many of you may know, the Board of Governors has undergone a re-structuring. With the exponential growth the league is seeing, we felt it important to add some new voices into the mix as we continue to strive to grow with our member base. Before announcing the new additions, we would like to thank @Bushito, @Tagger, and @TheLastOlympian07 for their contributions, as they will no longer be part of the BOG. In their place, @Advantage, @Josh, @Matt_O, @Renomitsu, and @Sonnet will now be joining the BOG. In addition to the changes of seated members, @tfong will be joining as the League's @Public Liaison. His primary role will be as a secondary point of contact for all matters directed to the @Commissioner . As always, we encourage members to use the Suggestion and Complaint section for any ideas pertaining to the league. When posting anything that you feel requires the commissioners' attention, we ask that you also tag the Public Liaison, to prevent any issues from going unseen. He will also be tasked with updating the community on Current BOG Discussions, as a way of maintaining transparency into the league's operations. For a list of active BOG members, you may refer to this page, as it is updated with any, and all, BOG changes. @Members
  4. 16 points

    VHL GM Opening

    Throwing my name into the ring, this is my 3rd season GMing and I've had the honour of learning the ropes from 2 VHL GMs. My time in both Vancouver and Calgary line me up to be one of the most prepared GMs to step into a VHL position. I could list my fake accolades and what I have achieved in a short amount of time but honestly my dedication and passion speaks for itself. I run an active LR and continue to promote activity within the forum. There are many people who have applied who have been here for longer or perhaps have more laid back personalities. In the end the VHL is where I want to be, I’ve showed what I can do as an expansion GM and I enjoy a good challenge. If you have any questions, feel free to send me a message. Blade
  5. 16 points

    Halifax 21st Unveil new Logo!

    With the playoffs officially done it’s time to unveil something the league has been sitting on for a little while ago. As you know, a few seasons ago we made a monumental error of hiring a designer that had a nice portfolio but ultimately screwed us by making the stinker the a logo currently belonging to the Halifax 21st. This logo can be seen here, depicted in what should be it’s natural state: Obviously that logo was pretty much hated by everyone and for pretty valid reasons, it was awful. However we had paid for it and didn’t want to pay for another one so we lived with it. Cue a few weeks ago when I was chatting with Halifax GM @Thranduil about maybe allowing the team to re-brand. Cue then very generous offers from @jack and @Motzaburger to help the cause and we arrive, after a few weeks of revisions, at this momentous occasion. The Titanic logo (not actually but that’s what everyone took it to be) is officially sinking to the bottom of the Atlantic so that the 21st may be re-born again. I present to you not 1 but 2 new logos for the team! First up is Jack’s design which is the team’s new primary logo: And the 2nd is Motza’s design which the team will use as an alternate logo: It is the league’s hope that these new logos, while keeping the team’s name and identity, will lead a new wave of players into the VHLM and continue the traditions that Halifax has started in the team’s young history.
  6. 16 points

    Gustav's Mock Draft: S66

    Welcome to Gustav's Mock Draft, the first-ever reasonably-long, stupidly-self-explanatory-in-title, first-sentence-and-in-fact-the-entire-thing-containing-way-too-many-hyphens-because-that's-how-I-tend-to-write-sometimes--I'm sorry. It's a media spot, a mock draft at that, and I'll be projecting picks right up until approximately whenever I feel like it. Anyway...I've been thinking about doing this for quite some time now, but since that time is now running out, I now pretty much have to do it in order to not hate myself for not doing it. As a side note, this would not have been possible without @rjfryman and his magnificent draft spreadsheet, which you can find here should you be interested. I also took the liberty of taking the tiny team logos from @Renomitsu's mock draft, though I'm fairly certain I've seen them all over the place (correct me if I'm wrong; I am not worthy). So, without further ado... #1: Riga Reign (From Russia With Love) Hunter Hearst Helmsley |@Beaviss| C | TPE: 431 Yep, right about what we expected. I don't remember a time when HHH wasn't the projected #1 choice. HHH being great was one of the very first things I learned about this league--before I'd fully figured out how to earn TPE, before I even knew who Shane Mars was, and probably even before Julius Freeman existed. The first indication of any doubt at all I saw came this week with an article posted by Victor after Moscow traded down, aptly titled "I was going to draft Shane Mars 1st overall." The reason given here was that, after Helmsley's initial contract was up, it was impossible to say whether he'd end up sticking around with his team--in that case, Moscow, and in this case, Riga. The Reign ABSOLUTELY will take Helmsley here--not only did they do well this year, but they've also managed to set themselves up for success, owning draft picks and owning a lot of them. Convincing a player to stick around is, and always has been, quite a bit easier when you're winning and will be for a while. So, I can see Hedgehog not only taking the risk here, but seeing it pay off as well. #2: Vancouver Wolves (From Davos) Julius Freeman |@rjfryman| LW | TPE: 339 -Spade18 Fire me @Banackock What? Not Mars? You heard that right, the Wolves pick Freeman. And it's not even a tough decision for him--Beaviss trades up to this spot with Freeman in mind. Not only is he high up in the draft class in terms of TPE, and not only has he managed to cap every week (and, might I add, he's guaranteed to cap every week now that he has, like Beaviss and Spade, joined Recruitment Crew), but he entered the league as a free agent. He's had way less time to prepare than most others, and, though I haven't calculated it, I'd be willing to bet he's #1 or #2 in terms of earning rate. He's won quite a few points in the lottery, he's proven himself more than worthy research-wise (see my preliminary statement), AND he just recently started a Conan Exiles server with Beaviss (though I'm not on it, I bet they'd both appreciate some mention for it here as they're looking for new people). So sorry, Shane Mars, but there's a new #2. #3: Seattle Bears (From Calgary) Shane Mars |@Spade18| LW | TPE: 358 Here's our year-long consensus #2, in my #3 spot (again, many apologies). I see Banackock trading up, to this spot specifically, because this draft has a definite "top 3," and this guarantees that one will be around at that point. That's perfect for a team that wants to start and end their rebuild as quickly as possible, and sticking Mars at the center of it makes it that much easier to escape, and come back even more powerful, within a season or two. No matter the placement of the top 3, there's almost no question that they are the top 3, and Seattle proves it here. #4: Riga Reign (From Vancouver through Davos) Mikko Aaltonen |@GRZ| RW | TPE: 315 I'd say that Riga is planning on selling, but they've already managed to gain control of much of the first round, and their star players--Edwin Preencarnacion, Podrick Cast, and Ryan Kastelic--are still there, making this not simply a sellout but a feat of epic proportions by management (let's not forget Kallis Kriketers). This season, however, would definitely be considered the start of a rebuild for the team had they not still managed to keep up their playing ability. Riga currently has a bit of an aging roster, with only three players S63 or newer at or above 400 TPE (and guess what? They're all S63 players, nobody newer). Minus Kriketers and Kastelic, in fact, the team isn't much beyond its core of Preencarnacion and Cast, both of whom proudly represent S61. Their picks in this draft leave them with plenty to work with, and space can, and will, easily be freed up by both retirement and trading for cheap picks. Here, I'm going BPA, simply because Riga has so many options. #5: Moscow Menace (From New York) Shawnomir Jagr |@TheLastOlympian07| RW | TPE: 296 Moscow needs, well, everyone. The Menace could use players at every position there is, and here I can see them moving around the draft board to pick not the best winger available (in Dmitri Volosenkov) but the second-best winger out there, in terms of TPE. Here's why: I can say that I believe Moscow is looking for a winger here--anything else would be a reach, other than Jet Jaguar. However, Moscow actually has a half-decent center in Mark Gebauer, so I can't see them loading up that position when they can spend time building a legitimate top line. Here I put Jagr over Volosenkov simply based on reputation--TheLastOlympian has been around forever, and while Volosenkov is likely just as trustworthy, I see Moscow taking the guarantee here. #6: HC Davos Dynamo (From Riga) Dmitri Volosenkov |@SirRupertBarnes| LW | TPE: 308 A while back, Davos was sure to pick a defenseman, and if that were still the case, I would actually put my own player here, at the risk of being labeled an egomaniac (just to be clear--I think Jerry would be a reach here, as Volosenkov and Jaguar are both very good forwards with higher TPE). The team recently traded for high-TPE defenseman Shawn Glade, however, giving them a nice linemate for Smitty. This trade gives them a bit more to work with, and though I would say that they will end up investing in defense, it's no longer a pressing need. So, here, they're quite happy to find Volosenkov, who they don't necessarily need but gives them much to work with in the trade market, whether they'd like to trade him or any other one of their rising star wingers for future assets, or, perhaps, high-TPE veterans. #7: Malmo Nighthawks Jerry Garcia |@GustavMattias| D | TPE: 286 Yes, this is me. Yes, Jaguar is at 304. No, I don't think I'd be here if this were most other teams. The fact remains, though, that the only position the Nighthawks find themselves in need of filling after the expansion draft is defense, as they only have one defenseman on the roster (Basaraba Moose). At the moment, they've got two forward lines, and a 500-TPE goalie. But the first defensive pair needs filling, and, though it's been a tight race, Garcia is the best available in terms of TPE. #8: Riga Reign (From Seattle) Jet Jaguar |@gorlab| C | TPE: 304 It's about time that Jaguar went off the board, and here we see it happen. Gorlab is an experienced member of the league (since 2014!) and brings a virtual guarantee that he'll be around and active--not that that's much of a worry with this draft class. Riga has two established centers, but they're S61. I can see the team sticking Jaguar in a winger spot, or perhaps making a trade to clear some space, but regardless of what happens, Jaguar figures to find room to play in Riga. Also, remember back at #1 when I said there were potential concerns about Helmsley's chances of staying with his first team? Here's Riga's foolproof plan B if #1 overall doesn't work out. #9: Riga Reign (From Helsinki) Aron Nielsen |@solas| D | TPE: 274 Enough of Riga picking forwards--it's time to move on as by this point they've saturated their scoring lines with new talent. Nielsen comes into the draft as the #2 defenseman TPE-wise, and, though he went through a bit of an inconsistent patch during the regular season, is back at full activity and just as good as ever with solas, a 2-time Hall of Famer, steering the ship. Reputation alone may actually be enough to put him over Garcia in some GMs' rankings, but for now, I'll put him at #9. #10: Moscow Menace (From Toronto) Owen May |@FacebookFighter| G | TPE: 266 May is a bit down in the draft rankings, but he's still got room this week to bring himself up, and I happen to know he's got an update or two on the way. He'll still be ranked below players like Bert Meyers (286 TPE) when the week is over, but the difference won't be as drastic as this article makes it seem. In May, the team gets their goalie--at the moment, they own the rights to inactive Justin Cole and semi-active Chase, but May is the class's first active goaltender, which earns him the last spot of the first round. ROUND 2 #11: Moscow Menace Arnor Sigurdsson |@bluesfan55| RW | TPE: 284 GMs are letting Bert Meyers slip here, but it seems like they all have their reasons. Here, Moscow picks up Sigurdsson--again, the team has Mark Gebauer at center, and, in fact, will welcome Victor's GM player, Vladimir Pavlov, also a center, next season. So, the Menace will opt for another forward, to complete at least one decent-looking line. #12: Calgary Wranglers Chico Smeb |@xDParK| LW | TPE: 272 Won't someone pick Meyers already? Nope! It just so happens that Calgary is lacking in every position but winger. Oddly enough, this would, for sure, be Meyers (and a steal!) if Meyers hadn't converted to center from left wing late last season. Thus, Smeb goes to Calgary, and Meyers stays on the board. #13: HC Davos Dynamo (From Vancouver through Riga) Charlie Paddywagon |@DMaximus| D | TPE: 270 At this point, Meyers not being picked is likely going to make a lot of people think I'm an idiot. In fact, I initially put him down for this pick because I thought we'd gone way too far down the board. But we're talking about Davos, who owns a good top defensive pairing but not a whole ton of depth beyond that--semi-active Cayden Saint is on the team, but Shawn Glade is S62, and who better to serve as an eventual replacement than Paddywagon, whose build (90 defense already, but not a whole lot otherwise) offers a solid foundation and quite a bit of flexibility development-wise? Meyers deserves to be here (and higher!) but Davos won't regret this pick. #14: Vancouver Wolves (From Davos) Bert Meyers |@RunnerBert11| C | TPE: 286 Honestly? Vancouver doesn't need a center either, at least not at this very moment. But at this point, there's a big drop-off in talent, and it's about time Meyers went off the board (he's got the same TPE as Garcia, who I took the liberty of projecting for #7!). The pick does make a bit of sense for Vancouver--star players Beau Louth and Rauno Palo are S61 and S62, respectively, making Gritty the only center who won't be out of the picture in a few seasons. Though Meyers won't be filling any holes immediately, he'll be an important part of the machine in a while, and the Wolves are more than happy to pick up this steal at #14. #15: Helsinki Titans (From New York) Codrick Past |@Kylrad| D | TPE: 258 Helsinki could use a winger here, but there simply aren't any here that wouldn't be a reach. So, they go for a different hole to fill and pick up Codrick Past, a defenseman who will do the job of giving them someone consistently active on defense. Though players like Sidney Crosby and Jesse Wilson are S63 and active within reason, Past gives the team a defender who consistently either caps or almost caps every week, something they don't have at the moment. #16: Riga Reign Apollo Hackett |@Renomitsu| D | TPE: 231 Here, the top players in the draft rankings are centers. And, you know what? A center would be nice given Riga's current roster. But this mock satisfies the need for a center in Riga twice over in Round 1. Aside from me scoring another point in my tagging battle with Renomitsu, this pick allows me to talk about how Riga has far less defensive depth now that they've lost Shawn Glade. For Riga, only Ryan Kastelic is a high-TPE active, and in fact, he's the only Riga defenseman active on the level most GMs would like. To be honest, I'd say defense is Riga's #1 priority in the draft, but their placement in the first round is a bit tricky--if Malmo doesn't draft a defenseman, I can see the team picking up both Garcia and Nielsen. But if Malmo does, Paddywagon is a bit of a reach at #9. It's not an emergency, though--Renomitsu has media spot claims banked through God-knows-when and is a solid pickup as a league veteran. #17: Malmo Nighthawks Rusty Shackleford |@K1NG LINUS| D | TPE: 199 What? Shackleford this high up? He's staying down in the minors another season; don't you know that? Yes, as a matter of fact, I do, and by the way, I also know he's a full 64 TPE behind Maximilian Kirbsson, who hasn't been picked yet. Here's the thing about this pick: Malmo needs defensemen, even after they've drafted Garcia in the first. They'll need at least a third defenseman on their team, and being an expansion team with no new players coming up this season, it's a hole in the depth chart almost more literally than figuratively. So why don't they pick Beau Buefordsson, who's sitting at 208 TPE and represents our last defenseman going up? Well, first, Advantage likely won't be trying to win a cup this season. It simply isn't feasible, so it doesn't really matter that Shackleford is staying down another season. Plus, his TPE earn rate, in the weeks before he was forced to stop to stay down, was a bit higher than Buefordsson's, and for that reason I have him ranked a bit higher for teams that likely aren't playing to win right away. #18: Vancouver Wolves (From Seattle) Hans Gruber |@TheFlash| C | TPE: 225 Here's another pick that isn't entirely necessary at the moment. If Gruber's drafted to Vancouver, he'd have no place to play at center, especially with Bert Meyers being picked farther up. The team could use a few defenders, but again, it's a bit of a reach at this point, even after Malmo has just reached up a bit with their last pick. Instead, I say the team picks up Gruber for some nice forward depth, and either makes a move or two or waits for its aging players to move out of the picture while Gruber develops. #19: HC Davos Dynamo (From Helsinki) Maximilian Kirbsson |@Kirby| C | TPE: 263 This pick is a bit of a development-type pick for Davos--Rylan Peace and John Madden currently hold down Davos' top spots at center, and figure to do so for most of Kirbsson's career. Though Kirbsson has slipped a bit here, as there are more active players out there, he put up some very good scoring numbers for the Houston Bulls this past season (as I should very well know) and is on every week to claim some TPE, whether he's capping or not. It's also true that he was, at the beginning of the season, quite active, so this pick could very well end up being a steal for Davos if Kirbsson returns to form. And if he doesn't, then it's no big deal--he's a solid choice for depth. #20: Seattle Bears (From Toronto) Valeri Morozov |@Dangles13| LW | TPE: 213 Guess what: Seattle only has five players on their roster. Remember what I said earlier about a few teams (Moscow specifically), about how they could use players everywhere? It's even more true for Seattle--they don't have a team full of bad or inactive players, but rather a team with five decent ones and literally nothing else. Here, Seattle will consider Beau Buefordsson, but ultimately go with Morozov--they'll be getting close to filling up two forward lines at this point. ROUND 3 #21: Moscow Menace Ludvig Sederstrom |@aleks| C | TPE: 218 Sederstrom just barely manages to fall into the third round here, and I know I'll be hearing all about it on Discord should he see this. While Gebauer is OK, a GM will want someone a bit more active to play center, and Victor grabs that here with Sederstrom, someone who hasn't claimed this week but has definite first-line potential if he's active enough. While I wouldn't say he's done so much that many GMs would be inclined to reach for him, he has definite potential to be a steal. #22: Helsinki Titans (From Calgary) Beau Buefordsson |@Radcow| D | TPE: 208 Here's where I get to predict the fate of my AGM, and predicted it is--he's going to Helsinki, and this is likely the most sure I feel about any pick at this point in the draft. Number one: though Helsinki picked up Codrick Past in the last round, they would still appreciate bringing in a new era of defensemen rather than simply just one. And number two, Radcow's GM this past season (and mine as well), Sonnet, is now AGM of Helsinki, and he's likely done quite a bit to help out Quik scouting-wise. He's more aware than anyone else that Radcow is deceptively active, despite a bit of an inactive patch halfway through the season. Buefordsson to Helsinki, and I'd be willing to put money on it. #23: New York Americans (From Vancouver) Kyle Sabertooth |@uphillmoss| LW | TPE: 199 At the moment, New York's future needs a few brilliant moves to save. They have a bit of an aging roster, and next to no meaningful picks to speak of in this draft. No one draft choice, especially in the 3rd round, will save the team, and that's why I say that the Americans are here willing to pick a player who's planning on staying down in the VHLM this season, especially since he's also a player who's more active than any still on the board above him. The team can always call him up should they want to, and, if they don't, he's definitely a player who will make an impact for the team next season. #24: Riga Reign (From Davos) Kolur Bjoernsson |@jblock3| G | TPE: 172 Bjoernsson gets the nod here because goaltender is the only position that Riga hasn't gone for yet. Kriketers is S63 and tearing it up, but the team doesn't have a backup and would appreciate it for the games in which they have to use one. In the future, we may see Bjoernsson going somewhere else as valuable trade material for, say, more picks, something that they're obviously not too opposed to in Riga. #25: Moscow Menace (From New York) Edgar Tannahill |@gregreg| LW | TPE: 191 I've got a good feeling about this. In the past, gregreg has been very much in favor of being drafted to Moscow. He's also, in recent memory, outwardly expressed a wish to be called up immediately. I can see Moscow reaching for him here--he's the only active, 190-some TPE VHLMer who isn't trying to stay down, and is only down this far because he created a bit late. I wouldn't be surprised to see him go sometime in the second round, but this pick is one of the first I could really see him being chosen at. #26: Riga Reign Nethila Dissanayake |@nethi99| RW | TPE: 199 Riga doesn't have any pressing needs right now, as they've managed to fill up just about every space they have with new guys. With the incoming depreciation of Edwin Preencarnacion, and the (very) recent trade of Kisshan Shan, Riga will have space for wingers on their roster before long. It's not an immediate need, given that at least one of their many centers will likely be shifted over to wing this season, so I've given them Dissanayake, a player who's staying down in the VHLM and could be waited for if Riga is so inclined. #27: Seattle Bears (From Malmo) Aleksander Rodriguez |@Jtv123| RW | TPE: 199 Here's our other 199-TPE VHLMer. Looking at Seattle's picks (three first-rounders next season), it's fairly evident that, while they're planning on rebuilding fairly quickly, they don't expect to be out of it with this draft class alone. So, they draft Rodriguez, who plans to stay down. At the moment, Seattle doesn't care about this, and it's likely that they like the idea of being able to plan around Rodriguez's arrival next season come draft time. #28: Vancouver Wolves (From Seattle) Rhye Tyr |@Plate| D | TPE: 201 Earlier this season, Tyr was battling it out with Aron Nielsen for the title of "S66's Best Defenseman." After hitting 158 TPE and falling inactive for a bit, though, he's been surpassed by a few, and though he gets on every now and then to claim something or other, he hasn't quite stuck with the strong start he had. Vancouver picks him up here for depth, as they only have two defensemen on the roster at the moment. #29: Helsinki Titans Clayton Park |@leafssteen| G | TPE: 214 Though I'd heard (or at least thought I'd heard) earlier in the season that Park was inactive, upon checking his player page I found quite the opposite. He's a welfare claimer, but takes on various other minor point tasks which distinguish him from other welfare-and-practice-facility-only players. He figures to be a solid backup for Alexander Pepper, one of the league's premier, high-TPE goaltenders. #30: Helsinki Titans (From Toronto) Jordan Tonn |@MexicanCow123| C | TPE: 200 With Tonn, the Titans add a bit of forward depth to their lineup. Right now, the team has five forwards, and while they're all reasonably solid players in terms of activity, they'll need a bit of depth. Tonn, the last non-inactive eligible player who's going up to the VHL, gives them that here, and this may very well end up being a steal, as MexicanCow's appointment to AGM of the San Diego Marlins is indicative of activity. ROUND 4: #31: Moscow Menace Guillaume Fontenette |@okocha5| D | TPE: 156 Anyone who's been paying attention to the VHLM's latest draft class knows that Fontenette, a pickup of the Mexico City Kings in this past week's VHLM Dispersal Draft, has been steadily climbing the rankings, right after I listed him as semi-active on my own draft board and moved on with my life. As a consequence, I'm forced to put him here--I believe he was below 100 just a few weeks ago, and, assuming VHL GMs do their homework on these things, he wouldn't be out of the question for even the mid-3rd round. This is Moscow's first defensive selection, and, while he won't go up to the VHL, figures to be a valuable addition to the Menace next season. #32: Calgary Wranglers John Frostbeard |@FrostBeard| RW | TPE: 184 FrostBeard is very close to Blade. Blade is very close to Bush. Calgary needs a winger, and Frostbeard is available. He'd be a good choice, too, with this pick. Starting off this past season highly active, Frostbeard trailed off a bit midway through, despite maintaining his status as an important member of the community. Recently, too, he was chosen as the new GM of the Houston Bulls (Horns Up!), a bit of a rise in status which may cause him to go off the board a bit earlier than this. If he's available here, though, expect him to be a lock for Calgary. #33: Moscow Menace (From Vancouver) Edward Vigneault |@Patpou22| D | TPE: 182 I'll be the first to say I had doubts about Vigneault's activity heading into the VHLM draft--he hung at 138 for quite some time, then brought that up to 143 and stayed there for a while too. Though largely a consistent welfare claimer, Vigneault has been known to do a media spot or two (including his first-ever media spot, infamously written in French) and has managed to re-legitimize himself with a burst of recent activity. While it's impossible to say whether he'll turn out highly valuable in the future, most teams here, and perhaps a bit earlier, will be willing to take the chance. #34: HC Davos Dynamo Juan Jaundice |@Jus| G | TPE: 166 This pick may come as a surprise to some, but Jaundice recently made a bit of a comeback, claiming a media spot and capping last week. Davos needs goalie depth, and, as by this point they will have picked up quite a few valuable skaters, they can use their fourth-rounder on Jaundice, who may, in a couple seasons' time, depending on which way his activity turns, end up as the starter. #35: Moscow Menace (From New York) Emil Passarelli |@SparrowLTD| RW | TPE: 189 Passerelli is currently in a tie, TPE-wise, with fellow right winger Mat Tocco, but I'm putting him first as Tocco has somehow gotten by without claiming even so much as welfare in the realm of one-time point tasks. Passarelli, however, is a consistent welfare claimer, giving him the edge should both continue to claim as they have been. Plus, again, Moscow will take anyone they can get. #36: Riga Reign Mat Tocco |@Matmenzinger| RW | TPE: 189 Here's that guy I was talking about in the previous pick. Like most at this point, Tocco is staying down in the VHLM, and he's simply the best player available for Riga to pick up. The fact that he is, in fact, staying down gives Riga lots of room to work with, as they have a full season to watch his progress and decide whether he's worth making room for on the roster. #37: Malmo Nighthawks Nacho |@Nacci25| C | TPE: 158 Nacho may actually go higher up the board than this, and by quite a bit, in fact, as he should be on a few "hidden gems" lists should anyone write any sometime soon. Unlike most around him, Nacho, while he doesn't tend to cap every week, is a graphics guy rather than a welfare claimer. This should move him up on many scouts' lists, and Malmo at 37 is, in my opinion, a conservative estimate. Look for him to begin to be considered around #30. #38: Malmo Nighthawks (From Seattle) AJ Axelsen |@littleboi| RW | TPE: 144 Axelsen is another hidden talent that I'd like to throw into the mix as another forward draftee by Malmo. While he does claim welfare, he's a bit like (hypothetically Moscow's) Vigneault in that he claims all his minor point tasks on top of that to make him not half bad at the end of the day. Axelsen could again be drafted higher than #38, but the pick makes sense for Malmo--they've focused on defense so far in this mock, and Axelsen provides a bit of needed forward depth. #39: Helsinki Titans Rhys Chism |@Jables| C | TPE: 156 Helsinki again goes with the forward-depth choice, and picks up a weekly welfare guy in Chism, who's recently been on the site a bit more often since his choice in the VHLM Dispersal Draft by Philadelphia. He's really only been on for welfare and practice facility every week, but he has been on every week, and actually tagged me in Philly's press conference earlier this week. He's in and out of the locker room, and the fact that Sonnet is familiar with him as a player may be convincing enough for Quik to pull the switch and pick him up here. #40: Calgary Wranglers (From Toronto) Dylan Doyle |@zepheter| LW | TPE: 116 This pick may come off as a surprise--we have Blake Laughton, a 151 TPE winger (and former teammate of mine) on the board. Doyle, however, is our first player since Nacho to not do welfare every week. While he did last week, he's written some media spots, showing definite potential to rise above many ranked above him in the future. Even if Calgary drafts Frostbeard, too, they could use some winger depth, and Doyle will give them this in a season. ROUND 5 #41: Moscow Menace Anthony Amberback |@Oost| D | TPE: 164 Amberback at 41 is a steal for the Menace, who pick up a third defenseman in the 5th round. Here, he's easily the best player available, but Moscow is perhaps the first team where this pick makes sense. Amberback claims welfare and practice facility every week, plus extra activities, and goes perhaps much later than he should here. #42: Calgary Wranglers Hunter Wagner |@Inf1d3l| LW | TPE: 169 The Wranglers here pick up Wagner, another practice-facility-and-welfare-plus-some-extra-stuff guy who will figure to form a decent combination with Frostbeard and Doyle next season. One could argue that Calgary would be overcompensating for its lack of wingers at this point, but since most of their choices aren't going up this season, #43: HC Davos Dynamo (From Vancouver) Samuel Sparrow |@Birdman| D | TPE: 154 Sparrow was recently passed by Fontenette in the TPE rankings, which also moves him down a bit in the draft. Here, we see him being picked up by Davos, who we've seen picking up Charlie Paddywagon back in the second. While Sparrow won't be going up this season, he can certainly end up being a steal in the 5th for Davos, who would appreciate a bit of support from an already-developed player once Shawn Glade begins to depreciate. #44: HC Davos Dynamo Blake Laughton |@Grape| LW | TPE: 151 Laughton comes off the board with this pick, and some might say it's about time. He's a welfare claimer, but gets on every week to claim it. Personally, I can also attest to his presence in the locker room, when he has the time for it. Look for him to go up to Davos next season for the sake of depth, and depending on his development, look for Davos to unload a forward or two in a trade. #45: New York Americans Pascal Batz |@efiug| C | TPE: 139 Though New York needs a winger a bit more than they need a center at this point, Batz gives them room to work with as he's not going up right away. He's the best forward available at the moment, and, if the team doesn't make any moves to make room, he can always be moved to wing for more ice time. #46: Riga Reign Cody Smith |@cody73| LW | TPE: 138 I'll never understand how Riga managed to get all these draft picks without giving up most of their own--and without completely selling out, to boot. Smith is a bit of a developmental choice here for Riga--he's a welfare guy, but like the others on my list, is on every week. The team can do whatever they'd like here--keep him, trade him, make room for him on the roster this season--anything. As a side note, Smith will end up being the first player ever drafted from my VHLM team, the Mississauga Hounds, and I'll admit that this mention was half of the reason I didn't stop after the fourth round. #47: Malmo Nighthawks Sunny Burst |@Sunburst| G | TPE: 114 The Nighthawks pick up Burst here, as their current goaltender is a S62 welfare claimer. Burst has been increasingly active lately, putting out what one could call a "burst" of activity prior to the expansion draft that made everyone's choices all the more difficult. Here, I can see Advantage pulling the trigger and going with the goalie, hoping that Burst's TPE will rise to a decent level before Johnny Havenk Carison is out of the league and before an early draft pick or an expensive trade is necessary for the position. #48: Seattle Bears Devin Gabella |@Gabella19| LW | TPE: 132 The Bears are here caught between Gabella and Halifax's Blake Gaudette (at least in terms of TPE level), but choose Gabella because Halifax is a Satanic cult Gaudette spent about a month as an inactive. While Gaudette seems to be back for good, with solid claims in the past couple weeks, this could hurt his draft stock a bit, and Gabella is chosen over him. #49: Helsinki Titans Ben Hafkey |@ItsMcLovin| LW | TPE: 112 So I was careful to drop the phrase "in terms of TPE level" in the last pick, and I'd like to explain exactly why here. The next player off the board is not Gaudette, but Ben Hafkey, a player who, if I remember correctly, had only 71 TPE when I first made my dispersal draft board. His activity has increased quite a bit since then, making him not only a steal for Philadelphia in the dispersal draft but a potential steal in the VHL as well, as Helsinki here digs into the TPE ratings to select him. #50: Toronto Legion Walter Clements |@cpetrella| C | TPE: 134 I actually don't have a tiny little Toronto logo to stick around the name here, as Renomitsu's mock was 4 rounds and we didn't get to this pick yet. Though I'd be very surprised if Devise actually keeps this pick, Clements is a choice that makes sense for Toronto. They need a center, first of all, and Clements is reasonably active--if I could find a more appealing acronym for "Welfare Plus Extra Stuff" than "WPES," I'd have been using it at this point, especially since Clements certainly fits the description. So! That concludes the first-ever "Gustav's Mock Draft" (I'll come up with a better name next season, I promise). Enjoy!
  7. 15 points

    Important News

    Me before the ban > Me after the ban
  8. 15 points
    Alright boys, we're doing it. Some of you might have seen my post from yesterday about Helsinki's uniform announcement. Team branding/identity was honestly the #1 thing I wanted out of the VHL when I first joined nearly a year ago, and I'm sad to say that what we currently have hasn't really impressed me. I want teams to feel like teams, with consistent color schemes, jersey player numbers, anything really that will help our virtual sim teams feel more like a world than it currently does. Thus, I'm beginning my campaign into creating a uniform set for every team in the VHL. Now, what goes into the thought process for a good jersey? Ideally, I would LOVE for people to catch on to the idea and try some jersey swaps of their own. With that in mind, these are the most important things I'm looking for in a consistent uniform design: Ease of access. I don't want to jump through hoops, here- I want everybody to be able to pick up a simple photo editing software and give it a reasonable go. Distinction. If at all possible, I'd like to at least modify ONE color of the jersey, so that it stands out from a basic NHL picture. Special cases. For example, Helsinki winning the cup was a huge motivation to switch to the St. Louis jerseys, because I can find pictures of players lifting the cup to represent our VHL team. So, I'd like to try and give most teams a jersey base that matches a cup winner, or something like that, just so people can stay consistent with it if they'd like. Some color schemes don't fall within reason, though, so I'm not going to try and stretch and warp a jersey idea JUST to meet this demand. That being said, let's get to the topic of today's post: the Malmo Nighthawks. They were the first team that really caught my eye for a project like this, as it's a tempting idea to make something that'll stick with a brand new expansion team. I also really like their color scheme, and have a really good pal on the roster to boot. So we have our subjects in mind, but how do we go about creating a jersey concept? Immediately, my mind jumped to two teams- the Buffalo Sabres and the Winnipeg Jets. Both of these teams use a dark blue as a base, along with a lighter color to highlight. This, in my mind, was the perfect opportunity to fit in the light green without it being too overbearing. Buffalo was chosen in the end to stay in line with our first and most important bullet point: I want these to be easy to recreate. The yellow trim varies quite a bit from the blue base, making it easy to separate and change without impacting other parts of the image. Winnipeg's light blue was too close to the main color, and caused problems when trying to swap it to green. Therefore, in the name of making this accessible to all, I decided to give the nod to Buffalo's jersey style. Now, without further adieu, the home sweaters (PNG renders for all players will be available at the bottom of the post): New captain Jerry Garcia @GustavMattias shows off the new home kits. As you can see, the green and blue give off a Seahawks-ish vibe, which works nicely for the color scheme that was provided within the logo. The emblem fits nicely on the front of the uniforms, and the neon green doesn't strike the eye as too bright or overbearing. You'll also notice that I removed the number from the front of the jersey; while Buffalo uses them for their NHL uniforms, I really don't think they look very good. Thankfully, removing them was simple and helped us fulfill the second bullet point- distinction. While this is a clear swap of the Sabres' home jersey, I believe the lack of a front number, changing of the logo, and changing of the trim allows the kit to stand on its own for use in signatures and graphics across the league. Second, my personal favorite, the away jerseys on a goaltender (yes, I made sure numbers were accurate to what the players wanted. This is by no means required, I just wanted to be hyper-accurate because I'm a roleplaying loser): Malmo netminder Michael Johnson @fonziGG stops the puck during a game on the road. Some color/jersey combinations just look better in white, and I think this team is a prime example of that. The green is allowed to stand as more of its own thing without overshadowing the dark blue. The pads in the base image were also styled just the right way to make this render pop. You'll notice I swapped the number and the helmet design as well- this is NOT something I'd expect out of newer members who want to give jersey swapping a try. A just got way too carried away with things and wanted to make a nice render for Fonzi's player, since I liked their team design so much. An overall view of the uniforms, featuring captain Jerry Garcia @GustavMattias and GM player Lucas Nygren @Advantage So, there we have it. I really like the way these specific swaps turned out, so Gustav and Fonzi might have some signatures to look forward to in the near future. Like I said, the PNG renders of both players are going to be available at the end of the post within a spoiler tag. I honestly had a blast putting this all together, and would love to see more teams in the league adopt something like this as a guideline, but never a requirement, to give newcomers to the league a little something to strive for once they hit the bigs. @Advantage specifically, but the general VHL public as well, let me know what you think of these mockups! If there's interest, I'll continue to flesh out a design for each and every VHL team, and even stream them along the way so people can learn how to make a jersey swap, themselves. Let's give this league a sense of identity, guys. I hope you'll be on board with that idea, at the very least. Player renders, as promised: 1,009 words, good for two weeks if I end up needing it later. I don't plan on claiming this, was just a fun idea I wanted to roll with.
  9. 14 points
    Off-Season Run-Down II - The Top Five Okay, okay, I confess - my hot take on Veran Dragomir was a little bit of a tease to put in the bottom five article, especially since Toronto falls in the top half. While there seems to be a reasonably clear hierarchy for the bottom teams, however, the top half is very difficult to differentiate - they're a bit more compelling of a story, as they're all genuinely unique. Here's a short list to summarize before we get started, though: 1) Helsinki & Toronto both have incredible top-line strength but limited depth - especially so in Helsinki's case 2) Riga doesn't have offensive star power, but can duel with the best and has an excellent D1/G. 3) Davos has a great F1 and D2 - but their first-line defense and second line of forwards have some soul-searching to do. 4) Calgary is one of the most uniquely deep teams in the league, with 7 players >500 TPE and great second lines. #5 – HC Davos Dynamo GM // @ShawnGlade Stars // RW Jake Davis Risers // S67 RW Bjorn Scoringsonn S67 C Aston Martin S67 D Guy LeGrande S66 D Charlie Paddywagon S65 RW Katie Warren After taking a beating from Riga in the regular season, the Dynamo pulled an upset in the playoffs by making some key lineup changes. Frankly, it’s a bit tough to keep track of all of the transactions Davos made in the offseason, so I’ll summarize the ones that affect this season specifically here: 1) Traded picks for RW Jake Davis 2) Traded away Rylan Peace to Toronto for four S69 picks 3) Traded away both Elias Dahlberg and Pat Svoboda for S67 and S68 picks, including Riga’s first rounders for both. 4) Traded away Codrick Past for veteran Konstantin Mulligan, while swapping picks Where does that leave S67 Davos? Frankly, they’re in a bit of the same position Riga was in last season, with 14 skaters and potentially just too many mouths to feed, but an incredibly promising future nonetheless. Their top line – with shiny new forward Jake Davis @Josh., Crimson, and John Madden – is right up there with Toronto’s top forward line and settles in at third-best in the league by raw TPE, slightly above Calgary and with a comfortable cushion over Riga’s first line. Like Calgary, Davos has defensive depth but not a lot of raw star power – defender Smitty Werbenjagermanjensen @flyersfan1453 has a whopping 640 TPE in just his third season, but is the team’s best defender by nearly 100 TPA. The team actually has 5 defenders – 6 if you project breakout latecomer Guy LeGrande @Steve to hit 350-400 TPE – that can each serve as top 4 defensemen on a given team, making them probably the deepest defensive team in the league. They may suffer a bit against the league’s top-heavy offenses like Toronto, but their second defensive will have the advantage against everyone except Calgary. Offensively, their depth is limited. Poor faceoff skill after John Madden means that one of their rookies – Aston Martin @Sullvino or Dan Gles @No_Dangles may be pushed to the second line on day one. These high-mid round picks will be taken care of nicely, as they’ll line with rising star Katie Warren and promising rookie Bjorn Scoringsonn, but Davos will face growing pains finding a second forward line that can match favorably against other teams’. High Points – Excellent defensive depth. Top-three F1 line. Great draft prepared for Season 69. Concerns – Very young (but promising) F2; D1 isn’t comparable to top European or North American teams. Projected Lines F1 // Ryuu Crimson – John Madden – Jake Davis F2 // Bjorn Scoringsonn – Aston Martin – Katie Warren F3 // [F1 extra minutes] – Dan Gles – Don Draper D1 // Smitty Werbenjagermanjensen – Konstantin Mulligan D2 // Marvin Harding – Charlie Paddywagon D3 // Alvaro Jokinen – Guy LeGrande G // Finn Davison #4 – Toronto Legion GM // @Devise Star Players // LW Veran Dragomir C Rylan Peace Risers // None (all S64 or earlier) Toronto’s one of the most interesting teams in the league. GM Devise makes a point of trading away all of his draft picks, and in return he has a pretty deep team – with seven players over 500 TPE (3-way tie for 3rd in the league). They missed the playoffs by a pretty sizable 8 points last season (73 vs. NYA’s 81), and notably had a -20 goal differential in spite of having a more mature roster than other teams. It’s pretty clear that Devise intends on continuing this trend of an older roster without any draft picks – as he doesn’t have any for the next three seasons at a minimum – and he’s got a very competitive squad to be fair. They have F1 and D1 lines that can compete with the best of them – and their top trio actually outmatches Davos’s, Riga’s, and Calgary’s – including all playoff contenders in the top five other than Helsinki. Top free agent signee Veran Dragomir @Velevra committed to the Legion within the last 48 hours, and is a major part of why the Legion are quite this high – he completes the second-best trio of forwards in the league. While Ryan Sullivan Jr. @Advantage, line partner Tzuyu @tfong, and S65 quadruple award winner Oyorra Arroyo @omgitshim aren’t obvious shoo-ins for First Team All-VHL this season, they each are perennial first-liners, are All Star worthy, and make the Legion’s top lines absolutely terrifying. I don't think Rylan Peace @Peace needs any introduction as he guns for an MVP/MOP this season with some top-drawer linemates. After the first lines, however, the Legion do have some concerns. Their TPE falls off precipitously after their third forward (as is the case with most teams), and their fourth-best defender is a 275 TPE Bolt Vanderhuge, who may pair with journeyman defender and former Reign member Cayden Saint @Symmetrik this season. While their second defensive pairing isn’t ideal, it still outpaces bottom teams’ D2s and generally should not be a large hindrance. They also have a solid starter in the net in JB Rift @Devise, who is about to start his third season in the VHL, but he doesn’t match up to Pepper, Kriketers, etc. yet. High Points – Excellent F1, D1; well-balanced second line. Tied for most players over 500 TPE in the American Conference (w/ Calgary). Re-signing Roctrion King and picking up Dragomir + Saint will give this team most of what they need and frankly could elevate them as high as #2. Concerns – D2 is not high-quality compared to most other contenders. Matthew Kai will have difficulty competing with some teams’ second lines. Limited faceoff ability across team. Average-to-good goalie may prevent Toronto from going deep. Projected Lines F1 // Veran Dragomir – Rylan Peace – Oyorra Arroyo F2 // Roctrion King – Joey Boucher – Matthew Kai F3 // Chace Trepanier – Gucci Garrop – [F1 extra minutes] D1 // Ryan Sullivan – Tzuyu D2 // Cayden Saint – Bolt Vanderhuge G // JB Rift #3 – Calgary Wranglers GM // @Bushito Star Players // LW Leph Twinger RW Diljodh Starload D Maxim Kovalchuk Risers // S65 Brady Stropko Calgary’s a pretty tricky team to assess; after losing to Vancouver in the conference finals last season, they quickly made several moves that made them potential favorites in the North American conference. These included trades for players like LW Leph Twinger @DollarAndADream and re-signing critical players like Starload @DilIsPickle and Brick Wahl @BladeMaiden long-term, while locking up veterans Sebastian Ironside and Maxim Kovalchuk @Banackock until the end of their careers. These five players alone make for a pretty convincing argument for Calgary, but it’s also important to note that they have pretty solid depth through two lines. While not the absolute top line in the VHL, Calgary’s top three forwards can readily keep pace with offensively-oriented teams like Davos, Toronto, and Helsinki. Similarly, their top defensive line isn’t perfect – Maxim Kovalchuk and third-year player Brady Stropko Jr. will have to face off against the league’s best offensive players. However, Calgary’s second line has 4 players that will start the season over 450 TPE – making their second defensive pair the most lethal in the league, as it includes sharpshooting defender Robert Malenko and defensive anchor Elasmobranch Fish @Sharkstrong. While their second forward line doesn’t quite measure up to Vancouver’s (~580 TPE/player vs. ~440 for Calgary), it can compete with every other second line in the league. One big point in Calgary’s favor is their goalie – Brick Wahl will be integral in pushing the Wranglers to a conference title, as only New York has a comparable netminder (with a large difference in skaters). Wahl clearly outclasses Toronto’s JB Rift, and Seattle and Vancouver don’t have high-tier goalies to speak of as of yet. High Points – Excellent defensive depth; D2 should be able to take advantage of most second lines. Best goalie in the North American Conference. Made key re-signings this offseason, including netminder Brick Wahl. Concerns – D2 will carry the second-line load for the Wranglers, perhaps even offensively. May not have the raw star power needed on first lines to outshine the best European teams or Toronto. Projected Lines F1 // Leph Twinger – Oleksiy Revchenko – Diljodh Starload F2 // John Frostbeard – Roll Fizzlebeef – Sebastian Ironside F3 // Cody Smith – Tyler Barabash Jr. – [F1 extra minutes] D1 // Maxim Kovalchuk – Brady Stropko Jr. D2 // Robert Malenko – Elasmobranch Fish G // Brick Wahl #2 – Riga Reign GM // @hedgehog337 Star Players // D Ryan Kastelic D Joseph McWolf Kallis Kriketers Risers // S66 RW Mikko Aaltonen S66 C Hunter Hearst Helmsley S66 RW Arnor Sigurdsson S67 D Lincoln Tate The Reign’s season was unceremoniously cut short by a sweep from Davos, exacerbating their already-horrendous franchise history against the Swiss franchise. Some experts had them on equal footing to the champion Helsinki Titans, but a couple of trades from Davos and smart line building turned the tables on the Latvian franchise in the postseason. Ultimately Riga’s strength is also its weakness: like the Dynamo in Season 65, the Season 66 Reign experienced growing pains after drafting and retaining six rookies on their main roster. 'Tag' on to that several members in the mid-to-late stages of their respective primes – Preencarnacion @Tagger, Podrick Cast @Victor, and Ryan Kastelic @Enorama, and we had a team that was simultaneously deep but talented at the top. And like Davos two seasons prior, that ultimately became their downfall – they simply couldn’t match up in the playoffs to a team with two excellent forward lines, as rookies Apollo Hackett and Aron Nielsen struggled against their competition. A season older and wiser, the Reign are poised to compete for a European title. With four forwards and two defensemen over 600 TPE (including up to three others that could break that mark by the end of the season), Riga is in an excellent spot to at least keep it close in playoff series against Davos or Helsinki. A line composed of Sigurdsson @bluesfan55, Aaltonen @GRZ, and HHH @Beaviss might not have scared too many teams at the start of last season – but that could be a line that hits 2,000 TPE collectively this season, which is terrifying to consider for most teams’ second-to-third lines. HHH himself can already play with the most skilled first liners in spite of being in his sophomore season, and his likely line-mates could outmatch most of their opposition by midseason too. It’s worth noting that Riga only really has two players that can face off – so we may see a switch-up in lines, with HHH taking on a first-line role and Matthews moving up to the second. Defensively, Riga could go as many as three entirely unique lines this season. With Kastelic and McWolf being the two obvious mainstays and likely receiving the most PP/PK time, GM Benjamin Zeptenbergs also has two reasonably experienced sophomore defensemen in Aron Nielsen and Apollo Hackett. Add to that VHLM standout Lincoln @Tate and we’ve got a team that’s genuinely 5 defensemen deep. Some scouts suggest Tate could join Hackett on the second line as early as mid-season. High Points – Talented S66 draft class and competitive F1; best D1 pairing in the league. Kallis Kriketers will make another strong push for best goalie. Improving S66/S67 players will be key to Riga’s success this season. Lincoln Tate has enough raw talent to make D2 this season. Concerns – An aging Preencarnacion, limited ice time, very tight cap space. Specter of Riga’s limited playoff success continues to hang on the franchise. Projected Lines F1 // Elias Dahlberg – Hunter Hearst Helmsley – Pat Svoboda F2 // Edwin Preencarnacion – Anthony Matthews (?) – Mikko Aaltonen/Arnor Sigurdsson F3 // Chico Smeb – [HHH extra minutes] – Mikko Aaltonen/Arnor Sigurdsson D1 // Ryan Kastelic – Joseph McWolf D2 // Apollo Hackett – Aron Nielsen (early)/Lincoln Tate (late) G // Kallis Kriketers #1 – Helsinki Titans GM // @Quik Star Players // LW Julian Borwinn, G Alexander Pepper, LW Matt Thompson, C Kronos Bailey Risers // S67 D Derek England S66 C Jordan Tonn This one was a pretty easy choice. No major free agent losses, four players above 900 TPA, the best Offensive Defenseman in hockey, and basically all of the award-winning forwards from the last season. I’ve done my fair share of fawning over how Quik has put together a great roster, and that’s absolutely the case here. Their top three forwards (@Jubo07, @Quik, @Beketov) come in with a sum of 2,959 TPA – nearly double that of some of the lower-rated teams in the VHL, or an entire roster of VHLMers – which comes in pretty easily as the best possible first line in the league. Defensively they’re not as overwhelming, but the roster still has an excellent projection with first-liners Sidney Crosby (785 TPE) and Jesse Wilson (694), who can go toe-to-toe with nearly any other starting pair in the league. There’s certainly something to be said about their depth – as their second three forwards are 405, 390, and 335 TPE, respectively – but two of them (C Orion Slade @BluObieZand C Jordan Tonn @MexicanCow123) are still quite active – claiming 10-12 capped TPE on top of all of the uncapped points coming out this past week. Sadly, S66 prospects Ludvig Sederstrom and Viktor Kozlov seem to have burned themselves out of the league – but they’ll still have times to relieve second liners of their minutes to limit fatigue. To this point, we haven’t really mentioned Dan Montgomery @BarzalGoat by name – but he’s one of the many award winners this team has to offer. A top-notch scorer, he was helped by Helsinki’s top-two last season and was able to focus his efforts against second liners to incredible effect. I expect him to have a similarly dominant season from his position this time around. High Points – Absurdly, almost unbelievably talented F1 (avg. 986.3 TPE), excellent scoring defenseman in Dan Montgomery, second-best starting pair in hockey. Also has one of S66’s best goalies. Concerns – Second-line depth, 3 of 4 S66 prospects seem to be done. Top line will have to carry most of the load. Bailey, Thompson, Wilson are all in contract years. Projected Lines F1 // Julian Borwinn – Kronos Bailey – Matt Thompson F2 // Bert Meyers – Jordan Tonn – Orion Slade F3 // [F1 extra minutes] – Viktor Kozlov – Ludvig Sederstrom D1 // Sidney Crosby – Jesse Wilson D2 // Dan Montgomery – Derek England G // Alexander Pepper
  10. 13 points
    VHL Headquarters – The S66 draft is unprecedented. Don’t believe me? Take a look at my intro here. For the number of ‘firsts’ we’re seeing in this draft with respect to volume (which is commendable in its own right), there is frighteningly little talk of possible elite defenders in this draft. After all, you have to go down twelve spots in the live draft rankings to find a single defender. Rhye Tyr, the highest-ranked defenseman in last week’s rankings, is a startling 125 TPE below from the top prospect in this year’s class; the young Canadian sits below three centers, five left wings, and three right wings. In the first-round mock draft released less than a day ago, Tyr was expected to go fifth overall – but his TPE compared to the next three draftees is sorely lacking, and @DilIsPickle astutely notes that his draft spot is partially due to a scarcity in defense in this draft. Let’s investigate – what defensemen might be best to draft (and briefly, why?), why is this historically-deep draft short of them, and how can we rectify the problem? Best in Class #1) Aron Nielsen @solas | Minnesota Storm | Canada 6’0” | 205 lbs. | TPE: 166 (+32 from 3/10-3/24) We can argue ‘til we’re blue in the face about whether Nielsen or Rhye Tyr should be ranked the best defenseman in S66’s draft class, but ultimately Nielsen has shown more upside, has improved faster, and may be more likely to have a successful rookie season. In a league that constantly asks, "what have you done for me lately?", week-to-week improvement is a must. He’s a high-quality two-way prospect that frankly has a skill-set that resembles a center nearly as much as he does a defender. We’ll save the discussion for what type of defender is ‘best’ for later in the article. With 39 points, a +16, 72 hits, and 49 shots blocked in 44 games, however, Nielsen has proven that he can do it all. He’s not as flashy as some of this class’s forwards, but he doesn’t have to be if he’s competent on every inch of the ice. He’ll likely hit the VHLM TPE cap before the draft happens, and although he has some stiff competition from some promising newer players (like our next couple of draftees), Nielsen is a safe bet for a defense-needy GM. #2) Charlie Paddywagon @DMaximus | Las Vegas Aces | United States 6’4” | 208 lbs. | TPE: 154 (+52) Nope, number two in the draft class still isn’t Tyr: it’s the Buffalo, NY-native Irishman Charlie Paddywagon, and only part of the reason is because one of his cop buddies is named Chet (https://vhlforum.com/topic/58556-charlie-paddywagon-an-oral-biography-12/). Paddywagon is a hard-nosed, coach’s dream of a defender: strong, immovable, and capable of stopping pucks and passing as those needs arise. He’s certainly important in the ‘best defender’ argument for this class in spite of a limited offensive repertoire (25 points in 45 games, -5): he averages nearly 2 SB and 1.5 hits/game, and devastates opposing forwards in the process. Paddywagon is possibly the fastest-improving defender in the draft, and scouts have been impressed with his progress especially in the last few weeks. There’s plenty of tape for him, as he participated in S65’s Dispersal Draft, and I wouldn’t question a GM that drafts him in the late first or early second round. #3) Jerry Garcia @GustavMattias | Houston Bulls | United States 6’1” | 194 lbs. | TPE: 150 (+54) We covered this guitar-legend-turned-hockey-player in last week’s article about mid- and late-round steals, and it’s for good reason. While not quite as polished a raw defender as Paddywagon, Garcia has shown excellent puck-handling skills and a willingness to lay hits down on opposing forwards like nobody’s business – in fact, he’s fifth in hits (at 143) in the VHLM and first among Entry Draft-eligible players in S66. He blocks shots (78) at a pace comparable to Paddywagon and Rusty Shackleford, further showcasing his willingness to be physical, but this physicality is also something to refine: Garcia currently has 108 penalty minutes, good for second only to teammate Viktor Kozlov in the minors. #4) Rhye Tyr @Plate | Halifax 21st | Canada 5'10" | 205 lbs. | TPE: 159 (+8) For most, this will be something of a surprise - Rhye is generally projected to be one of the first two defensemen off the board, possibly mid first round; I'm not dismissing that possibility, as he's considered to be one of the better prospects in the field. Certainly, this young Canadian has the scoring and defensive chops to make that argument; he has 37 assists to his name and earns about a point per game. In recent weeks, however, scouts have suggested Tyr hasn't been improving at as rapid a rate as he was previously. Does this mean Tyr is as good as he'll be against VHLM competition, or is this something more worrisome for the future? If he gets back to work, Tyr could still be a first-round/early second-round pick. #5) Codrick Past @Kylrad | Ottawa Lynx | United Kingdom 6’0” | 190 lbs. | TPE: 133 (+38) One of the more promising two-way defenders in the minors, Codrick Past talks and plays a big game. He recently announced his preferences for draft destinations, but importantly showed that the choice of General Manager (and fantasy league results, heh) are moreimportant than current team success for him. He also recently accused some fellow VHLMers of doping. On the ice, he’s shown to be an excellent passer (48 assists in 44 games) and a pretty good defender (83 hits & shot blocks) through his 44 games; he’s anchored an otherwise talent-depleted Ottawa Lynx defense and could go as early as the late second round for GMs in need. #6) Rusty Shackleford @K1NG LINUS | Saskatoon Wild | United States 6’5” | 225 lbs. | TPE: 121 (+51) Rounding out our top five is an actual steak-and-pulled-pork-eating, PBR/Bulleit Bourbon-drinking cowboy’s son in Rusty Shackleford. He brings his tough Texas attitude to the ice, where he’s the closest thing to an enforcer this class has; like Garcia, he has an abundance of hits (126), blocked shots (79), and penalty minutes (94). Some scouts make an argument that Shackleford may actually be worth taking as high as the early third round; he’s improved quickly and has similar upside to many of the defenders higher up in this list, but simply had a later start (first TPE added in week ending March 3rd) #7) Andreas Sundell @VisualDarkness | Minnesota Storm | TPE: 120 (+38) | Playmaking Defenseman (SK, DF, PH) Sundell has a solid chance of breaking into the mid or early fourth round for the astute GM. He’ll get a chance on the big stage with fellow Euro Codrick Past as a part of Team Europe in the World Junior Championship before you know it. Doesn’t get a lot of chances to contribute points-wise due to limited minutes, but does generate a good number of hits and blocked shots. He has to share ice-time with four or five competent defenders, some from last season’s VHL Entry Draft – so the stats don’t say everything with this promising Swede. #8) Cody Parkey @SaltyTalty| Saskatoon Wild |TPE: 103 (+62) | Playmaking Defenseman (DF, PA, SC) Parkey is a solid defender with lots of scoring potential (65 passing, 55 scoring); currently projected as a 5th-rounder but has breakout potential and may go early in the fourth or even in the third. Produces plenty of hits; has only played in 36 games this season. Has an excellent +15, and is a relatively young player (created week of 3/3) #9) Edward Vigneault @Patpou22 | Halifax 21st |TPE: 105 (+46) | Playmaking Defenseman (SK, DF, PA) Like Parkey, Vigneault is a younger player (34 games played) but has slightly better defensive stats (57 hits, 53 shots blocked). Has shown high-quality passing ability on top of defensive fundamentals. Currently sitting behind S64 draftee Basaraba Moose and Rhye Tyr, but has better draft stock than the latter due to recent improvement, per scouts. Like many of his colleagues, will likely need to spend another half or full season in the VHL before any ice time with the pros. #10) Dwin Championship @Award97 | Saskatoon Wild | TPE: 78 (+41) | Offensive Defenseman (PA, SK, SC) Dwin is a strange defenseman, with subpar defensive technical skills but a good eye for passing lanes. Primary strength right now is finding high-quality assists and laying out hits. Like most of our defensemen ranked 5th or lower, Championship shares ice time with other defensemen in his class (Parkey, Shackleford) and hasn’t gotten much of a chance to shine yet. #11) Beau Buefordsson @Radcow | TPE: 89 (+28) | Defender (DF, SK) Beau is one of the few defense-first defenders in the draft, but he has shown smooth skating and glimpses of scoring potential in recent games. At this point, he’s a bit difficult to evaluate due to limited ice time and his rawness as a prospect - but pro teams looking for some depth at defenseman will find a solid pick in Buefordsson. Honorable Mentions #12) Papa Gage #13) Samuel Sparrow #14) Duncan Jeffers #15) Richard Hejtsel #16) Anthony Amberback #17) Srraxxarrakex II #18) Finn Theismann [author note: excluded my player so as to avoid some bias] Where Are the Defensemen? Last season’s (i.e. S65's) Week Two Draft Rankings by @McWolf showed a much different picture than S66’s class: three defensemen in the top four prospects and six in the top twelve actually demonstrated a defense-dominant class. Wings were virtually nowhere to be found – with the first showing up at rank 13 (but centers were abundant through the top half of the class). Is this class's top 20 normal variance, or is it something more? 1) Is there a need for defensemen? One possible explanation for the lack of high-TPE defensemen is that the professional league has enough. After all, if the league is saturated, veteran player builders wouldn’t want to sit behind players 4-5 seasons into their career for their first several seasons. Similarly, if there are a high number of excellent prospects sitting in the VHLM waiting for a chance to start, S66 draftees may need to wait a while before getting any significant ice time. As shown above, there hasn’t been significant variance in defensemen among the top 20 prospects (until this season), though it is worth noting that the increase in LWs may be because of a limited wing class last season. Their distribution is important, too - with players like Smitty Werbenjagermanjensen, Dallas Jones, and Brady Stropko Jr. (in a class dominated by defensemen) all projected in the first round, veteran players might have just decided that there are too many S65 draftees just ahead of them. More important, however, is the availability of defensemen to major league teams. Ideally, teams should be able to sport two lines’ worth of capable defenders – or have the means to replace them. Consider how many teams needed to worry about their future or depth in defense last season. Some GMs may have placed their hopes of fielding a good defense on this draft, but relatively few teams (Helsinki, Riga, and to some extent HC Davos, Riga, and New York) have a defensive corps worth talking about. Riga in particular has an excellent defensive lineup and future, with 4 active major leaguers and 4 active prospects to which they have the rights. If teams want to field two complete lines of defensemen, there’s clearly a need – so maybe we need to diversify our search or have GMs reach further down these deep draft ranks for depth at defense. 2) Is there motivation to make defensemen? A few VHL.com articles, Media Spots, statuses, and league chatter (Discord) conversations suggest that a lack of defensive stats may drive (1) members to make non-defensive players and (2) defensive players to be built as two-way, or even offensive players. The predominant build is a high Defense attribute with Passing, Scoring, and Skating; depending on the build, Puck Handling and (more rarely) Checking is seen on defensemen. Let’s take Calgary’s defensemen as an example. Lando Baxter @Elhandon, the team’s highest-rated defender, has exceptional skating, roughly 85 Puck Handling, Defense, and Passing, and 75 Scoring. Their other defenders Dallas Jones @Trifecta and Elasmobranch Fish @Sharkstrong both have about 75 Scoring; Jones is very balanced between scoring, playmaking, and defense, while Fish is a bit more defensively oriented (90 DF, 80 PH, 60 CK) but still possesses average passing and scoring. In fact, among all players on the Wranglers, the lowest Scoring attribute is 73; only one player has Checking above the first TP threshold (70). Even last year’s champions, the Toronto Legion, started two defensemen with 90+ scoring – each within one point of their defense (Tzuyu @tfong and Robert Malenko @pennypenny), and neither of which invested heavily in checking (40 and 50, respectively). These builds (and builders – looking at you, tfong <3) are so successful that the Best Defenseman trophy was split in three several seasons ago – producing the Jake Wylde, Alexander Valiq, and Sterling Labatte trophies for best defensive, offensive, and overall defenseman, respectively. Furthermore, the last defenseman to earn either of the Scotty Campbell or Brett Slobodzian trophies was Guntis Petenis (who earned both) in S54. Before that, Daniel Braxton took home the Slobodzian trophy in S27, and we have to dig to S20 until Patrick Bergqvist, the second-to-last defenseman recipient of the Campbell trophy. In an offense-driven league, however, a lack of defensive MVPs/MOPs seems like a given. Importantly, diversity in defense builds is just as important as diversity in forward archetypes. On top of that, defensemen have three position-specific awards and equal representation (due to lower player population & fewer positions for defensemen on teams), and we had high-quality defense in the S65 draft, so we have to ask... 3) Is scarcity of defensemen in S66's draft even a problem in the first place? Ultimately, providing some arbitrary, undeserved impetus (e.g. extra TPE, overrepresentation in awards or All-Star teams) to make defensemen would be an overreaction – and if there is a scarcity of defensemen, GMs are much more likely to value high-quality players at this position anyway. For new and old players alike, the most important quality is staying power: will users stick around long enough for their players to see continued success? Is it even reasonable for every team to field a high-quality D1 pair? Artificially overpopulating the pool of D-men will make those users who only want to make defensemen less likely to stick around, and possibly make veterans who would otherwise make forwards enjoy their time in the VHL less. So I ask @VHLM GM and @VHL GM – is this draft's lack of high-TPE defensemen a problem? Does the strength of defense in the S65 draft compensate for this offense-dominated draft? Maybe most relevantly -- who's your top pick on defense, and where do you think they'll go? Also tagged here: @PapaGage, @Birdman, @Tophdaddy, @hejta, @Oost, @flan, @StaticShocked [Length >2,000 words; I'd like to use this MS for 4/14, and will claim others after the turn of the season. Am I allowed to do this?]
  11. 12 points

    Live S68 Draft Class Rankings

    Live S68 Draft Class Rankings Rank Change Player Name Position TPE Team Nat. Member 1 Condor Adrienne D 325 PHI VA Green 2 Lance Flowers D 275 YUK GB CowboyinAmerica 3 Frans Eller C 238 YUK DK Ace 4 Thorny Underyew C 220 OTT GB jack 5 Jeff Downey D 218 HOU CA JeffD 6 Teemu Lehtinen Jr LW 214 HOU FI Sixersfan549 7 Wolf Stansson Jr D 207 YUK IS Cornholio 8 Sigard Gunnar LW 207 PHI IS Big Mac 9 Luciano Valentino D 204 HFX IT Kekzkrieg 10 A Red Guy G 198 YUK AU .sniffuM 11 Micha Sage LW 191 OTT CA AcousticKazoo 12 Keven Foreskin (GM Player) D 179 MIN BN Esso2264 13 Owen Nolan RW 177 HFX IE studentized 14 Raymond Bernard G 172 OTT US Mr_Hatter 15 Fang Flashback G 167 PHI CA uphillmoss 16 Ryo Yamazuki II RW 165 MIN JP Donno100 17 Bud Knight RW 163 PHI US Dilly Dilly 18 Aamon Grim D 162 OTT US aCrypticPancake 19 Ricky Johnson D 160 PHI CA Midnite 20 ↑ 6 Andrej Petrovic D 159 YUK RS Tyler 21 ↓ 1 Justin Rushmore LW 157 YUK US street 22 ↓ 1 Willie Dredge RW 155 YUK US sjs88speed 23 ↓ 1 Kaspars Claude LW 155 MIN IT Bruins10 24 ↓ 1 Gert B Frobe D 153 SDM US NumberJ5 25 ↓ 1 Chad Gilbert C 153 SDM US Fire_In_Babylon 26 ↓ 1 Case Martell RW 152 PHI US Shaka 27 Bruce Grimaldi G 150 SDM US Psyduck77 28 Samuel Ross G 149 OTT US Brrbisbrr 29 Fredrik Elmebeck D 148 HOU SE Elmebeck 30 Seabass Perrin D 147 YUK CA Sebster03 31 Ryan Busser RW 147 SDM CA Frozen Block 32 Finnegan MacBurn D 141 OTT US DizzyWithLogic 33 ↑ 3 Alyksander Hunter D 136 SDM CA Jaku 34 ↓ 1 Jaxon Walker RW 133 MIN US hewasajazzman 35 ↓ 1 Beau Bennett D 129 OTT CA Datools 36 ↓ 1 Block Buster G 127 MIS AU Banana2311 37 Benson Kramer RW 120 PHI CA Benson 38 Mac Hooper RW 119 MIN GB MacH 39 Ondrej Ohradka LW 101 SSK SK animal74 40 Jeff Tates RW 97 SSK CA PotatoKing 41 Roadkill Steve RW 96 SDM DE stevo 42 Alex RW 96 FA LV Markoovskyz 43 Tony Bolonee D 94 YUK US Tbeez99 44 Ryan Chism D 93 SDM NZ Jables 45 Jason Connors LW 93 SDM US Klrpizza 46 Liam Rooney C 90 MIS CA elrune1988 47 Jacob Perry D 88 MIS US Liberty_Cabbage 48 Killy Foilen RW 87 MIN AU Aye my name jeff 49 Keith Harris LW 87 PHI CA Ty343 50 Balentine Kidd C 84 MIS GB TukTukTheGreat 51 Mike van Stronk D 83 SDM NL Beerfridge 52 Jerry Wang RW 81 HFX SG ColeMrtz21 53 Joakim Sakic RW 80 HFX SE Gscx420 54 Jacob Scott D 80 OTT US jscott 55 Denis Lever RW 80 HOU US DenisLever 56 Nate Wright C 79 YUK US 73MPL4R 57 Wonona Levantoes RW 78 OTT GB oramuda 58 Ben McGirr LW 76 LVA GB cartoes 59 Hendrix Lapierre C 74 LVA CA Lapierre 60 David Wallace RW 73 LVA GB Juddy 61 Julian Blackthorn RW 70 SSK US LattimoreIsland 62 Cameron Eastwood C 70 OTT GB CammyM 63 Tauras Karazija D 69 PHI LT ontanis 64 Raleigh Ritchie RW 67 MIN GB DangerGolding 65 Senor Physique D 66 SSK CA Alim123 66 Stanley Sawchuk G 64 FA CA Molholt 67 Pavel Dotsk RW 64 HOU RU TRed7894 68 Tomas Hasek C 62 SDM CZ SJT29 69 Nate Telker C 58 MIS CA Telkster 70 Vladimir Pol RW 55 MEX RU AnthonyOuellet 71 Kris Tougher LW 53 MIS CA chrissyl93 72 Lukas Schweitzer G 50 MIS DE GlowyGoat 73 Davy Jones D 50 MEX CA jon-cent 74 King Czar IV D 49 FA RU Riggsy 75 Yeet Dabbersson D 46 MIS TH Radcow 76 Ryan Dingle RW 44 MEX AU Robotastic 77 Jack Danger LW 44 FA US THEMARD 78 Connor Bregham LW 44 HFX US Icedragon25 79 Gordie Burnett C 43 SSK US Gordie 80 Patrick OReilly RW 41 SSK US brenstl 81 Whiskey Malone D 40 FA US mollymcdeath 82 Justice Irons LW 40 FA US astrogenov 83 ↑ 7 Alex Armstrong D 40 HFX GB dylanjj37 84 ↓ 1 Rebacco Black D 38 MEX US Rebacco 85 ↓ 1 David Souter D 38 FA CA boomshocks 86 ↓ 1 Alex Desmond D 38 LVA US If_Tuna_Could_Fly 87 ↓ 1 Peter Louis RW 34 LVA CA CosmicStorm 88 ↓ 1 Myles Angellus RW 34 SSK CA co2angel 89 ↓ 1 Javier Ricardo D 34 LVA US Javier Ricardo 90 ↓ 1 Brenden Ambrose LW 34 FA US bcadrums94 91 Nash Fields D 33 FA US Nash015 92 Vince Bitter RW 32 FA CA NucksGamer1 93 Milton Hilton LW 32 FA BR DameHoops 94 Matt Lapointe D 32 MEX CA MattyIce 95 Leo Duplessis D 32 HOU CA Logansanwolvie 96 Ian Walker C 32 FA CA Spartacus 97 Farzu Afzey D 32 FA US farzu 98 Duncan MacLeod C 32 SSK HU Jimbo75 99 Baka Lakalakabangalangjangganghang C 32 FA HM Ninetyfourgoalie GM Players will go to the team that their user GM's. They will not be drafted but they will be a good goal post to see how you are doing.Includes all players entering the S68 VHL Draft who have added TPE to their player. Once your player has had an update approved by updaters that puts you over 30 TPE, you'll be added to the rankings.  Last updated: August 18 12:11 CST @NucksGamer1 @dylanjj37 @Telkster @Green @TukTukTheGreat @MattyIce @Javier Ricardo @elrune1988 @Logansanwolvie @Juddy @Spartacus @astrogenov @PotatoKing @Tbeez99 @AnthonyOuellet @73MPL4R @sjs88speed @Jaku @Brrbisbrr @Radcow @Elmebeck @Aye my name jeff @Liberty_Cabbage @CammyM @mollymcdeath @Psyduck77 @Bruins10 @chrissyl93 @bcadrums94 @Nash015 @Jimbo75 @NumberJ5 @Banana2311 @If_Tuna_Could_Fly @Rebacco @CosmicStorm @Kekzkrieg @Datools @uphillmoss @Mr_Hatter @DangerGolding @stevo @studentized @Jables @Frozen Block @hewasajazzman @Gscx420 @boomshocks @Markoovskyz @oramuda @Lapierre @cartoes @co2angel @Gordie @SJT29 @Alim123 @Klrpizza @THEMARD @farzu @Big Mac @Sebster03 @Riggsy @MacH @animal74 @AcousticKazoo @Icedragon25 @Donno100 @GlowyGoat @ontanis @DizzyWithLogic @Esso2264 @Robotastic @JeffD @Ace @Cornholio @brenstl @jack @jscott @Shaka @aCrypticPancake @DameHoops @street @Midnite @Molholt @Ty343 @LattimoreIsland @Molholt @Dilly Dilly @CowboyinAmerica @Tyler @Benson @Ninetyfourgoalie @Sixersfan549 @Beerfridge @jon-cent @Fire_In_Babylon @TRed7894
  12. 12 points

    S67 Theme Week

    Hey everyone! As has become tradition every season, this PT week (ending August 18th) is Theme Week. For those who have been here for the past few seasons, you know how it works. For those who haven't been around, it means that this week you have a chance to earn up to 8 Uncapped TPE by submitting Tasks related to the theme. As has also become tradition, since this is being posted Monday morning, it is possible that some of you may have already submitted tasks for the week. If that is the case (or you have a multi-week MS), you may still participate, and delay claiming either task by one week. However, to be eligible for Theme Week bonus TPE, your point task must be posted by August 18th. (As @Beketov always reminds when I post these, if you have a job that replaces a PT, you may automatically claim the doubles, and if you have a job that pays the full cap, you may claim all 8 Uncapped TPE, provided you still perform your duties this week). Now that that's taken care of, the theme this season is: VHL Expansion! As some of you surmised when the job posting went up earlier this season, the GM vacancy we were looking for was to fill the position for expansion. A few even bandied about the idea that, perhaps, the league would expand by two teams. Well, those in the latter group were correct, as the VHL will be expanding by two teams in Season 68, bringing our total to 12 VHL teams, more than the league has ever had before. Many great candidates applied for these jobs, and were discussed at great length. Ultimately, with only 2 openings, it was a tough decision, and we thank everyone for applying, and encourage you to continue the great jobs you all have been doing, especially the VHLM GMs who applied, as there will be openings in the future, and all who did not earn the job this time around will be considered for any future openings. That said, the GMs of these two new franchises will be: @diamond_ace and @Enorama. The team locations, names, and expansion draft rules will be announced during the off-season, which leaves this theme very open to interpretation. You can write articles on where the teams may end up, how you think the expansion draft will work, how you think the process works, GM profiles, or anything else you can think of relating to VHL Expansion. For graphics, you can create logos, mystery team sigs, etc. relating to Expansion. TPE Distribution for completing themed tasks will be as follows: Complete a Regular Point Task (Media Spot / Graphic/Video / Podcast), on 'Theme', and receive an extra 6 Uncapped TPE   Complete a VHL.com submission (Written / Graphic / Podcast), on 'Theme', and receive an extra 1 Uncapped TPE  Complete both 'Theme' submissions, receive an additional 1 Uncapped TPE, for a total of 8 Uncapped TPE   @Members
  13. 12 points
    We’re about halfway through Season 66, which naturally means we’re going to levy a too-early verdict on how each team’s draft went. Now, I know what you’re thinking – “you always do articles about defense. Is this only going to be defense? My team didn’t draft defense.” Astute observation, but I will be judging – nay, defending – each GM’s decisions for all players, including defensemen (of course), goalies, and forwards. But as with any ranking, we have to establish the criteria on which we’re judging these draft decisions to make our judgment fair. Those criteria are: 1) Draftees’ TPE relative to position (per round, not pick) 2) Draftees’ acquired TPE since draft (per round, not pick) 3) Last update 4) Performance in majors since draft, if applicable Now, to be clear – these are draft grades, and they’re meant to hover around an average of a 5/10. I refuse to mince words or placate all fan-bases with “A” grades: if your team receives a 5/10, that means their draft was average relative to the league's other competitive, thoughtful GMs. Half of the league probably did better, and half of the league probably did worse. That’s not a bad place to be. Having more vs. less picks did not affect grades. We're just looking for how effectively general managers sussed out player talent and growth at the picks they could draft. For readers' convenience, I have provided a quik change in TPE figure so you can figure out how your player compares to others in your round. This data may be 24-30 hours out of date (sorry!), but compares players to their last VHL Scouting Center rank. Thanks rjfryman! New York Americans Draftees: C Maximilian Kirbsson (23rd) LW Hunter Wagner (45th) C Walter Clements (55th) Our first team is one that’s traded away a majority of its picks – not only for this most recent draft, but nearly all of its picks for Season 67’s draft (save their own and Vancouver’s fourth-rounders). All three of their rookies are signed on to three-year deals, and they join a host of new players after a flurry of deals at the end of the season – including ones for Robert Malenko, Piotr Jerwa, and Kisshan Shan following blockbuster deals for star Leph Twinger at the end of S64 and Paolo Nano in the first half of last season. But we’re here to look at draft picks, and the Americans only had three. The first is highly-touted center Maximilian Kirbsson @Kirby, who’s contributed 4 goals on 74 shots and 16 assists. He’s also contributed 64 hits thus far, which is excellent for a rookie and above-average for centers. He gets most of his ice-time with Carles Puigdemont and Kisshan Shan, but it’s as a winger rather than a center because of the abundance of talent at his position (Puigdemont and Ylonen). Unfortunately for the New York management, most scouts have fallen off of the Kirbsson hype train. He’s contributed meaningfully as a third option at center and most other times as a winger, but his trajectory from the minors (6th overall) to the VHL (third round, 23rd overall) as well as his practice hours since the last S66 rankings (+22 TPE vs. 42.1 average for second round) are a very worrisome sign for a team that was hoping to have him as a building block for the future. His last update was May 10. The team’s other two picks – Hunter Wagner @Inf1d3l in the third round and Walter Clements @cpetrella in the fifth – were actually reasonably high value. Wagner, currently still in the minors, is nearly capped and has added 28 TPE; Clements is the Americans’ diamond in the rough, with a whopping 58 TPE since those same rankings and is nearly capped. We can probably attribute that both to the agent and the positive locker room culture in Philadelphia. Final Grade: 4/10. Only three picks to talk about here: Kirbsson is probably a bust, but New York should feel good about their sixth-rounder. Wagner isn’t perfect thus far, but could be a depth piece. Calgary Wranglers Draftees: C Tyler Barabash Jr (GM player) RW John Frostbeard (12th) RW Nethila Dissanayake (26th) D Rhye Tyr (32nd) C Raphael Nazarians (40th) LW Cody Smith (42nd) LW Dylan Doyle (52nd) D Andreas Sundell (62nd) The Wranglers had a pick in every round save the first, and have a nice mix of forwards and defensemen positionally. They picked up promising wingers John Frostbeard @FrostBeard and Nethila Dissanayake @nethi99 with their first couple of picks, then strangely picked up inactives Rhye Tyr and Raphael Nazarians in the fourth. Let’s take a look at those first few rounds. In a move that puzzled many, Calgary opted for RW John Frostbeard – who had been projected to go mid-fourth round – high in the second. It was a bit of a puzzling pick – especially with high-rated forwards like Shawnomir Jagr, Bert Meyers, Kyle Sabertooth, Chico Smeb, and Valeri Morozov picked later in the very same round – but he had a promising aspect to him as part of the Philadelphia front office. At the time, it was assumed that he would be a solid, consistent addition to the team with a reasonable floor. Thus far he’s been outperformed by all others drafted in his round – with a +22 TPE to his name – and just 4 of those in the third round, one of which is teammate Nethila Dissanayake. But he’s still chugging along, and that’s enough to avoid calling him a bust. While Frostbeard has performed below the expected second rounder, Dissanayake is much closer to that metric for his round (+35 vs. an average of 42.1). All of Calgary’s picks are still playing for minor league squads; Frostbeard has 59 points (nearly 1.5 ppg), good for a +30 on a thriving Philadelphia team. Dissanayake’s production is a bit slower (28 points with 13 goals, 15 assists) for a similarly-loaded Saskatoon. There’s very little to talk about with Rhye Tyr and Raphael Nazarians. Neither has added a single point since the draft, and they’re 99%+ busts. Strangely, like New York, Calgary’s late-round picks are a grab bag of “awesome!” and “yeah, that’s what we expected.” In particular, fifth- and sixth-round left wingers Cody Smith @cody73 and Dylan Doyle @zepheter have improved spectacularly since the draft. Smith, who plays for brand-new minors team Mississauga, has a whopping 50 points, with 27 goals on 196 shots, and 103 hits. He’s shown a versatile skill set and a nose for the net – clearly, he isn’t afraid to lay out opposing players either. In 40 games, he also has 5 game-winners, which is pretty exciting for the Calgary front office. Doyle’s production has been slower, as his ice time is much more limited; he was a mid-round minors draft pick and a late VHL draft pick, so that’s to be expected. However, his improvement on the ice has been remarkable as of late; we can likely expect him to thrive in the coming seasons with more ice time and eventual progression to the majors. Those two mid-late round picks have vastly outperformed their classmates (+72 vs. +36.5 for Smith, +51 vs. +33.9 for Doyle) and will buoy Calgary’s draft score. Defenseman Andreas Sundell went the way of Tyr and Nazarians – nothing to say here. Final Grade: 6/10. Frostbeard is improving at his expected floor, and Dissanayake is acceptable as a third rounder. Calgary’s fourth round picks were 100% flops, but there is incredible promise in their late-round picks. Vancouver Wolves Draftees: LW Julius Freeman (2nd) RW Shawnomir Jagr (14th) LW Kyle Sabertooth (18th) C Hans Gruber (28th) LW Ben Hafkey (53rd) C BALLS McZehrl (63rd) Next up is none other than the Vancouver Wolves, who had four picks in the first three rounds and currently sit sixth in the VHL standings (third among American conference teams). Held back somewhat by middling goalie play, it was expected that strong skaters like centers Beau Louth @Beaviss and Rauno Palo @jRuutu would bring this team to the top half of the table. That remains to be seen, but Vancouver is certainly in the thick of the playoff race. The Wolves did an excellent job drafting the most talented players at any given pick, and in fact drafted only forwards. Provided their defensive talent (Wolfe, Mulligan, Harding, and Philliefan), that’s not entirely unreasonable. We start with first-rounder LW Julius Freeman @rjfryman, who was taken second overall and has continued excelling against the VHL’s best as a first-liner. At present, he has limited point production (8G on 118 shots, 16A) but has a net +5 in spite of facing players with years’ worth of experience on him. He’s also been incredibly disciplined, with just 8 penalty minutes through 49 games. It’s not quite the production we expected coming out of a 100-point Halifax season, but is in fact better than expected because of the role he’s expected to play. Most importantly, he’s stayed active (+82 vs. a 64.6 first round average), even more so than other top-ten picks. Next are the second rounders and fellow wingers Shawnomir Jagr @TheLastOlympian07 and Kyle Sabertooth@uphillmoss. Jagr, as expected, gets plenty of time on the ice during practice (+58 vs. +55.8 average) but has had limited rookie point production, with just 11 in 49 games and a -19 plus-minus against major league opponents. Sabertooth opted to stay in the minors and has only modestly improved (+27) but has produced excellent numbers for an excellent Philadelphia team – 54 points in 40 games, on top of 95 hits. Of the two, Jagr definitely has the better upward trajectory. It’s hard to blame GM Beaviss for picking Sabertooth, however, because even as a reach relative to his talent (ranked 29th), he was expected to improve rapidly and keep up with his peers. Next up is in fact the most-improved member of the Wolves’ draftees, Hans Gruber @TheFlash. His luck against major league teams is again a bit limited (20 points, the same -17 plus-minus) like Jagr’s, but league scouts across the board have praised Gruber’s improvement (+89 vs. +42.1 average) as greatly outpacing his peers. He was one of two picks (like Jagr) that was drafted below his scouted talent (19th, drafted 28th), but the chip on his shoulder may have in fact motivated him more than just about any member of the draft class. As we go a bit further down, we reach Vancouver’s late-round picks: LW Ben Hafkey @ItsMcLovin and BALLS McZehrl @Rent A McZ (Ed note: name capitalized for accuracy, not emphasis). While they’re both still minor leaguers, they are both still hits; Hafkey (+57 vs. 33.9 average) has served key depth minutes for Philadelphia as a two-way forward, and McZehrl (+33 vs. +9.2 average) has shown aptitude for just about everything you can think of – scoring, passing, defense, skating, and recovering loose pucks. Before coming to the majors, McZehrl will want to specialize his game a bit – but he’s doing good work for a struggling Minnesota team. Final Grade: 9/10. Freeman and Gruber have shown up their classmates; Jagr produces better than most second rounders; and Hafkey and McZehrl could be long-time VHL depth players or even starters if they keep their pace over the next few seasons. Toronto Legion Draftees: N/A Well, that was fast. Good talk. Final Grade: N/A /10 Seattle Bears Draftees: LW Shane Mars (3rd) LW Valeri Morozov (20th) G Clayton Park (27th) LW Kari Jurri (48th) LW John Perdue (58th) G Luke Derion (68th) The Seattle Bears are dead-last in the standings (12-30-6, 30 points) and have a -64 goal differential. But take a look at their trade page and try to tell me their management isn’t doing anything – go ahead. I’ll wait. The Bears had most of their picks for this last draft, but will hope to add to their team with an astounding three first-rounders and four second-rounders in the S67 draft. We can expect this season’s draftees to get a huge boost next season, and they’ll likely be expected to start and mentor the upcoming draft class – and this makes the S66 picks somewhat important. Their first rounder was LW Shane Mars @Spade18, who was ranked second overall but drafted third behind aforementioned winger Julius Freeman. Mars has had to take on an incredibly heavy load – playing the first and third lines for his team as a rookie, and as a result he hasn’t improved much (+25 vs. +64.6 average). His production has outclassed all other rookies other than Moscow’s Jet Jaguar – Mars has a whopping 27 goals and 57 points overall to his name off of a massive 331 shots, which is hardly surprising provided the ice time and offensive focus he’s needed to occupy. It’s concerning that he hasn’t improved that much: in fact hasn’t updated in about two weeks, a fact that should scare a Seattle front office that hoped to make him the cornerstone of their franchise. Valeri Morozov @Dangles13 and Clayton Park @leafssteen were the next two picks for Seattle, and they’ve shown some promise. Morozov’s point production (11 G, 13 A) is decent for a rookie, but where he shines is his physicality. He leads all rookies with a whopping 176 hits – good for eighth in the league – and ‘just’ 112 penalty minutes to show for it. He’s definitely taken on more of an enforcer role for his team, consistent with his time in Yukon (230 hits in 72 games). He has limited practice time to show for all of his hits (+35 vs. +55.8 average) but can stay on as a depth piece if he keeps this pace. Unfortunately for Seattle, he hasn’t updated since May 12. Clayton Park, on the other hand, has had a rough time adjusting to the majors (89.7%), but that’s sort of to be expected from rookie goalies, especially ones with rebuilding rosters. He’s improved quickly (+61 TPE vs. +42.1) even compared to most second (and even some first) rounders, and will be the gem in this team’s draft. All of Seattle’s 5th-7th round picks (Kari Jurri, John Perdue, and Luke Derion) have failed to thrive in the league, with just 1 TPE between all three of them since the draft. Most times, late round picks are really hit and miss; Seattle just got the short end of the stick on all except one: 8th-rounder Thomas Kennedy @Walter Fizz has been a surprise contributor to the Ottawa Lynx. He may be called up next season provided his recent and rapid improvement (+117). He’s produced 42 points, including 14 goals on 158 shots, and will be a prospect to watch come season’s end. Final Grade: 4/10. Mars is teetering closer to bust than you ever want to see from a third overall pick; Morozov is below-average but salvageable; and nearly all of Seattle’s late-round picks were definitely misses. G Clayton Park and C Thomas Kennedy are the two redeeming factors for this team’s draft. Thoughts? Did I get it right or wrong? Am I a garbage reviewer? I need to tag @GustavMattias at some point, so I figure the end is appropriate. Want to write the European Conference companion article? Let me know!
  14. 12 points
    In the first installment of VHLM Insight, we will take a look at the top two teams in the league, the team sitting comfortably at the bottom, and give an honorable mention. We're approaching the 30 games played mark in the VHLM, and the field is starting to take shape. The picture is becoming a bit clearer as teams that are dominating, teams that are in the middle of the pack, and teams who are falling out of playoff contention are settling in on the standings bracket. The teams who make up the Top 5 are Philadelphia, Ottawa, Minnesota, Halifax, and Houston - each having less than 10 loses and coming in well above .500 in terms of wins and loses. Yukon currently sits in the sixth position, and is the only other team outside of the Top 5 to be above .500; the remaining five teams all sit well below. The exception to this is Saskatoon, who is only a few games back from evening out their average, and could potentially get it together to be above .500 at some point in the season. THE TWO TITANS OF THE VHLM Philadelphia currently sits on top of the VHLM with 47 points, and a record of 23-3-1. The Reapers leading scorer is Center Alex Pearson, who has 24 goals and 22 assists for a points total of 46. Pearson also leads the VHLM in goals. Defenseman Brandon LeBlanc leads the team in assists, with 33, but also currently sits 4th on the Reapers for goals with 12. LeBlanc also leads the league in assists, and is also sitting atop the league for Defensemen. Goalie Fang Flashback holds an impressive record of 22-2-0, a 2.16 Goals Against Average, with 5 Shutouts and a Save Percentage of .883. Flashback is number one in the league for wins, and has three assists, the most for any goalie in the league. With the help from their spectacular goalie, and their powerful offensive performance, it is easy to see why the Reapers are sitting atop the standings. Ottawa finds themselves in second place with 43 points, two games behind the Reapers, with a record of 21-5-1. Center Zeno Minti leads the Lynx in both goals and assists, 20 and 29 respectively, for 49 points which is also the best on the team. Left Winger Anthony Hawk holds second place in points for the team at 41, and is probably one of the deadliest on the ice with his impressive 112 hits. Goalie Raymond Bernard has a record of 17-3-0, a Save Percentage of .87, 1 Shutout, and a Goals Against Average of 2.74. With the strong play from Minti and Hawk, look for Ottawa to stay on the heels of the Reapers in the coming week. STARTING AT THE BOTTOM Sitting in the very last spot for the league is the Mississauga Hounds, who hold a record of 5-21-1 with 11 points. There's not a single player on the Hounds roster who has a positive -/+ rating, with the exception of one player who has only played a total of three games. You could blame the abysmal record on schedule strength, maybe. It's hard to win games when your leading goal scorer has only 7 goals in the 27 games they have played, and the rest of the offense isn't getting enough chances to help produce. Maybe some trades could help correct the ship on this team, time will tell, but for now they looked to be destined to sit at the bottom of the pack. HONORABLE MENTION It's worth noting the play from the Minnesota Storm, who currently hold the third place spot in the standings at a record of 20-6-1, sitting one game behind Ottawa with 41 points. Defenseman Kefka Palazzo leads the team with 44 points, and also leads in assists with 30. Left Winger Berocka Sundqvist leading the team in goals with 20. Goalie Justin Cole has a 20-6-1 record, an impressive 7 Shutouts, and an equally impressive .899 Save Percentage. Cole leads the league for goalies in Goals Against Average (1.91), Shutouts (7), and comes in second for Goals Against Average (0.899). Sitting one game back from Ottawa, look for the landscape to change when it comes to the Top Three Teams in the VHLM. @diamond_ace @berocka @Jayrad28 @Psanchez55 @Zeno @ahawk2191 @WhiteMocha @uphillmoss @Mr_Hatter
  15. 12 points

    S66 Hall of Fame Induction

    As is League tradition, every off-season the VHL presents it's Hall of Fame induction. This season, and for at least the next 2 seasons, the Board of Governors has decided that only one Player will be inducted, as opposed to the traditional 2 inductions each season. This season we also welcome another builder into our ranks, one that has been waiting a long time to enter this hall. D - Mats Johnsson, S57, S57-64 @Quik RS: 576GP, 134G, 469A, 603P, +191, 608PIM, 984HIT, 1046SB, 22GW PO: 72GP, 19G, 68A, 87P, +20, 148PIM, 173HIT, 171SB, 4GW S61 Alexander Valiq Trophy (Top Offensive Defenceman) S62 Jake Wylde Trophy (Top Defensive Defenceman) S63 Sterling Labatte Trophy (Top Overall Defenceman) S63 Jake Wylde Trophy (Top Defensive Defenceman) Two Continental Cups (S59, S62) First Team All-VHL (S62, S63)  Second Team All-VHL (S64) Without Norris Stopko's first ballot Hall of Fame last season this likely would have happened sooner, but the BOG was quick to react and make sure that Mats Johnsson wasn't passed up again. His beginnings were humble after being drafted by the soon to be defunct Stockholm Vikings and his first few seasons were nothing spectacular but they did not slow Johnsson down for future success, both in the regular season and in the playoffs; the latter of which he made 6 seasons in a row on route to two continental cups in S59 and S62. Johnsson was always a defence first type of player winning the Wylde trophy twice and nearly eclipsing 1000 hits on his career. As an extra bonus, Johnsson holds the current record for practice hours of any player. After all that effort it's certain that he has earned time to rest and sit alongside the greats that are before him in the VHL Hall of Fame. Vote Mats Johnsson - 7/10 Ay Ay Ron - 3/10 Tyson Kohler - 0/13 Jakab Holik - 0/13 Astrid Moon - 0/13 Keaton Louth - 0/13 @Positivefan036 Many of you likely saw the article eagles wrote a few weeks ago about being inducted into the hall as a builder. Sometimes it just takes a bit of a spark to make people realize that theres been an oversight. Known more commonly by his original name of Eaglesfan, this member contributed greatly to the league since joining over 10 years ago if my memory serves correctly on the date. From being an active grader and BOG participant to one of the longest serving and greatest VHLM Commisioners the league has ever known eagles as served the VHL well. While he has taken a bit of a step back in recent years that does nothing to devalue what he has historically offered to the league. Consider this an oversight corrected as Eaglesfan joins the Hall of Fame as a builder. Congratulations to both on their induction into the Victory Hockey League Hall of Fame!
  16. 12 points

    Mock S66 VHL Entry Draft [1/2]

    Welcome to the S66 VHL MOCK Draft, Presented by the Unofficial VHL Scouting Network! Hosted by me (Renomitsu) with plenty of help from rjfryman! Want to make a mock of your own? Click here! This sheet, made by @rjfryman, will be updated shortly after posting to adjust for recent trades. This mock goes to 40 picks (4 rounds), when almost all picking teams are 3+ players deep at 3+ positions. Now with understanding of wing positions! Round 1 1. Riga Reign – C Hunter Hearst Helmsley @Beaviss HHH has the most TPE of any player in the draft and is one of only two players currently above 300 TPE. He'll crowd the Riga depth chart a bit at center, but gives Riga a lot of wiggle room and trade power. This pick gives the Reign a choice between dominating while fielding a very deep team, or building a team of young stars without sacrificing much current power. Another option is taking Shane Mars, and setting themselves up at a wing spot for a long time. Frankly, that may be the better option, provided HHH is Beavis's player and would likely leave for Vancouver after his rookie contract is up. 2. Vancouver Wolves (from Davos) - LW Shane Mars @Spade18 Mars is the perfect player to fill out Vancouver's LW spot; he'll get second-line minutes from the get-go, with a chance to start over Mulligan by the start of S67. He'll have minutes to play with centers Rauno Palo and Beau Loth, which should do wonders for his rookie season. If the Reign opt for Mars, Beaviss gets his dream fulfilled and can take his own player. 3. Seattle Bears (from Calgary) - LW Julius Freeman @rjfryman The Bears need a left wing - not just for depth, but to have one at all - and Freeman is a no-brainer here. He's ridiculously active, just posted a VHLM mock draft of his own yesterday, and as a brand-new part of the Recruitment Crew, is as close to a guaranteed thing in this league as there is among first-gens. He's a slam-dunk pick for Seattle. 4. HC Davos Dynamo (from Vancouver) - RW Mikko Aaltonen @GRZ Davos is a reasonably deep team already - but they'll want to set up for when newly-acquired S60 oldie Veran Dragomir and prime S62 draftee Ryuu Crimson retire. Aaltonen gives them this option, though he may not have minutes for a little while. 5. Moscow Menace (from New York) - C Jet Jaguar @gorlab I doubt Jaguar plans on falling this far (nobody ever does), but he's the best option at this pick by a handfl of TPE, and gives Moscow an immediate second-liner at center. He'll sit behind S64 draftee Mark Gebauer for a little while, but will have a starting job waiting for him. 6. Riga Reign - LW Dimitri Volosenkov @SirRupertBarnes Volosenkov fills a future and current need, as Riga tries to figure out their wings of the future. He'll take the second LW spot immediately, and the Reign probably look for another wing to put over inactive Kisshan Shan - that'll probably be VHLM standout Shawnomir Jagr unless the Nighthawks take him. 7. Malmö Nighthawks - D Jerry Garcia @GustavMattias With this pick, Malmö picks up a first-pair defender for the foreseeable future. There are four left wingers between 200-230 TPE, so I think Advantage sees the value of a pick at another position of need here and takes Garcia. I also fulfill my daily quota of GustavMattias tagging with this post. 8. Riga Reign (from Seattle) - D Aron Nielsen @solas Seeing Garcia picked at 7 will probably spur the Reign into action; seeing as they've got a ton of picks back-to-back-to-back, they elect to take the next best defender in Nielsen to set their second defensive pair for the next couple of seasons. Charlie Paddywagon is also an option here, but there's a 30+ TPE drop-off between Paddywagon/Nielsen and the next best guy. Riga will try to get a second D if they're available in the second round. 9. Riga Reign (from Helsinki) - RW Shawnomir Jagr @TheLastOlympian07 Riga needs to fill out their wingers - at this point, they have two excellent starters in LW Randoms and RW Preencarnacion, but Preencarnacion is getting older and Riga would like to have a pair of active second-line wings waiting in the... well, wings. Preencarnacion has regression staring him in the face, and randoms is two seasons behind - so Jagr and Volosenkov could be playing starting roles on a competitive team in just a few seasons 10. Moscow Menace (from Toronto) - G Owen May @FacebookFighter Moscow need a goalie? They get a goalie. Now they're on to getting active wings and defensemen. Round 2 11. Moscow Menace - RW Arnor Sigurdsson @bluesfan55 The Menace could opt for a defender here just to get another active one on the books, but I think they opt for the highest-TPE pick here and go for Arnor Sigurdsson. He's very close to Shawnomir Jagr, but since there's a slight TPE difference, we'll say Sigurdsson goes here. The Wranglers get a little uneasy, as the last 250+ TPE winger gets taken off the board by a smart Moscow team. 12. Calgary Wranglers - LW Chico Smeb @xDParK The Wranglers get sweaty palms after Arnor Sigurdsson is taken off the table, and opt for the next best wing in Chico Smeb. They're aware Kari Jurri is inactive, and while Valeri Morozov is another close-to-comparable option, it's a little ways down before you can find another good winger after him. Calgary also doesn't get another pick until Round 4, so they're more-or-less obligated ot take him now. 13. Riga Reign (from Vancouver) - D Charlie Paddywagon @DMaximus This seems like a strange set of picks, but take a look at Riga's roster right now: they're going to be incredibly young at all forward positions with at least two solid lines for the foreseeable future and have a goalie coming into his prime. I think they go for one of the deepest defenses in the VHL, and two easy replacements for Bolt Vanderhuge and Cayden Saint in a few seasons. And yes, I love defense. 14. Vancouver Wolves (from Davos) - G Clayton Park @leafssteen The Wolves reach a little and try to find their goalie of the future in Clayton Park, who would start immediately. Other choices include Bert Meyers and Maximilian Kirbsson, but after Vancouver sees May taken off the board they simply have to take Park here. Seattle will be looking for a goalie to replace S60 draftee Tristan Iseult, and if Park & Bjoernsson are taken by other teams there is a lot of uncertainty past those two. 15. Helsinki Titans (from New York) - LW Valeri Morozov @Dangles13 The Titans desperately need wings - they currently only have S63 star Julian Borwinn on the roster, and while that's nice, he can't play two positions at once on the ice as far as I can tell. The Titans score a much needed winger in Morozov, even with as tempting as taking Bert Meyers or Maximilian Kirbsson is at this juncture. 16. Riga Reign - G Kolur Bjoernsson @jblock3 I mean, what does Riga need at this point? They've got 5 wings, 4 of which are S63 or younger, 5 centers including HHH, and 5 defensemen, two of which they got in this draft. I think the Reign start planning long term and reach mightily for Bjoernsson, just to see if he pans out while Kriketers enters his prime. And maybe to cause some havoc - because there are plenty of teams with goalie needs. 17. Malmö Nighthawks - D Codrick Past @Kylrad The Nighthawks needs to fill their defensive need, and has a tough choice between Codrick Past and Apollo Hackett. It's honestly a toss-up at this point. This'll be up strictly to Advantage's personal preference, as Past and Hackett are within 3 TPE of one another. We'll assume he takes the 199 of Past over Hackett's 197. 18. Vancouver Wolves (from Seattle) - C Bert Meyers @RunnerBert11 Meyers has the talent of a first-rounder, but crowding at the C position pushes him down to the mid-second. Vancouver gets an absolute steal, Meyers gets a chip on his shoulder, and things work out perfectly for GM Beaviss. 19. HC Davos Dynamo (from Helsinki) - G Jus Jaundice @Jus This pick probably looks crazy. And maybe it is. But the gap between Jaundice and the next active goalie is nearly 100 TPE - and the Dynamo could use a better backup in a season or two. The Dynamo also have to have been terrified by Riga's selection of Bjoernsson early in the round - exactly as hedgehog planned. Jaundice's activity has just increased this week - so things are looking up. 20. Seattle Bears (from Toronto) - C Maximillian Kirbsson @Kirby The Bears get an absolute steal in Maximillian Kirbsson, and probably opt to swap him to a winger role. There are plenty of good centers in this draft, and just not enogh spots to let them start early. At this point, it's absurd how far he's fallen and the Bears shouldn't be coy about swapping his position. Round 3 21. Moscow Menace - LW Kyle Sabertooth @uphillmoss Sederstrom and Gruber are still options here - but Sabertooth has been incredibly active, and with three centers on the roster including this draft's Jet Jaguar, the Menace fill a more pressing need. They could opt for a defenseman here, but with this pick have their four wing spots filled with active players. 22. Helsinki Titans (from Calgary) - RW Aleksander Rodriguez @Jtv123 A bit of a reach, but Rodriguez gives the Titans what they need most, plus he's been pretty active. They could opt for a defenseman here, but honestly they need any players that can fill their second line's wing spots. They can afford to wait for a defender. 23. New York Americans (from Vancouver) - RW Mat Tocco @Matmenzinger Tocco will play an important part of transitioning on from the inactive Sven Hitz - assuming he's active, that is. 24. Riga Reign (from Davos) - C Ludvig Sederstrom @aleks In every other season, getting a 200+ TPE player at pick 24 is an absolute steal. It's still a steal in this draft, because of positional needs from teams. Riga has more than enough centers, but could use Sederstrom as trade bait, or maybe if Anthony Matthews doesn't pan out to be a center of the future. Sederstrom may fume at this pick - and by most metrics, he deserves to be higher - but there were four centers above him in TPE and the VHL has plenty of center talent already. My guess is Riga asks someone to change positions - but where would Sederstrom switch to? He may become a second option at RW when Reencarnacion retires, or even a starter outright if Jagr or Volosenkov don't pan out. 25. Moscow Menace (from New York) - D Apollo Hackett @Renomitsu It's a little tacky to tag myself, but whatever. Hackett falls way further than expected, and lands with Moscow. He'll have a starting spot sooner rather than later, especially with Fitzgerald and Bronstein inactive, but it remains to be seen if he'll flourish like some of the higher-rated defenders in this draft. 26. Riga Reign - LW Edgar Tannahill (gregreg) Malmö get winger depth, and it's an incredibly-promising player in Tannahill. He has a fiery attitude, isn't afraid to smack-talk or voice his opinion, and will easily help set the tone in the Reign locker room if he would like. He has a chance to be a leader for his team from season one or two if he so chooses - but will this room of old heads and high draft picks let him? 27. Malmö Nighthawks - C Hans Gruber @TheFlash The Nighthawks snag the last mid-to-high quality center in the draft for depth, and even though Sederstrom's picked 24th, this is still a steal. Advantage should be ecstatic if Gruber is still available here, but honestly provided the abundance of active centers in the VHL it's not unbelievable to see him fall this far. It just means he'll have a couple of seasons to shine like crazy later in his career. 28. Vancouver Wolves (from Seattle) - D Rusty Shackleford @K1NG LINUS Vancouver want to find players they can build up behind S61 vets Samuel Gate and Marvin Harding, and they'll get an active member (and a steal) in Rusty Shackleford. 29. Helsinki Titans - RW John Frostbeard @FrostBeard A newer member that recently was appointed to a VHLM GMship, John Frostbeard would seem to have a future of activity underneath his belt. He's a consistent welfare-taker, and will be a solid addition to Helsinki's roster. Not only that, he'll get excellent second-line minutes behind Arnor Sigurdsson. 30. Helsinki Titans (from Toronto) - D Beau Buefordsson @Radcow The Titans currently only have three defenders - they fix that by picking up new-blood Beau Buefordsson. Round 4 31. Moscow Menace - D Edward Vigneault @Patpou22 Moscow need depth at defender, and they get it with Vigneault. Lew Bronstein's TPE isn't going anywhere fast, and Vigneault will most likely be able to be an immediate starter if he chooses to come up; otherwise, the Menace are more than happy to watch him grow in the minors over the next season. He may, in fact, be a better prospect than Amberback - but it's too close to tell. 32. Calgary Wranglers - D Anthony Amberback @Oost Defensive need? Defenseman given. Anthony Amberback rounds out the Calgary defense. I consider Vigneault and Amberback interchangeable at this point. 33. Moscow Menace (from Vancouver) - RW AJ Axelsen @littleboi Moscow find themselves a steal with Axelsen, who's gained 52 TPE in the last three weeks. He's a regular welfare/MS poster and could have a chance at a regular backup or fringe starting spot in the future. Like most picks after round 3, he's a bit of a gamble - but a look at his activity history should be enough to sway the GM. They play with fire, but have the picks to take a gamble. 34. HC Davos Dynamo - RW Emil Passerelli @SparrowLTD Passerelli is a bit of a gamble, since his TPE gaining is a bit limited from week to week. Davos takes Passerelli as insurance in case Svoboda or Warren go inactive - which is unlikely, but possible. 35. Moscow Menace (from New York) - D Samuel Sparrow @Birdman His activity is spotty on occasion, but Samuel Sparrow can be a nice fourth D-man, either as a future first/second liner or as a stopgap player depending on Birdman's activity. Frankly, his potential spans between multiple-season first-liner and two-season fifth D-man. I like this pick better than Parkey, who seems to have gone inactive. He'll be exactly what Moscow wants, and may be able to replace current defenders as soon as mid-late next season due to activity. 36. Riga Reign - C Rhys Chism @Jables Frankly, I'm not sure what Riga go for here. Chism could be good trade bait as Reign continues to collect centers. 37. Malmö Nighthawks - LW Cody Smith @cody73 The Nighthawks will be tempted to take another defenseman to round out both pairs, but with 3 between 85-105, and several more around 70, they elect to take some winger depth and hope for good defensemen next draft. 38. Seattle Bears - D Guillaume Fontenette @okocha5 Fontenette is nabbing around 12 points a week on average. That's excellent, especially for a 4th-round pick. Still, in my opinion, a better pick than Cody Parkey due to activity level in spite of the TPE deficit. His recent activity may end up putting him over Sparrow. 39. Helsinki Titans - LW Devin Gabella @Gabella19 Gabella is another pick at slightly above his projection, but he provides some depth to the Titans' winger spot and has been pretty active the last few weeks. I think the Titans take the dive. 40. Calgary Wranglers (from Toronto) - LW Dylan Doyle @zepheter Doyle is another recently-active pick that fills a depth position for the Wranglers, and he closes out our mock!
  17. 12 points
    S66-67 Off-Season Run-Down I - The Bottom Five Compared to Season 66, this off-season has been a whirlwind – just about on schedule, with an expectation for Season 67 proper to start on either Sunday or Monday. After a dominant regular season, the Helsinki Titans and their two skater stars in Julian Borwinn @Jubo07 and S65-66 free agent signing Matt Thompson @Beketov easily cleaned up in the playoffs – and the awards, with nearly a dozen going their way. And that’s not even including their first- and second-team All-VHL selections. In terms of the draft, Season 67’s class was incredibly deep – much like last season, and a very promising sign – which means some teams have been revamped a bit. And while some teams have traded away players, they were generally pretty even exchanges: New York started a fire sale for picks, and Toronto kept on doing its thing just trading away all of its draft picks. Otherwise, a couple of exchanges for picks to offload some salary didn’t seem to make much of a difference. But here’s a hot take: even this season’s biggest free agent signing in Veran Dragomir doesn’t change my favorite for the S67 championship. Heck, it might not even put them in the top two. Read below and in this topic's companion article for more opinions! #10 – Seattle Bears GM // @Banackock Stars // None Risers // S67 LW Acyd Burn S67 D Ambrose Stark S67 D Boone Jenton S67 LW Henrik Zoiderberg S67 D Hulk Hogan S67 C Scott Greene S66 C Thomas Kennedy S66 G Rayz Funk Of all of the teams with a bright future, Seattle has the most potential. Like New York, they have a relatively younger ‘star’ player in center Joel Ylonen @Esso2264 (an S64 prospect) surrounded by players that would most likely qualify for limited second to third line minutes on other teams. But it’s worth noting – if it isn’t already obvious enough from their ‘Risers’ – that Seattle hit with deep S66 picks and have a tremendous number of 250+ TPE S67 selections. The first season or two for the Bears has been and will be rough – there’s little way around that. With the retirement of Defenseman of the Year and assists leader Samuel Gate @street, there are few current redeeming qualities for the bears. But between rookie wingers @Acydburn and @HenrikZoiderberg, rookie center Scott Greene @DoktorFunk and sophomore Thomas Kennedy @Walter Fizz, three rookie defensemen in Hulk Hogan @HulkHogan, Ambrose Stark, and Boone Jenton @FakeJenton, and goalie Rayz Funk @Rayzor_7, the Bears have literally drafted an entire set of first liners for the future. The question is, will they stick around after their rookie contracts? If 5 or more of the 6 re-sign, they’ll be a force to be reckoned with come S70, but hardly anything is ever so certain in the VHL. High Points - First-line center Ylonen; ridiculously good S67 draft class. Hulk Hogan will be a first-line starter right away, and Seattle has possibly the best future defensive trio and goalie in the league. Concerns - Everything from F1-F3 and D1-D2... for this season. Projected Lines F1 // Shane Mars – Joel Ylonen – Acyd Burn F2 // Henrik Zoiderberg – Scott Greene – Thomas Kennedy F3 // Valeri Morozov – (Thomas Kennedy?) – Edgar Tannahill D1 // Lando Baxter – Dallas Jones/Hulk Hogan D2 // Ambrose Stark – Boone Jenton G // Rayz Funk #9 – New York Americans GM // @Esso2264 Stars // RW Dan Wilinsky Risers // S67 ACL TEAR S66 RW Aleksander Rodriguez S66 RW Nethila Dissanayake S67 C Boris the Forest The Americans squeaked into the last playoff spot in Season 66, and promptly started a fire sale in order to take on two excellent S67 prospects in winger ACL Tear @Quik and center Boris the Forest @chillzone. In the process, they rid themselves of first-liners Joel Ylonen, Joseph McWolf, and Leph Twinger and accumulated picks for S67/S68. For now, that leaves them with several promising young prospects and superstar winger Dan Wilinsky @oilmandan, the lone skater above 500 TPA for the Americans. Thankfully he’s still mid-career, having entered via the S63 draft, and that gives him another couple of seasons to see the New York roster grow. For now, he’ll likely line up with center Carles Puigdemont and fellow winger Kisshan Shan, particularly as the team waits for one of wingers Aleksander Rodriguez @Jtv123, Nethila Dissanayake @nethi99, or TEAR to pass one of the two. Until then, this leaves New York’s first two forward lines as a bit underwhelming, and their D1 line woefully so. In fact, it’s unclear as to who, exactly, New York can even play at D2. Piotr Jerwa and Bald Guy will likely man the first line, while Mountain Thunderfist and maybe a call-up or position swapped forward will have to man the second spot in the second defensive line. New York also has one of the larger rosters in the league, sitting on 15 skaters and 3 goalies. While the aging Tristan Iseult isn’t a bad backup for perennial starter Ismond Kingfisher, their dearth in starting-quality skaters forces the Americans down to ninth. High Points – Good, young prospects (S65+) complemented by a single superstar in Wilinsky. Rodriguez, TEAR, Forest, and Dissanayake should be steady earners. Concerns – No other skaters above 500 TPE. Depth is questionable beyond second forward line and a singular defender (Jerwa). Expect the S68 NYA first pick to be either 1 or 2OA. Projected Lines F1 // Kisshan Shan – Carles Puigdemont – Dan Wilinsky F2 // ACL TEAR – Boris the Forest – Nethila Dissanayake F3 // Aleksander Rodriguez – Maximilian Kirbsson – Blake Laughton D1 // Piotr Jerwa – Bald Guy D2 // Mountain Thunderfist – ??? G // Ismond Kingfisher #8 – Malmö Nighthawks GM // @Advantage Stars // None (RW Matthew Materazo future) Risers // S66 D Jerry Garcia, S67 RW Lucas Nygren, S66 D Rusty Shackleford, S67 C Trevor Van Lagen As the new kid on the block, Malmö really has their work cut out for them. After a hot start to last season, they were eliminated from the playoffs with around 10 games left, and part of it had to do with their selected expansion core. The Nighthawks chose high TPE players, many of which unfortunately ended up going inactive. GM Chris Miller did an excellent job drafting generally high-quality players in Season 66. D Jerry Garcia @GustavMattias in particular has shot up the rankings since being revealed as a possible sleeper in the draft and taking on a VHLM GM position. In a similar vein, defenseman Rusty Shackleford @K1NG LINUS was drafted slightly lower but continues to earn TPE like a madman. When it comes to offense, Malmö’s team is predictably young but promising; Materazo has his work cut out for him, as he’ll most likely be working with veteran Mikka Pajari (492 TPE) and RW Jack Lynch (425) against other first lines. Garcia and one of Shackleford/Basaraba Moose will man the first defensive line, but they’ll likely struggle against league-average lines with 250-300 more TPE than either of them. Ultimately, from the top-down, Malmo needs time to develop its prospects. With a handful of pretty reliable users occupying their roster, they’ll need to figure out a way to retain all of their actives come S68 and S69. High Points – Excellent young defenders, reliable earners after F1. Jerry Garcia and Rusty Shackleford have shown promising consistency in point earning from S66’s draft class. S67 prospects will get starting time sooner rather than later. Concerns – Stated above. Malmö’s not going to win playoff games any time soon, if I had my guess. Projected Lines F1 // Jack Lynch – Mikka Pajari – Matthew Materazo F2 // Blake Gaudette – Teagan Glover – Lucas Nygren F3 // Trevor Van Lagen – Phil Marleau – Brian Strong D1 // Jerry Garcia – Rusty Shackleford D2 // Basaraba Moose – MORPHEUS DESTRUCTIOUS G // Michael Johnson #7 – Moscow Menace GM // @Victor Stars // LW Randoms, C Podrick Cast Risers // S66 C Jet Jaguar, S66 G Owen May As one of the two most recent expansion teams, this is about where I’d expect to find Moscow. There are some starter-quality players on the team that can join Randoms and Podrick Cast, namely C Mark Gebauer, RW Jorgon Weyed, and LW Dan Baillie, but none of the Moscow lines blow other teams’ lines out of the water. That’s not to say the Menace’s offseason was uneventful – they offloaded picks to Riga and Vancouver to acquire three best players in Cast, Randoms, and goalie Roger Sterling – but they certainly mortgaged some of their future in the progress. Ultimately, Moscow is still a very young team, and with rising stars like C Jet Jaguar @gorlab and “goalie of the future” Owen May @FacebookFighter, we can likely say that the Russians have some good days ahead. They may want to move some of their veteran players out for some active rookie and sophomore players or some high draft picks, as I don’t see the Menace going terribly far in the playoffs if they make it. Offensively, they’re capable of keeping up; their first line is perhaps only marginally worse than Riga’s, while their F2 is a fair bit better than the league average (but possibly worse than Vancouver’s). Defensively, we have a different story: Moscow’s best defender is 468 TPE Paolo Nano - good for most teams’ second line, but certainly not their first. High Points – Young, developable team with a pair of veteran mentors. Will have good transition from Sterling to May in goal. Very deep at forward, with Pavlov moving up to F3 shortly. Concerns – Defense currently doesn’t measure up to other mid-table teams. First line offense doesn’t have a clear-cut star. Projected Lines F1 // Randoms – Podrick Cast – Jorgon Weyed F2 // Dan Baillie – Mark Gebauer – Jet Jaguar F3 // Dimitri Volosenkov – Connor McDavid/Vladimir Pavlov – Mat Tocco D1 // Paolo Nano – Evgeni Komarov D2 // Mitch Matthews – Edward Vigneault G // Roger Sterling #6 – Vancouver Wolves GM // @Beaviss Stars // C Beau Louth, C Rauno Palo, D Shawn Glade Risers // S66 LW Julius Freeman, S67 G Greg Eagles, S66 C Hans Gruber, S67 C Micheal Gary Scott The Wolves made it to the finals last year – so why are they sixth, and third overall in the North American Conference? They re-signed Gritty @Positivefan036 and Denver Wolfe @InstantRockstar, who will both be important depth pieces, but don’t have any first line quality players beyond the above listed three stars. S66 draftees LW Julius Freeman @rjfryman and RW Shawnomir Jagr @TheLastOlympian07 are pivotal in forming the second lines, and both are likely to break the 600 TPE mark this season. One point of difficulty comes with Vancouver’s depth at one position – center. Both of their stars are there, and many of their depth pieces (e.g. Hans Gruber, Micheal Gary Scott) have lower effective TPA because of points lost to faceoff skills. And unless they plan on putting Louth and Palo on the same line, Vancouver’s stuck with 400-550 TPE players occupying the remainder of their top two forward line spots. This bodes well for their F2 – which would be the best by about 100 TPE per player if Rauno Palo were put there – but the star split makes for a F1 line that pales in comparison to Helsinki’s, Riga’s, Davos’s, Toronto’s, and Calgary’s. Their first defensive pair (Shawn Glade and Jagger @Philliefan) is similar in quality to Calgary’s, putting them at about fourth in the league, while their D2 sits moderately above the league average. However, Vancouver can easily fight fatigue, as they’re likely to have 8+ forwards above 400 TPE this season. The factor that pushes them furthest down the rankings, however, is their goalie. Even if Greg Eagles and Clayton Park are incredibly active this season, they’ll both hit 450 TPE at best – which puts them possibly above Seattle in North America and tied-ish with Malmo in Europe. That’s not a great look for a team that wants to contend. High Points – Excellent Center and overall offensive depth. Good defensive depth. Concerns – Very star-reliant (i.e. Louth and Palo) forward lines. Their goalies are also very raw prospects and may have a tough time because of average defensive depth. Projected Lines F1 // Julius Freeman – Beau Louth – Gritty F2 // Hans Gruber – Rauno Palo – Shawnomir Jagr F3 // [F1 extra minutes] – Micheal Gary Scott – Ben Hafkey D1 // Shawn Glade – Jagger Philliefan D2 // Denver Wolfe – Codrick Past G // Clayton Park (early) / Greg Eagles (mid-late)
  18. 12 points

    Ban Thread

    @DougF has been permanently banned for soliciting illegal images from members.
  19. 11 points

    Draft Day for Lincoln Tate [2/2]

    Reminiscent of his youth, Lincoln Tate, stood patiently outside the large wooden door that led to one his parent’s many different bedrooms that scattered across the globe. Lincoln’s Mother had flown in to attend the draft with him, and only after he had requested through correspondence that at least one family member be there with him. Lincoln was surprised to learn that his Mother was willing to come as she hadn’t attended a single VHLM game this past season, and he was certain that she didn’t even know what the VHLM or the VHL was. But nonetheless, Lincoln was happy to have company. Lincoln had never spent much time with his Mother, he was raised mostly by the hired staff and only saw his Mother on average four times a year. Winnie Tate wasn’t the worst parent, she cared for her son in many ways and had done her best to provide him with the best education money could buy. Out of both of his parents, Winnie had shown Lincoln the most love, and the when it came to the time they spent together during those odd occasions each year, they were pleasant enough and that was all Lincoln could ask for. He wasn’t one to complain. Lincoln and his Mother had traveled together via the Tate private plan and landed quietly on the night before the draft, travelling by car to their local property and blowing the dust off the doors as they passed through them. The Tate’s were known to have properties all over the world, just for this very occasion. It wasn’t that hotels weren’t good enough, it’s just that the Tate’s preferred to own the hotels they slept in. Lincoln had woken early on the day of his draft, and even though he had hardly slept through the night he was filled with energy. He felt strangely refreshed and nervous at the same time, and the anticipation that had been building inside of him since he opened his eyes was causing him to sweat too much. Part of the problem that was causing Lincoln to overheat was that he had been dressed in his suit for almost two hours now- unable to quell the excitement pounding in his chest. What would happen tonight? When would he be selected? Where would he be going? These sorts of questions littered his mind, overwhelming him at times and forcing him to focus on his breathing. He had learned different breathing exercises to help him calm himself down in times of stress and breathing in slowly through his nose and out of his mouth was one of the methods that helped to relax him the most. Lincoln exercised this very breathing tactic as he waited calmly for his Mother, he wasn’t going to rush her, even though he knew very well that if he didn’t do just- that they might miss the draft altogether. The only thing that assured Lincoln was the fact that he was forecasted to be picked in the second round, possibly the first, so even if he and his Mother were late to the draft- He wouldn’t have to be worried about being selected by that point, and everything would still be just fine. However, Lincoln didn’t want to be late at all. He knew that he had to find a way to convince his Mother that they had to leave a bit early, and the only way he was going to be able to do that was to talk to her- and that wasn’t something he was used to doing. Lincoln leaned into the large wooden door causing the door to slowly creek open and reveal his stick skinny, filthy rich, Mother sitting far across the room on a single chair, admiring herself in a mirror that nearly matched the height and width of the door that Lincoln had just opened. Winnie Tate immediately noticed her youngest son in the doorway and while her eyes only lingered on him for a moment, she knew what it was that he wanted, she could read Lincoln like a book, “Yes?” She asked him, giving him the chance to ask the question that she already knew was going to come out of his mouth. “I was wondering when we might leave?” Lincoln asked softly, doing his best not to add any inflection in his voice, if he was to have any success with his Mother he would need to tread carefully. “Soon,” she told him the same answer she had given him earlier that day. They would leave when she felt good and ready to do so. She was aware of how important this event was for her son, she could see it in his eyes alone. But a Tate rushed for no one, and events only really started when a Tate wanted them to. This draft or whatever it was that Lincoln was so eager to get to, could wait. “Okay,” Lincoln responded just as softly as he had spoken a moment before and he understood then that his attempt had not been successful. He switched tactics and entered the large room with vaulted ceilings and furnishings that had been carved from two-hundred-year-old cedar. Lincoln was calm and fluid in his movements as he edged closer to his Mother, finally reaching her side and smiling back at her through the mirror. “Did you want some company?” Lincoln asked, figuring this strategy might move things along faster, “Would it be okay if I waited with you?’ Winnie was not quik to say yes, and she debated in her mind whether she should ask Lincoln to continue waiting outside the room, as she had done before. She knew that their assistant Ramone was waiting outside, ready and willing to drive them to Lincoln’s event, and she knew that it had been at least an hour or more since Lincoln had last asked to leave. “No that’s all right,” she said to Lincoln as she forced a smile, she wanted to be kind to her boy, even though she had expected more kindness to be shown to her, “We can leave.” Hearing her response Lincoln’s face lit up a smile, his tactic had worked, and it meant that they would be on their way, he would arrive on time for the draft after all. “Thank you,” he told his Mother sincerely, “Thank you so much.” *** “How long will this take?” It was a simple question from his Mother and one that Lincoln knew not to take the wrong way. “I’m not sure,” he said honestly, “It might be a couple of hours.” “A couple of hours!?” She was astonished, “For a Tate? That’s outrageous, surely you’re not wasting your time with this, ‘hockey,’ Lincoln?” He shook his head and remained stoic, “No,” he said without any trace of agitation, “My hope is that the wait won’t be long, I just don’t know what’s going to happen. No one can know that.” “Well,” she said to herself as she turned away to look through the limousine window, and Lincoln watched as his Mother stared at the passing city. He could tell that she was debating in her mind, trying to figure out what was reasonable, “One hour,” she said aloud before she looked back at him, “One-hour Lincoln, and if you’re not drafted by then- then it’s not worth staying. What league doesn’t value a Tate?” It was now Lincoln’s turn to debate what his next move should be as the very thought of only staying at the draft for an hour was mortifying. How could she make such a demand of him? She had elected to come to the draft when asked, and now she was stating when they had to leave? It was so typical of her to do this to him last minute and try to force him to deviate from his plans. He wondered what her true motive was, at least if it was his Father he would have been more forthcoming. His father was never afraid to admit that he’d rather be doing something else than spending time with his son. But why even listen? Lincoln was almost of age and an adult in terms of the law. She would only be considered his legal guardian for two more months. Besides, if she wanted to leave the draft then she could, and Lincoln would stay. They weren’t set to leave the city until tomorrow and depending on who Lincoln was drafted by, he might be getting on a different plane than the one that brought him here. But what Lincoln didn’t understand was that he had already spent his last night living in the same home as parents, and that everything was about change- forever. “If it takes longer than an hour, I’m going to stay,” Lincoln was satisfied with how the sentence had flowed out of his mouth. He had spoken with confidence, and when he looked his Mother in the eye, he held strong. “You will not,” she was insulted by his suggestion, “A Tate will not be embarrassed, and that’s what you are Lincoln. If the hour has passed and they-“ He cut her off, “I’ll come right back after I get drafted, you can go back home and do whatever you want. I’ll get a ride back. I don’t need Ramone to stay,” Lincoln was trying to be reasonable, he didn’t want to make this any worse than it already was. “It’s not about me WANTING to leave,” she tried to reassure him, “I just- Lincoln, our name is important. We’re a brand.” “I want to stay there, please,” Lincoln still wasn’t ready to defy her. Not yet. “Just stay the hour with me and if I don’t get drafted by then, you can leave. I’ll be home soon after, the draft won’t take longer than three hours, maybe less.” “Three hours!?” She exclaimed, focusing on the word three, “How many people are in this thing Lincoln?” “It’s a professional league Mom,” Lincoln told her, “Once I’m drafted I can sign. I made over a mill-“ “You don’t need to work for money Lincoln,” she was swift in her reaction, “If you want to make real money you should be working for your Father. I’m certain he thought you’d be working for him by now, and you were always so good with numbers.” “I’m good at this,” Lincoln could no longer resist, “And had you shown up once last season you would have seen that.” “Is this how you talk to your mother now?” She asked as the limousine pulled to a stop. Ramone opened the door for them, revealing the venue of the VHL draft and a large crowd scattered outside of the front entrance. Lincoln looked outside and then back at his Mother, “Are you coming?” “I’ll meet you inside,” she said coldly as she looked down and away from him, reminding him of his younger sister and how she reacts when she doesn’t get what she wants. “Okay, see you in there,” Lincoln went to step out of the limo and then stopped, he looked back at her, “Sorry about what I said.” She didn’t respond. Lincoln left the limousine and walked inside alone. *** When Ramone arrived, and his Mother did not, Lincoln was not surprised. He wasn’t angry either, just disappointed and unsure as to why he extended her an invitation. Lincoln had been alone for most of the season, staying in empty homes or hotels, sometimes at the team’s expense but mostly at his parents. They expected a Tate to live by a certain standard and it was a high one and far too pricey for a VHLM team to afford. Still, Lincoln had found time to make friends and win himself over with the group and if there was a highlight so far to the draft it was getting to talk with his soon to be ex teammates Phil Marleau and Greg Eagles beforehand. The small talk was fun and upbeat and they all wondered collectively what would happen, and as Lincoln wished them well he watched them with envy as they headed back toward their family- the people who waited for them with open arms. When the draft started Lincoln missed most of the beginning speech, he was too focused on the door to the arena floor and anxious to see if his Mother would come. “I took her back to the estate, she’s not here,” Ramone finally said to him, not wanting Lincoln to continue to hope for her presence. “I’m sorry Lincoln,” Ramone spoke with sincerity and compassion, he rarely showed emotion but even he was astounded at the fact that Lincoln’s Mother had decided to leave. “It’s okay, I’m not upset,” Lincoln’s response wasn’t truthful and Ramone knew it, but he needn’t comment any further, there was nothing left to be said about it. Ramone could sense that there was some confusion on the draft floor and he leaned into Lincoln, lowering his voice as he asked, “What’s happening?” “Something’s going on,” Lincoln told Ramone as he watched the crowd move about, Executives on the floor appeared upset, “There’s technical difficulty I think.” “Will they shut it down?” Ramone asked naively. “I don’t think so,” Lincoln shook his head, “I doubt it.” “You want some French fries or anything?” Ramone asked, feeling a sting of hunger hit his belly. “No,” Lincoln said, “You go ahead,” and before Lincoln could finish his sentence Ramone was up on his feet and headed toward the concession. Lincoln sat alone as he waited for the draft to start, and he looked around for Ramone the moment the announcement was made. Ramone had not yet made it back from the concession as members of the Riga Reign worked their way to the main stage. “With the first pick of the VHL Entry Draft the Riga Reign are proud to select, Lincoln Tate.” The crowd surrounding Lincoln seemed to find him immediately with hands reaching out to touch him as Lincoln was lifted from his seat and embraced by strangers. Lincoln smiled as he shook hand after hand and said thank you to people he had never met before, looking around one last time for Ramone but still not seeing him. Lincoln was thrust forward in disbelief as he seemingly floated to the arena floor and found himself on stage with a Riga Reign jersey being pulled over his shoulders and a Riga hat being placed on his head. “Welcome to the VHL,” a voice said to him. “Welcome to Riga,” another told him. “Thank you,” Lincoln said as his eyes bounced from one man to another, “Thank you,” he continued to repeat. FLASH! Cameras went off in front of him as he took photos with the team and for the first time in his life Lincoln was the center of attention. He wasn’t sure how to react or what to do and instead allowed the group to guide him. “How does it feel to go first overall to Riga?” Lincoln was seated in a chair next to his new General Manager, Benjamin Zeptenbergs and looking across at him was an attractive television host expecting an answer. Lincoln was at a loss for words and stuttered as he started to speak, “It-it’s beyond words, I’m honored.” “You were expected to go a few picks later than first, were you surprised?” “Very,” Lincoln was forthcoming, “But thrilled that it happened.” “Are you excited to play next year in Latvia?” “Can’t wait.” “What do you hope to bring to the team?” “Offense,” Lincoln was quik to say, “I want to be a weapon out there, shoot to kill.” “Do you have anything you want to say to the fans of Riga?” Lincoln smiled, “Let the Reign begin,” he said with an excited laugh- he still couldn’t believe this was all happening to him, and just as quik as it all came, it was over. The attention moved now from Lincoln to the next in line, and as Seattle called out Funk’s name the camera’s seemed to shift in unison away from Lincoln and the noise around him softened. “Where you off to?” The question came from behind Lincoln and as he turned around, he saw his new General Manager, Zeptenbergs, looking back at him with a curious expression. Lincoln grinned sheepishly, “I was going to try and find my ride home.” Zeptenbergs laughed at the remark, “We’re your ride home now, don’t you want to come with us?” Lincoln looked over Hedge’s shoulder at the floor of the draft, watching as the people continued to hustle back and forth and cheer the names that were being called over the speakers. “Yes,” Lincoln said to Zeptenbergs, “Lead the way,” and he followed Zeptenbergs back onto the arena and over to the Riga Reign table, to where he belonged. 2814 words
  20. 11 points

    Let’s talk TPE inflation

    Am I the only one to hard disagree here? The hard earning of TPE whores allows them to handle steep depreciation. But did you see how hard depreciation with our update scale hits across the board? Especially in the final seasons. I actually think we are in a good spot. The heavy earners will have the excess to handle the steep falls in 7th/8th season while everyone else settles with the hard decisions of prioritizing attributes.
  21. 11 points
    Literally live sim 5 of 7 games (was intending on doing all 7, but had to get sims done when I did/circumtance) and still people think something is fishy? There is no extra inside knowledge of how the sim operates. Not more than any of the other GM's who've been here just as long as me. Also I'll say again, we've had GM's be simmers before tons. Will and Jardy come to mind as examples. Just so you guys are aware, the only way for someone to "rig" something in the sim would be if I deleted the game file that it outputs after I hit simulate, and then reload an older version of the index back before the game happened. Hence why when I live sim....there is literally 0% chance of foul play involved. As for simming, Beketov is taking VHL next season and me VHLM, and then we will alternate every other season due to work load. Anyway, I'm not going to get into responses about this stuff, I've talked with Bek about it before the finals even started....and we are confident in our simming team. It'd be nice if members put the salt away for half a second to see that too. But I get it, obviously it's not a conflict of interest when OTHER GM's sim...but when I do, it is. *laughs*
  22. 11 points

    Shuffling the Deck

    Right out of the gate, the Las Vegas Aces have been everything I've known. My first player, Julian Borwinn, was drafted here. My first job (AGM) was here, and my first taste of STHS sim as a GM for the last four seasons. Highlighted by a Founder's Cup Championship in S64, being the architect of the Aces for 288 regular season games (177 - 85 - 26) has been an honour and privilege. Grooming the talent of tomorrow while remaining competitive each season was a goal from day one. I believe we achieved that in spades while keeping open hearts and storing our clubs as far away from the golf course in search of that championship ring crested in diamonds. The VHLM is all about retention and involvement of our eager new members and that also holds true to the GM role. It is on this day I announce my passing of the torch as I will be stepping down as General Manager. After several days of building a list of recommended replacements for the role, @Banackock will ultimately take my recommendations into consideration and complete the hiring process. VHLM GM career in review I leave you with the words I express to all Vegas alumni; "Once an Ace, always an Ace". As far as my future goes, I hope to return as an AGM at some point in the near to distant future should a team be interested in my services. @VHLM GM @VHLM Commissioner
  23. 11 points
    Like this post to show support for potatoes!
  24. 10 points
    Honestly? I think it's annoying as hell that Higgins has made this his crusade. Boubabi was an edgelord who multiple times said racist and inflammatory things for the sole purpose of getting a rise out of people. He made enemies of people with fights for no reason, continually escalating even when he made no sense. He made the boards a toxic place to be on a regular basis, and I would have seriously thought twice about coming back if he were still here. Fuck that guy, I wish I could vote no twice.
  25. 10 points

    Writing About My Team

    So I was thinking about what to write and I felt I should give a shout out to my awesome team who have been so thrilled to be members of the Malmo Nighthawks. How am I going to do this? Well, I will write an article on every member of my team and talk a bit about the player and the member themselves. So far it has been a fantastic experience being a General Manager for the Malmo Nighthawks and I couldn’t ask for a better team supporting me. We have come a long way in such a short little time and I’m thrilled to see where we end up in the end. Now, let me introduce you to my team: D - Basaraba Moose – The first team captain we ever had and a solid two-way defender that came to Malmo in a trade shortly after the Expansion Draft. Moose, who definitely fits the bill as a defender that can play in any situation, has had a solid impact on the green and black thus far during his career. Moose has recorded 73 points in 117 career VHL games (the first two seasons of his VHL career) and he has also recorded 183 hits and 266 blocked shots over that time. More importantly, Moose was one of our most enthusiastic members when first joining the team, and while he has become far busier and sadly not around as much, he will always hold a special place in the heart of Malmo’s fans. LW - Blake Gaudette – Blake was not one of my Expansion picks but he has been a member of our franchise since the Inaugural season. Just like Moose, Gaudette came over in a trade from another European team in the Davos Dynamo. Gaudette had some controversial moments over on that team but has rounded out nicely for Malmo as both a member and player. With over 300 TPE as a S66 player, Gaudette looks to be a figure for the future with the Nighthawks and given that he is one of the more active members in our discord, he has been an important piece for us. With 38 points in 45 games, Gaudette is having an excellent year and should figure into the Rookie of the Year voting. RW – Brian Strong – Wheaties is a member I have been familiar with since the Elite Football League, as he was my GM for a number of seasons there. He was selected by me in the Expansion Draft as the player that we took from the Wranglers, and has quietly become a solid young player for our team. With 300 TPE as a Season 65, Strong won’t blow you away but with a well-rounded power forward build, he will be an excellent accessory piece going forward. Additionally, he has always been a loyal member and someone that is an excellent teammate through and through. So far in his rookie season, Strong has recorded 11 points in 45 games playing third line minutes for the Nighthawks. RW – Jack Lynch – Our selection in the Expansion Draft from the Davos Dynamo, Jack Lynch has quickly developed into one of the leaders of our team. With almost 500 TPE as a Season 65 player, Lynch has found a place as one of the best players on our VHL team. Starting out as a more defensive player, Lynch has developed quickly into a well-rounded talent that is a consistent offensive threat. After a 63 point rookie season, Lynch is coming close to a point per game total in his sophomore season. With 106 points in 117 career games with Malmo, Jack Lynch is only getting better and will be a long-time fixture for the team into the future as a potential top line player. D – Jerry Garcia – One of the star young talents on our team, Jerry Garcia was our first Dispersal Draft selection in Season 66. As a stingy defensive defenseman with a talent for separating others from the puck, Garcia is improving his offense during his sophomore season. After a 31 point rookie campaign, that saw the defender record 119 hits and 145 blocked shots, Garcia has improved to be a 23 point player in 45 games, while recording 88 hits and 107 blocked shots. He seems destined to likely pass his rookie numbers and if he keeps it up, he could find himself in the discussion for some hardware soon enough. RW – Matthew Materazo – As our best offensive player, Materazo has come some way from being the Americans cast out come Expansion Draft. After a 33 point and 58 point campaign in his first two seasons, Materazo has had an incredible breakout year with 51 points in 45 games as the leading scorer of the Malmo Nighthawks. Matt, like Jerry, has grown into being one of our biggest leaders on our team. At one point he was the Assistant GM and has been one of our letter holders since he came onto the team in Season 66. Ultimately, I feel strongly in Materazo’s career and he seems to only be getting better. He recently signed an extension all the way through Season 70, and I couldn’t be happier to be committing long-term to Materazo. C - Mikka Pajari – Devise has our veteran player and while Pajari is probably not the star I expected him to become when I traded for him prior to Season 66, it is hard to argue with the presence he has become on what is generally a very young Nighthawks squad. Since joining the Nighthawks, Pajari has recorded a respectable 92 points in 117 games and has been a consistent physical threat with 493 hits over that span. While it’s unlikely that he continues to become a top line center, Pajari does project to be a solid veteran player as he enters his last couple seasons on what will be a much improved team going forward. D – Morpheus Destructious – MORPHEUSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS……..listen…..this man was the 57th overall pick in the Season 66 draft……..how crazy is that?!!! He was an excellent steal as a pure defensive defender who throws massive body checks and entertains with his infectious personality. Destructious has played a fairly solid role on the team as a second pairing defender, recording 8 points in 45 games with 144 hits and 90 blocked shots. The question will become, can he take his game to the next level and ever evolve further than what he has become? I’m confident that if he keeps updating, he will achieve those goals. C – Phil Marleau – Our third overall pick in S67 has continued his growth into a top center and he will likely continue that development going forward. With 32 points and 218 hits in 45 games, Marleau has had a good rookie season and should be a fixture in the Rookie of the Year voting at the end of the season. Phil has always been a tremendous member and nothing has changed now that he is a member of the Malmo Nighthawks. He projects as our future top line center and it wouldn’t surprise me if he takes that role on next season. D – Rusty Shackleford – Mr. Shackleford was my second round pick back in Season 66 and despite deciding to stay down for a second VHLM season, he has become one of our best players as the partner of Jerry Garcia on our top pairing. Shackleford’s offense has been developing, but he still projects best as a great skater who plays stingy defense and throws his weight around, not unlike Garcia. With a solid rookie campaign a little over half way complete, Shackleford sees himself with 29 points, 105 hits and 99 blocked shots in 45 games, which puts him on a solid place overall. On top of that, the member is consistently active and he is someone that I trust with some of my decisions when I am contemplating a move. Shackleford is someone I want to lock up long-term and I am thrilled to have him on the team now and going forward. C – Teagan Glover – Teagan Glover was our top forward last year, recording 71 points in 72 games during his rookie season. He was the Riga pick during the Expansion Draft and has blossomed into a solid forward. Unfortunately due to the minute restraints of having three lines, Glover has only recorded 18 points in 45 games. With that being said, the team has made it clear they want to improve his minutes and give him a better shot going forward, one that he deserves and has proven to do a lot with in the past. The member itself is quiet generally but consistent and has embraced being a part of the Malmo Nighthawks thus far in his career. C – Trevor Van Lagen – One of our third round picks in Season 67 was an absolute steal and that player is Trevor Van Lagen. Taking on a role as mainly a penalty killer and third liner, Van Lagen has put up respectable numbers despite these difficult time restraints. Recording 17 points in 45 games, Van Lagen’s consistent improvement will result in more minutes going forward and a certainly increased role, especially with the likes of Pajari getting older and closer to retirement. G – Michael Johnson – As for our top goaltender, Michael Johnson is the guy we are counting on to be our franchise goaltender going forward. It hasn’t been the easiest year for Johnson, who has been stuck playing behind a younger team, but he has still had some pretty incredible moments on route to a 18-22-5 record, .907 save percentage and 3.46 GAA. While it remains unclear if he can hang with the top goaltender in his class, Rayz Funk, Johnson has embraced being a Nighthawk unlike his competitor ever would have, and has been very outspoken about his love for the franchise. I couldn’t be more proud to have this guy as a member of our team and I expect some great things going forward from him.
  26. 10 points
    A Very Early S68 VHL Mock Draft As we reach the two-thirds mark of the VHL season and descend upon the Trade Deadline, this would normally be the time where I write that the pack has separated into haves and have nots. But this season, that isn’t really the case. The last team in the lottery (Riga) is just six points behind the third team overall (Calgary). Last place in the league (New York) is just nine points behind a playoff spot. Really, anything can happen. So that means that projecting a draft order right now – not even taking into account the flat lottery odds – is a fool’s errand. Luckily for you, I’m a fool. Here’s an early look at the way the draft could potentially fall, with the caveat that even a 10% success rate on these picks is purely coincidental. There’s a lot that goes into draft picks, including personal friendships and alliances. I’m ignoring all of that – this mock largely bases itself on TPE and team fit. If you think your player is listed too low, then it is absolutely because I dislike you personally, and not because I’m just throwing darts at a board. Now, let’s get down to business. A big thank you to @rjfryman as well, whose rankings were invaluable for putting this together. 1. New York Americans – D Condor Adrienne @Green There’s only a 25% chance that the team with the worst record actually ends up with the first overall pick, but if that’s the case for New York, then this pick would seem to be a slam dunk. Adrienne has run away with the most TPE in this class, and looks to be engaged that his agency perhaps hasn’t been since all the way back with O’Malley. New York, meanwhile, has loads of talented, young forwards but not as much on the blue line. It’s a perfect match. 2. Malmo Nighthawks – D Lance Flowers @CowboyinAmerica Malmo already has talent pretty much across the board, including at forward (led by rookies Lucas Nygren and Phil Marleau), defense (Rusty Shackleford and Jerry Garcia) and goalie (Michael Johnson). They can afford to go best player available at this spot, and by pure TPE, it would seem to be Flowers. Alongside fellow upcoming rookie – and former Halifax linemate – Hugh Chan, Flowers would be a stabilizing force on the second line for years to come. Four active, young defenseman is a luxury not many other VHL teams have. 3. HC Davos Dynamo – C Thorny Underyew @jack Davos has a glut of young defensive talent with Werbenjagermanjensen, Paddywagon and LeGrande, but while their forward core is slowly growing with recent additions like Martin and Scoringsonn, there’s room for more top-shelf talent. Underyew, Eller and Lehtinen should all be names that are in consideration here, but one thing that Davos’ recent picks have in common is that they’re pure playmakers – not a single checking point among them. Out of the three potential draftees, Underyew’s play is the most physical, which adds a different element to the Dynamo squad. 4. HC Davos Dynamo (via Riga Reign) – G A Red Guy @.sniffuM Finn Davison has been the goalie of the future for Davos for a while, but slowly but surely, that’s evolved into the goalie of the present. By the time the draft occurs, Davison will be entering the back half of his career. And given that the Dynamo’s timeline seems to coincide with more of a rebuild – Crimson and Davis aren’t getting any younger – it makes sense to grab a goalie of the future for the next time the team’s in contention. Guy is the best goalie available and has rocketed up draft charts; it wouldn’t surprise me if that continues over the coming weeks. 5. Seattle Bears – C Frans Eller @Ace Last draft was all about stopping the puck for the Bears, with defenseman Hogan and Jenton and goalie Funk all selected in the first 11 picks, alongside GM player Stark. The Bears did pick up Burn at #7 and had three second round forwards, alongside its S66 forward class, but it makes sense to me to pick up more top flight offensive scoring talent. Eller is exactly that, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him slot into the team’s second line sometime during his rookie year. 6. Vancouver Wolves – D Jeff Downey @JeffD It’s getting close to pure rebuild time for the Wolves, and outside of goalie (where they may have gotten a steal in Eagles), they could use an injection of youth in just about every position. Downey has shot up draft rankings since he declared, and given that Vancouver only has one current defenseman younger than S65 and over 200 TPE, it’s clear to see that he’d be a defensive cornerstone for years to come. Lehtinen and Gunnar would also be reasonable picks here if they decided to go offense instead. 7. Helsinki Titans – LW Teemu Lehtinen Jr. @Sixersfan549 Helsinki’s an interesting one to project for me. The Titans only have one pick in the first three rounds, and given their recent success, the inclination may be to trade this pick for one last go in Thompson’s final season. But if they do keep the pick, they have a few young players, mostly S66, that would form a nice future core. Adding Lehtinen would allow Helsinki the best of both worlds – keeping a cornerstone for the future and a potential rebuild, while adding a high TPE player that can contribute depth right away for another run. 8. Calgary Wranglers – LW Sigard Gunnar @Big Mac We’re getting very close to rebuild time in Calgary, and I bet the team’s management knows it. As a result, this pick could easily be on the block for a future first or as part of a rebuild package. But if it’s kept, the goal should be for a standout player that will still be around as part of a contending squad three or four seasons down the road. Gunnar is exactly that type of player – a pure scorer that can help get through the lean times – and also represents the best value on the board. The forward market takes a bit of a dip from here. 9. Moscow Menace – G Raymond Bernard @Mr_Hatter For the Menace, their time is now – with so many players on the roster, it’s not only win or bust, but the salary cap situation is going to start to look very sticky when those S66 rookie contracts run out in a year. That’s why a future piece like Bernard makes sense to me: In the short term, he replaces the elder Sterling as the team’s second goalie, a must-have when every game is crucial. But if everything goes right, he also could be a challenge to incumbent Owen May in the long-term, given that Bernard has racked up a higher TPE rate as of late. 10. New York Americans (via Toronto Legion) – D Luciano Valentino @Kekzkrieg As noted above, it makes sense for New York to be particularly defense-heavy in this draft. There’s a potential for it to be too defense-heavy – in this scenario, they’re adding not only Adrienne but GM player Keven Foreskin. Still, Valentino is easily the best talent currently available on the board, and he’s shot up the draft rankings in recent weeks. He’s a great value with the final selection in the first round, and in the actual draft, I wouldn’t be surprised if he actually ends up a bit higher. 11. New York Americans – LW Micha Sage @AcousticKazoo 12. HC Davos Dynamo (via Malmo Nighthawks) – D Wolf Stansson Jr. @Cornholio 13. New York Americans (via HC Davos Dynamo) – RW Ryo Yamazuki II @Donno100 14. Riga Reign – G Fang Flashback @uphillmoss 15. Moscow Menace (via Seattle Bears) – LW Justin Rushmore @street 16. Vancouver Wolves – RW Bud Knight @Dilly Dilly 17. New York Americans (via Helsinki Titans) – D Aamon Grim @aCrypticPancake 18. Calgary Wranglers – RW Case Martell @Shaka 19. Vancouver Wolves (via Moscow Menace) – D Ricky Johnson @Midnite 20. New York Americans (via Toronto Legion) – G Samuel Ross @Brrbisbrr
  27. 10 points

    S66 Off-Season Schedule

    S66 OFF-SEASON SCHEDULE Dates Subject to Change  Sunday, June 30th Depreciation S67 Finance TPE Cut-Off (all TPE earned, up to, and including, this date will affect salary brackets for S67)  Experience Points Allocated    Monday, July 1st Canada Day S66 VHLM Achievement Tracker TPE Awarded S66 VHLM Awards Ceremony  Tuesday, July 2nd S66 ALL-VHLM TEAMS S67 VHLM Entry Draft @ 830PM EST Wednesday, July 3rd S67 VHL Entry Draft @ 8PM EST Free Agent Discussions Open @ 11PM EST  Thursday, July 4th Free Agency Opens @ Noon EST S66 VHL Awards Ceremony Training Camps Open World Cup Day 1 World Cup Day 2 Friday, July 5th S66 Hall of Fame Induction World Cup Day 3 World Cup Day 4 Saturday, July 6th World Cup Day 5 World Cup Quarter Finals Sunday, July 7th 67 VHLM TPE Cut-Off (Any players who have earned 201 TPE or more, up to and including this date, will no longer be eligible to play in the VHLM for S67 - Training Camp may not be claimed after this date if you are at the Cap; if you are within 10, you may claim up to the cap, i.e. If you are at 194, you may claim 6 TPE from Training Camp)   World Cup Semi-Finals Monday, July 8th S67 VHL Pre-Season Starts  Pre-Season Retirement (Players can re-create for S68 and still play S67) World Cup Bronze & Gold Medal Games Tuesday, July 9th S67 VHL/VHLM Indexes Posted  Wednesday, July 10th S67 VHL/VHLM Regular Season Begins  Training Camps Close 
  28. 10 points
    You asked, I figured it's a pretty easy topic to get my TPE for 2-3 weeks, so here's the third and final instalment of people still around from cup-winning seasons. Let's take a slightly shorter trip down memory lane from S41 to S60 and I won't go any further than that as I think we've retained the vast majority of more recent cup winners. And in case you missed them, parts 1 and 2, which now may need to be updated for the likes of @animal74, @Sebster03, and whoever else has come back in the past few weeks, can be found below: https://vhlforum.com/topic/63670-whos-still-around-from-old-cup-winning-teams/ https://vhlforum.com/topic/63686-whos-still-around-from-old-cup-winning-teams-part-2/ Season 41 New York Americans @sterling @Smarch @Tyler @Advantage @Victor @gorlab @der meister @TheLastOlympian07 We start off with a team pretty similar to the S39 New York squad, still stacked with some of the biggest names of the time, both player- and member-wise like Tom Slaughter, Conner Low, Milos Denis and Brick Wahl. There were some changes though, like me joining the team as Matt Bentley, as well as two fresh faced S40 draftees – gorlab on his first player Jody 3 Moons, and der meister on his second player Christoph Klose. There's also I believe just the second cup for the typically inactive TheLastOlympian who featured as Dimothenis Vlasis. In fact, I believe the only member of this team no longer with us is Boragina's second and last player Mikkel Boomgaarden, a depth defenceman. Season 42 Cologne Express @Green @diamond_ace @Devise @flyersfan1453 @stevo The tenth franchise to win the cup, this would be Cologne's only triumph thanks in large part to securing the top two picks in the much hyped S40 draft – Thomas O'Malley and Mason Richardson. O'Malley is still around following Green's recreation, and will feature heavily in this decade, although he wasn't quite the star of the show yet – that honour goes to diamond_ace's slightly unlucky goalie Martin Brookside, who did come through in the end as Cologne's MVP. Robin Gow was a trade deadline acquisition who made a difference, while Devise was busy trading away picks to get the cup and appeared on the team as Logan Laich. Last but not least, stevo, the Cologne loyalist, got his reward with a cup for Ron World Peace and recently came back under his actual username. Season 43 Seattle Bears @Trifecta @Bushito @Higgins @Molholt @Phil This. Fucking. Team. Somehow stopping Cologne from repeating despite no future Hall of Famers or an active GM for most of S43, this was the Cinderella story to end all Cinderella stories from Seattle. The star was probably Niklaus Mikaelson, one of Trifecta's finest creations, and if not him then one of that season's two GMs – Bushito (Brady Stropko) or Higgins (James Faraday). Molholt made an appearance as AC Savage, not one of his finest creations, and the captain was one Phil Villeneuve – both the latter two have only recently made triumphant returns. Apologies if any of Karlsson, Escabar, or Samuelsson are currently under a different username as I seem to recall one of them was. Season 44 Calgary Wranglers @Positivefan036 @CowboyinAmerica @Beketov @InstantRockstar This would have been the underdog story of its generation if it wasn't for the team immediately before it, but Calgary also played its part in stopping Cologne from winning a second championship. This was eaglesfan's finest moment as GM, with his player at the time being Tim TebowGow. The star of the team was a young Hans Wingate though, as CowboyinAmerica got his first of many cup rings, but quite a few of the other members, despite being quite prolific at the time, are no longer with us. However, there is a bit more active alumni in Jackson Miller (Beketov) and Teuvo Ruutu (instantrockstar). Season 45 Helsinki Titans @Will @Phil @Victor @Green @der meister @Bushito @Kylrad Pretty much textbook VHL GMing in the 2-line era. Draper aka Will added three TPE whoring rookies in himself (Aleksi Koponen), myself (Greg Clegane), and Phil (Phil Hamilton) and pulled off a trade for two big stars of the time in O'Malley and Klose, already cup winners in their entry-level years. There was also an inactive appearance for Stropko and the first of many cups for Marcel Faux – just a shout-out here for Tylar, now inactive but a big Helsinki loyalist both here with this and other players. Finally Souryuu Kaminogi was an underrated defenceman maintained by Kylrad, now another underrated defenceman in Davos. Season 46 Helsinki Titans - same as above less Bushito add @Beketov Not much changed here from S45 other than Stropko out and Jackson Miller in – this would be Beketov's last cup until he returned to Helsinki in S66, maybe that was the problem all along? Season 47 New York Americans @Green @Tagger @tfong @street @jRuutu @Banackock @.sniffuM Helsinki probably should have given the threepeat a better shot here, but the cup went where O'Malley went in this era and that was to New York for his final season. Before O'Malley joined this was already a strong team, with Tagger on his finest player in Edwin Reencarnacion, while tfong and streetlight featured as Biggu Kyanon and Lloyd Light. Devise was around with another squad player in Thaddeus Humbert, while we also had two first championships – captain Jorma Ruutu and goalie Blake Campbell were jRuutu's and Banackock's first players respectively. Finally, giving this some old school New York vibes was Damien with E'Twaun Delicious. Season 48 Toronto Legion @CowboyinAmerica @Molholt @DollarAndADream @stevo @Higgins @hedgehog337 @Positivefan036 Right, here we go. It didn't feel like it would be a threepeat at the time was the core was in place once Hans Wingate joined in free agency. He joined forwards Max Molholt and Zach Parechkin (DollarAndADream seeking his first ever cup), LeAndre St. Pierre, World B. Free (stevo), and first overall pick Black Velvet (Higgins). TebowGow from earlier was providing some veteran blood, as was Benjamin Zeptenbergs, although this was the future eternal Riga GM's first ever championship. Season 49 Toronto Legion - same as above except Positivefan A few minor tweaks here as TebowGow retired and was replaced by Marcel Faux. The core and Zeptenbergs remained however. Season 50 Toronto Legion - same as above except hedgehog replaced by @Tagger and @diamond_ace The salary cap continued to decrease the roster size and Zeptenbergs retired, but Molholt went for quality over quantity and added Reencarnacion and Hyvarinen on their final season seeking their second championship each. That was enough for possibly the most impressive of the three cup victories, even if it did go to seven games in the final. Season 51 Riga Reign @JardyB10 @sterling @TheLastOlympian07 @BluObieZ @Green @Trifecta Toronto was a goal away from pulling off a fourpeat, but were denied by Riga in Game 7 of Cleganebowl, with Sandro (Jardy) defeating Greg (me) after Toronto lost Wingate to retirement and Velvet to free agency. Riga on the other hand profited quite a bit from free agency, signing Jeff Hamilton (sterling), Shawn Muller (TLO), and Sir William Covington III (Robbie). That was quite for them as their core before that featured not much more than a young Pietro Maximoff (Green), while their acquired Kai Roberts (Trifecta) alongside the younger Clegane in the off-season. Pretty good result for a hastily built team. Season 52 and 53 New York Americans @Devise @street @gorlab @Phil @BluObieZ @gregreg We're hitting the peak back-to-back territory of the 50s and while I split out Helsinki and Toronto, let's save space and time here. Devise managed to get three top forwards together in Diana Maxwell, Tom Lincoln, and Unassisted, although only one of them, streetlight, is still with us. The key players elsewhere were Bobby Digital, gorlab's second player, and Phil Shankly, Phil's umpteenth player, while M.T. Power did in S53 what J.B. Rift couldn't in S66, and that's defend the crown as a rookie goalie. The guest visiting star was Covington in S52 and then Joel Jarvi (Greg) in S53, who swapped record-chasing with Cologne for a cup in New York. Season 54 and 55 Helsinki Titans @BluObieZ @Higgins @solas @flyersfan1453 @Bushito @Trifecta Covington was controversially traded from New York to Helsinki via Cologne (for some reason I was dragged back from inactivity to make a ruling on that trade deadline debacle) and got his third cup anyway in S54 before retiring. Apart from him and Higgins' Black Velvet, of threepeat fame, this was pretty much a homegrown team, featuring Theo Axelsson (solas), Shayne Gow (flyersfan), Hudson Abbott (Bushito), and Astrid Moon (Trifecta). The two key members who would actually stick around until the S60 cup wouldn't stick around in the league until today though, for very different reasons, being Franchise Cornerstone (boubabi) and Rudoplh Schmeckeldorf (Corco). Season 56 Quebec City Meute @Will @solas @Green @jRuutu @Velevra @tfong @Bushito Eight players but what an eight players. Other than the GM, Frank, whose player was Pierre Gaudette, every member of this Quebec team is still around, with 5 Hall of Famers – John Locke (Will), Lukas Muller (solas), Pietro Maximoff (Green), Fabio Jokinen (jRuutu), and Apollo Skye (Velevra), as well as Fook Yu (tfong), and Hudson Abbott (Bushito), who promptly retired with three cups in three seasons. Season 57 and 58 Riga Reign @hedgehog337 @Will @solas @der meister @Phil @Smarch @Tyler @Jonessee27 @Positivefan036 Locke would then move to Riga to form a legendary duo with Fredinamijs Krigars (hedgehog), with Muller joining them in S58 after the role of veteran center was played by Essian Ravenwing (der meister) in S57. Those were the star players but the other team roles were also filled out by big names like Phil Shankly, Rusty Trombone (Smarch), Niko Bogdanovic (Jonessee), and Slava Aleksei (Tyler). There was also a cameo appearance from eaglesfan when The Process moved to Riga for S58. Season 59 Seattle Bears @Banackock @CowboyinAmerica @BluObieZ @TheLastOlympian07 @Quik @Advantage As we neared the end of the dark days of project player two and having recently contracted, Bana also brought Seattle out of the darkness with two of his players on the team. The co-playoff MVPs were Gabriel McAllister (CowboyinAmerica) and Vernon von Axelberry (Robbie), but most of the team is in fact still around, including Shawn Gretzky (TLO), Mats Johnsson (Quik), Peter Quill (Green), and Dexter Lane (Advantage). Season 60 Helsinki Titans @Higgins @Will @solas @Pandar And finally, peak Project Player Two – two final players for Higgins, two players from his newly banned assistant GM boubabi, and two players picked up from previously successful Riga and Quebec teams in Locke and Muller. The only new username here was Pandar, getting a late but deserved cup with Marc-Alexandre Leblanc, as the shitshow which was the VHL's sixth decade came to an end. 1,668 words so 3 weeks for Pavlov.
  29. 10 points
    Season 67 Mock Draft Series | 2nd Round Part 3 @VSN In case you missed it here is the complete first round mock draft published last week on VSN: 1.01 - Phil Marleau - C 1.02 - Bjorn Scoringsson - W 1.03 - Hulk Hogan- D 1.04 - Aston Martin - C 1.05 - Rayz Funk - G 1.06 - ACL TEAR - W 1.07 - Lincoln Tate - D 1.08 - Boone Jenton - D 1.09 - Michael Gary Scott - C 1.10 - Acyd Burn - W 2.01 – Seattle Bears - W|23 – L|40 – OTL|9 Previous Picks: Marleau (1), Funk (5), Jenton (8) The Pick: Boris the Forest - Center - Mexico City Kings @chillzone Analysis: As I highlighted in my first round mock draft, the Seattle Bears own this draft after shedding off veteran talents to stock up on draft picks in their rebuild. This is a pivotal draft for the future of the Bears. In the first round mock, they addressed all three positions with Marleau, Funk and Jenton. With the first pick in the second round, they add a very talented center in Boris the Forest. Boris is easily a first round talent, but he slightly slips into the early second round here. In the regular season for Mexico he put up an impressive 33 goals and 33 assists, fourth best in points on the team. Seattle walks away from this draft with two premier centers; a rugged two-way leader in Marleau and a dynamic offensive scorer in Boris the Forest. A huge haul for Seattle. 2.02 – Malmo Nighthawks - W|28 – L|41 – OTL|3 Previous Picks: Scoringsson (2) The Pick: Wrike Chyrnoble - Goalie - Mexico City Kings @Savoire Faire Analysis : Back-to-back Kings get selected here as goaltender Wrike Chyrnoble comes off the board. Chrynoble was a rock for the Kings in the regular season finishing with a 41-25 record and a 2.24 GAA. Malmo here is in a position where they have a starting goaltender in Johnny Carison, but he may have reached his ceiling in the VHL and is beginning to get up there in age. This is an opportunity for Malmo to grab the number two goalie available in this draft behind Funk, give him a year or two to develop and have a young franchise goaltender. Wrike has a solid frame at 6'4 and 220 pounds and is widely regarded as a very athletic goalkeeper. The former 9th overall pick in the VHLM finds himself a home in Malmo. 2.03 – Moscow Menace - W|26 – L|38 – OTL|8 Previous Picks: Hogan (3) The Pick: Derek England - Defense - Mexico City Kings @PenKnight Analysis: Make that three straight Kings draft picks here at the top of the second round as Derek England hears his name called by Moscow. England has been one of the more under the radar prospects in this draft class and is at the top of the second tier of defenseman behind Hogan, Tate and Jenton. Statistically, England had a very solid year with 59 points in 72 games for the Kings, which was also Top-10 amongst all VHLM defenseman. Moscow has a handful of promising young stars on offense with the likes of Jaguar and Volshenko and they add to pillars on the back end here with Hogan in the first and England in the second. England is described as a solid two-way defenseman who can move the puck very well, but also is very responsible defensively. The defense is set for the future in Moscow. 2.04 – Riga Reign (via TOR) - W|42 – L|23 – OTL|7 Previous Picks: Scott (9) The Pick: Dan Gles - Center - Mississauga Hounds @No_Dangles Analysis: Riga has one of the most talented rosters in the VHL headlined by Podrick Cast, Edwin Preencarnacion, Ryan Kastelic and Kallis Kirketers in net. At this point in the draft, Riga will look to take the best player available and that is Dan Gles of the Hounds. Gles has been rising up draft boards over the past week, according to VHL scouts and also put together a very impressive season for the Hounds. His 96 points were good for Top-6 in the VHLM and was second in scoring on his team behind only Callum MacElroy. He plays all areas of the ice well and was never really known for his goal scoring until he came to the VHLM. Despite adding Michael Gary Scott, who projects now as a center in the VHL, Riga is happy to select Gles to develop a young core down the middle. 2.05 – Riga Reign (via NY) - W|42 – L|23 – OTL|7 Previous Picks: Scott (9), Gles (14) The Pick: Greg Eagles - Goalie - San Diego Marlins @Greg_Di Analysis: This is a tough pick for Riga on the projeced back-to-back here in the second round. It goes without saying that they have an elite goaltender in Kallis Kirketers who is a life blood of their backend. However, drafts are about building out that prospect pool for the future and not always necessarily focusing on immediate needs. Riga looks at their draft board here and sees a young promising goalie in Greg Eagles and cannot pass up the opportunity. Eagles is right there with Chyrnoble as the second best goalie in this draft and I would not be surpised to see him go before him. Eagles had 39 wins and a 2.61 GAA for a good Marlins team in S66. While he lacks the size that Chyrnoble has (6'1 180lbs), he makes up for it with his positioning. He always manages to find himself in the shooting lanes and square to the puck. Riga brings in a potential star goalie of the future here with the 15th overall pick. 2.06 – Vancouver Wolves – W|39 – L|29 – OTL|4  Previous Picks: TEAR (6) The Pick: Michael Johnson - Goalie - Halifax 21st @fonziGG Analysis: The run on goalies continues here in the second with the third goalie being selected in the first six picks of the round. Vancouver takes a long, hard look at a few other players here, but with Funk, Chyrnoble and Eagles off the board they take Johnson from Halifax. The Wolves roster three goalies including the talented veteran in Roger Sterling. They also used the 14th overall selection in S65 goaltender Joe Nixon, who hasn't fully developed as they initially hoped for. With Sterling having a couple seasons left before retirement, the Wolves snag Johnson and hope he can be the guy that Nixon was supposed to be. Johnson stands at 6'3 and 210 pounds and split time in the cage with fellow S67 draft prospect Thorvald Gunnarsson. Gunnarsson statistically edged out Johnson in terms of save percentage and GAA, but Johnson had three shutouts to Gunnarsson's zero. Scouts seemingly are pretty high on both prospects, but give the edge to Johnson as they see him with slightly higher upside at this point. 2.07 – Seattle Bears (via DAV) - W|23 – L|40 – OTL|9 Previous Picks: Marleau (1), Funk (5), Jenton (8), Forest (11) The Pick: Henrik Zoiderberg - Left Wing - Mexico City Kings @HenrikZoiderberg Analysis: Seattle continues plucking talent in this draft class, this time with one of my favorite prospects in Henrik Zoiderberg. The Swedish winger burst onto the scene early in the season and ultimately put up a respectable 27-28-55 stat line for the talented Kings. In my May 20th article, I highlighted Zoiderberg as a potential sleeper in this draft class. Zoiderberg is a very smooth, playmaking winger who can also be relied on defensively. He has really been developing his goal scoring ability as the season went on and his 27 goals reflects that work. When I reached out to a few VHL scouts, they raved about him as a player and person off the ice. He is seemingly loved in the Kings locker room. Sticking Zoiderberg on a line in Seattle with former teammate Boris the Forest can be something special to watch in Seattle. 2.08 – Seattle Bears (via CAL) - W|23 – L|40 – OTL|9 Previous Picks: Marleau (1), Funk (5), Jenton (8), Forest (11), Zoiderberg (17) The Pick: Guy LeGrande - Defense - Halifax 21st @Steve Analysis: Shockingly, Seattle is back on the clock here with the eighth pick in round two. To summarize the draft so far for Seattle, they have picked two centers, one goalie, one defenseman and one winger; addressing needs all over the ice. With this pick, they go back to the back end and pick up Guy LeGrande from Halifax. LeGrande was a mid-season pickup for Halifax, playing in only 49 games, but had an immediate impact. He produced 7 goals and 35 assists which is just off a point per game pace. LeGrande is an offensive-minded forward with great puck skills and a rocket of a shot from the blue line. When I sat down with the 21st head coach, he could not stop talking about the work ethic and character of this kid. Definitely a prospect to keep an eye on in this draft. 2.09 – HC Davos (via RIG) - W|37 – L|27 – OTL|8 Previous Picks: Martin (4), Tate (7) The Pick: Trevor Van Lagen - Center - Halifax 21st @VanCanWin Analysis: With their third pick of this draft, Davos selects another riser in Trevor Van Lagen. The former 84th overall pick of the Season 66 VHLM Dispersal Draft proved to be an incredible steal for Halifax at that slot as he eclipsed a point per game pace in his first VHLM season (28-46-74). Van Lagen is a big, strong offensive-minded center standing at an impressive 6'5 and 215 pounds. He possesses some of the best natural goal scoring abilities in this draft class amongst centers and once he tightens up his skating, he could be an absolute force in the VHL. Davos here cleans up with two potential elite centers in Aston Martin and Trevor Van Lagen. 2.10 – Seattle Bears (via HEL) - W|23 – L|40 – OTL|9 Previous Picks: Marleau (1), Funk (5), Jenton (8), Forest (11), Zoiderberg (17), LeGrande (18) The Pick: Scott Greene - Center - Mississauga Hounds @DoktorFunk Analysis: It's only fitting that we round out this second round mock draft with the Seattle Bears who will have selected seven players in the first two rounds after this pick. Seattle looks at their board and goes with the best available player here in Scott Greene of the Hounds; their third true center selected in this draft. Like Van Lagen, Greene proved to be a very good steal for the Hounds as he was selected 66th overall in the VHLM Dispersal Draft. In the regular season, he produced 27 goals and 20 assists in his 72 games played. He also added two points in the Hounds 5 playoff games. The slightly undersized centerman possesses great scoring and skating abilities that will translate to the VHL very well. He also prides himself on his faceoff ability, which is likely at the top of this class. Overall, Greene is a rock solid prospect and has been consistently developing throughout the season. He joins the immense Seattle Bears draft class at the end of the second.
  30. 10 points
    How Does the VHL Need to Respond to Its Growing Player Base? An integral part of rumors for the league over the last season has been the need to accommodate increasingly large classes, as evidenced by large S66 and incoming S67 Entry Draft(s). Many suggested the S66 class was a perfect storm of excellent recruiting and affiliation with other large leagues – but that’s proven not to be the case, as S67’s class now has 91 players that have earned any TPE, including at least 41 that have hit 100 TPE. While that’s slightly below S66’s mark of 50 players of at least 100 TPE, there’s still another update or two left for this incoming class. Let’s set some definitions for ‘retained’ new players versus ‘active’/’inactive’ rostered players so we can start talking about the need to expand or change lines in earnest. First, a ‘retained’ player is a draftee that’s earned at least Welfare (+4) for each of the eight weeks since the last S66 Rankings update (as in at least +32); that means the S66 draft class has exactly 47 retained players (58.7% of draftees) based on my most recent articles’ research. Next, an ‘active’ rostered player is one that’s earned any point task or welfare in the last month or so (ending with the week of May 12). An inactive one is any player that doesn’t meet that criteria; note that any S60 or S61 player saving for regression is counted as active. Where, exactly, does that leave us in terms of the league as a whole? It’s kind of hard to decipher any meaningful data from the team-by-team tables, aside from maybe the fact that the Legion and Bears are old and the most recent expansion teams are absurdly young. But consider the lower portion of the table, where I’ve marked the total active defensemen (D), forwards (F), and goalies (G) in each phase of their career. Active S66 VHLM players >150 TPE are included to suggest which of this year’s draft class are likely to be called up come next season. More importantly, this brings to the surface exactly how much hidden impact is still left in this unusually large class – among them studs like Saskatoon defenseman Rusty Shackleford (293 current TPE), Ottawa center Jordan Tonn (266), and Minnesota’s Mat Tocco (265), who I’ve covered in previous articles. Let’s do some simple math, shall we? If we take likely call-ups (i.e. exclude inactives, low TPE S66 players) from the VHLM, we’re left with 57 forwards, 25 defensemen, and 8 goalies between S64-S66 (all current early-phase players). What are the implications of this? 1) We have enough defenders for 2 per team – plus change – with just S64-S66 players 2) Similarly, S64-S66 has enough forwards for nearly two full lines (6 forwards) 3) Lastly, we could nearly fill the league with S64-66 goalies as starters. Remember that this isn’t even taking into account incoming Season 67 Entry Draftees – but to be fair, there were only 23 active draftees from the Season 66 class that went straight into the VHL, and two of them went inactive. But we want to give the best argument against change and conservatively estimate S67’s draftees relative to S66 – let’s suppose we have 50% draftee retention for a slightly smaller class (40 players), and that they’re roughly distributed into a 9F-4D-1G arrangement, or roughly 25 forwards, 11 defenders, and 4 goalies. This means that, between S64-S67, we have 82 forwards, 36 defensemen, and 12 goalies – enough for nearly three lines of forwards, roughly 4 defenders per team, and slightly more goalies than we need. Numbers don’t lie, and even if we lost an additional 10% of players at each position we’d have enough for 2.5 lines of forwards, 1.5 lines of defenders, and a starting goalie for every franchise plus one. Point Made. What Do We Do? To answer the question above, we need to know the league’s priorities – for example, how much they want to preserve the current structure of the league. Here are just a handful of the considerations the BoG, administrators, and current + future GMs need to think over: 1) How important is ice time? 2) Similarly, how important are league-wide stars? 3) How important is team recognition? 4) How do we engage a larger player base? 5) When do we make the change? Elephant #1 – Ice Time Ice time is one of the most important issues to discuss with regards to player engagement, and begs the question: does the league expand, change the number of lines, or limit ice time by endurance? The league can’t simply afford to tuck this problem away and hope for the best without any adverse consequences, because an adjustment of some sort has to be under consideration provided the larger classes. Unless the recruitment team is immediately dissolved, we can expect classes to be significantly larger than the Season 65 Entry Draft at the very least, and that’s simply not amenable to the current league structure as-is. Let’s suppose we were to strictly expand to fit our current player-base – and, to play it safe, let’s suppose every regression-phase player retired. Right now, this season. From S62-S67, we’d have 94 forwards, 49 defensemen, and 16 goalies, and assuming we’re sticking with our current arrangement of 6F-4D-1G, we’d need about 15 teams to accommodate the forwards specifically. As we expect, we’d see a shortage of defensemen and essentially no backup goalies, which would probably be nightmarish, and frankly a 5-team expansion is ridiculous. With 12 teams total, we would see roughly 9 forwards, 5 defensemen, and 1.25 goalies per team, which is probably a little more manageable; it also requires a line expansion, which I’ll discuss in a moment. But many members are pretty tired of expansion after Moscow and Malmö, and it’s likely that some members are tired of being moved from team to team with little to no agency. The current paradigm of 2 skater lines for forwards/defensemen and 1 goalie (+backup) has worked well for the vast majority of the league’s existence, save a few teams being pretty light on defenders. But new players typically want to make forwards (or compromise and make offensive defensemen), which has slowly skewed draft classes in favor of forwards over the last few seasons. More importantly, team success in the league as-is is based on compact rosters of high-TPE players. It makes logical sense and has also been the case this season. The Helsinki Titans – runaway Victory Cup winners for S66 – have 80% of their forward playing time focused on six players, while rookies like Ludvig Sederstrom get 15% of total even-strength time. Similarly, the North American Conference-winning Calgary Wranglers rotate between the same six forwards, while the Vancouver Wolves (with a higher average TPE team vs. team, even when including 57 TPE G Patrick Vigneault) give more time to their rookies. Is it ‘wrong’ for Calgary and Helsinki to win this way? No. It’s not ethically, legally, or morally wrong in any sense. They’re playing within the rules of the league, and possibly didn’t even plan their rosters around this tight 11-player rotation. Beyond that, line coaching, astute trading, and mortgaging the future has without a doubt been an important part of their success. @Quik has done a damn good job assembling a crack team of players this season. But that doesn’t mean the league shouldn’t change. Changing the number of lines was probed in Project jRuutu, @jRuutu / @Beaviss, which revealed that the majority of the league was in favor of change at least to 3 mandatory forward lines. But it’s worth noting that a very significant minority of the league – 37% of votes – opted to keep the current set-up. We’re not going to discuss GM players here, as I feel they’re an added dimension to this argument that’s a bit touchy and frankly has only a modest influence in favor of action on behalf of the league – the GMs are well-aware of this factor, as are the BoG and administrators. And frankly, I think that a handful of the ‘keep as-is’ votes can be swayed just by the volume numbers showcased in the introduction to this article. Were we to change with respect to lines, the current suggestion of 9 forwards, 4 defensemen, and 1-2 goalies using the Louth rule actually very neatly fits the current distribution of players written out above. Elephant #2 – ‘Star Power’ and Team Recognition At least part of the reason most of us participate in sim leagues is a chance to fulfill a fantasy of being a star player in a hockey league. Maybe that’s just me projecting – but being able to follow a single player that you’re solely responsible for at least in part points toward that mentality. Part of being in a larger league means a little less overall recognition, even if GMs were to become more adamant about recognizing players on an individual basis. I’m not about to start tagging 30 players in each of my articles, and neither will many, if any Media Spot or VSN writers. Part of this argument ties in to the ‘ice time’ factor outlined above, but lower overall player statistics due to deeper teams, or less time in the limelight because of more teams is effectively inevitable. To be honest, I’m not sure that individual recognition can be completely addressed by the league with any solution. That is, recognition will HAVE to decrease because of a larger player base. That makes the highs (like MVP/MOP) higher, but only for the one or two players that achieve it per season. The change most amenable to retaining ‘star power’ (individual recognition) is probably expansion, because it allows players to stand-out better within a division or conference and permits more ‘first-line’ ice time for comparison. A decrease in ice time due to endurance or line number changes, on the other hand, doesn’t allow for gaudy numbers and buries lower-level players on major league teams for the majority of their career. I’m no formal VHL researcher, but my intuition tells me that isn’t an indicator for increased player retention. It’s a step in the more realistic direction, of course, but a deviation from one of the original intents of the league. More importantly, though, player and team recognition seem to work in opposite directions as the league grows. || When comparing larger leagues (in terms of # of teams) like the SBA to the EFL and VHL, I anecdotally feel as though it’s harder to connect with a tremendous number of teams. But since the SBA is limited to five starters, they’ve needed to start with and expand to a larger number of teams – at present, they have 24 college/minor league teams and 16 major league teams. If you asked me to name even five of the SBA teams, I’d be hard-pressed to in spite of being on an NCAA team for nearly two full seasons. It’s hard to feel engaged in a league where the brands don’t ‘stick’ – and I worry that the league may move in that direction if forced to expand too many times. I felt comfortable naming most of the VHL and VHLM teams by the time I finished my first season in the VHLM, and definitely could at least recognize their logos. Part of this is because the VHL has relatively fewer teams – but another part of it is because administration and the BoG painstakingly ensure teams are distinct and recognizable. Rapid expansion isn’t conducive to this, but I have little to no concern about the staff’s ability to maintain this level of brand identity if they continue to select good GMs. Elephant #3 – When Do We Make the Change? I'll be quik. I think the league should make a change, and relatively soon. Last season, there was a lot of hesitance with respect to expansion and line changes, but we need to understand that change was once on the horizon, and now is in plain sight. Change should happen in the next season or two unless we want competitive balancing to be around who can acquire the smallest core of high TPE players and leave tons of draft picks – and more importantly, new members – in limbo or buried in the fourth line of an absurdly deep, young team. Maybe for the next season we leave a ‘soft’ (i.e. unenforced) 3 F line requirement in while trying to figure things out. It isn’t easy to keep long-term GMs, and sussing out just the right candidate(s) will be hard. We could take a season to give current managers a break from losing players to expansion and start a search for a great pair of expansion GMs. The best option is probably to change line requirements and expand. People are resistant to change, but unless we expect a considerable slowing of new members and/or a sudden drop in player retention, we can’t dig in and hope that the league stays precisely the same. What would you do in the BoGs’ position? Do we need additional seasons to run the numbers, or is the league's current state enough for you to make a move?
  31. 10 points

    So I bought a VHL Hat

    So I signed a nice long contract to play in Helsinki for the rest of Pepper's career- figured this might be a fun way to celebrate This hat WILL make an appearance during Friday's VHL draft stream.
  32. 10 points

    Big Shoutout

    This really isn't that important of a topic but I happened to be looking at our registration stats today so I wanted to share this and showcase just how huge of an effort our @Recruitment Crew is putting in and what kind of effect it really does have on the league. This graph shows the amount of registrations since the league moved to this site in late 2013, I believe it's split up monthly though that's kinda hard to tell over a 5 year span. Obviously it's very hard to really see details that zoomed out but I think the spike speaks for itself. The growth we've seen in such a small time (less than a year) is absolutely amazing and I just wanted to give our guys a big shoutout for it because that's honestly amazing.
  33. 10 points
    Rank Change Player Name TPE Team Nat. Member 1 C - Hunter Hearst Helmsley 298 YUK USA Beaviss 2 LW - Shane Mars 275 MIN USA Spade18 3 Up 1 C - Maximilian Kirbsson 215 HOU SWE Kirby 4 Down 1 LW - Kari Jurri 209 HOU NED hockeyis66 5 Up 1 RW - Mikko Aaltonen 206 LVA FIN GRZ 6 Down 1 LW - Dimitri Volosenkov 203 HFX RUS SirRupertBarnes 7 LW - Julius Freeman 195 HFX USA rjfryman 8 C - Jet Jaguar 190 HFX UKR gorlab 9 RW - Shawnomir Jagr 184 SSK CZE TheLastOlympian07 10 Down 1 RW - Arnor Sigurdsson 181 YUK ISL bluesfan55 10 Up 1 LW - Bert Meyers 181 MIN USA RunnerBert11 12 Up 1 D - Aron Nielsen 170 MIN FAR solas 13 Up 1 G - Owen May 169 HOU SWI FacebookFighter 14 Up 3 LW - Valeri Morozov 165 YUK RUS Dangles13 15 D - Charlie Paddywagon 164 LVA USA DMaximus 16 D - Jerry Garcia 160 HOU USA GustavMattias 17 Down 5 D - Rhye Tyr 159 HFX CAN Plate 18 Down 2 RW - Nethila Dissanayake 156 SSK SRI nethi99 18 Up 4 C - Ludvig Sederstrom 156 HOU SWE aleks 20 Down 2 LW - Kyle Sabertooth 154 LVA USA uphillmoss 21 Down 1 G - Wendy Kandee Cain 152 MIN USA SlashACM 22 Down 1 RW - John Frostbeard 149 YUK LAT FrostBeard 23 Up 1 LW - Chico Smeb 143 MIN SKR xDParK 24 Down 1 D - Codrick Past 142 OTT UK Kylrad 25 Up 1 G - Clayton Park 139 YUK AUS leafssteen 26 Up 1 C - Hans Gruber 137 SSK GER TheFlash 27 RW - Emil Passerelli 134 SSK USA SparrowLTD 28 Up 3 D - Rusty Shackleford 131 SSK USA K1NG LINUS 29 Down 5 C - Raphael Nazarians 128 SSK ARM LIL V O D AK 29 Up 3 C - Jordan Joshua Tonn 128 LVA CAN MexicanCow123 31 Up 2 LW - Hunter Wagner 124 GER GER Inf1d3l 31 Up 6 RW - Mat Tocco 124 MIN CZE Matmenzinger 33 Down 4 D - Richard Hejtsel 123 YUK LAT hejta 33 Down 3 LW - John Perdue 123 SSK USA johnnyhockey42 35 D - Andreas Sundell 122 MIN SWE VisualDarkness 36 Up 1 RW - Aleksander Rodriguez 120 OTT USA Jtv123 37 Up 2 D - Cody Parkey 119 SSK PRK SaltyTalty 38 Down 4 C - Nacho 115 HFX USA Nacci25 38 Up 4 D - Samuel Sparrow 115 HOU USA Birdman 40 Up 22 D - Apollo Hackett 113 SSK USA Renomitsu 41 Down 5 G - Luke Derion 112 LVA USA Barracuda 42 Down 1 C - Rhys Chism 111 HOU USA Jake Levine 42 Up 2 D - Beau Buefordsson 111 HOU SKN Radcow 44 Down 5 D - Edward Vigneault 109 HFX CAN Patpou22 45 Down 1 G - Juan Jaundice 101 SSK USA Jus 46 Up 3 D - Anthony Amberback 95 SSK USA Oost 47 Up 2 LW - Edgar Tannahill 91 SSK CAN Gregreg 48 Down 5 D - Titus Stone 90 YUK USA MD9 49 Down 3 D - Papa Gage 87 HFX USA PapaGage 49 Up 5 LW - Blake Laughton 87 HOU CAN Grape 51 Down 3 D - Duncan Jeffers 86 LVA USA Tophdaddy 52 Up 4 G - Kolur Bjoernsson 85 PHI ISL jab3 53 Down 6 RW - Sami Van Den Dreissche 82 YUK BEL TsarPeter 53 Up 7 LW - Cody Smith 82 HFX CAN cody73 55 Down 6 C - Eeli Harju 79 OTT FIN Teztify 55 Up 2 C - BALLS McZehrl 79 OSL GER Rent A McZ 57 Down 5 D - Dwin Championship 78 SSK SWE Award97 57 Down 5 D - Srraxxarrakex II 78 OTT JAP flan 59 Down 5 LW - Blake Gaudette 77 HFX CAN Gaudette 60 Down 1 C - Pascal Batz 75 OTT SWI efiug 61 Down 3 C - Walter Clements 69 PHI SIE cpetrella 62 Down 1 G - Sunny Burst 64 LVA USA Sunburst 63 Up 6 D - Guillaume Fontenette 62 OTT FRA okocha5 64 Down 1 D - Dave John OQuinn 60 YUK CAN JohnOQuinn 64 NEW LW - Devin Gabella 60 HFX USA Gabella19 66 Down 2 D - Dean Clarke 58 PHI USA Kyle 66 Up 17 RW - AJ Axelsen 58 HFX SWE littleboi 68 Down 3 D - Hiromu Takahashi 54 MIN JAP O4L 68 Down 2 D - Finn Theismann 54 HOU GER StaticShocked 68 Up 5 D - MORPHEUS DESTRUCTIOUS 54 PHI IM Abaddon 71 Down 4 D - Fabius Adomaitis 51 HFX LTU Claire 71 Down 4 LW - Micheal Rasmussen 51 LVA CAN Connor mcdavid 71 Up 5 LW - David Clarkson 51 PHI CAN Jacob Kundrat 74 Down 5 LW - Joakim Sederstrom 50 HOU SWE Samee 74 Down 5 C - Adama Traore 50 PHI USA Adama Traore 74 Up 11 C - Charles Alderson 50 HFX USA Kithoo 77 Down 5 LW - Jean ClaudePaul 49 HOU FRA Yusuf Abdul-Latif 78 Down 5 LW - Thomas Vancheck 48 LVA AUT Thomas Vancheck 79 Down 4 C - Markus Lulic Descheneaux 46 LVA CAN mxld17 80 NEW LW - Dylan Doyle 44 USA zepheter 81 Down 4 RW - Karlis Liede 43 MIN LAT DoubleCarl 82 Down 4 RW - Alexis Lafreniere 42 SSK CAN Yehboi 83 Down 4 D - Londortharl 41 LVA CAM MattyG 84 Down 4 D - Yuri Kalerov 40 SSK SWI Camel 85 Down 4 D - Jack Logan 39 YUK USA WeaponX 85 Down 4 D - Quinton Collins 39 OTT CAN Jepox 87 NEW C - Thomas Kennedy 38 OTT AUS Walter Fizz 88 Down 5 D - Jakobe Puffalump 37 LVA CAN Puffalump 89 Down 4 RW - Fudge Popsicle 36 HFX CAN LaprasRuler 89 NEW LW - Ben Hafkey 36 USA itsmclovin 89 NEW C - Logan Swallow 36 PHI USA TriaL Exotic 92 Down 5 LW - Waluigi De Rossi 34 OTT ITA Kitras 93 Down 5 C - Matthew Tolsma 33 SSK CAN matthewtols 94 Down 5 D - Anthony Griffis 32 USA Tygrzz 94 Down 5 G - Marchello Mirabella 32 MIN ITA Wandering_Buffalo 94 Down 5 LW - Tim W 32 USA Spadesy 97 Down 5 C - Gervais Bulhoes 31 CAN HOCKEYBEAST9000 As with all weekly updates, Up/Downs relate to progress from last week. These TPE rankings were correct as of Sunday 3PM EST and were the rankings primarily used for this Mock Draft. First off, for those who haven't seen the status updates, sorry that this is later than originally announced. I thought I would be able to submit a mock with an unnamed expansion team since it seemed pretty inevitable across the board that we were expanding, but was asked to hold off till the announcement of expansion was made. When the announcement was made though, I then had a run of birthday's and Mother's Day that meant my free time wasn't as much as usual. Hopefully I should have next week's rankings up at a swifter time next time around. One thing to note for the Mock Draft is that I have not added anyone who hasn't added TPE to their player in a fortnight. This does not mean that they cannot re-earn their way back onto later Mock Drafts by adding TPE to their player, but given that prospects are generally going to be ranked on their earning rate, a player that hasn't earned TPE in two weeks does not offer anything a prospective team would be looking for. The following Mock Draft has been done based on the VHL Standings as of yesterday (Monday) morning and with the expansion team Malmo Nighthawks picking sixth overall. First off though, to get a gauge on what they need, here's the mock expansion draft. Expansion Draft Selections for Malmo: From Moscow: Lew Bronstein Moscow have seven active players currently on their roster, so they’ve got an interesting decision on their hands; protect all them and lose an inactive + a 3rd in likely this season’s draft or free up an active. So Moscow offer up Lew Bronstein (their oldest active) for selection, ADV considers trying to get Von Moltke back active from EFL, but does wind up going with Bronstein. From Calgary: Callum MacElroy Calgary have seven actives on their pro roster at the minute and elect to protect all of them, leaving a pick between Brian Strong and Callum MacElroy, a pick decided by MacElroy having a chance at earning TPE through the recruitment of Ludvig Sederstrom and Finn Theismann From Vancouver: Jorgon Weyed Another interesting scenario, I can actually see Vancouver leaving starting goalie Tristan Iseult being left unprotected here but I don’t think Malmo will have much use for a goalie with only two seasons remaining, so they go with Jorgon Weyed. From Davos: Jack Lynch I originally had Malmo picking Cayden Saint here, but since Malmo don’t want to completely overload on defensemen in this draft, they take Jack Lynch, who has shown solid bursts of activity and could be a very good winger in the future. From New York: Paolo Nano/Vaydar Odinsson I couldn’t tell from Boom’s topic if he intended to leave the league after this season or later on than that, but I think either way, he’s unlikely to be protected. If he doesn’t retire, I could see ADV taking a punt on him for certain, but if he is retiring, it will likely be Paolo Nano who, for the second consecutive expansion draft, finds a new team. From Helsinki: Dan Montgomery Vesto Slipher’s retirement has at least provided the Titans with an extra protection for this expansion draft, that I think they will intend to use on Orion Slade. This leaves Helsinki a choice between Dan Montgomery or the younger David Harrison, but I think he’ll go Montgomery. From Toronto: Chace Trepanier Toronto would have the option of either Trepanier or Lespineau-Lebrunette, but I don’t foresee Malmo having much need for a defenseman entering his final season in the league, so they take Trepanier who regularly submits for welfare. From Riga: Anthony Matthews I think this will be between Matthews and Basaraba Moore, two players who I think Riga would rather keep, but will likely have to expose to keep up their championship aspirations. I’ll say that, while Moore has displayed better TPE earning than Matthews as of late, Malmo takes Matthews mainly because they could use a center. From Seattle: Gucci Garrop I think Seattle will be picking here between Sergei Kovalev and Gucci Garrop for their seventh protection. While Kovalev is considerably older than Garrop and not that far ahead in TPE, the GM Blake Campbell --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- FIRST ROUND 1st Overall Moscow Menace select Center Hunter Hearst Helmsley Victor may have announced that his GM player for the Moscow Menace is going to be a centre, but should they win the lottery, I would highly doubt they would be looking at anyone else with their first overall pick. Helmsley gets a guaranteed 12 TPE per week through his recruitment work that winds up also receiving the benefits of TPE-events automatically, so there's very little chance that anyone is going to catch Helmsley in terms of TPE. Don't be surprised to see Victor hold off of adding faceoff points to his GM player until after the lottery is decided. 2nd Overall Calgary Wranglers select Left Winger Shane Mars Calgary already have a couple of very promising wingers in Brady Stropko Jr and Diljodh Starload, but with players like Aksel McKnight and Bryce Zhields either retiring or purely filling in as depth on the second line, they will definitely have a place for Shane Mars in that offense. Like Helmsley, Mars benefits from earning a capped 12 TPE per week from his recruitment job, so unless he leaves abruptly, the pieces are in place for him to become one of the best players in the VHL once he enters his prime. 3rd Overall Vancouver Wolves select Left Winger Julius Freeman One of the bigger reasons for not just reposting the Mock Draft I made a week ago is the dramatic change in the VHL standings. In my previous mock draft, Vancouver were picking seventh overall but after losing eight of their last ten games, they find themselves picking with one of the first three picks. Vancouver will already have two full lines of offense before this pick (even with losing Weyed to expansion, they’ll still have Matthew Kai promoted to the pros), Freeman offers them a second winger other than Beau Louth who regularly hits the 12 TPE cap. Not only that, Freeman has earned an absurd amount of uncapped TPE through the lottery, which has helped catapult him to seventh in TPE despite joining late on in the process. 4th Overall HC Davos Dynamo select Center Jet Jaguar I remember back in Season 49 that Gorlab’s last player Bobby Digital was selected by the Dynamo and he demanded a trade because he didn’t want to play for them (In fact it was myself who wound up trading for him), but history shouldn’t repeat itself here as he’s talked on the discord about how that wouldn’t be the case this time. Depth at center is probably the main weakness for Davos as Connor McDavid (their current second line center) only earns a max of 6 capped TPE per week while every other forward on the top two lines regularly hit the max 12 capped TPE per week. Adding Jaguar to that and Davos have an incredibly dangerous forward line to keep an eye on. 5th Overall Riga Reign select Right Winger Mikko Aaltonen Reign were likely expecting a top four pick when they traded Leph Twinger for this selection, but with the Wolves falling down the table, the Americans currently find themselves in the wildcard slot. They still get one of their primary targets though in Mikko Aaltonen who, like General Manager Benjamin Zeptenbergs, is Latvian (or at least GRZ is) and will both now represent a Latvian team. Aaltonen has been max capping very consistently and will be a very good winger for the future, likely replacing the now inactive Kisshan Shan down the line. 6th Overall Malmo Nighthawks select Goalie Owen May I had to think about this for a bit because there’s a lot of very good skaters still available here and there are some good goalie prospects outside of Owen May, however May is the only one who is consistently capping out at 12 TPE per week and if you were to let him fall to Moscow at 11th, it could wind up becoming a decision you regret in the future. Norris Stopko’s playoffs just last season showed just how important getting the very best goalies can be and, if he continues on his current pace, May can certainly get up there. 7th Overall HC Davos Dynamo select Defenseman Jerry Garcia Davos will be waiting till the fourth after this round is over till their next picks and, with only three defensemen on the roster currently, they’ll probably want to make sure that they can get the best available defenseman in case Riga decide to snap him up with their two consecutive picks. While it’s extremely close between Garcia and Charlie Paddywagon, I’m giving the edge to Garcia here as he’s got the more VHL ready build of the two (which will be ideal for a Davos team that should be looking to compete in Season 66), but both are consistent 12 capped TPE per week earners and this is definitely the closest race for best player at their position. 8th Overall Riga Reign select Defenseman Charlie Paddywagon While Riga don’t necessarily need a defenseman right away, they will likely want to snap up one for the future as, while they do have very active defenseman like Ryan Kastelic, Shawn Glade and Basaraba Moore, they’re currently getting inconsistent activity out of Dylan Nguyen and Bolt Vanderhuge is purely a welfare player. Paddywagon can therefore potentially be the fourth super active defenseman for the team and will rise to prominence once the likes of Glade and Nguyen start to regress after Season 66. 9th Overall Riga Reign select Center Bert Meyers With Matthews gone in the expansion draft, Riga don’t currently have a young center prospect in their system and, with Podrick Cast and Mikka Pajari both hitting regression prior to the start of Season 66, plans need to start being made for their replacement. Meyers, like Freeman, has had an exceptional start to the league and could very well go quite a bit higher than this depending on GM member preference. He may not get many minutes out of the gate, but Meyers will go on to be a key player for this Reign team in the future. 10th Overall HC Davos Dynamo select Right Winger Arnor Sigursson Davos think about snagging another defenseman before they go silent for the next three rounds, but wind up going with the best player available. That would be either Shawomir Jagr or Arnor Sigursson, who are both very similar right now, but they wind up going with Sigursson. While I think Jagr may be the better prospect, it seemed from his media article that Jagr really wanted to go to Moscow, so I think the fact he’s very likely to go there with the next pick would make him extra disappointed if he goes here. Sigursson is still a very good player though, capping at 12 TPE the last few weeks and gives a more physical edge to the Davos forward line. SECOND ROUND 11th Overall Moscow Menace select Right Winger Shawnomir Jagr As mentioned above, Jagr mentioned that this would be his favourite team to be picked by in the draft and this will fill a need for the Menace as they have just two active wingers right now in Matteo and Dan Bailie. I think they would also consider defenseman as well as, after losing Bronstein in the expansion draft, they’d only have Evgeni Komarov and Mitch Matthews who are active, but I think there’s a player he can potentially snap up in the third that fits what he’s looking for at that position. 12th Overall Calgary Wranglers select Defenseman Aron Nielsen Calgary could still use another active forward to add to their roster even after the addition of Mars, but I think they’ll make sure to fill up their second line of defense with this pick. After having his last five players in the VHL being taken no later than second overall, Solas re-enters second round territory for the first time since Season 27. Out of all of the top three defensemen I've had selected this draft, I'd say Nielsen is likely the most VHL-ready player and, while it has been a while since he's made a defenseman, his general understanding of the sim will likely see him distribute TPE a little better in the early goings. He is progressing at a solid rate TPE wise, currently flipping between 8-10 TPE per week, which is good, but not quite the rate of the other defenseman ahead of him. Hopefully this is a return to form for a very good member who has made the Hall of Fame once before with the powerful two-way forward Theo Axelsson. 13th Overall Riga Reign select Center Maximillian Kirbsson It might be surprising to see a player who is currently third in the rankings occupy this space in the draft, but ultimately this was triggered by the fact that I feel like his recent TPE earnings have been off the pace in comparison to the remainder of his forward competition, only earning six capped TPE this week. If he were to return to the form that got him this high up in the rankings though, then Riga have an absolute steal here and, like Meyers, an eventual replacement to the aging pair of Cast and Pajari. 14th Overall Vancouver Wolves select Left Winger Dimitri Volosenkov Another player who is ranked very high but is picked later than maybe anticipated due to recent TPE earning, Volosenkov has already demonstrated he can earn TPE as he’s already set to enter the VHL next season. However, he’s not quite at the same TPE earning pace of the other players taken ahead of him here. I mentioned it in another article I believe, but he really is just 150 words away from capping each week (VHL.com articles), and given that he’s done media articles before, he’s got that capability in him, he just needs to do it to prove he belongs with those taken ahead of him. 15th Overall Helsinki Titans select Left Winger Kyle Sabertooth With losing Dan Montgomery in the Expansion Draft and Bald Guy not having done much to improve his player as of late, Helsinki are desperate for defenseman help, but there’s a lot of depth at this position set for the third round, so they’ll hold off till then. In the meanwhile, they’ll pick the most talented offensive player available in Kyle Sabertooth, a podcaster for the VSN who is more than capable of hitting the 12 TPE cap pretty comfortably with his current radio job. This gives the Titans a player to potentially fill the hole that the retirement of Vesto Slipher creates. 16th Overall Malmo Nighthawks select Right Winger Mat Tocco This may seem like a very early selection for the Nighthawks based off of the rankings, but for an expansion team such as Malmo, this makes a lot of sense. In reality, the Nighthawks are unlikely to be competing for the next couple of seasons, so their prerogative should be less focused on “who is going to help us most in our first few seasons?” and more focused on “who is going to help us most in our third season onward?”. That’s where a player like Mat Tocco comes in, someone who is reaching the TPE cap super consistently (moreso than the players still left to be picked ahead of him in the rankings) and provides a great future offensive threat for the Nighthawks. 17th Overall Vancouver Wolves select Defenseman Rusty Shackleford Vancouver do already have four defensemen on their roster, but I believe they’ll want to have more future talents in mind for the position given that Samuel Gate has long been inactive and both he and Marvin Harding are entering regression after this season. Rusty Shackleford has been either capping at 12 TPE or getting very close to doing so since creation and should he keep that form up, he would likely continue on to be a better player than Gate was, even though the fifth year defenseman was taken second overall. 18th Overall Vancouver Wolves select Right Winger Nethila Dissanayake Aiming to be to hockey what Murali Murilitharan was for cricket, the Sri Lankan Dissanayake had a bit of an off week last week, only earning 6 TPE, but he’s been an active contributor in discussions and has shown max TPE potential in the past. 19th Overall Riga Reign select Right Winger John Frostbeard Like GRZ taken previously, John Frostbeard is another Latvian member who I’m sure Hedgehog will have an interest in. Frostbeard hasn’t been hitting the cap lately, hitting 7 TPE the last couple of weeks, but he’s certainly shown the potential to be earning much more than that. He’ll still be a very solid player even if he maintains the earning of the last two weeks, but returning to his previous form will be the factor that can turn him into a star. 20th Overall Vancouver Wolves select Left Winger Chico Smeb A member who has made several solid players in the past, Smeb will hope to improve upon those players performances with Chico Smeb. So far he’s on the right track, hitting the pension cap on quite a few occasions. Won’t likely feature on the top lines out of the gate, but will be competing with Volosenkov and Dissanayake for second line minutes down the line. THIRD ROUND 21st Overall Moscow Menace select Defenseman Codrick Past Does Victor take the player who is named after one of his current players? Yes he does. Past has been pretty good at hitting 11 TPE per week with his player and it fills a need for Moscow who, like stated above, only have two active defenseman on the roster. 22nd Overall Helsinki Titans select Left Winger Valeri Morosov Morosov is an interesting case as his TPE per week has varied drastically week-on-week (been anywhere between 4 and 9 capped TPE per week). He’s proved with Otto Axelsson that he can make a solid player, let’s see if he can do the same with Morosov. 23rd Overall New York Americans select Center Hans Gruber Gruber is a player who I think could climb in later Mock Drafts as he’s very regularly hitting his welfare cap of 10 TPE. Gruber will provide a good backup solution for Odinsson down the line should the winger decide to leave New York this off-season. Edit: Noticed after writing that Gruber changed to Center, but he can still cover for Odinsson for the time being. 24th Overall Riga Reign select Center Ludvig Sederstrom A player who has been earning solid amounts of TPE since joining the league, Sederstrom really only falls here because after the first few centers are taken, their isn’t that much clamour for a center. Riga have already drafted two, but they will play one/two of those on the wings until the retirements/transactions that end Pajari/Cast’s stay with the team. 25th Overall Moscow Menace select Goalie Clayton Park Moscow need a backup plan at goalie to challenge Chase for the number one spot in case he goes missing for a period like he did earlier this season. Park has less TPE than other alternative Wendy Kandee Cain, but has displayed greater potential in earning TPE, so I think he’s more likely to take this spot. 26th Overall Malmo Nighthawks select Defenseman Apollo Hackett Very much like the Tocco pick, this is quite a bit higher than Hackett sits in the rankings, but he’s earning max TPE per week, something that Advantage is going to want out of his star defenseman. Hackett looks set to rise in future Mock Drafts with continued activity as well. 27th Overall Helsinki Titans select Defenseman Cody Parkey The first defenseman Helsinki take to address their need at the position, Parkey has shown capabilities of hitting the 12 TPE cap and has a couple of recruits (Dwin Championship and Duncan Jeffers) that he will gain lots of recruitment TPE from should he reach the required milestones. 28th Overall Helsinki Titans select Defenseman Beau Buefordsson Buefordsson had an off-week that saw him only claim two capped TPE, but bounced straight back with one that earned him 12 capped TPE, demonstrating his capabilities to earn TPE. Another defenseman, Buefordsson and Parkey could be a very good combination down the line should they hit their potential earnings more regularly. 29th Overall Riga Reign select Left Winger Emil Passerelli Riga pick up a solid winger to finish off the third in Emil Passerelli. While he’s occasionally hit the welfare cap of 10 TPE, one thing he’s had that worked in his favour was the recruit of Juan Jaundice, netting him some extra recruitment TPE. 30th Overall Vancouver Wolves select Center Jordan Joshua Tonn Vancouver have Beau Louth entering regression, so can start to plan for the future depth of the position with Tonn. Tonn has yet to hit the TPE cap since joining, but is a solid earner nonetheless. 3554 Words.
  34. 10 points

    S64 VHL Hall of Fame Induction

    Inducted into the Hall of Fame as a Builder Thanks to those who voted me for that honour and those who helped me on my way in the VHL, been doing these player leagues for over ten years now and never received something like this before, feels pretty fucking good!
  35. 10 points
    Reapers Hire An AGM, This Announcement Will Hit You Like BOOM! The Philadelphia Reapers are happy to be able to announce the addition of @BOOM™ to our new organization. Boom is the embodiment of what this team stands for. As a man with a reputation that precedes him, the original creator of the Broom shack aka the Boom Shack, he fits in with the fun party atmosphere Phili is trying to create. We may not always be the best, but we intend on having a lot of fun. For all the potential draftees and free agents who read this know that if the Reapers take you, know you are going to a fun team that will support you in your VHLM career and help you to prepare for your time in the bigs. So with this message I welcome my partner in crime and fellow Death Dealer to the Reapers, Boom you are the perfect choice and i know we will have a lot of fun. To everyone else know we both look forward to welcoming all our future lill’ Death Dealers to the team. Party on Reaper Nation!! -BladeMaiden
  36. 9 points

    Beaviss 10,000th Post Party

    Hey Nerds, This will be my 10,000th post on the VHL its so far its been 822 days (May 8, 2017 - August 8, 2019) my social life is all but gone. Since I joined the VHL I got married and got my dream job. Ive also had the following roles on the site... VHLM GM(1 cup won), VHLM Commissioner, VHL GM, Recruitment Team, Recruitment Team Lead and Ive had 1 player retire (Keaton Louth) and 3 currently active (Beau Louth, HHH and Brock Louth) @diamond_ace told me about these awhile ago and said he missed these things and I couldn't find what a post party is actually so this is my version? Anyways lets hope I got another 10,000 posts in me. Just found out im supposed to do shout outs so here they are: @Tagger Literally taught me everything I know on the site and held my hand when I first started and answered almost 15 pages worth of questions I had @Frank For giving me Quebec(Vancouver Now) in the worst state ever and having to rebuild forever to get it back to where it should be (Even though I suck and never win cups) @Beketov For making my life hard by never letting me win a single Draft Loto and killing my GM Cup dreams in the finals. @Frank Gets a second shout out for making me a VHLM GM and Commish before I even finished my first full season.... @Spade18 For starting with me and making bigger busts than me so people dont think im the worst player builder ever. @tfong For being ancient and never giving me any wisdom. @Quik Gets a shout-out since when im frigged on adderall and caffeine he will answer 1 out of every 15 messages I send him. @ShawnGlade For making the entire league dump on him for the Harding - Glade trade. @.sniffuM For playing ps4 with me and vaping in my ear and leaving for dart breaks every 5 mins and being gone for almost 30 mins every time. @Will Ill give you a shout out if you change your profile pic. @rjfryman for buying dinner when he took me and my wife out for dinner when he came to Victoria. Im done for now i think
  37. 9 points
    People be writing media spots in here claim your tpe
  38. 9 points

    An invitation for the White House

    An invitation for the White House While the Fake News Media had not picked up this story yet for national coverage, we have insider information that the following events actually happened. The Philadelphia Reapers, who had won the Season 66 Founder’s Cup, were invited to the White House by the president of the united states of america, to celebrate their victory. They were also joined by the next generation of Reapers, as the team is an actual family for eachother, no one is left out. The day started with the president, he who shall not be named, who started of with a speech were he congratulated everyone on their fine achievement in keeping this cup away from Canada. Edward Vigneault was triggered by this remark, saying Canada contributed as much to the victory as the Americans and threw a poutine in his face. No one even knew why he was carrying that, but that was only the start of the visit. After the speech was done the Reapers were invited to a ‘home cooked’ meal by the in house chefs of he who shall not be named: McDonald’s , Kentucky Fried Chicken and New York Pizza. When the personal of the trainers Kyle Sabertooth saw this he immediatly forwarded to the table and yes, you guessed right: Step 1: ┬─┬ノ( º _ ºノ) Step 2: ┻━┻︵ \(°□°)/ ︵ ┻━┻ Indeed, all the tables had to be flipped with all the 'food' (as much as you can call it food in Sabertooths eyes) was thrown away all over the ground. "You are not feeding my athletes this kind of crap you monster" he shouted. Yes, quite the start of the evening... Hiding in a corner while this all happened was Mrs Maiden, the Philadelphia General Manager, who only just now realised that she brought even more insane people to the White House (next to those already living there) and this could only end badly. To get everyone away from the mess 'he who shall not be named' asked everyone to calm down. There was a party in the main hall with his personal playlist. There would also be drinks and snacks (nothing healthy, but Sabertooth was already removed from the party to be locked up in the local police station) so everyone could have a great time, the best time in the world, a great time like no one else had before. The first song started playing and Zappa was sounding over the speakers. Well this shouldn't be too bad everyone thought, I really expected worse from him. Shamefully not everyone agreed. Icelandic player Sigard Gunnar started to make a fit about this and in a horrible icelandic accent he started screaming that we are not ballgame players, but that we play with pucks and sticks, almost tossing over the music installation, while security had to hold him back, he lifted his finger far enough to hit the next button, which soon enough he would regret, when a song of a young czech kid singing about Pokemon Go started. You saw the blood of Gunnar boiling up, it wouldn't take much or he would explode. Luckily the song didn't last long, but just as he started to calm down he heard the following lyrics sang over the speakers: No, noo, nooo, nooooooooooooo!!!!!! NOT FRIDAY, NOT FRIDAY!!!!!! Sigard shouted. I CANT TAKE THIS ANYMORE. Sigard ran straight to the glass door escaping the party who so far played only played songs he really disliked. With the glass shattering, the music also stopped playing. He who shall not be named started to shout 'who put this on my playlist? I only had great songs on it, the best songs in the world!' People were looking at him like he was crazy. Vigneault shouted to him in his frenglish accent YOU ADDED IT, IT HAS YOUR NAME ON THE SPOTIFY LIST. And then it happened, a 15-second intro started followed by a bass drop,15 seconds with the bass and a lion roar at the end of the first 30 seconds. Yes.... it was the Harlem Shake. Vigneault also started to get angrier and angrier. WE WERE PROMISED GOOD MUSIC! 'Ok ok' he who shall not be named said, lets try this then. This is really one of my favourites. And while he said it, we were hearing 'a little bit of monica in my life, a little bit of erica by my side...' now Condor Adrienne also started to look angry... 'God I hate this song' he whisper in Vigneaults ear. We need to get find a way to end this night, or we will be scarred for life by this. When the next song started to play 'DES-PA-CITO" Vigneault couldnt do anything but agree to Adrienne. Okay, you have a plan for this? Because I cant take this much longer. Wait guys wait.... If you dont like this one, maybe you will enjoy this artist I brought in for you, it is the best artist in the world, he is so good, you have not seen such a good artist in your life! Suddenly the spotlights went to the eastern side of the room where a small podium was build. A ukulele started to play a few chords. Vigneault heard the first tones and was like 'oh fuck'. It was indeed Livin'in the sunlight, lovin' in the moonlight, another song he hates with passion. He stormed forward, grabbed the ukulele off the cover artist (because let's be honest, he who shall not be named would not hire an a-artist for this) and started smashing his face in. It partly worked as the song did stop as the artist, but the side effects of broken bones and bleeding teeth, was not something the security liked to see as they grabbed Vigneault with four off them and put him back on the first plane to Moscow. So before Adrienne and Vigneault even made any plans, Vigneault was gone and the party continued. Tu du du du du - tu du du du du du, he who shall not be named had started his spotify list again. Man, this song even was known in our part of the galaxy Adrienne mumbled, one time tu du du du du, two times tu du du du , and i fucking hate this. With that french canadian bastard gone I need to find more help, there must be someone able to end this party once and for all. He looked to his right side and he saw Kevin Low nodding, he knew exactly what Adrienne was thinking. The two of them ran suddenly towards their assistant general manager Julian Borwinn, Adrienne grabbed his legs, Low grabbed his arms and they started swinging. One.... two.... three.... and Adrienne already let go of his legs as they hit the ground on which Kevin goes four... five..... Adrienne shaken his head in disbelief, we always let go at three. Luckily Borwinn didnt land on his head before it would have been the end of a career, but their plan to toss the assistent gm towards the music system horribly failed with result that the next song started playing 'I'm blue da ba dee da ba daa' and just as we seen before with Gunnar and Vigneault, something just snapped with Adrienne. His 6'8 frame and 240 lbs stormed himself towards the sound system to make sure this was the day the music died. The music indeed stopped as the sound installation fell into pieces, his teammates were cheering as the party finally would be coming to an end, no more horrible music, no horrible food and finally rid of he who shall not be named. Let's all go home guys Brandon Leblanc said, I've had enough of this shit, let's get back to training for the next season. The team all left and took the plane back home and continue their workouts. On the plane Dylan Doyle had a surprise for the team, as he was the only one who stayed behind in the dining hall, he had gathered up all the Big Mac's he could find and started to passing them along, they might be cold, but food like this never loses its taste, it's almost like it's chemical! With Sabertooth still in prison, the team finally could enjoy their meal. The next day after the Reapers had a practice session, Fox News was playing on the background and 'he who shall not be named' was discussing another of his worthless plans. "Thanks for coming out everyone, this will be a great speech, this will be the best speech ever" he said. After recent events I have decided that Mexico is no longer a threat, we will not build a wall at the border, they wouldn't pay for it anyway. We now have decided we will build a wall around Philadelphia. You noticed the crowd being confused, they really wondered what he smoked this time as it didn't make sense. Philadelphia is a threat to the nation, Philadelphia attacked the White House yesterday. One by one you saw the crowd moving away and you could hear them whispering. This time he has really lost it.... Words: 1564 - For three future media spot claims
  39. 9 points
    To New York Americans fans everywhere, We all knew this day may come and after the recent moves in front office and in player personnel, it was more and more likely to happen. This doesn't make it any easier to write this, even though I've written it out in my head dozens of times since I was told before the season I'd likely be moved. I originally came here in S63 with my VHLM teammate Joseph McWolf shortly after winning the Founders Cup in Ottawa. We had no idea what we were in for, we were just a couple of fresh faces kids going to a team at the beginning of a complete teardown and rebuild. We were the envy of the league as one of the up and coming squads in the VHL, with solid goaltending, one of the best young d-men out there and enough talent up front to scare teams about what we'd turn into. We added lots of talented pieces over the next few seasons as we attempted to climb into the elite of the league. Guys like Joel Ylonen, Carles Puigdemont and Ryan Sullivan Jr gave us a deadly attack and when we signed Leph Twinger, we all thought we had the last piece we needed to challenge the big boys. After all that potential was building, it started to become too much pressure for some guys and we seemed to level out and never get any higher. It's a real shame we never got to see that squad grow into the potential we originally had and ultimately as we hit the middle part of our careers it became apparent a shake up was needed. One by one my long time teammates were either traded or released until it was just me and Carles. I was asked if I had any preference where I wanted to go. I originally said I'd prefer to stay and try to lead the American back into the forefront, but that I would do anything to help the team out and accept a trade that made sense for everyone. As the games rolled on I knew my day was coming and I tried to give my best and beyond every night. I've never been a flashy player or one of the best out there, but I have always tried to be the hardest worker and tough to play against. For some reason this year, I've seemed to get more lucky bounces and have been getting on the scoresheet more often than in years past. Hopefully this will give all you fans something to remember me by. Thank you to every fan that came to the rink every night and cheered us on win or lose, I'll never forget you. You've all made this such a fun place to play and I still hope to one day bring the Cup back here because New York is where my heart is. To my new fans in Helsinki, hopefully you can all read English, cause I don't know a lick of Finnish or whatever you speak over there. I'm looking forward to the next few years we will have together, you've already got such a good hockey team and I hope I can add to that bring another Continental Cup across the pond. It's incredible the work the staff has done here bringing in all these amazing players and somehow being able to have them all gel so well. Plus somehow being able to pay them all! Helsinki has always intrigued me, since I was interviewed before my draft by your current GM. Although I didn't end up here from the beginning, hopes I can prove that I'm worth the ransom that was paid for me come here. I've played with several of these guys in the past for team Canada among other places and I think we will find chemistry very quickly. I haven't had much success in the playoffs but as David Price once said, "I was saving all my post season wins for the Red Sox. " Here's to the future and winning several Continental Cups! Dan Wilinsky Claiming for next week
  40. 9 points

    VHL GM Opening

    Jubo throwing his name in the ring; Joined as a player in S62 5 gold medals as GM at the international level (2xWC + 1 bronze / 3xWJC) 2 Founders Cups (1 as GM with Vegas S64 &1 as AGM with Philly S66) S64 VHLM GM of the Year Obviously activity/availability is not an issue (Julian Borwinn at 1161 TPE and counting) My 1 year VHLForum anniversary is August 4th Full list of accolades can be seen in my forum signature Thanks for your consideration.
  41. 9 points
    Stars in the Making | A Look at VHLM’s Fresh Faces In recent days and weeks, we have seen some new faces join the VHLM. Some through the S67 VHLM Dispersal Draft and some through VHLM free agency, as they entered the league after the draft. The Season 68 Draft crop seems to be a very strong one headlined by defensemen Connor Adrienne, Lance Flowers and Wolf Stansson Jr. We’ll be covering the class, the VHLM and the top prospects throughout the season on VSN, but today we shift our focus to some of the fresh faces of the VHLM. After rigorously scouring the S68 class, I have identified a handful of new players that have caught my eye early on. These players all declared for the draft just days before it took place or signed with the VHLM after; these could be stars in the making. Luciano Valentino – D – Halifax 21st @Kekzkrieg VHLM Drafted: 53rd Overall Joined: 7/2/19 TPE: 128 The first player on my list is a defenseman drafted by Halifax in the late rounds, Luciano Valentino. The Italian-born defenseman has really burst on to the scene in his first week in the VHLM. The 6’3 defenseman is primarily a defensive-minded defenseman. In his Italian junior hockey league, he was seen as one of the more sound defensive defenseman in the league. He uses his big body to be a presence in the defensive zone, including blocking shots. Valentino is also a very good skater and passer; he is built for the VHLM game. He’ll likely see second-pairing minutes to start the season for Halifax, but this is a player to keep tabs on as the season progresses. This is my Lincoln Tate-esque riser to keep an eye on. Raymond Bernard – G – Ottawa Lynx @Mr_Hatter VHLM Drafted: 40th Overall Joined: 7/2/19 TPE: 76 The only goalie that made this initial list was Ottawa Lynx draft pick, Raymond Bernard. Ottawa picked Bernard with the 40th overall pick and I expect this to look like a value pick when we reflect back on this draft. In the pre-draft interview process, Bernard reportedly performed very well and was spoke highly of by VHLM executives. His biggest asset, which really sticks out when you watch him, is his reaction time. It’s likely due to his great athletic ability, but he can react to a quik deflection in the slot with ease. He makes it look easy. There’s a good chance we see Bernard as the day one starter for Ottawa. Willie Dredge – RW – Yukon Rush @sjs88speed Signed with Yukon Joined: 7/8/19 TPE: 50 The player that has the freshest face on this list is Willie Dredge, a winger who signed with Yukon just a couple days ago. There are three main things Dredge brings to the table: speed, speed and speed. He possesses tremendous footspeed, acceleration and edgework. The question for Dredge moving forward is, can the mitts match the feet? His pick skills and scoring ability, at this point in his career, are slightly lacking behind his skating ability. I do believe like he will continue to work on those aspects of his game and develop them. The former Massachusetts high school hockey standout, will have to adjust to the VHLM game, but he has all the tools to be an impact player in this league. I see Dredge stepping into a Top-6 role for Yukon at the back half of the season. Owen Nolan – RW – Halifax 21st @studentized VHLM Drafted: 64th Overall Joined: 7/2/19 TPE: 67 Another Halifax late round draft pick enters the fold as an under the radar player to watch. Nolan is a relatively raw player out of Belfast, Ireland. He played junior hockey there until the age of 15, quickly rising above his peers to become one of the top prospects of the nation. He provides a mix of natural goal scoring talent and a big-bodied power forward. I think he will develop one of the more lethal shots in this draft class and maybe in the entire VHLM this season. He’ll be a presence in front of the net as well. I’m not sure Nolan has the high, high upside of some of the other players on this list, but given where he was drafted in the VHLM Draft I think he could be a steal. Micha Sage – LW – Ottawa Lynx @AcousticKazoo VHLM Drafted: 32nd Overall Joined: 6/27/19 TPE: 99 TPE The highest 67 draft pick in this article is Micha Sage, a winger drafted to the Ottawa Lynx by first-year GM Acyd Burn. Sage hails from Ontario and is described by scouts as a power-forward that has an innate ability to put the puck in the net. He plays a smart game, knows how to find the soft spots in the defense and possesses a pretty deadly shot. He will need to bulk up a little bit to be a power forward force in the VHLM, but that is something the Ottawa trainers will focus on early on. The Lynx do have some veteran wingers on the roster right now with Hunter Wagner and Michael Rasmussen, but Sage is impressive and can make a pretty immediate impact.
  42. 9 points

    This day in history...

    @Rayzor_7 Made VHLM HISTORY as a new GM...
  43. 9 points
    Here's part 1: https://vhlforum.com/topic/63670-whos-still-around-from-old-cup-winning-teams/ Let's smash through a few more seasons then shall we... S21 Toronto Legion @sterling @Victor @Bushito Sterling and I (James Bencharski and Lars Berger) combined efforts for a second time here on a team built by David Knight. Several other repeat members here like Zero (J.D. Stormwall), McNeil (Voittu Jannula), and Cameron Davidson (nagger), but this was the first Continental Cup for Bushito, who continued making solid players after Peyton Nydroj and recently both got his first Hall of Fame induction and a Continental Cup as a GM. S22 Helsinki Titans @Advantage @Renomitsu A team with a similar makeup to some older Calgary and Riga teams, with two prominent members being Slobo and Kendrick. Cam Fowler was the first-gen of CoachReilly, a highly vocal member who is sadly no longer with us but remained very active until S50. Noah, inactive at the time and inactive now, got his first championship as Syd Drayson, and the reliable Renomitsu was a depth defenceman for the second time in his career. Adam Schultz was the first player of Frank, famous most for GMing Quebec as recently as S57. Last but not least, Malmo has just become the fourth team he's managed, but back in S22 Advantage was just starting out and got his first cup with Michael Angelo. S23 Calgary Wranglers @JardyB10 @diamond_ace @.sniffuM Jardy completed his career with a third cup in six seasons, now as GM, having built a team of fine members like Munk (Jeff Dar) and Spangle (Mathias Chouinard), among others. The long-term survivors here however are Jason aka diamond_ace (Lars Intranquilo), a key contributor to the VHLM then and in the year since, and Damien aka .sniffuM (Joey Clarence), who was on the player who created the famous snubbed censor. Damien has disappeared at times since, but has been VHLM commissioner and a Hall of Fame inductee and is back again in a more low key role at the moment. S24 and S25 HC Davos Dynamo @tfong A few repeats here, most notably Squinty, DGFX., and of course tfong with Kanou's crowning achievements. He is the sole survivor of these back-to-back winners, with Frank again missing the cut, while Koradek, present in S24 and the creator of so many of the current logos around the league, had a glorious but short time in the VHL. S26 Vasteras Iron Eagles @Tyler @Phil @sterling @.sniffuM @Hybrid1486 Very impressive survival rate here, especially with the recent return of Phil, 40 seasons on from his first ever championship. The second and last Vasteras championship was the brainchild of Tyler, featuring in goal as Andreas Bjorkman, and Scotty, on his real last hurrah as RJ Stafford and featured Sterling, Pensfan, Damien's second player Tukka Reikkinen and provided a first championship for Hybrid (Clint Guite). S27 Helsinki Titans - No one A superbly fun team, but one that really hasn't aged well, with some of its key members long gone like Squinty, Koradek, Boragina, and Claudio. The closest thing to a survivor is Munk, but like in S23, his appearances recently have been far too sporadic to include as a current active. S28 Seattle Bears @gregreg @InstantRockstar @Higgins @JardyB10 Greg built up Seattle's first cup-winning team after S17 on the core of the Seattle Six – Felix Peters (himself), Jarvis Baldwin (CoachReilly), Nikolai Lebedev (Noah), Mitch Higgins (Higgins), Radislav Mjers (Instantrockstar), and CAL G (Jardy). Jardy and Higgins continue to exist in lurk form as former admins/simmers, while the recent returns of Greg and IR have resurrected the active member count of this team. S29 Toronto Legion @sterling @Beketov @Tyler One of the more random cup winners in the VHL's past (the recent Toronto cup winners have clearly used this team as inspiration) gave additional cup rings to Sterling, Beketov, and Tyler, now Alexander Labatte, Jason White, and Connor Evans respectively. Apart from that, no notable new names won this season, with repeat appearances from Sandro and the Funks – a good VHL band name if nothing else. S30 Calgary Wranglers @Victor @diamond_ace @Advantage @flyersfan1453 @solas @BYE A decent retention rate here which makes sense how active this team was at the time. More cups came to Jason, Advantage and myself (Clark Marcellin, Ryan Sullivan, Alexander Chershenko), while the defence featured 3 still active members who won their first cups – flyersfan (Jim Gow) who went on to briefly commish, solas (Klaus Muller), a quiet creator of good to great players ever since, and Boom (Vladimir Boomchenko), who recently found himself burnt out again but has consistently come back to good effect in the past. S31 HC Davos Dynamo @Phil @tfong @gregreg @Bushito @frescoelmo Fittingly, we are getting more names who've stuck around as we get to the halfway stage of the VHL's existence. This was the team of the Knight brothers (David Smalling and Phil Rafter), Fong (again), Greg (again), Sandro (again), Bushito (for the second time, with Satan), and a first cup for frescoelmo, who's more famous for Tarik Saeijs than Emerson Byer but also seemed to reappear in the league recently. S32 New York Americans @Victor @Tyler @.sniffuM @InstantRockstar @Devise Here a random collection of members combined to good effect, but then how can you go wrong with myself, Tyler, Damien, and instantrockstar? At least, if it's S32. The mastermind behind this was Devise however, in just his second season as GM ever, winning his first championship with rookie goaltender Skylar Rift. There will be much more of him to come. S33 Riga Reign @Hybrid1486 A bit of a relapse here, with a few previously prominent members like sherifflobo and Corco now long gone – although Corco's last player Boner only retired a couple seasons ago. However, Felix Leiter was Hybrid's player so he is representing this team today. Not much more to say about this one. S34 Helsinki Titans @Higgins @der meister @Hybrid1486 Higgins built a team of first-gens in his first run with Helsinki and many are only recently inactive in the VHL. That's a list that includes STZ (Ethan Osborne), who went on to GM both Helsinki and New York, Tylar (Brody Hodgson), who would win a few cups with Helsinki in a few more incarnations as Marcel Faux and Sami Zayn, and fever95 (Anatoli Zhumbayev). One first-gen who is still around is der meister (Till Lindemann), although he has not recreated since Casey Jones retired in S64. Finally, there was a second straight championship for Leiter and Hybrid. S35 Quebec City Meute @Kyle @Devise A much hated team, built through free agency and being able to acquire all 3 Valiq brothers retains two members – Kyle, who was one of the Valiqs, and Devise, who was the league-altering free agent in Skylar Rift. Otherwise, Koradek and Squinty have long gone as above, while Jericho famously won his first championship with Wesley Kellinger, but has also been inactive since the mid 50s. S36 HC Davos Dynamo @Victor @Velevra @Trifecta @Molholt @Quik @BYE My crowning achievement as GM has a few members still kicking around, even if you discount the recent departed Boom (Odin Tordahl). My partner on defence was Shane Baker, which was Velevra's first player, he's since made a number of good players including a Hall of Famer in Apollo Skye and one of the more unlucky current players in Veran Dragomir. Da Trifecta got his first cup as Davey Jones and continues to pop in, as does Molholt, more famously the GM of the threepeating Toronto team about a decade later, but first time winner with Jarkko Olsen here. Finally, Quik was inactive at the time but got another ring to his name with Matteo Gallo, my first draft pick as Davos GM. S37 Toronto Legion @Green @xDParK The star of this Toronto team was Remy LeBeau and this was Green's first-gen, who has won many cups with his numerous players since. It appears Adam Warlock was his last player for a while but he still pops in and history suggests he'll be lured back in sooner rather than later. On the other hand, xdPark largely disappeared after Chico Salmon retired, but has only recently come back and might be at his peak VHL form. A notable member who would definitely still be here if he wasn't banned is boubabi, then on his first player Niklas Lindberg and a far cry from the outspoken member he became. S38 HC Davos Dynamo @Victor @Velevra @Trifecta @Molholt @JardyB10 @frescoelmo Davos won the last of the three straight Toronto vs Davos finals, and it was a similar team to the one which triumphed in S36. The main changes were Tordahl and Gallo being replaced by Naomi Young (Jardy) and Felix Zamora (frescoelmo), both of whom are in that strange semi-active limbo state at the moment but we'll class them as active for now. S39 New York Americans @sterling @Smarch @tfong @Tyler @Advantage @BYE A great team built around known, low-risk names, many of whom are still around in some capacity. Sterling and Smarch went back to their days of winning together, with Smarch on his finest player in Conner Low. Fong (Xin Xie Xiao), Tyler (Milos Denis), and Advantage (Brick Wahl) all featured, with another appearance for Tordahl – overall it's little surprise this team won. S40 Riga Reign @flyersfan1453 @Positivefan036 @Phil @Molholt And we'll end the second part of this on the first champion from the 40s. This was the first combined triumph of the Gows, with Phil helping out on defence. Molholt and boubabi also made appearances on their first players' swansongs in a dominant playoff display. Again, no new names to speak of though. That's another 1,500 words so that's a wrap for Pavlov too. I might revisit this concept in 3 weeks' time.
  44. 9 points

    Reapers S66 Team Collection

    The Official Philadelphia Reapers Team Signature Collection -- Defense -- Boomer Kuwanger @Hybrid1486 Duncan Jeffers @Tophdaddy Brandon LeBlanc @Psanchez55 Kevin Low @Smarch Edward Vigneault @Patpou22 Condor Adrienne @Green Boone Jenton @FakeJenton -- Forwards -- Scotty BigShotty @FerdaJets Walter Clements @cpetrella Dylan Doyle @zepheter John Frostbeard @FrostBeard Devin Gabella @Gabella19 Ben Hafkey @ItsMcLovin Kyle Sabertooth @uphillmoss Bjorn Scoringsonn @11 Eleven Matt Tocco @Matmenzinger Anthony Hawk @ahawk2191 -- Goalies -- Kolur Bjoernsonn @jblock3 Sunny Burst @Sunburst - - Management - - GM - Blade @BladeMaiden AGM - Jubo
  45. 9 points
    Please tell me we're not actually having this conversation. If someone doesn't trust the integrity of the league, you might as well leave.
  46. 9 points

    VHL Expansion

     Hi Everybody, As many of you are aware, the VHL is a little crowded. In addition to expanding to an odd number, with now 9 teams in the league, the amount of prospects coming up next season (shoutout once again to our fantastic @Recruitment Crew) necessitated expansion, returning us to a 10-team league. With that said, I will let the league's "newest" GM introduce his franchise: Logo Reveal: For those wondering, the expansion draft for this expansion will follow the same rules as last draft (teams may protect 7 players + GM player, players with NTCs must contact a commissioner to confirm they have waived them in order to be exposed, if a team cannot expose at least one active member, the new team may select a 3rd round pick from any of the next 3 drafts [S66-68, thanks again @Devise 😛 ]). The expansion team will also have a lottery to determine their slotting in each round of the S66 VHL Entry Draft, with equal odds of selecting anywhere from 5-10. Thank you for reading, and best of luck to Advantage in the upcoming season, and beyond!
  47. 9 points
    Saskatoon Wild Scouting Center, Saskatchewan – Hunter Hearst Helmsley. Shane Mars. Kari Jurri. Long ago, the four nations lived toge – uh, wrong intro. My bad. These three prospects are ostensibly the most talented and highly-sought after players in a draft that is nearly (if not already) 90 players deep. As expected, they (among maybe a half-dozen other prospects) have received plenty of airtime and speculation: we’re used to hearing the pro comparisons and possible career trajectories, fans clamoring for lower-ranked teams to ‘tank’ their season to get the next most valuable prospect, and so on. To put this in perspective – the last several dispersal drafts have had between forty and seventy draftees; aside from last season’s dispersal (67 players) the next most comparable was a 51-man dispersal ten seasons ago, in Season 56’s draft. When compared with Entry drafts, it’s still potentially the largest field of selectable players in recent history. The lowest TPE pick from S65’s entry draft was Billy Kimber, the thirty-first (although not the last) overall pick of the draft, who had 32 TPE with the season’s live draft rankings; there are 87 players this season with at least that many points waiting for their chance at the pros. Overall, the Season 65 draft had 38 drafted players – this season’s pool would have half of its players go entirely undrafted if the same were to happen this season. Make no mistake – recruiters have been putting in their work and it’s been paying off. But because this season’s draft pool is so apparently deep, players with the potential to make it as World Juniors, World Cup players, or first-round fantasy picks may go without being mentioned until draft time. “We’ve got enough first-round quality wings alone to make up most Entry drafts by themselves,” one anonymous scout commented at a Week 2 VHLM game, “Mars and Jurri are the obvious, but Aaltonen, Volosenkov, Freeman, Sigurdsson, Jagr, Meyers…” “That would have been your average first round in most previous entry drafts. This year? Those are just the top eight prospects between two positions.” General Managers and AGMs make it their job to look into each year’s eligible player list – so let’s take the dive for ourselves and try to find a few hidden gems, why don't we? Inclusion Criteria (1) S66 Draft Class; currently included in @Tagger‘s most recent Scouting Center rankings. (2) As of the Week 2 VHLSC rankings, currently ranked below rank 20 (based strictly on TPE, likely to be drafted in Round 3 or later of the current draft) (3) Early bird gets the worm – draftees with large TPE claims this week will be more highly considered. Last three weeks’ TPE gain will be the main inclusion criterion. (NOTE – some of these TPEs may be reported several hours before article posting, and may not match current TPEs) D Jerry Garcia – Houston Bulls Current Projection – Mid-Late 3rd Round (23/88) TPE – 144 (+56 after 3/3) Garcia is a hybrid of the old-school defensive defenseman with a new-school prototypical skillset. He’s one of the more skilled defenders on a VHLM roster, with the ability to make it to loose pucks and stop many forwards in their tracks. In recent weeks, he’s been hitting the gym and working on his playmaking skills, but he’s still certainly most effective on his team’s half of the ice. The defenseman’s agent (@GustavMattias) has experience in a number of arenas – the most recent being a stint as Team Asia’s World Juniors GM. He’s been cited as an “incredible force for good” in the locker room by his own GM, and one of the prominent voices interfacing with the media for his minor league squad. Perhaps most importantly, Garcia has been putting in plenty of work on the ice and in the gym; many scouts have noted diversification in the defender’s skills in the last couple of weeks alone. His plethora of proficiencies leave him most likely to continue along the defensive defenseman or enforcer route – but we’d be remiss to count out the possibility of development into a two-way defenseman. Regardless, Garcia’s rapid and recent improvement is a sign that GMs in the majors ought to take note of – he’d be a steal in the fourth round and wouldn’t be out of the question for the early third. Scout’s Notes “He’s well-rounded and is a threat on both sides of the ice because of his passing ability. Something of a black hole for errant passes and chasing the puck down after a big hit.” “[Jerry] has a penchant for making big hits and blocking big shots. He’s probably your goalie’s best friend.” “He played guitar for the Grateful Dead and has an ice cream flavor named after him, I mean come on.” “If I’m a team in need of multiple positions, I’m looking to steal Garcia in the late third, or pick him for value as early as the second.” ABOVE - Hans Gruber, seen here definitely not scheming. C Hans Gruber – Saskatoon Wild Current Projection – Late 3rd, early 4th round (29/88) TPE – 125 (+46 after 3/3) This promising young forward from Germany was traded from Philadelphia in exchange for picks just last Saturday (3/16) with teammates DWin Championship, Cody Parkey, and Brian Strong. Wild GM @Peace made the massive exchange of picks – including what may be over half of the team’s S67 dispersal selections – for a chance to win now. Some suggest Gruber’s something of a grinder or playmaker – and this early in his career, he could probably opt to go either way. It’s hard to pick out one specific strength for the winger, who has shown glimpses of excellence in defense and puck handling in addition to the positional mainstays of passing and scoring. In 34 games in the minors, he’s accumulated 6 goals in 68 shots, and a total of 24 points. He’s presently second on the depth chart – which means he’s quite likely to run into other more-developed forwards and defensemen whenever he’s on the ice. Though his performance does not yet top the league, the Wild GM can rest easy: the young German scored an overtime-winning goal just earlier today in one of his first games with the team. Scout’s Notes “Sure, I see why he could be easy to sleep on. Plus-minus isn’t too flashy – but take a look at his last couple of games and tell me he can’t at least hold his own with the best.” “That screamer to clinch today’s game against the Reapers should at least catch your eye.” “Didn’t this guy steal like $640,000,000 or something?” ABOVE - Clayton Park playing goalie for the Vienna Thunder, Midget AAA team (per biography) G Clayton Park – Yukon Rush Accolades – 1x WJC Team World (S65) Current Projection – Early 4th round (32/88) TPE – 119 (+68 after 3/3) Buried underneath the (well-deserved) hype for Kandee Cain (@SlashACM) and Owen May (@FacebookFighter) is Austrian netminder Clayton Park, a top-four prospect for this season’s draft. Taken 49th overall (7th round) in the S65 Dispersal Draft, Clayton has stepped up his game considerably and may merit consideration for a pick as high as the early third round depending on how the rest of this season plays out. He sits only behind the newly-reinforced Juan Jaundice in shots against but has managed an 86.6% save percentage in spite of the volume of shots against him, good for third in the minors behind the aforementioned Cain (89.2%) and S65 New York draftee Chase (90.0%). He’s currently in the bottom half of the table for goals allowed (3.39) – but many scouts believe that’s simply a function of the number of shots he’s had to defend this season. Park takes on the style of a classic butterfly goalie; though slightly undersized at 5’ 10” and just 150 lbs. (68 kg), Park has shown solid reaction time, positioning, and rebound control. And don’t worry, even when he’s not playing hockey he finds a way to keep in the cold: he has a long history of downhill skiing in his free time. Scout’s Notes “Second-best butterfly goalie behind Cain… probably won’t see a ton of ice time in the pros next season but has potential through the roof.” “Excellent support system, a lengthy history on the ice; if he sticks around he could be pretty good.” “Clayton Park, eh? You talkin’ ‘boot the one in Halifax? RW Mat Tocco – Philadelphia Reapers Current Projection – Early 6th Round (43/88) TPE – 98 (+68 since 3/3) We’re fourteen games (sort of) into the young career of Czech/Italian forward Mat Tocco, and in spite of limited ice time (19.7 mpg, 67th in the minors) he’s racked up a nice plus-minus of +9 with 9 points – not too shabby for a brand-new entry. He has elements of the prototypical sniper-style forward, but with a nice added bonus of being able to skate around slower defenders. As with many of the prospects on the board thus far, Tocco is very moldable – but his strengths right now are mobility and scoring. Though he’s recently had to move to the States, Tocco comes from humble origins. Born of an Italian immigrant and a butcher’s daughter, he’s proven throughout his life that hard work is just part of the process for him; his rapid improvement on the ice over the last few weeks certainly corroborates that. He faces an uphill battle, with nearly twenty wingers above him on most draft boards. If his past is any indicator, however, he’s ready for the test. Scout’s Notes “Pretty raw, but the scoring potential is there. We can always use another high-quality sniper in the league; the sky’s the limit for him.” “Built like a brick sh*thouse for a guy his height. Not surprising to see the number of hits he’s laid out so far.” “Glad to see all of his hard work pay off. Seems like he’s in for the long haul.” “I’d like to see a GM reach a little for him. Might not be out of the question to see him late third, early fourth round by the time all’s said and done. Guys that improve as fast as him go on to either have damn good careers or flame out.” Other unlinked references in this article: @Sonnet, @TheFlash, @leafssteen, @Matmenzinger [if possible, I'd like to use this for three weeks' worth of media spots (weeks ending 3/24, 3/31, and 4/7); currently sitting just under 1,700 words.]
  48. 9 points
    Just a little bit of my personal experience here in VHL after a month being here actively. Lot's and I mean truly LOT'S of people have been super supportive and have done so much to ensure that my time that is spent here is as much fun as it can be. First off, huge thanks to @BladeMaiden as she as a VHLM GM was just truly amazing by showing guidance and allowing everyone on the team to feel welcome and at "home". Secondly, huge thanks to all the lovely experienced player builders that shared their knowledge and made everything make sense. Overall, as the community here is growing more and more every day, I do have to say that even forums and just information exchange between people is really, really refreshing and shows that VHL is not populated by douchebags. Truly, a great first month and I do hope that this will continue in the future.
  49. 9 points
    imagine making test sims in a random sim engine yall some losers
  50. 9 points

    S64 VHLM Award Ceremony

    S64 VHLM Awards Welcome to the S64 VHLM Award Ceremony! Firstly, we'd like to congratulate the Las Vegas Aces on winning the Founders Cup. It was a strong season which seen numerous hurdles and even bigger news for the future. Of course, this is the off-season where we expand - WE GROW!Philadelphia Reapers and Houston Bulls are now rolling with things and it's only going to be making the VHLM stronger. During my tenure, I feel as though the league has continuously improved and it's because the league is working hard right now (we have so many amazing members). This season, we experienced and witnessed a lot of highs and success. We have an amazing group of managers, simmers, systems and members in place to make the VHLM a successful league that people care about. I think I can speak easily on behalf of @diamond_ace and myself when I say we wish to only continue this growth and success. If you won an award you can claim 2 TPE. All co-winners can claim 1 TPE. Team awards do not count as TPE. S64 VHLM Awards Championship - Founder's Cup: Las Vegas Aces Best Regular Season Record - Prime Minister's Cup: Las Vegas Aces Leading Points - Ethan Osborne Trophy: Nathan N (LVA) @NathanN Leading Goals - Alexander Chershenko Trophy: Diljodh (HFX) @DilIsPickle Leading Assists - Vladimir Boomchenko Trophy: Eric Parker (LVA) @Eparker24 Regular Season MVP - Mitch Higgins Trophy: 1. Nathan N (LVA) - Forward - (4 Votes) @NathanN 2. Diljodh (HFX) - Forward - (1 Vote) 4. Bolt Vanderhuge (HFX) - Defense - (1 Vote) Playoff MVP - Skylar Rift Trophy: 1. Shane Mars - Forward - (4 Votes) @Spade18 2. Joe Nixon - Goalie - (2 Votes) Top Defenseman - Ryan Sullivan Trophy: 1. Bolt Vanderhuge (HFX) - Defense - (4 Votes) @kayfabe 2. Eric Parker (LVA) Defense - (2 Votes) Top Goaltender - Benoit Devereux Trophy: 1. JB Rift (OTT) - G - (4 Votes) @Devise 2. Tyler Smith (HFX) - G - (2 Votes) Top Two-Way Forward- Matt Bentz Trophy: 1. Nathan N (LVA) - Forward - (6 Votes) @NathanN Top Executive - Jack Reilly Trophy: 1. Las Vegas - GM - (4 Votes) @Jubo07 2. Halifax - GM - (2 Votes) @McWolf Congrats to those who won awards this season. Best wishes moving forward @VHLM Commissioner
This leaderboard is set to Halifax/GMT-03:00