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  1. 15 points
    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!
  2. 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?]
  3. 12 points

    Mock S66 VHL Entry Draft

    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!
  4. 11 points

    Ban Thread

    @DougF has been permanently banned for soliciting illegal images from members.
  5. 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*
  6. 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
  7. 11 points
    Like this post to show support for potatoes!
  8. 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.
  9. 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.
  10. 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.
  11. 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!
  12. 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
  13. 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.
  14. 9 points
    The Reaper Nation Welcomes Their New Second in Command I would be lying if I said that I thought Philadelphia would be hiring a new AGM for Season 66. Sometimes an opportunity arises that is too hard to pass up. With a resume consisting of gold medals at the world minors and professional level as well as a Founder’s Cup championship; the Reapers believe they have hired on a member that will bring balance and experience to the team. The Reapers deserve to be a top club and with a name comes an aura; the Reapers should be feared as the opposition. Today Philly is excited to announce the hiring of @Jubo07 as our Assistant General Manager. Effective immediately he will assist with our draft board and take on additional responsibilities as the season nears. Season 66 should bring great promise to the fans and existing members of the franchise. @VHLM GM @VHLM Commissioner
  15. 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!
  16. 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.]
  17. 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.
  18. 9 points
    imagine making test sims in a random sim engine yall some losers
  19. 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
  20. 8 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 -- Forwards -- Rhys Chism @Jables Walter Clements @cpetrella Dylan Doyle @zepheter John Frostbeard @FrostBeard Devin Gabella @Gabella19 Ben Hafkey @ItsMcLovin Kyle Sabertooth @uphillmoss Bjorn Scoringsonn @11 Eleven -- Goalies -- Kolur Bjoernsonn @jblock3 Sunny Burst @Sunburst - - Management - - GM - Blade @BladeMaiden AGM - Jubo
  21. 8 points
    Still Wet Behind the Ears - S66's Best 'First-Gens' Saskatoon, SK - Being the new kid on the block is never easy. Your new 'friends' don't quite understand you, and you've got a few precious days to adapt to a whole new environment. Some of the league's best prospects this season are in fact its newest members, thanks to the league's @Recruitment Crew . There were, in fact, so many that we couldn't even fit half of those above 100 TPE into this article. Since our last few articles were about finding 'value' and 'reach' picks in this year's deep draft class, we need to pay our dues and look at the best with this one. Without further ado - Reddit, SBA, EFL, other VHL members - show us your recruiting skills. This is the cream of the crop - new agent edition. C Maximilian Kirbsson @Kirby Houston Bulls | 6’0” | 195 lbs. S65 WJC (Team Europe Selection) TPE: 225 (+28 from week ending 3/17-week ending 3/31) The prospect on this list with the most raw talent, Maximilian Kirbsson is a Swedish center who got his start in the VHL/M with an agent who is most notable for managing gunslinging LSU QB Jake Luck and Syracuse Orange scorer JK Kirby. It’s easy to see, based on this breakthrough agent’s player activity, that he’s Kirbsson is quite likely to stick around for the long haul; the 18-year-old has even overtaken fellow Bull Kari Jurri in draft stock – which is hard enough to do provided there are only a select couple ahead of him now. He’s secured a $750,000 endorsement from Ferda Apparel alongside buddy Kari Jurri (covered below). In addition to being a breakout draftee, he’s a bit of a sweetheart, citing an adorable interaction with a new fan just a couple of weeks ago. The attention is well-deserved, as Kirbsson led the VHLM in points at the time. It’s hard to argue with stats and results – as the Houston squad presently sits third in the league with 68 points. Admittedly he’s not much of a hidden gem, as he was taken in the first round of the S65 VHLM Draft, but he’ll make any general manager who picks him in the first round rest easy. Projection: Top 4 LW Julius Freeman @rjfryman Halifax 21st | 6’3” | 210 lbs. S65 WJC (Team World Selection) TPE: 233 (+47) Our first American on the list, Julius Freeman has had just a few articles about his soaring draft stock; we won’t belabor the point here. Agent @rjfryman appears to be something of a newcomer to player management, but it hasn’t shown to be a detriment as of yet: Freeman is expected to be a clear-cut first round draft pick, and Halifax likely securing the top playoff seed is even more promising for this left winger. While his +/- (+25) and points per game (76) are impressive to begin with, Freeman’s also accrued 7 game-winning goals over the stretch, so he clearly has the intangibles to go with his high-quality offensive abilities. Projection: Top 6 RW Mikko Aaltonen (@GRZ) Las Vegas Aces | 6’3” | 200 lbs. S65 WJC (Team Europe Selection) TPE: 223 (+42) Aaltonen – whom you may have heard speak just earlier this week shouting out a few 'sleeper' picks in this year’s draft – is the shiny new toy and offensive standout for the high-rolling Aces. Formerly of the Philadelphia Reapers, this young Finnish forward has a stat line that is a result of his time on both the Reapers and Aces. He’s comfortably on pace for over one point a game (58 GP, 70 P) but sports a less-than-ideal -18 while on the ice. Recent success with the Aces has shored this +/- up a bit, and the Aces’ placement at 4th in the league puts them just a handful of points above the Rush and Lynx. Mikko is a traditional two-way forward, with a skill set that mirrors many other top forwards in the draft; he leans a bit more towards raw scorer but has shown flashes of excellence on defense this season that should have GMs chomping at the bit to draft him. If his own confidence is anything to go by, Aaltonen has a place in the league for seasons to come. Agent @GRZ has @hejta to thank for his introduction to the league, though the latter seems to have removed himself from agent duties in recent weeks. Projection: Top 6 Above: Owen May, not-so-shamelessly taken from his agent's signature G Owen May @FacebookFighter Houston Bulls | 6’2” | 180 lbs. S65 WJC (Team Europe Selection) TPE: 191 (+44) In my Hidden Gems review of the S66 draft, we passed over Owen May in favor of coverage of Rush goalie Clayton Park – but now May gets additional spotlight. Interestingly, Owen May has been projected in multiple mock drafts to overtake standout Wendy Kandee Cain, a reversal of most talking heads’ opinions on the matter from a few weeks prior. To push the point further – he’s actually been projected as early as the 5th overall pick to the Malmö Nighthawks for the S66 Entry Draft. Like defense, the goalie cohort in this draft is quite thin – and with agent @FacebookFighter brand new to the scene, May’s high draft stock is something to be admired. Like a few others on this list, May has the opportunity to play in the S65 World Juniors, which begin shortly; the Swiss netminder sits behind JB Rift, and will likely see a few games’ worth of time on the ice over the course of the tournament. Projection: 1st Round RW Arnor Sigurdsson @bluesfan55 Yukon Rush | 6’4” | 205 lbs. S65 WJC (Team Europe Selection) TPE: 202 (+43) Sigurdsson is a two-sport forward from Iceland, with experience here in hockey and formerly as a physical centre-forward for Valùr Reykjavik’s youth football team. Though Iceland is hardly a VHL staple, this draftee has shown close to point-per-game production (57 GP, 54 P) on a struggling Yukon Rush team. He has repeatedly shown a game resembling the prototypical power forward, with the build of a defenseman and some skills to match (67 CK, 70 ST, 66 PH) on top of excellent scoring potential. The Rush have a potent offensive attack in general – and Sigurdsson has had to share the limelight with Hunter Hearst Helmsley, Anthony Matthews, and John Frostbeard (whom we’ll discuss a bit later). With a rare skillset it’s rather difficult to predict where GMs will take the young forward; he’s certainly among rare company with an unusual defensive skillset. Will this increase his draft stock, or will GMs be a bit more conservative? My guess is, in spite of his (possible first-round) talent, some GMs may shy away a bit as they try to figure out exactly how a player like Sigurdsson works in the VHL. But if Sigurdsson slips into the second round as we suspect he may, he’d be one hell of a steal. There’s nothing better for a GM than a talented player with a chip on their shoulder. Projection: Late 1st/Early 2nd Round LW Kari Jurri @hockeyis66 Houston Bulls | 6’3” | 210 lbs. S65 WJC (Team Europe Selection) TPE: 209 (+14) Next on our list is Kirbsson’s teammate and Ferda Apparel winger Kari Jurri. Like Kirbsson, Jurri has a multi-sport agent – and he represents two-way Syracuse F Championship Defense. Though initially an Oslo signee, this young Dutch forward was also drafted by the Bulls just two picks after Kirbsson; frankly, the two forwards have been one of the most lethal combinations in the VHLM today. Jurri presently sits at 83 points on the season (36 G, 47 A) that slots him at about 1.5 P/gm and a respectable +25 while on the ice. Agent @hockeyis66 seems to have a penchant for two-way players, as he’s capable of defending, passing, scoring, and skillfully skating around opposing defenders. Provided his success so far, Jurri’s agent seems to have a winning formula. In spite of his prior clumsiness on the ice (in fact once being described as a freight train, the winger shows plenty of promise for the VHL. His draft stock is quite high – the vast majority of mock drafts have him going in the first round – but he likely does not carry the same clout as his fellow Bulls forward. At the very least, he hasn’t been as much of a media darling and is in fact relatively reserved with the press. Projection: Late 1st Round LW/C Bert Meyers @RunnerBert11 Minnesota Storm | 6’1” | 175 lbs. S65 WJC (Team Asia Selection) TPE: 197 (+50) The first on this list to be below the 200 TPE cap, Meyers embodies the phrase ‘jack of all trades, master of none.’ Capable of scoring, passing, winning a faceoff, blocking and handling pucks, and defending, there’s very little Bert can’t do. Even his points are split nearly evenly (19 G, 21 A) while playing for a Minnesota Storm team that has made every move possible to win a VHLM title this season. It’s worth noting that Meyers is certainly on the light side of the player base – at 175 lbs., some GMs may have concerns about his ability to stay on the puck if pressured by some of the league’s heavier defenders. A native Wisconsinite, Irish twin, and S65 VHLM draftee, he’s one of the more experienced prospects and has 58 games under his belt – and he’ll be utilizing that experience as he makes the transition from LW => per a recent press release. Agent @RunnerBert11 has taken on a number of responsibilities after seemingly coming to the VHL out of nowhere: among them is Assistant GM-ship for the Saskatoon Wild, and Bert is certain to benefit from his agent’s understanding of the game. Meyers’s agent’s actions may in fact boost the winger’s draft stock itself, as taking on any type of GM role signals a long-term investment in the league. Projection: Late 1st Round D Charlie Paddywagon @DMaximus Las Vegas Aces | 6’4” | 208 lbs. S65 WJC (Team USA Selection) TPE: 186 (+44) I've actually already written about breakout defenseman Charlie Paddywagon, but sometimes one shout-out isn’t enough. His agent @DMaximus, like the last few entries on this list, seemingly appeared out of nowhere – but that hasn’t stopped the Irishman from being labeled with star potential over the last few weeks. He’s attracted enough attention with his fashion sense to be interviewed and featured by Style Magazine, and is in fact the third of our draftees listed here to receive a Ferda Apparel endorsement. And if other brands were hoping to feature Paddywagon in the near future, that’s too bad – he’s locked in to his Ferda endorsement for the next three seasons. Advertising aside, Charlie’s defense has improved to VHL starter-comparable levels (90 DF, 70 ST); while his offensive repertoire still needs some work, it would see as though this 47th-overall S65 VHLM pick is set to prove the league a newbie defenseman can still make it big. Projection: Early 2nd Round D Jerry Garcia @GustavMattias Houston Bulls | 6’1” | 194 lbs. S65 WJC (Team USA Selection) TPE: 182 (+48) Like fellow defenseman Charlie Paddywagon, I’ve already written about Jerry Garcia – but he’s appeared in BOTH of my previous long-form articles. He’s recently declared his affinity for Helsinki, Seattle, and recently-announced expansion team Malmö as his preferred destinations. As one of the top few defensemen in this draft and as part of a seemingly star-studded Houston roster, GMs are sure to be listening. Let’s not beat a dead horse – Garcia knows what he’s doing, I just secretly wanted to ping @GustavMattias again. Projection: Early 2nd Round RW Nethilia Dissanayake @nethi99 Saskatoon Wild | 6’8” | 197 lbs. TPE: 164 (+32) The lone Asian player on this list, the exceedingly-tall and lanky Nethila Dissanayake hails from Colombo, Sri Lanka. He’s the last of our ‘agents-from-nowhere’ to appear here, and for good reason – he’s one of the better forwards on a rising (but recently-struggling) Saskatoon team, and the lone Wild player to appear on this list. Perhaps most significantly, he’s the first-ever Sri Lankan to play for the VHLM. He has a lengthy history with hockey, winning 3 cups with the Alabama State Hornets during his college days and had a burgeoning career with the Prince Albert Raiders in the CHL. Overall, Dissanayake has been one of the more productive members of the Wild, securing 69 (nice) points (28 G, 41 A) in just 58 games. He was the 32nd overall selection in last season’s Dispersal Draft, and appears to be on-pace to improve that stock tremendously for the Entry Draft. Projection: Late 2nd Round [>2,100 words; will claim as needed through June]
  22. 8 points
    If your biggest worry in life in a conspiracy in a fake hockey league I pray for you
  23. 8 points

    10 Years on the VHL

    It is Easter weekend 2019 and that made me think that I must have joined around easter in 2009. So I checked my builder article and lo and behold, my joining date was in fact early April 2009, meaning that I have now been on the VHL for just over a decade. OK, its not quite up there with Beketov and Fong and a handful of others (not including Quik here cuz he must have been missing for half the leagues history), and I did leave for just over a year until I came back last summer (granted I kept popping back in pretty regularly) but still. Ten fucking years. I don't think its possible to explain everything that's changed in 10 years. In internet terms that's probably like someone talking about what life was like in the 50s. I'm sure most members newer than myself were on the internet in 2009 (although the frightening thought is that I'm sure there's a few who were not), but the same concept applies to sim leagues - they are just simply not the same these days. Better or worse that's not for me to decide but different. I don't know if teenage me would enjoy cutting my teeth in the modern VHL or if current me would enjoy the bullshit of the league a decade ago so its probably all for the best. But fuck. 10 years. Anyway, that's that. Happy Easter folks. Happy my sort of anniversary. Have a good rest of the long weekend. Much love xx. ❤️
  24. 8 points
    Good afternoon everyone, this is the new General Manager of the Malmo Nighthawks writing to you today, as I am putting out my first official team statement regarding the Expansion of the league and my return to the GM fold. First, I would like to speak on the process of how this came to be. A little while back I was approached about whether or not I had interest in becoming a GM again, which I definitely did, and whether or not I was interested in running an Expansion team. Back when I was the GM of Cologne, I had been told that I would have the next opportunity to manage a team after the contraction took place, due to how well I had been putting that team together. Nevertheless, I took a step away from the league as I personally felt that we were making no strides in improving recruiting and there were some pretty scary signs that the league was heading to a pretty dark place. Specifically, I definitely wasn’t sure the league had much of a future and it wasn’t until I returned just to see how things were, that I realized how far the league had come. After fully returning to the league I became admittedly addicted again, just like I did way back in Season 18. It was like a new league with the Portal changes and the incredible recruiting numbers. I have no doubts that this is the brightest the league has ever been and that’s why I wanted to take over this Expansion team. I haven’t been this committed to a GM role since I took over New York originally. I took over Stockholm because there was nobody who wanted it and they were in pretty desperate need of some leadership. I took over Cologne because no one wanted it after Punkhippie ran it into the ground. While I never won with Stockholm, we were a competitive threat for quite a while and had some great runs that just didn’t pan out into Continental Cups. I never got to fully see through my rebuild of Cologne but we went from a team with a disastrous present and future, into one of the brightest futures in the league, just before contraction claimed them. Nevertheless, that is why I had an interest in coming back. I want a chance to break all the records, but more importantly turn an Expansion team, a team that I had entire say of logo and name of, and make them into the league’s juggernaut. Ultimately, once I knew I was taking over I communicated a set of names I was interested in and then was given a huge list of logos to pick from. Once we had that, we agreed on the colours of the team and the rest is really history. Going forward I like our chances with one of the strongest drafts in league history ahead of us, and from what I can tell, a very good chance to draft some excellent players in the upcoming Expansion Draft. I’m thrilled to be in this position again and I am truly happy to say that I feel like this will be my best run yet as a General Manager. Regards, Christopher Miller GM of the Malmo Nighthawks
  25. 8 points

    Make The Draft Great Again

    I'm going to start off by telling you a little story for those of you who weren't around or weren't paying attention for the last draft (S65). Generally speaking, the draft is run live, with GMs needing to react to other picks being made in real time and there generally being a shitshow around scheduling when to hold it, a bit of chaos when it comes to tracking who's been picked, and some hectic live trades. In S65, for reasons unknown (I would just assume, or hope, scheduling conflicts) the draft was held earlier, I assume over the course of several days, in secret. The thing is, it wasn't actually so secret, because when you see a team trading up in the 2nd round three days before the draft, you have to assume they know who's available at that specific pick. I get that this made life easier on the GMs, but it was just. so. boring. The craziness that is draft day is supposed to be part of the fun around being a GM, and with drafts being run through the portal now, it should be much easier to track who's been picked. Let these draftees have the same fun that I had on my draft day, where there was all sorts of crazy speculation and rumors before my name ever got called. Bring back the true live draft. Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk. 238 words, theme week.
  26. 8 points
    This is cool. After doing so well with Wingate, HOF wasn't actually my goal with McAllister - I just wanted to score a lot of goals and stay with my draft team (Seattle) for as long as I could. But starting with back-to-back VHLM Playoff MVPs and moving onto the S56 Stolzchweiger, it always seemed like something more was in the cards. I had a lot of fun with McAllister building up a team in Seattle to win it all, being the missing piece in Davos to go on a miracle run, going from a pure scorer to somehow winning three Boulets and most hits in a season, and overall making an impact on every game. For my first player that spent all 8 seasons as a forward, I think he did pretty damn well. Thanks to my GMs @Banackock and @Tyler for giving me the framework through which to kick ass, the HOF voters for getting McAllister in there (unanimously too, which is crazy to me), and to everyone for making this a fun community to be a part of. I'll be back here soon - maybe for the third HOF player in a row?
  27. 8 points
  28. 8 points
    Hello everyone! @Members With the trade deadline approaching, there is a fairly significant announcement to make that will change the landscape of the league, moving forward! As most here know, the @Recruitment Crew has done an incredible job bringing in new members to this league, helping it grow daily from what used to be a nearly 100% re-create league, to where we are today. With increased membership, comes a need for growth in the league, starting with the entry point where these new members are starting their VHL journey. As many of you have heard the whispers, the league’s worst kept secret is finally becoming official: the VHLM will be expanding by two teams, starting in Season 65! When exploring our options for where to locate these two teams, it soon became apparent that the VHL’s American representation is severely lacking. In a league with 14 teams combined, many members have voiced a wish for greater representation than 3 teams, with only 1 in the VHLM. With that in mind, knowing that a large portion of our membership hails from the Land of the Free, we focused on adding two new locations to the continental 48. Quickly, that lead to the realization that the VHLM would remain with a single non-North American team, and that a need for relocation has arisen. When looking at locations to relocate the Oslo Storm, there was only one place that came to mind: the state with the largest Scandinavian population in the United States, known for its harsh winters and love of hockey. That’s right, beginning in Season 65, the Oslo Storm will be relocating to Minneapolis, Minnesota, and retain the Storm moniker, as they will henceforth be known as the Minnesota Storm! As for the two expansion franchises, the league has long known that it needed to represent this first city in some fashion. Many members have been clamoring for a team in this great city for years, knowing that it is a hockey hotbed, with ravenous fans and great ties to the game. The city that brought you Cheesesteaks and Rocky, Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love finally gets a franchise, as the Philadelphia Reapers hit the ice next season! The second city to be granted a VHLM franchise is another with deep roots in the game, though they may no longer be apparent aside from a fruitless attempt at winning an NHL expansion bid. The lone Champion from the days of the WHA not to be included in the merger with the NHL, this city has been without professional franchise for some time. Once the home of the great Gordie Howe, and his sons Mark and Marty, this city is one we feel deserves to have a shot at redemption, and a fitting name to go with it. The VHLM’s 8th team, next season, will be the Houston Bulls! With these changes in the VHLM, there are still a couple more announcements to make, regarding some shuffling in leadership. We would like to thank @.sniffuM for his work as VHLM Co-Commissioner. He has done a fantastic job, working in conjunction with @Banackock. Effective immediately, he will be stepping down, and @diamond_ace will be taking his place as Banacock’s co-commissioner. As that will create a hole in the Ottawa GM slot, @Esso2264 will be taking diamond_ace’s position as Ottawa GM, at the conclusion of this season. The final piece of housekeeping with the VHLM is that, effective immediately, @Peace will have the interim tag removed, as he will stay on as Saskatoon’s GM. But wait, there’s more! While most already knew about the VHLM expansion, we have done our best to keep another secret close to our chest. There will be a couple changes to the VHL, as well! The first will be another relocation. While the league does have a strong connection to la belle Province, the team itself has failed to deliver on its great promise, with an abysmal record in Continental Cup Finals, which rivals the notoriety of the now defunct Vasteras/Stockholm franchise. Beginning next season, the team will across the land, to another heavily populated of area of VHL membership. Yes, for all you BC boys and girls out there, you will finally be getting yourselves a team, as the Quebec Meute will be heading west, to be known as the Vancouver Wolves! Naturally, with the VHLM continuing to grow, providing more and more VHL players every season, the VHL sees a corresponding growth. After originally expanding over 30 seasons ago, the league saw fit to return to its original 8-team format in Season 58, in order to maintain a healthy balance, knowing that one day expansion would return to the table. Eight seasons later, it is seeing that growth, and the league will be adding one team into the fold this season, as the first wave of expansion hits! Rather than me telling you about this team, I will let the league’s newest GM do the talking: Indeed, the VHL will be returning to Russia for the first time since Season 10, as Victor looks to continue his legacy as one of the league’s great builders! Of course, with expansion teams, that also means Expansion Drafts, as well as changes to Entry/Dispersal Drafts. First, we will begin with the VHL: Expansion Draft Will take place prior to the S65 VHL Entry Draft Each team may protect 7 players (skaters and/or goalies), as well as their GM Player. All players eligible to play in Season 65 (S58-64) are eligible to be drafted, if left unprotected Draft picks may not be selected, except for: If a team cannot/does not put forth one active player who is under contract for S65, a 3rd round pick in any of the upcoming 3 drafts is attached to any inactive the expansion team will select S65 Entry Draft Moscow will select between 4 and 9 in each round of the draft, as determined by a random lottery If Moscow is awarded the 4th slot, but the Wild Card team wins the Draft Lottery, Moscow will select 5th Overall in the 1st round, and then 4th in each subsequent round. Draft Lottery; S66 and beyond Beginning with the S66 Lottery, Wild Card teams will no longer be eligible for the draft lottery The odds for winning will become 30% for 9th place, 25% for both 7th and 8th place, and 20% for 6th place. Playoff Format There will be no changes to the playoff format with the inclusion of a 9th VHL team Now for the changes that will come to the VHLM: Expansion Draft Order will be determined randomly, and be conducted in a snake draft Team 1, Team 2, Team 2, Team 1, Team 1, Team 2 Each expansion franchise will get 3 selections Each team may protect 5 assets (players and/or draft picks in the next two Dispersal Drafts [S65 / 66]), and can only lose 1 asset to the Expansion Draft Each team may protect two 1st round picks without counting against the protection limit S65 Dispersal Draft The two teams will select from the 7th and 8th slot, respectively, in each round Whichever team selects 1st in the Expansion Draft will select in the 8th slot in the Dispersal Draft, while the team that selects 2nd in the Expansion Draft will select in the 7th slot in the Dispersal Draft Draft Lottery; S66 and beyond Will follow the current VHL lottery where the 3 non-playoff teams share an equal 30% chance at 1st overall, and the Wild Card loser will receive a 10% chance at winning 1st overall Playoff Format With 8 teams, the VHLM will follow the current VHL Playoff format, with a first-round Wild Card series between the 4th and 5th seeds, playing to a best-of-3. After the first round, the playoffs will return to a best-of-7, with the 1st seed playing the Wild Card winner So there it is. Everything to do with both leagues’ changes, relocations and expansions. As you can tell, it’s been a busy season in the @BOG , and there are still more announcements to come once the off-season hits. Until then, enjoy the remainder of the league’s 64th Season, and stay tuned for more announcements, including Sunday's revealing of this season's Theme Week! We’re hoping you are all as excited as we are for this new chapter in the VHL! @Commissioner
  29. 8 points
    There is no reason to tag the entire league for this Good luck Boom hope you get a bigger closet this time
  30. 8 points

    We Clinched

    In my first year in the league, our team has clinched first place in the VHLM! Our team, the Las Vegas Aces, have really done an excellent job in a tough league. For a while there we were well ahead of the pack but recently Halifax and Ottawa have stormed up the standings are are right there. It should be a really fun playoffs and run for the Aces. For my player, I am very happy with how well he has done in his first season. Just outside the top 10 in scoring for d-men is something I was hooping to achieve but didn’t think my player would achieve that so I’m very impressed with his offence. Defensively, I am very impressed and was hoping to be a top d-men in this league. Mitch has been able to be 4th best in plus- minus through 70 games as well as sitting 8th in hits. I am very happy with his defensive play as I wanted him to be a defensive defence man with an offensive touch. For improvements, I am hoping to improve on Mitch’s penalties. He took more penalties that I would have wanted but am happy with his intensity and physical play so we just have to work on finding a balance here. For now we are focusing on finishing up the last two games and going on a Long playoff run to win the championship. Congrats to our GM @Jubo07. Congrats to all my teammates. Let’s win the championship! @wcats @NathanN @BluObieZ @CurtisG93 @Rocketman04 @DaftRaincloud @Anthony Matthews @Matt_O @Ty343 @SwagSloth @jacobaa19 @Eparker24 @nymets5 @Antone10 @Goonie @Lefty @oilmandan @Philliefan @TheLastOlympian07 @SpartanGibbles @Bonzaijoe
  31. 7 points
    Potential Sleepers in the S67 Class Today, we’re going to begin a series of draft-related content for the S67 Entry Draft. While I acknowledge we are very early in the process and a lot can happen between now and draft day, it is never too early to take a look at the class in more detail. The theme of this week is going to be an early look into some of the potential sleepers in the class. All players that are ranked below the Top-20 in the S67 Live Rankings as of today were eligible for consideration. Let’s take a look at the Top-5. Lincoln Tate – D – San Diego Marlins @Lincoln Tate The first on the list is a 6’5 defenseman from the San Diego Marlins, Lincoln Tate, who has burst onto the scene since signing his VHLM contract with the Marlins. When scouts describe Tate, they all say the same thing: a smooth, two-way right shot defenseman. Watching Tate play is magic, the way he can skate with the puck and distribute around him is extremely impressive. Tate has played 13 games so far this season and has tallied 4 goals and 18 assists, which puts him at Top-3 in the VHLM for points for defensemen behind only Hulk Hogan and Kevin Low. We have Tate labeled as a sleeper for now, but he is beginning to garner national attention and we would not be surprised if he was a high draft pick when that day comes. Henrik Zoiderberg – LW – Mexico City Kings @HenrikZoiderberg Swedish winger Henrik Zoiderberg has also been beginning to open eyes around the league. Zoiderberg is a playmaking, slick winger for the Mexico City Kings who also provides his team with sound defensive hockey. When paired with a high-scoring linemate, he can really make magic happen. Scouts have been raving about his two-way game and overall leadership in the locker room since he has joined the VHLM. Zoiderberg was not eligible for the VHLM Dispersal Draft, but instead signed a one-year deal with Mexico City. In his 19 games played so far he has put up a 3-6-9 stat line. At it’s face, these stats will not “wow” anyone, but when looking at Zoiderberg you have to consider the complete player and room for growth. Both of which positives for the Swede. Derek England – D – Mexico City Kings @PenKnight The second Mexico City Kings player to make the list is defenseman Derek England. England was drafted 31st overall in this past S66 VHLM Dispersal Draft and ever since then has been very impressive on and off the ice. The Russian-born defenseman checks all the boxes from a mental standpoint. He has a strong team-first mentality and very high hockey IQ. Scouts also have been excited about his offensive potential. Similar to Lincoln Tate, he can move very well with and without the puck. His 2 goals and 12 assists are good for second on his team amongst defenseman, but he is just now hitting his groove in the VHLM. Look for him to continue to skyrocket up draft boards as the season progresses. R.J. Lloris – RW – Las Vegas Aces @RJMW Undrafted free agent R.J. Lloris comes in at number four on this list. The Canadian-born winger possesses natural goal scoring talent, period. He previously played in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League before joining the VHLM and shattered team records in his time there. To compliment his goal scoring touch, he also plays the game like a Tasmanian Devil, which can be a real treat to watch. Lloris was signed by the Las Vegas Aces during the season and despite their recent struggles, Lloris has been able to develop his game in a positive way. While still a very raw prospect, we like his trajectory if he continues to work hard on and off the ice. Berocka Sundqvist – LW – Mississauga Hounds @berocka Rounding out our list is an Australian winger from the Hounds, Berocka Sundqvist. This kid has a very interesting background as he was a youth star in Australian-rules football prior to his hockey career. This background has laid the foundation for the player he is today and hopefully will become in the future. Scouts are intrigued by his skill-mix. He plays a very physical game and at high-pace, but he also has a very good hands as well. The Hounds have been a middle of the pack team to start the season and Sundqvist has found himself playing primarily third line minutes. We think that if he continues to develop and progress, he could start to see some Top-6 and special teams minutes. Berocka could be a mid-round steal.
  32. 7 points
    Right now, the Hounds locker room on the forum contains a build guide that I copied and pasted from Houston's locker room, and which I believe, by some of the wording contained therein, Sonnet may have copied and pasted from somewhere else as well, as it's stated in an introductory statement to be a staple of locker rooms around the league, and Sonnet can write a good deal better than whoever typed that list up can (my apologies if you wrote that and you're reading this). While I will readily admit to having copied quite a bit from the way Houston built their team, I'm at the point now where I have some sort of idea of what I'm doing as GM, and I'd like to personalize it a bit, starting with re-writing said guide. I would post it in my locker room right away, but I figured that a) I'm probably going to be wrong about quite a bit of what I'm about to write, and b) perhaps there's some ancient STHS secret that I've neglected to leave out of here. Feedback is very much appreciated, and indeed begged for, if you're a league vet with valuable input. Besides, I figured that once this list has gotten to the point at which it's better than the old one, it might help out our new guys quite a bit, and can serve as a valuable tool for GMs to give their own players, should they so desire. So, I present to you... GUSTAV'S GUIDE TO BUILDING (Hopefully Better Than That Other One) If you're new, welcome to the VHL! If you're not, I have no idea what you're doing here, but thanks for stopping by and I hope you learn something nonetheless. I've decided to throw together this guide to building as a less confusing alternative to the already existing guide. Whether you use this one, that one, or neither, I hope I can make things a bit less confusing with this post. To start, let's look at the attributes for skaters: Checking: The higher this stat is, the more hits your player will record. High checking will also give you lots of penalty minutes, especially in the VHLM, but if you're building a physical player, there's nothing wrong with upgrading this attribute. Eventually, it's a good idea to combine high checking with a bit of discipline. Fighting: This one is pretty self-explanatory. The more you upgrade fighting, the more fights your player will get into. Not good for the team, but some people like to upgrade fighting nonetheless. Discipline: In theory, this attribute should lower the number of penalties your player takes. In practice, it's proven to do next to nothing unless a good amount of TPE is put into it, making it not the best attribute to upgrade on the VHLM level. Some say that it does help, though, so it's not a bad idea to upgrade if your checking is high. Skating: Upgrades to skating make your player faster and can also help with positioning. In my opinion (and that of most others), skating is an important one to upgrade. Some believe it doesn't do much, but most players that you'll see out there have significant upgrades to skating. Part of decision-making formula*. Strength: Sounds important, really isn't. Strength plays a minor part in two areas of the game: for one, it makes a player harder to knock off the puck (though puck handling will also accomplish this), and for another, it makes a player's checking slightly more effective. It also plays a minor part in face-offs and fighting. Mostly, strength should be reserved for your player's build after you've already put a good amount of points into it, but once this is the case, upgrades to strength aren't a bad idea. Puck Handling: Underrated! Good for just about any build. It is exactly what it sounds like--a player with good puck handling will have a hard time losing possession, and this is more important than most realize in the simulation. Also helps with tipping and stealing the puck. If a player has skating upgraded, puck handling should be upgraded as well. Face-offs: A good face-off rating is essential to any center's build, and good for any forward in general. Being able to get possession right away (especially if your goalie has solid rebound control, which we'll get to later) is imperative, especially in the defensive zone. Passing: Another "exactly what it sounds like" attribute. Very helpful--turnovers are frequent when passing is low, and this isn't something you want for your player. Upgrades to passing, no matter the build, are helpful and should be done. Part of decision-making formula*. Scoring: Yet another "exactly what it sounds like" attribute. The higher this rating is, the better your player will be at, well, scoring. This is helpful in just about any build but defensive defenseman. Part of the decision-making formula as well*. DEFENSE: Defense is, in my opinion, THE MOST IMPORTANT ATTRIBUTE FOR ANY POSITION, BUILD, OR WHATEVER. Every player, regardless of what type of player they are, should, as I see it, upgrade their defense rating to at least 70 in the VHLM. Many all-time great VHL elite scorers have a defense rating of 99, with the trend becoming all the more frequent in recent seasons. Upgrading defense not only makes your player valuable on both ends of the ice, it also makes a player more likely to track down a loose puck, which is also helpful on both ends of the ice. It will also make your player more adept at intercepting passes, which can lead to some great chances, especially if your player is a forward. I HIGHLY recommend that everyone, regardless of position or build, upgrade defense, and do so significantly. Penalty Shot: This attribute makes your player more successful in both penalty shots and the shootout. Not too useful, but almost nobody ever upgrades it. Putting even 5 or 10 TPE into it will give you an edge over most goaltenders, but again, keep in mind that this stat isn't all too important. If your player has needs, address them first. Leadership: Arguably the most worthless one on the board. There are but a few who think leadership does anything at all. Theoretically, it will help your team's morale and make them more consistent, but you'd need everyone strongly upgrading leadership for this to make any sort of difference. It's just not worth it. *Decision Making Formula: Passing, scoring, and skating are all part of the "decision-making formula." Basically, the more you have one of these attributes upgraded, the more likely your player is to choose that course of action when carrying the puck. For example, a player with scoring upgraded more than passing or skating is most likely to shoot the puck, rather than pass to set up a play or attempt to skate to gain better positioning. It's advisable to stagger these stats a bit so your player isn't indecisive--if scoring is more important to you than passing, put scoring about 10 points ahead. If passing is more important than scoring, put passing about 10 points ahead. In my own personal opinion, skating doesn't have to be staggered, and can be upgraded just as much as your top preference--common sense dictates that if you're carrying the puck, you will either have to pass or shoot, so in the end, to me, this doesn't make much difference. If you upgrade skating significantly, however, you'd better also upgrade puck handling to make sure you can pass or shoot in the first place. Now for goalies! Skating: This attribute affects a goaltender's ability to move around, both in the net and out of it, to play pucks, for example. This is an important attribute for goaltenders, though not a top-tier one. Size: Fun fact--although you get to choose your player's height and weight during creation, that information actually has no bearing on your goalie's performance. A goalie can, by official height and weight, be built like Shaq, or like Peter Dinklage, and neither will have any sort of advantage size-wise over the other in the sim. This attribute is actually what makes the difference--the higher a goalie's size rating is, the more area that goalie will cover without even having to move. Agility: Agility will make your player's movements more natural, making this attribute an overall boost to quickness. It's helpful as a supplement to already-upgraded stats, but isn't a substitute for any of them. Rebound Control: It doesn't matter what kind of save a goaltender makes--if the puck goes right back out to an opposing player with a wide open net, the outcome won't be very good. A solid rebound control upgrade gives a goalie the ability to stop the puck and hold onto it, something of higher importance than most realize. Centers be warned, though--to get the puck out of the defensive zone after the goalie hangs onto it, you'll need to win the face-off, so be sure to upgrade your face-off rating! Style Control: This attribute is far more important than it sounds on its surface. Upgrades to style control will allow your goalie to be a good deal more consistent in the course of a game, maintaining the same style of play throughout. If a goalie doesn't do this, the game can fall apart and get blown wide open, so it's best to have this one taken care of. Hand Speed: This attribute will increase your goalie's hand speed (no, really). It's also quite important, as anyone who knows hockey even a little bit knows that the glove is one of the most important pieces of equipment a goalie has, being extremely versatile and mobile. Making sure your goalie can use it well is one of the secrets to success as a player. Reaction Time: While skating and agility help to make sure that your goaltender can move around easily, reaction time is what makes sure your goaltender makes a move in the first place, before the puck goes in the net. While skating and agility are important, reaction time outdoes both. Penalty Shot: This one will improve a goalie's ability in both penalty shot situations and in shootouts, but nothing but. Though not the most useful, putting even a little bit into this stat can give a goalie an advantage, as not many skaters upgrade it either. Leadership: See above under skater attributes. Long story short, don't bother. So, how should you distribute your earnings among your player's attributes? A general comment here: STHS (our resident sim engine) tends to favor a few high-ranking stats over a lot of mid-range or low-ranking ones in a balanced build. That said, don't go too extreme--don't do something like upgrading scoring to 90 while not touching anything else--but to start, consider upgrading your top 4 or 5 to 70, one at a time. Then, either upgrade those further, go for some others, and just be creative--there's no single way to build a player, and there's no single road to success. Look at some high-TPE VHLers, as well as a few VHLMers with experience, for a good model. There's room for creativity, for sure, but there are definitely guidelines to follow. Also, remember up in the skater section, where I said to keep scoring and passing about 10 TPE apart? Yeah, that. Don't make them equal. Now to break down, in general, how to build a few different types of players: Offensive Forward: What to upgrade to 70 first, in order of priority: 1. Scoring or passing, whichever is more important to you 2. Take the other, whether scoring or passing, and upgrade to 60 3. Defense 4. Skating 5. Puck Handling **Somewhere in here, add face-offs if you're a center** Secondary upgrades (not as important): -Strength -Discipline -Face-offs (if you're not a center) Level 3 (below secondary, upgrade if you want): -Checking -Penalty Shot Useless: -Fighting -Leadership What to move past 70 first: -Scoring or passing, whichever you've chosen -Defense Defensive/2-Way Forward: What to upgrade to 70 first, in order of priority: 1. Defense 2. Skating 3. Puck Handling 4. Passing 5. Scoring to 60 **Add face-offs in here if you're a center** Secondary upgrades (not as important): -Face-offs (if you're not a center) -Checking -Strength -Discipline Level 3 (maybe address at some point): -Penalty shot Useless: -Fighting -Leadership What to move past 70 first: -Defense -Skating -Puck Handling Physical Forward: What to upgrade to 70 first, in order of priority: 1. Defense 2. Skating 3. Puck Handling 4. Checking 5. Passing **Add face-offs if you're a center** Secondary: -Scoring to 60 -Face-offs (if you're not a center) -Strength -Discipline -Fighting (maybe) Level 3: -Penalty Shot Useless: -Leadership What to move past 70 first: -Defense -Skating -Puck Handling -Checking Offensive Defenseman: What to upgrade to 70 first, in order of priority: 1. Defense 2. Scoring 3. Passing to 60 4. Skating 5. Puck Handling Secondary: -Checking -Strength -Discipline Useless: -Face-offs -Penalty shot -Leadership What to upgrade past 70 first: -Defense -Scoring -Skating -Continue to upgrade passing evenly with scoring Defensive Defenseman: What to upgrade to 70 first, in order of priority: -Defense -Skating -Puck Handling -Passing Secondary: -Checking (Primary, if you'd like to be physical) -Discipline -Strength -Scoring (if you're going pure defensive, I'd argue that you don't have to upgrade this at all. If going more two-way, keep this at least 10 behind passing) Useless: -Face-offs -Penalty shot -Leadership What to upgrade past 70 first: -Defense (should ALWAYS be highest) -Skating -Puck Handling For Goalies: This one is a bit more complicated. If you're a goalie, there are 4 attributes you want to get up to 70, right away, and keep at the core of your build, no matter what it is. They are: -Rebound Control -Style Control -Hand Speed -Reaction Time After that, you have just a little bit of freedom. Upgrade the following to about 60, then continue upgrading more or less evenly with the primary attributes. -Skating -Size -Agility If going for a butterfly-style goalie, skating and agility are the way to go. If going for more of a stand-up guy, put some emphasis on skating and size. Penalty shot is on the third priority level here, and as always, don't bother with leadership. Hope this helps. Build on and have fun!
  33. 7 points

    VHLM Power Rankings - Weeks 1+2

    After sixteen STHS days, sixty-seven games have been played by the eleven teams. Themes are starting to develop, and the teams are starting to show their abilities. The league has been showing some interesting things in the standings with the three expansion teams making some waves. These rankings are all in my opinion and are as unbiased as I can be. 1. Philadelphia Reapers No real surprise here. Philadelphia sits top of the standings despite a couple recent upsets by San Diego and Yukon. They had to strong wins recently beating the 2ndplace Ottawa 5-3 and the streaking Mississauga team 6-3. Due to their depth they lack a star, but they have two players tied for 7th in points. Their goalie, Kolur Bjoernsson, has been pretty strong and is 3rd in both SV% and GAA. 2. Ottawa Lynx Ottawa had a nine-game win streak going before it got popped by Philadelphia. That being said, they only played a top five team twice. Beating Halifax 7-2 and Minnesota 4-0. They lack a star player as their top goal scorer sits tied for 13th and tied for 15th in points. Their key to success is their goalie, Pekka Pouta. He has the 2nd best SV% and 1st in GAA. It’ll be up to him to keep them winning. 3. Saskatoon Wild Saskatoon has had a weak showing recently going 3-3 in their last 6 games. Losing to San Diego, Halifax and Philadelphia. Rocky LaGarza is a star player for them and sits 1st in points with 24 and 1st in goals with 11. They’ll be looking for better performances out of their goalie Jaun Jaundice who sits 7th in SV%. They’ve picked up Kefka Palazzo, Fylo Gibbles and Milan Griffin this week so we will have to see what impact they have. 4. Mississauga Hounds Mississauga went streaking winning five straight before dropping a game to Philadelphia. They beat the likes of Minnesota and Halifax in close games while dispatching Las Vegas and San Diego easily. They have two top 5 players in points, as well as Hulk Hogan the league leading defenceman in points. They picked up two defensemen, Noah Hanley and Daman Veyalon, which should help their push as they’ve only played the last two games. 5. San Diego Marlins San Diego has been doing well lately, coming close against Saskatoon and back to back wins against Philadelphia and Saskatoon. San Diego has been playing a very offence orientated style of game but only have one player in the top ten for points. Their goalie Greg Eagles hasn’t been helping much either with the 3rd worst SV% and GAA. I don’t know if this hot stint will hold long. 6. Minnesota Storm Minnesota has been falling in recent times. Losing to Mississauga, Halifax and Ottawa while barely managing victories over weaker teams like Las Vegas and Mexico. They are relying on their goalie Wendy Kandee Cain to hold them in games, which can only last so long. I see Minnesota falling in the future. 7. Halifax 21st Halifax has been underperforming and hasn’t been able to keep a hot streak long. With recent losses to Mexico, Saskatoon and Mississauga and a blow out loss to Phillidelphia, I expect them to drop in the standings. Despite this, they have four players in the top 15 for points. Their goaltending seems to be the issues as Thorvald Gunnarsson has the 2nd worst SV%. 8. Mexico City Kings Mexico is in an interesting situation, they are 2-2 against top 3 teams but are also 2-2 against bottom 3 teams. They are playing a very defensive style of game and it shows when they are averaging just 16 shots per game. However, it is working somewhat as their goalie Wrike Chyrnoble is 1st in SV% and 2nd in GAA. Look for this to change as teams see Chyrnoble more and get used to his style. 9. Yukon Rush Yukon has done the unthinkable recently and beat Philadelphia 2-0 and Mexico 2-1. But otherwise they have lost every game by about a two-goal margin. While not the worst team in the league, I don’t expect them to get good any time soon. Even with their strong goalie Justin Cole holding them together. 10. Las Vegas Aces Las Vegas has had a little luck recently, upsetting Mexico 4-3. They have the 2nd place point scorer in Emil Passerelli but this is likely due to him being the only one who can do anything. Their goalie is a soft spot as Virgil Ligriv holds the worst SV% and GAA by a solid margin. Their backup goalie Luke Derion would hold second worst in both categories as well if he was eligible. They’ve already started selling. 11. Houston Bulls Zero wins, three points. Two players in the top 50 for points, traded both of them away. Arguably the worst goalie in the league. This team is like their logo; on fire and burning away. Look for a Moscow Menace-esque season from them.
  34. 7 points


    Time to finally go off about something that's been on my mind for a good while, though I've never decided to actually talk about it here. I'd say most with any reasonable amount of experience know exactly what I'm talking about, but for those who don't, let me explain. Currently, the VHL (and VHLM) uses a system called the "lottery" to encourage discussion on its game threads. Every week (for some small reward, and every month for some bigger ones), a random game is selected, and from that game, a random comment in that game's thread is randomly selected as well. Whoever made that comment is eligible for 3 TPE, if chosen in the weekly lottery, and if chosen in the monthly lottery, can end up winning a doubles week and 16 uncapped TPE if they win all three drawings. Great, right? Sure! It certainly made me want to make a few comments, especially last season, when I commented on most of Houston's game threads, and this season, when I plan to comment on all of Malmo's, for no reason other than that the lottery exists. I even won a doubles week last season from doing this. And, let me tell you, I hate the fact that the system works this way. The tipping point, for me, was when a few people began to comment on every thread for the lottery. I mean Every. Single. One. This type of thing isn't the "discussion" that the league wants to see--it's spam, and it's being rewarded. Allow me to preface the rest of this article by saying that, to the few people who have figured out how to play the system this way (you know who you are), I have absolutely NOTHING against you in particular. Hey, I'm even somewhat guilty of it myself, though I'm too lazy to take it beyond my own team's games in most cases. You've figured out how the system works, you've figured out how to play it, and you play it because it works. There's nothing wrong with that--to be honest it's damn smart. This is about a broken system, one which has potential but works in the wrong way entirely. I've gotten to know the few people who are guilty of this in my time in the league, and I'll say that they're some of the nicest people I've met on this site--I'd never write an article to complain about them. The lottery itself is what sucks. Now, how can we fix it? The tricky part here is to encourage discussion without encouraging spam. If discussion in game threads is something that's actually very important to the league, then there should be some sort of reward for doing so--our Thunderdome is just about dead, because there's no real incentive to post there (and no, I'm not suggesting that there should be, though I'd like to see that be a bit more active as well). One possible solution is to have a sort of reviewing-like system, making constructive comments on game threads an activity that can be completed for capped (or, if you really want to see some threads blow up, uncapped) TPE. But this won't work, in my personal opinion--we'd just end up with every game thread having 10 general statements about the result. This would also be hell for whatever updaters take the time to read reviews first--they'd effectively have a lot more reviews to read. Another, perhaps a more promising one, keeps the lottery, but moves it elsewhere--similar to the VHLM Fantasy Zone, a separate thread can be created, or perhaps an entry on Google Forms, which allows everyone who enters the lottery to enter exactly once. No spam, but it does reward activity in that those who are active enough to notice and post in the thread are those who are in general active in the first place. This eliminates the whole "league discussion" part of it, but again, there isn't really much league discussion going on in the game threads that isn't purely lottery-motivated. I'd also like to point out that it is my opinion that comments here and there, and really on a regular basis, will not die if the lottery is moved elsewhere or discontinued altogether. I made comments in some (though not all) of Houston's game threads last season, before I knew the lottery existed. And when I did find out about the lottery's existence, about halfway through the season, that was still before most of my teammates, many of whom dropped by threads here and there beforehand to make comments and were actually interested in talking about the games, TPE be damned. In fact, I'd argue that game threads will be a good deal more supportive of conversation without the lottery in place, because someone posting there would feel quite a bit more free to respond to a comment, without wondering if that comment was put there by someone who actually cares about what happened. The broken lottery system is what we have right now, and, though I enjoyed my doubles week last season, please, let's change things.
  35. 7 points

    11 Reapers Drafted into the VHL

    Saturday evening presented the league with its 66th VHL entry draft. The VHL has been spoiled beyond imagination following the increased drive and interest over the last few seasons. The VHLM's top rated team heading into season 66; The Philly Reapers, were beyond excited to see their future alumni drafted to their professional clubs. The Helsinki Titans lead the way in interest drafting three Reapers set to join their club in season 67. The draft ran through into the night and when it was all said and done contract offers and training camp invites were sent out like clockwork. The level of excitement from within the Philadelphia franchise resembled that of a New Years party. Each and every member of the organization excited for themselves and their teammates as their hockey dreams inch closer to reality. Philly management was beyond ecstatic to see all of their eligible roster players find a draft destination. The following is a breakdown of the drafted players and their respected VHL franchise; @Jables @cpetrella @uphillmoss @FrostBeard @Gabella19 @Mclovin @zepheter @Patpou22 @Tophdaddy @jblock3 @Sunburst
  36. 7 points

    S65 VHL Hall of Fame Induction

    First ever HOF
  37. 7 points
    The Nighthawk Chronicles: The Birth of a Franchise By Christopher Miller Located at the very Southern point of Sweden, Malmo is a well-populated city that has been searching for someone to believe in. The Redhawks of the SHL have simply been a middling team that has frustrated local population and given the smaller scale of the Swedish Hockey League, fans had lost their passion and started to not populate their arena. Enter the Malmo Nighthawks, the Victory Hockey League’s newest team and one that has been making a lot of waves already. Born with an experienced General Manager that has managed the New York Americans for fourteen seasons, the Stockholm Vikings for seven seasons and the Cologne Express for one season, the Nighthawks have taken the build of their team very seriously. Miller had this to say about the choice to own the team and also manage it: “I have always had an interest in owning a VHL franchise and to help develop a brand-new team in our great league. I have had the opportunity to manage quite a few times to quite a bit of success and I definitely intend on using that experience to make Malmo a competitive threat.” The locals in Malmo have shown quite a bit of excitement since the news broke with quite a few reactions hitting social media. One local said, “This is the push that this city needed as we hope to finally see a successful team grace us. I want to be able to cheer for a championship team and I feel Miller could bring that attitude to this team, given his experience.” Others have shown interest by buying season tickets early, with Malmo easily reaching their ten-thousand season ticket goal that they set prior to the announcement being made. There are many though that are concerned that the Swedish curse will continue and that the lack of success that Vasteras and Stockholm had, will continue on to Malmo. Of course, this is despite both the Iron Eagles and Vikings being a part of a different franchise. The Iron Eagles won just two Continental Cups over their team’s history, with one of them coming in the Inaugural campaign of the league. The Vikings were successful in being a competitive playoff team that could win quite a few games but were unfortunately unable to ever capture a Continental Cup during their team’s history. “I am aware of that concern by some of our locals and I’ve heard it brought up in the media as well. With that being said though, I don’t really understand why some get worried about it. We are a different franchise with no association to them and we are going to have a very young and exciting team that will be able to compete with everyone else in the Victory Hockey League. With that recipe for success I have the utmost confidence that we will be a definitive threat to the rest of the teams in our league.” And what does Miller have to say to those concerned about his team’s future success? “Just sit back, support the team and watch us do our thing. It may not be immediately, but we will be an absolute juggernaut in our league if I have anything to say about it.”
  38. 7 points

    Game of Thrones

    I'd trade 2-3 important characters to get my boy back
  39. 7 points
    Houston Bulls GM: YOURE HIRED! With the draft only a few short days away, we want to give Houston's new GM as much time as possible to settle into the new role and prepare. We had an incredible amount of quality members apply for the position - making it very difficult to decide on one single name. Unfortunately, we must and not everyone can be hired. With that being said, the newest GM in Houston Bull's history - a seemingly great up and coming member who I've watched grow into a strong contributor amongst the boards and discord LR's... @FrostBeard Small Announcement: Halifax 21st GM Position As most know by now, @McWolf has stepped away from the world of sim leagues for at least right now. He was an amazing member who contributed in so many ways for the VHLM and VHL. He'll absolutely be missed and I hope to see him pop in one of these days. Now a replacement must be named (and already essentially was by Mcwolf during the season - we just need to make it official)... @Thranduil Best of luck to both new managers in their position. @VHLM Commissioner @VHLM GM @Commissioner
  40. 7 points

    Houston Bulls GM (VHLM)

    Kinda comes out of nowhere, but as a lot of people will know, my schedule is filling up way too much s of late. Had to take a lot of personal time to buckle down on schoolwork (which ended up being a massive success, thankfully), and now I'll be taking up an internship over the summer while focusing more than ever on school and my career. I could probably still GM with the free time I'll have, but I know I'm going to be kinda burned out and I won't be able to put as much time into the team as I originally wanted, or as much as a more active user might be able to. As such, I figured it would be best to step down and let a more enthusiastic person take up the role. I'll be available to whoever takes up Houston for advice/guidance, and I'll also continue to update the all-time lists on the forum to preserve the legacy of the team, since that doesn't take too much time to maintain. I had a blast getting this team off the ground, but with the amount of stuff I'm going to be involved in elsewhere, I have to walk away and make sure my focus is in the right place. Maybe some time down the line my schedule will open back up to let me give this another go. Good luck to whoever takes the job next, and thanks to everyone who made the inaugural season such a special one!
  41. 7 points

    Midseason Awards and MVPs [1/2]

    The VHL season has just passed the half way mark and as the teams start to look towards the stretch drive and the trade deadline that's about a week away, it's a good time to make some guesses for the playoffs and a few awards. Right now the drive for the Continental Cup looks like a four horse race. The Riga Reign lead the pack with 61 points in 42 games. Although they sit fourth in goals scored, a staunch defense and solid netminding has them leading the way in goals against. The spread between first and fourth is only five points, Seattle (59), Toronto (58), and Helsinki (56) all have eyes for a run at the championship. Seattle leads the way in the VHL with 158 goals, with a whopping 5 players averaging a point per game. The Quebec City hold the fifth and final playoff spot right now, sitting 14 and 17 points ahead of Calgary and New York respectively, while Davos is already practicing their golf swings at a horrific 30 points back of Quebec. In all honesty, there doesn't seem to be much belief that there will be any switching between teams in and out of the playoffs, mostly just jockeying for home ice advantage for the second season. Next we will select team MVP and biggest surprise. MVP is pretty self explanatory and the surprise player can be for a good or bad reason. Riga Reign MVP: @Tagger Edwin Preencarnacion. Although he is well off his career year pace of S62, Edwin continues to pace the Reign in scoring, sitting 5th in the VHL on both goals (26) and points (58). Riga has a couple options with both Podrick Cast and Kallis Kriketers both enjoying fine seasons Riga Reign Surprise: @DollarAndADream Leph Twinger. The former first overall selection in the S62 draft has taken another step back in his career. After taking the VHL by storm in his rookie year with boxcars of 56-60-166, Twinger got a severe case of the sophomore slump in S63, putting up 34-33-67. In 42 games this year, he only has 11 goals and 27 points. An improved roster around him have taken away his offensive chances, but Riga Hope's he can get things back on track. Seattle Bears MVP: @Beketov Matt Thompson. This could go a few different ways, with Robert Malenko also garnering interest. But it's tough to go against the all world winger. Now in his fourth season, Thompson continues to dominate, notching 35 goals and 70 points, good for a tie for first and third respectively. He also leads the league in hits and sits in third in plus minus. Seattle Bears Surprise: @Laflamme Sergei Kovalev. Yet another who continues to fail expectations. After a standout rookie season, Kovalev has regressed, only scoring 10 goals and 17 points in 42 games this season. Playing on a loaded Bears team, you'd hope he would be more productive. Seattle will need Kovalev to pick things up if they hope to knock off Riga. Toronto Legion MVP: @omgitshim Oyorra Arroyo. Enjoying by far his best VHL campaign, Arroyo leads the league in goals and points, and seems to have found another level since arriving from Calgary. Probably the best acquisition made by any team this past offseason. Toronto Legion Surprise: @tfong Tzuyu. Quietly having a very good sophomore year in Toronto, Tzuyu has 16 goals and 50 points, which ranks second for defensemen. Not a super flashy or physical player, Tzuyu gets the job done and Toronto feels like they got a gem at fifth overall in the S63 draft. Helsinki Titans MVP and Surprise: @Sonnet Alexander Pepper. While the Titans rebuild on the fly, Pepper has done fine job holding the fort. Helsinki has had trouble scoring goals, ranking fifth in league goals, so keeping pucks out has been even more important. Pepper leads the league in shutouts and sits third in save percentage as he tries to drag the Titans into the playoffs. This all after an underwhelming rookie campaign. Pepper is putting the league on notice that he will be a star for years to come. Quebec City Meute MVP and Surprise: @Beaviss Beau Louth. Our only selection for both MVP and surprise, Louth lives in the shadow of his brother Keaton, but this season Beau seems to be making a name for himself as well. Sitting 10th in league scoring, the younger Louth leads a retooling Meute team that is trying to save money and stay competitive at the same time. With brother Keaton retiring at the end of the year, its Beau's time to shine. Calgary Wranglers MVP: @Bushito Jasper Canmore. While the Wranglers enter full blown rebuild mode, one of the holdovers remains superstar Canmore. His scoring totals may be down, but he continues to be the straw that stirs the drink in Calgary. With only one season after this, Canmore looks to put his name in with the other team legends. Calgary Wranglers Surprise: @BladeMaiden Brick Wahl. After falling in the draft to the end of the second round, Wahl started the season pinned to the bench behind veteran acquisition Shawn Brodeur. After a disappointing start, the team turned to Wahl, who grabbed the starting role and run with it, trying to keep the Wranglers afloat. New York Americans MVP: @McWolf Joseph McWolf. Drafted 2nd overall last season, the Americans were hoping for a rough, tough shut down defender. What they seemingly have got is an all round stud. McWolf leads his team in scoring with 10-38-48 which is good for third among defenders in points. He also leads the VHL in blocked shots and sits ninth in hits. On a rebuilding team McWolf looks like the perfect player to build around New York Americans Surprise: @oilmandan Dan Wilinsky. Although he is only in his second season, it's been a bit of a struggle again. Being on a rebuilding team doesn't help, but much was expected out of the top forward on New York. After 41 games Wilinsky has scored 18 goals and 33 points, sitting in fifth in team scoring. With only one year left until free agency, will the Americans want to spend the big money on an underperforming player? On the bright side, Wilinsky eats a large chunk of minutes and is solid in his own end, but he was drafted to put up goals. Davos Dynamo MVP: @Ahma Alvaro Jokinen. The third year defender has been one of the few bright lights for a horrible Davos team, scoring 7 goals and 37 points. Jokinen’s body is covered in ice packs after most games, trying to block every shot. Help is on the way though, but Jokinen will be heavily relied upon until it does arrive and beyond. Davos Dynamo Surprise: @Nykonax Elias Dahlberg. While Dahlberg has put up a respectable 16 goals and 26 points in the first 42 games, after hearing the hype that surrounded him coming into the league, it has been disappointing. Most of said hype was self generated by Dahlberg, who has never been accused of humility. While he may have a bright future ahead of him, it can't be the start the youngster was hoping for. Scotty Campbell Trophy: MVP: Oyorra Arroyo. It'll be a very close race, with many names in the mix, but for now we'll go with the leagues leading scorer. Sterling Labatte Trophy: Top Defenseman: @pennypenny Robert Malenko. I do hate to say it, but this year Malenko is the best defenseman in the VHL. Helped out by playing on a high scoring Bears team, Malenko has 13 goals and 69 points so far. A couple other guys should help split the vote, but seeing how generally the top scoring defender wins, well stick to that. Aidan Shaw Trophy: Top Goalie: @hedgehog337 Kallis Kriketers. Helped by a very good team in front of him, but Kriketers has been a stud since his year in the VHLM. Tough to bet against him. He has won championships in every season of his career. Christian Stolzschweiger Trophy: Rookie: @Esso2264 @RyanZabby Ryan Zabby or Joel Ylonen. Flip a coin. Both are having good rookie seasons helping a rebuilding Americans team. Maybe they share it. Dustin Funk Trophy: Most Improved: Beau Louth. Could set new career highs across the board by the 50th game of the year. The sky is the limit for the younger Louth. 90 points aren't out of the question yet if Beau stays hot. This has been a very competitive year to date, and it's only going to be more so as we get closer to the playoffs. Expect the trades to start rolling with the deadline approaching and teams trying to get a head start to build some chemistry. With only a few sellers and potentially several buyers, we could see prices skyrocket for the stars on the block. Who do you guys think should be MVPs? Who needs to step their game up? Will the Meute ever get out of a salary cap crunch? Which rebuilding team will become a contender first? Will Toronto ever keep a draft pick again? 1504 words
  42. 7 points

    S65 WJC Awards

    S65 WJC Awards The S66 WJC Closing Ceremonies have begun. This season we made our newcomer GMs face our tried and true VHL veteran GMs. The task must have seemed monumental for these bright newcomers, to not only take on but defeat these larger than life GMs. For one exceptional new GM this became a story of tenacity, diligence and perhaps a little bit of luck as he out maneuvered our pros in the finals. On Behalf of the WJC Team I would like to congratulate @TsarPeter and his Gold Medal European Team. It was a Close tournament and It could have easily gone our Canadian Silver Medalist way, @Bushito defiantly showed Canada was a force to be reckoned with this whole tournament. He and His team of Canadians should be proud. Finally, Our Bronze Medalist Team World Had a lot of the tournament’s best players on their team. I few different bounces of the puck and @ShawnGlade may have been wearing a different color medal. A special thank you to our team USA GM @uphillmoss and Our Team Asia GM @GustavMattias. You both did your teams proud and proved that you are exemplary GMs. Now we can get to the fun Stuff! The Official WJC S66 Podium: First Place: Team Europe Second Place: Team Canada Third Place: Team World 🌎 Now on with the Personal Awards! May I present to you your S66 WJC All-Star Team WJC All-Star Team F- Kyson Blake, USA @TMI F- Shane Mars, World @Spade18 F- Anthony Matthews, World @Anthony Matthews D- Elasmobranch Fish, Europe @Sharkstrong D- Dallas Jones, USA @Trifecta G- JB Rift, Europe @Devise MVP: And lastly, the overall MVP of the tournament. As always there are many good candidates for the WJC MVP although I don’t think that people will argue with our choice. Everyone join me in congratulating JB Rift (Devise), the amazing European goalie that carried Europe to their stunning victory! JB Rift had a Save % of 0.940 in the RR and 0.929 in the Medal Round, this gave him an over all Save % of 0.935.A Stunning performance by this Toronto Legion Goal tender! Thank you to all the GMs, players and fans, you are what continues to make this tournament a success each season. I would also like to acknowledge our simmer (Devise) for all his hard work on the tournament, we couldn’t have done this without him. All the best, BladeMaiden and Frostbeard WJC S66 Co-Commissioners
  43. 7 points
    G - Brick Wahl for Calgary deserves this the most in my opinion @BladeMaiden
  44. 7 points

    Potential Team USA WCJ

    Potential WJC Season 65 Team USA Line 1: Left Wing: Kyson Blake Center: Gritty Right Wing: Matthew Materazo Now, this is a really great first line you have Kyson Blake who is a pure sniper who is also a great all-around skater. Gritty is a wonderfully powerful puck handler who can handle the puck gracefully and get deep into the zone, He can also shoot well enough to hold his own. Matthew Materazo is the playmaker who lets this line shine with his unselfish play and ability to let his line-mates do what they do best. Line 2: Left Wing: Jose Gonzalez Center: Hunter Hearst Helmsley Right Wing: Katie Warren Jose is a great addition to the second line. He is a player who is a good mixture of a player who has a good shot as well as the ability to pass very well. Hunter Hearst Helmsley is a great center who is currently still in the VHLM and is already able to score at will and keep his opponent one edge with his ability to outskate and puck handle any defense. Katie Warren rounds out this line with the unselfish play-making ability that lets the line-mates do great things and balance each other out. Line 3: Left Wing: Shane Mars Center: Orion Slade Right Wing: Josh Harris Shane Mars is another VHLMer who is currently tearing it up right now in the VHLM and can do great work on the WCJ team. With his scoring and general skating ability, it will be a pleasure to see him on the team. Orion Slade is a center who is a great all-around offensive player. He can shoot, pass, skate and handle the puck with ease. Look for him to make good use of the third line. Josh Harris is a great sniper who will help this line-mates by always being in the right place to get a good shoot off so that his line can capitalize on any situation given to him. Line 4: Left Wing: Matteo Center: Teagan Glover Right Wing: Rocky LaGarza Matteo is perfect for a fourth line that can be physical and push the other team around. I would not be surprised if he starts a few games just to check and fight the other team and get them off their game. Teagan Glover is an absolute legend in Halifax right now doing work and getting his team-mates opportunities to great things. Teagan is a well-rounded player who deserves a spot on this team and will only get better as time goes on. Rocky LaGarza is a strong offensive player who will balance out the rest of the line in his true offensive nature. Where Matteo might check someone out of the play Teagan will bring up the puck and Rocky will be where he needs to be to make a play. Defensive Pair 1: Left Defense: Dallas Jones Right Defense: Eric Parker Dallas Jones is a strong defensive player who will be the cornerstone of this USA team. He plays the tough defensive game that makes the other team pay to get near the goalie. Don't sleep on Dallas on the power play either he has a wicked slapshot that can and will go in. Whereas Dallas was the tough defender Eric Parker is the defender who is more all over the place in his ability and play style. Eric is a great position player who has great hockey IQ and that allows him to play whatever style the team needs at any given moment. Defensive Pair 2: Left Defense: Fylo Gibbles Right Defense: Charlie Paddywagon Fylo Gibbles is a great defensive defenseman who will keep opposing forwards away from his goalie. He also has a nice shot if given the space. Fylo is a great skater one of the best on his teams. Charlie Paddywagon is a strong defender who worries more about defense and stopping people than he does about getting points. He is a great skater but his defensive play is one of the best. Maybe one of the best on this team USA roster. Defensive Pair 3: Left Defense: Jerry Garcia Right Defense: Rusty Shackleford Jerry Garcia is a younger skater who is known for his breakout ability. He is great at making sure he makes the right pass or keep the puck himself until he and his team is out of danger and out of his own zone. Rusty Shackleford is a wonderful foil to Jerry. Rusty will check someone out of the play so that Jerry can push the puck out of their zone. Given more time these two could be higher on the depth chart but for now, they could be great additions to the team. Starting Goalie: Joe Nixon Joe Nixon may not be a starter in the VHL yet be he is learning under one of the best goalies in the league right now Tristan Iseult. With that kind of learning and his practicing he has been doing, I am excited to see what he can do with the starting role. Backup Goalie: Cole Mertz Is a strong back up on his current team of HC Davos Dynamo and he will be a strong backup for team USA. Couple players who are on the outside looking in: Justin Cole - G Justin Cole is a great young goalie who even if not on this USA team this year will be a great goalie for years to come. David Harrison - C David Harrison us a great center who starts a play off right by getting the faceoffs when they count. He is developing into a good all-around offensive player who if he continues to grow could make a good addition to this team. Julius Freeman - LW Julius Freeman is a wonderful playmaker who is really new to the league and is on his first season but already near the top of players who can play in the WJC in season 65. If he grows and some people slack off you might see him steal a winger position maybe. AK47 - RW I'm actually not sure if AK47 is able to play since he is on the WJC Eligibility list but he is also retired. If he can play he would be the second line RW but if he is retired then he is retired. 1,055 words - Will use for 2 weeks - March 18th- 24th and March 25th-31st
  45. 7 points
    2nd Week VHLM Recap “What a week for Halifax!” First off, what an amazing week for Halifax 21st – they are in an amazing position leading VHLM with 32 points in 20 games played has a 6-point lead over last weeks champions Las Vegas Aces. With 32 goal differential we can clearly see that lately has been on fire and truly dominating. Halifax wins are coming not only by having the league’s best goaltender Chase, who after 20 games played is having 0.913 save percentage and only 2.34 Goals against but by having deep scoring coming from every line and having 5 players at least point-a-game surely helps. Secondly, the best defenseman in the VHLM? Denver Wolfe from Minnesota Storm is truly dominating as he is leading whole VHLM in points and having over 2 points per game. It is truly unbelievable. I don’t think anyway was excepting this to happen as I don’t remember anyone really talking about Wolfe’s skills. Drafted in S65 as 9th overall in VHL – Looking now at Vancouver Wolves, I guess we will see them on the top of the standing in S67 as well. Thirdly, we must talk about other outstanding players leading their teams in VHLM. Hunter Hearst Helmsley – does he need an introduction? Hunter is leading Yukon Rush in points and as of right now – leading VHLM in goals with 21 goals in 20 games played. That puts him on top of some truly fierce competitors like Jack Lynch from Ottawa Lynx, Kari Jurri from Houston Bulls, Anton Edvin from Halifax 21st and Shawnomir Jagr from Saskatoon Wild who all have 18 goals in 20 games played. All the guys on this list are going to be well known in VHL as true snipers. Coming back to Hunter – I guess we have to put some blame on Yukon’s management as with this generational talent they should not be out of a playoff spot. The +/- category in top 10 is lead by players from Minnesota Storm, Houston Bulls and Halifax 21st. Great chemistry between their lines, truly captivating teammates. Lastly, I would like to talk about Philadelphia Reapers – team that has amazing talent and still haven’t been able to find chemistry between their players. Players like Brian Strong, Mikko Aaltonen, Jet Jaguar, and Tyler Barabash Jr. are doing all they can to push their team to that playoff spot and even though we have had only 20 games played yet, Philadelphia can’t wait much longer to try to have a run for it. With the huge investment by their players into gaining TPE, we could see changed in team’s performance very soon, but will it be too late? There we go ladies and gentlemen, ECN Review of 2nd Week in VHLM is finished and we are here again at the end and this will be a small editorial comment – if any of you dear readers have a suggestion or any idea that I should think about – be sure to write a message here in forum and let’s make news here in VHLM better! People mentioned in this post: @caltroit_red_flames, @Beaviss @hockeyis66 @TheLastOlympian07 @Wheaties @GRZ @gorlab @Bushito @Chase Klein
  46. 7 points
    Sorry everyone! I had a very rough patch where I almost didn't even think about logging in. I'd rather not share the details but I'm glad to be back!
  47. 7 points

    Ayo DRAPER what the fuck is good???

    Salutations, Some of you may know me while some of you may know of me, and some of you may have never heard of me before. I am a long-time VHL supporter making his triumphant return to the GOAT hockey sim league. For those of you who don't know me, I am, of course, gorlab. I have been active on a couple of sim leagues in the past, including VHL. I've had some good times and some bad times on sim leagues, but have met a lot of cool people and used sim leagues to teach myself a bit of graphic design, so I have no complaints. I'm over 30 and live in Saskatoon, SK. I've been known to offer the fade to other sim leaguers, and that policy is still in effect, so if you ever find yourself in Saskatoon and want to fight a sim leaguer, hit my line. I have two former VHL players, neither of which amounted to much besides raising multiple Continental Cups. My first player, Jody 3 Moons, was a winger that played on the New York Americans, Stockholm Vikings, and maybe another team in the S40-S50 era. My next player, a defenceman named Bobby Digital, played for NYA and maybe Riga Reign in the S50-S60 era. I've recently returned to the VHL to find that many things have changed, but there are still a lot of familiar faces who I still fuck with the long way. @Will I been back on this site for like a week now and you haven't said wassup? Cmon bruh, I hear you're the big cheese now, but you'll always be the late night hortons running, cigarello smoking homie in my eyes. Some of these new people I met said you made the vhlportal.com. Shit works pretty damn nicely, so good work. I'm glad your education has finally paid off. My new player is a playmaking centre named Jet Jaguar, who will be playing the upcoming VHLM season with the Philadelphia Reapers, so all my OG VHL player partnas keep an eye out for the kid, and get your S66 draft picks ready. I'd shout out a whole bunch of other OG members in this thread, but i'm just trying to get to the tpe tbh. Thanks for reading and I am glad to be back for another run through the VHL.
  48. 7 points

    TOR/CGY: S64 off-season

    Devise realised he still had a draft pick.
  49. 7 points
    HOUSTON--We have a problem. Or at least Beau Buefordsson does. The city of Houston pulled countless strings to bring out the best for the Bulls, one of the VHLM's two new expansion teams. Just short of $700 million was spent on a state-of-the-art arena, connected to a multipurpose facility housing everything from a shopping mall to the Bulls' practice rinks. And yet, just a few days after the ribbon was cut on the practice facility and team activities began, the doors were closed, citizens hoping to catch a glimpse of the Bulls' practice were turned away, and there was ribbon up again, this time of the yellow "DO NOT CROSS" variety. And after a day and a half of speculation, the answer has finally been released to the media. "When Buefordsson walked into the room," said a member of the team who did not wish for his name to be printed, "I almost threw up." Furthermore, according to this player, "[w]e couldn't even get the smell out after he left. We've just hired a private contractor to replace all the carpeting in the locker room and we also plan on getting the entire thing fumigated. I don't even know how something like this is humanly possible." For Buefordsson, as well, things got ugly. "[Houston GM] Alexander [Pepper] chased him out of the building with a sponge and a gallon of bleach. I don't know what happened after that and I'm not sure I want to," said the player. Buefordsson has reportedly been ordered to pay for the professional deodorizing of the facility, as well as for an entire year's supply of air fresheners and cleaning equipment. When contacted by the media, both Pepper and Buefordsson declined to comment.
  50. 7 points

    S64 VHL 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 4 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, the league's lone player induction gets in by way of a unanimous vote. There will also be another builder inducted, who received over 90% of the votes to join the league's famed builders. Without further adieu, I present this season's VHL Hall of Fame Entries: LW - Gabriel McAllister @CowboyinAmerica, S56-S63 RS: 576 GP, 397 G, 429 A, 826 P, +286, 721 PIM, 2079 HIT, 302 SB, 68 GW PO: 62 GP, 44 G, 48 A, 92 P, +33, 100 PIM, 281 HIT, 51 SB, 9 GW S56 Christian Stolzchweiger Trophy (Top Rookie) S58 Scott Boulet Trophy (Best 2-Way Forward) S59 Daisuke Kanou Trophy (Playoff MVP) S60 Scotty Campbell Trophy (League MVP) S60 Brett Slobodzian Trophy (Most Outstanding Player) S60 Mike Szatkowski Trophy (Most Points) S60 Kevin Brooks Trophy (Most Goals) S61 Scotty Campbell Trophy (League MVP) S61 Daisuke Kanou Trophy (Playoff MVP) S61 Scott Boulet Trophy (Best 2-Way Forward) S63 Scotty Campbell Trophy (League MVP) S63 Brett Slobodzian Trophy (Most Outstanding Player) S63 Mike Szatkowski Trophy (Most Points) S63 Scott Boulet Trophy (Best 2-Way Forward) Two Continental Cups (S59, S61) A quick glance at his Trophy Case shows exactly why this was one of the easiest selections in BOG history. With 14 individual awards to his name, while also Captaining two Continental Cup Champions, McAllister is one of the most decorated players in VHL History. Finishing just 3 goals shy of the fabled 400-mark, McAllister sits in a tie for 7th all-time in goals scored. His 826 Career Points place him 17th all-time, 68 GWGs sit in a tie for 19th all-time, while his 2079 hits place him 22nd among all players to ever play in the VHL. All in all, Gabriel McAllister is one of the best to ever lace up his skates in the VHL, and was an automatic decision for all voters. Vote Tyson Kohler - 0/13 Jakab Holik - 0/13 Astrid Moon - 0/13 Gabriel McAllister - 13/13 Ay Ay Ron - 0/13 Matt Lynch @Tagger Someone who has been in the league for several years, Tagger is the man many will credit as being the reason they are here today. In fact, his efforts are the reason you see the Recruitment Crew working with Prospect Updates, Mock Drafts and the weekly Newsletter. Bringing the VHL from a period where recruitment/retainment was at its darkest, the efforts to help shape the future of the league will be felt for generations of VHLers to come! Vote Yes - 11/13 No - 1/13 Abstain - 1/13 Congratulations to both on their induction into the Victory Hockey League Hall of Fame!
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