I guess since i was tagged ill give some input
i think the leagues favors offense over defense so i can see why forwards are becoming more popular. However we always talk about this could be the best draft class maybe ever in the VHL, yet there are no defensemen that really stand out. Its surprising for sure, that there are really no bad first round picks, except all of them are forwards. I think the lack of defensemen is due in part to players wanting to be in the best scorer on their team, therefore were seeing less and less players who give a shit about defense.
however i want to make this very clear to newer members. Defensemen CAN be offensively minded. Ill use my own defenseman as an example. Shawn Glade is currently a defender on the Riga Reign. His VHLM season saw him score 108 points and 48 goals. This was the best season by a dman in nearly 10 seasons. He just finished in 5th place for points among dmen, as well as achieving top 10 in plus/minus as well as shots blocked. You could prolly make an argument for Glade being thr best two way dman in the league right now. My point is that you can be offensive no matter where you play. Id argue dmen are MORE valuable because they have more chances to prove themselves than say a winger