Jump to content

Moving parts before draft [1/2]


Recommended Posts

So the week or so leading up to this draft had a few interesting twists to the tale. The story can be as long as you'd like, but for simplicity's sake, let's just start it off on lottery night. I was at work, it was particularly busy that day, and I finally found a minute to check my phone and the first thing I saw was a message from Esso saying "would you be willing to move down" - the problem was, I had no idea what he was talking about. I knew the season was at about the right time for the lottery, just hadn't thought about the fact that it was about to happen. Obviously, this is not really the way I'd typically like to find out about a lottery win, but I knew two things: 1. I'd already had a decent idea of the players I'd been looking to draft, and 2. As a general rule, I usually see 1st overall as an obvious trade down situation. Clearly that didn't come into play, but we'll get to it later.

Esso throws an offer out there before I've really even started to look, it appears to be a pretty nice offer at first glance, and I tell him that, but also that I'm not committing to any offers that day while at work (and while I certainly didn't want to trade at work just because it would be a hassle, I also wanted to stall for time so as to look into the draft and see how things were before agreeing to something dumb that looked good). I also throw a kind of open ended statement out in the GM Discord channel that I'd be entertaining offers for the 1st pick (that I'd only just found out I had) just to see what kind of things came back. As I had time to study the draft class, my ideal trade would have been to trade 1st down to 3rd and in doing so, 14th up to about 9th or 10th, even if those ended up having to be separate trades.

In order to explain why I wanted that exact trade, I'll need to get into my team needs a bit. Prague has a lot of young, active guys. Some are more welfare level active, which is fine on a team at this stage of a rebuild (or I guess a build) and some are more fully active, such as our captain Erik Draven and his usual graphic and a few other weekly bonus things. We could always use some more talent at both forward and defense, but we were largely fine on both, provided everyone can stay the course. What we didn't have, however, was a goalie. Bruce Grimaldi went missing not long after last season's draft and left us in a bit of a situation between the pipes. There was one top tier goalie in this draft, Solomon Crawford, but I didn't really want to take him at 1, since that would entail missing out on all of the S69 big name recreates: Soren Jensen, Benny Graves, and Cinnamon Block. I figured with 3 of them, while I'd prefer to take a defenseman (Mountain Thunderfist was the most easily replaced on the roster) I could definitely find a spot for a forward if it came down to it. Trading down to 3 would guarantee me one of them, while trading up to 10 or so would give me a reasonable shot to land Crawford, since few teams need goalies at this stage.

A few more GMs tested the waters (Beaviss, Banackock) but no one who actually had picks in the vicinity I was looking for... until Hedgehog. He had 3, 6, and 10. If I could just work that into a 3 and 10 situation, it would be exactly what I'd been looking for. However, Hedgehog initially wanted to acquire 1 without losing 3. Value-wise, this certainly could have been done, but value isn't always everything - a million dollars has the same value as a million bowls from the dollar store, but no one has any real use for that many bowls. Around this time, and with some prodding in the discord from Seabass Perrin that we really needed to make sure we had a goalie now rather than some undetermined future date, I'd decided I couldn't really risk having Crawford as the only plan, and looked around at team situations that would be amenable to some short term help until a drafted active would arrive. This came in the form of Moscow, who had both Raymond Bernard (a young active goalie who presumably will fill Moscow's net for the foreseeable future) and semi-veteran Owen May. I'd messaged Victor about maybe getting May after the draft if Crawford didn't work out, and while he was amenable to this, he also threw out there that perhaps he'd need to lose him for cap anyway, and I could get him cheap. The price ended up being Kolur Bjoernsson (the other inactive goalie I already had, and well worse than May) and S71 3rd. This was worth doing as insurance.

Given that I no longer really needed to trade down in order to trade up, I decided to keep 1st overall, and with it, bring Cinnamon Block on board, barring any last minute overpays (I'm always open to last minute overpays). I made this known to the team, and to a few others outside of the team, as well as the potential backup drafters (AGM Zoiderberg, who could also not make the draft, and "unofficially official" Acydburn who I'd been talking to prior to Prague existing so he was grandfathered into the management team in a way - good thing, as he would end up drafting). Once we knew it would be Acyd drafting, I had him watch for anyone who clearly sounded like they were trying to trade away a late 1st, and if I had time at work on draft day (which I would have, we were pretty slow last night, and I got done with status changes halfway through the shift) then I'd pop in and try to negotiate something. This would of course be to try to secure getting Crawford as well, because even right before the draft, I didn't expect him to fall to 14. Acyd had the list, he knew what I wanted to do with the draft, and he could modify it a bit based on certain situations (I had a retired player on it which he pointed out, although as it turned out we'd have never gotten to that portion of the list anyway). I generally at that stage just trusted him to do it, talked a bit with him and a few other members on my lunch, and went back to work. It's a good thing I didn't get any pings about trades being available, because for the first bit of the draft, I ended up 3 rows away from my cubicle learning room charges and not paying attention to my phone.

When I finally got back to my desk, there was a small group of calls coming in, then once those were dealt with, I looked at my phone. I opened up the VHL tab - I always have at least one tab on my phone internet set to VHL, just in case - and pulled up the draft. First glance revealed that we were past the Prague 2nd rounder. I tried to remember who all was on the early portion of the list, who all we could have ended up with, then looked down at the pick. 14. S. Crawford.


Without having to do any predraft trading to set my picks up in the exact right positions, without picking up any additional picks or sacrificing future picks, we got Crawford. We got him with the pick that was ours anyway. The best case scenario from this draft was to land both Block and Crawford, and I'd wanted to move around in order to increase the chances of this happening. I didn't move around. It happened anyway.

I'm not entirely sure the bosses at work would be thrilled to note that my attention was split between actual work and some sim hockey league they've never heard of - some of them might mind more than others, and it's a pretty calm environment for that sort of thing as long as the work gets done in a relatively short amount of time, given that the nature of the job lends certain parts of it to be urgent - but I don't even care right now. Things worked out for Prague in the best way they could, given we only had the two picks, and I'm very ok with that. Given how thin this draft class was, if there was ever a year where not having a third or fourth was fine, this was the year. Even for a guy who thrives upon late actives in drafts, I'm content with just the two picks this year. Besides, I couldn't have asked for a better two picks.

1519 words

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin

Sounds like some delightful real life/VHL balancing acts last night: I had to be antisocial in a bar with about 70 colleagues for two 5-minute stints as I desperately tried to do some mental arithmetic and make sure I tapped on the right players to cap dump in the portal. I know @Enorama was in a similar situation too.


And @eaglesfan036 ended up giving me FA updates on him and Smitty over Facebook earlier in the day, which is good because I didn't have time to check personal emails.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Victor said:

Sounds like some delightful real life/VHL balancing acts last night: I had to be antisocial in a bar with about 70 colleagues for two 5-minute stints as I desperately tried to do some mental arithmetic and make sure I tapped on the right players to cap dump in the portal. I know @Enorama was in a similar situation too.

nah, I was drafting. I had to deal with a sleepy edgehog though, and almost got BPA'd with the 7oa pick

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Anything that connects the VHL to the real world (no matter how marginal) is a nice little touch that earns you some points in my book. I like the idea that you're quietly cheering your franchise on while at work after getting a nice trade offer. As has been the case with Advantage's and hedgehog's articles (among plenty of other GMs), I always like a look into the mentality/thought process in personnel movement. That's an awful long first sentence for your second paragraph though! ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • DollarAndADream changed the title to Moving parts before draft [1/2]
  • 2 months later...

Review: as a GM in SBA I def love reading about the behind the scenes process of other GMs. you walk the reader through your brainstorming process in a clear and personal way, and I def felt excitement when your plans came to fruition and you were able to draft two great players. i understand why but i wish you shared more details on the trade offers and how you weighed the pros and cons. photos / graphics could have helped make the article pop more. wonderful @diamond_ace

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...