SPNHL, Season 31: Top Free Agents
Long time no see, my friends. School got a little hectic last semester which prevented us from providing more coverage, but we’re back and ready for Season 31 of the SPNHL. Eggman and Sedin completed the three-peat and established themselves as the greatest dynasty in the history of the SPNHL. However, their success lead to the introduction of an interesting rule: only one resign for GMs.
This rule provided somewhat of a reset for the league, breaking apart teams that have dominated for multiple seasons and dismantled teams which GMs took seasons to build (perfect time to introduce the rule Plisk, didn’t screw me over at all). Yet, this rule provided a draft pool that is the deepest and most talented I’ve seen in my 5 seasons in this league. With only 12 teams this season, we’ll see a strong first couple of rounds.
With a little help from my friend Chadkillz ,we compiled a list of the top 5 free agents at their positions. We divided it into the three categories: forwards, defenders, and goaltenders, and did a statistical comparison based on their last season (or their career stats for those who took a few seasons off). We also didn’t rank them because we’re too lazy, so be your own judge!
Chad: Bstieboydp is coming off a stellar season with the Avalanche where he put up 117 points and won the cup. He won’t be on the draft board for very long. LeCupidon finished 4th in points last season. He put up 113 points finishing right behind Bsieboydp. Rich scored 66 goals last season and almost won the Rocket Trophy. Whichever team picks rich is getting a proven goal scorer. Diirty_Triix had a great bounce-back season. He put up very good numbers while playing with LeCupidon and Rich on a very skilled Flyers Team. Toslick had a rough first half to last season with the hurricanes but really turned it on after being traded to Winnipeg.
Dirty: A mix of staples and returning veterans fills our top 5 defenders list, with U1, CapCan, and Noto playing last season while Wally and Execution return after 3 and 4 seasons respectively. U1 had a decent tenure in Arizona, showing his talent as a top two-way defender. CapCan continues to be a reliable stay-at-home defender, as she played all but 5 games last season for Vegas. eXecution returns to the league and if his last season is any proof, he’ll be an absolute steal for $3.5M, so don’t expect him to be on the board for long. DrWally, eX’s D partner on the Lightning of the VGHL, is also returning after a strong season. He has arguably the best defensive numbers on this list, but his availability may be a detriment to his value. “The Legend Killer” Notorious had a rough season, but is a consistently reliable defender who is more than worth his value at $3.5M. Expect him to be the last man back for an offensive minded team.
Dirty: The 5 goalies on this list represent the cream of the crop of their position, and have been so for quite some time. Chad is a bit of a biased bitch, but the numbers don’t lie and his performance last season behind a dismal Carolina squad nearly put them into the playoffs. Ciulla played the same role in Winnipeg, and stole them quite a few games. That record is deceiving, as most of those losses came at the beginning of the season while the Jets were still starting their engines. Giroux had another solid season after his Vezina worthy performance in season 29, being a brick wall in net for the islanders behind B-wall. Get it? Great. Giroux is a stud, but fell short in last season’s Vezina voting to Rancher, who played like a madman and won his second cup in three season with Colorado. Playing behind a dynasty like that may be easy, but numbers like his are hard to get. Fivestar backstopped the Leafs all the way to the Stanley Cup finals, and very good numbers while doing so. He proved his skill and reliability in net, so expect him to be picked up early on in the draft.
Well, that was fun. Although I was initially opposed to this new “one resign” rule, I do appreciate the bevy of talent it has reintroduced to the draft. It looks like one of the deepest in years, so maybe Vandoos won’t take a rookie in the first round. Nonetheless, we should see some big surprises and some predictable reunions in tonight’s draft as we see the informal beginning of season 31 of the Sony Playstation Hockey League.
I’d like to thank chadkillz134 for helping out with this article (and actually suggesting the idea of it) and encourage everybody to join Kozmo, myself, and a multitude of guests tonight as we react to picks, get interviews, and listen to Kozmo drunkenly rant while my GF plays Horizon Zero Dawn in the background. We’ll be live on www.twitch.tv/thespnhl_media at 7:30 EST, so come say hello!
See ya soon, everybody!
–DD & Chad