Question: What is the point of FAQs?
Answer: To answer frequently asked questions.


What are the different league emails?

cphl1@yahoo.com  - email for anything related to rules or discussion and GM Editor line files. Not for player movement.

cphltrade@yahoo.com - email for all player movement.

cphlufa@yahoo.com - email for all UFA or RFA player requests or movement.

cphllines@yahoo.com - email for submitting all line files generated by the GM Editor only.

How do I send an email?

When sending an email to any of these addresses we also need you as the GM to follow some protocols. It is VERY difficult when wading thru many emails to determine what team is sending the requests if you do NOT put your team name in the SUBJECT header.  So from this point forward...no exceptions...all email addressed to the league without the team name and situation in the SUBJECT box will automatically be deleted. How to do this...simple...as follows:

To: cphltrade@yahoo.com

Subject:   Boston Bruins - Question about Player position change

Message:  The Boston Bruins want to know if Joe Blow can play this position  (http:// link required to prove position change)


Boston GM

What is Private Messenger?

For those of you who did not know it, CalgaryPuck has a Private Messenger  that works wonderfully for things like our league. Whenever you are in Cal Puck domain any messages instantly pop up on your screen. I suggest that this be used as a means of trade discussion or general banter between two GMs...it certainly gets your attention whenever you are on the site. If you dont know about it look up and to the right for Private Messenger when on the Message Board.

How do I make a Trade?

1. One of the participating teams makes a trade proposal to another team via the "Propose a Trade" link on your roster page.

2. The other team will then find a link appear on their roster page that allows the GM to view their "trade offer". The link will say  "You have been offered "x" trades. View Trades.   They will also get an email notifying them of the trade. 

3. From View Trades you can select the proposal for viewing.

4. After you view the trade(s) you have the option to either accept or reject what was offered. 

5.  If you accept the trade then league is notified and the CPHL either approves or rejects the deal.

6. A GM can also use the "Email Trade Offer" Link found on their teams page for a general email to start negotiations with another team.

General info for Newbies

* Lines files are sent to cphllines@yahoo.com .ALWAYS..Do NOT send elsewhere or cc them to another email address.

* IF you have a retired/injured player they can NOT play in the sim. You the GM CAN move players to the centre portion of the Editor as opposed to the playing lineup so they will not take part. Sometimes it takes us a few days to catch up to 45-50 emails. IF they arent on your GM page on the website playing on the pro roster they cannot play in the game. Make sure, cuz in the reg season you will get fined if caught cheating. Two times caught equals you are canned.

* IF you see a player in the wrong position in the Editor vs the Website...use the button on your team page.... Actions: Position change request - Change Password - Change Personal Info - Bickering/Suggestions?
We will change him for you...you cannot do it yourself.

* IF you have a guy in the CPHL that should be in the AHL or vice versa...let us know. If he is supposed to be in the AHL then use the right button on your team page. Or a simple email to cphltrade@yahoo.com. USE the right email format for sending emails...see FAQs.

* If a post is MANDATORY for GMs...you need to respond. IF you do NOT respond you are fired...no questions asked. Its a free game and we arent babysitters here. We have lots of guys who want to play.

* We dont tell any GM whether their lines made it in or not. We dont have the time. You will know by what lines played your game. There are times the SIM will still change things on its own...although rare it does happen to most GMs at least once a year...at least...live with it. Its a free game.

* What if a player has played in Europe for 2 years? Is he eligible here?
Ya you betcha...actually we raised it to 3 years this year cuz of our expansion sisters...so any Euro is eligible to play CPHL for 3 years....unless they say I RETIRE...then they is done.

* IF a team gets a pile of injuries in the regular season we will be more lenient on fining a team for being under roster limits. A GM must still make the effort to plug holes on the team and maintain rosters as good as possible. One or two injuries do NOT mean leniency. Be a GM...trade or acquire older veteran UFAs if you have to to fill a hole.

* Rotoworld is used for ALL CPHL Injuries. If a player is listed on Rotoworld he is injured regardless if he shows up healthy elsewhere! The link to Rotoworld is under the Rosters section. AHLers do not get placed on the IR. Only players in the CPHL have to follow Rotoworld. If a player is in the CPHL and gets injured they go to the IR regardless of age. IF you dont want a player in the CPHL and wish to send to the AHL then you can waive them...if 23 and under they go direct...if over 23 they can be claimed.

How do I get the GM Editor to work?

http://www3.sympatico.ca/dayel_peterson/GMEditorHelp.htm Pay attention to the last TWO boxes!

Do I create a password when submitting GM Editor lines?

Do NOT enter a password or we cannot access it. (See the above link)

When I try running the GM Editor I get the following error..."cant find COMDLG32.OCX..."?

2 possible fixes.... 

1. Rename COMDLG32.OCX in System folder to COMDLG32OLD.OCX (probably in c:\windows\system folder)
2. Run Regclean.- You can download this utility from by clicking here This is a nice utility from Microsoft that will clean the Registry on your PC.  (probably not necessary so you can skip this step)3. Download COMDLG32.OCX by clicking here. Save in the same System folder that you rename the old COMDLG32.OCX.
4. Register COMDLG32.OCX. From DOS REGSVR32 . Type c:\regsvr32 comdlg32.ocx

A message box that states "DllregisterServer in Register COMDLG32.OCX successful should appear.

5. Restart your PC and then run GMEditor. 


Check the date and version of the comdlg32.ocx. If the date is after 7/26/95 (version yet before 7/19/97 (version 5.01.4319) you can try installing the 5.01.4319 version of comdlg32.ocx for Windows 95 (CdlgPatch95.EXE).

If you are running Windows 98 then you can try installing the 6.00.8169 version of comdlg32.ocx for Windows 98 (CdlgPatch98.EXE). 

When I request a position change for a player do I have to let the league know when I move him back to his original position?

Anytime you change a players position you should let the league know...this enables us to change the position on your roster page and in the simulator. All position changes MUST come with proof via a link from the web somewhere.

Im having problems running the GM Editor on XP computer.

For XP/2000 users...
Open the cab file with Winzip.
Extract the gmeditor.exe and other DLL's to a folder (c:\ program files\GMBeta say...)
Make a shortcut to it.
Run it.

If you change operating systems you have to install the whole setup-package again. You can't just copy the directory from computer a to computer b and figure it will work.

The GM-editor, along with FHL itself, is written in Visual Basic. To run a program written in VB certain files are required to be installed and correctly registered on the computer. The file missing here, cmdlg32.ocx, is one of them.

When running any installation program for a VB-based program, or Visual Studio itself, this particular file is installed in your Windows\System directory and correctly registered in your Windows-registry.

When you download the setup-program you get a set of TEMPORARY files, along with a file called setup.exe. Run that file, and you will go through the "correct" steps of installing the GM-editor, and the files you need will be correctly installed on your computer.

Is there any site for FHL generated questions?

You bet there is...although a lot of it is pretty much useless, here it is.


Remember, we do not play the CPHL with all of the same bells and whistles as other FHL Leagues....we are different.


REBUILDING A TEAM, tips, guides & ideas

by Widell of THE LEAGUE on Monday 24 November 2003

Most of us have been in the scenario, you join a league, the only teams available are weak teams in need of a massive rebuild, it will take lots of time & patience to make this team respectable, and eventually a contender. Am I up for the challenge? Well hopefully if you read this, you will get a good idea of some tricks & ideas to build a very good FHL team.

There are two main ways to rebuild a team, the long patient route, or the active trading route, trying to better your squad just a little with every trade, we will look at and analyze both routes, and give pointers to each. Rebuilding means different things to different people, but the end goal is always the same, to be competitive.

Rebuilding the patient way:

One route you could take is the slow, steady route, taking a few seasons to build yourself a strong base of players to move forward with, or to begin making trades/adjustments with. The key to building the long patient way, is to make good draft picks. And stock up on them. In almost all NHL leagues, draft picks have incredibly high value, gather up as many draft picks as possible, come draft time, the price for them goes significantly up. How do I make good decisions you ask? Well, most prospects really don't lose their luster for 3-4 seasons, they can still be regarded as top prospects despite not cracking the NHL lineups (Jani Rita is a prime example). So in the first few rounds, it's hard to make a bad pick, but in the later rounds are where you can often separate the elite GMs, from those whose knowledge is somewhat limited. If you are in a rebuilding role, it is usually best to take a prospect rather than an older player who may have snuck through, a suggested tip would be to take prospects off of popular teams, the Leafs, Habs of the world. Why you ask? Many times GM's try and trade for their favorite teams guys, if you've got that prospect who has a decent season, then his teams fans will be all over him, often driving his value up.

Unrestricted Free Agency varies on most leagues, and its tough to write a general plan to deal with UFA when rebuilding, some leagues have restrictions on dealing signed UFA's some punish your team if you've done that before. But one tool that can be used effectively in rebuilding is UFA. By signing some quality UFA's you can then flip them over for more youth/picks. It is in essence a free chance to grab at players and flip them to further along your rebuilding job. Some teams can use UFA to put them to the next step of contending. A team in the BRHL (Columbus) had a decent team built up, they probably weren't ready for the playoffs yet, after three seasons of slow, long rebuilding, but they decided to focus on the one key to the puzzle the didn't have, that star goalie. They signed Eddie Belfour to a respectable contract, and he carried them into the playoffs. Without Eddie their starter would have been Robert Esche (prior to his breakout year this season). Now with Esche and Oulette, the Jackets can easily flip Belfour over to another team and build their team into the contender. After 4 full seasons, the Jackets are turning the corner, and becoming a legit contender. Using free agents to increase your prospect/pick base can be a very effective way to further along the rebuilding process.

Rebuilding via the trading route:

While you will no doubt be trading alot either way, their is another, theoretically quicker, way to rebuild a team, and that involves being very active on the trade front. While this is also a risky route to take, You must have the ability to win the majority of your deals, otherwise you're working backwards. How do you make trades with the garbage you've currently got? IF you've got a young guy or two, keep em around, but any veterans that have value, often the best route is to package them up for picks and other prospects. Use those picks/prospects at a later time to flip them around to good players entering their prime. A leagues individual rules will have a large effect on the routes you can take, knowing the rules inside and out will be incredibly effective, it will allow you to know what teams are hard up against a cap, which are going to lose guys to free agency etc. Often rebuilding sees the team go from dumping all veteran players, to trading some of their prospects/picks for established guys who have a good future ahead of them.

A few things to always look for is teams who have a glaring weakness at one spot, but yet can still be competitive, if you have a player who could fit their needs, or can acquire one, it is often beneficial to get an idea of what you can flip a guy for before you deal for him. Analyze each team, figure out what they could use, what they could offer, and if it would be worth it for you to proceed with that or other deals that will line it up. I've made 3 separate deals to line up the one deal I really wanted, is OK to take a slight loss in a deal if it means a big win in another. Trading is the lifeblood of any FHL league, the draft is very important, and depending on the UFA rules, free agency can be, but trading is where you have everything in your power, being an effective trader, usually results in being an effective GM. While it is not always possible, but being as active as possible often gives you the first crack at trades, a GM posts that a guy you have had your eye on is available, get their before anyone else, it eliminates any immediate competition, and you could have that deal sealed up before another GM who wanted him makes a better offer. Being the first in line is almost ALWAYS a good thing.

Some More Tips:

A few more tips that can really move along the rebuilding process, I don't take on any new teams unless its a hardcore rebuilding job, one of the most effective ways I have found to enhance my team is to trade my lesser value players for other players who have low value, that could potentially break out, they can be of different levels of talent experience, and cost different amounts, but the common thread is they COULD break out. Usually I try and identify about 5-10 guys who could break out, and then try and trade for some of them, maybe 2 or 3 actually break out, but the break out of them greatly outweighs the deadweight I gave up, or now have. How do I identify these guys? Well usually they show me something, or a position opens up for them. Sure their are busts in this tactic (Lee Goren, Travis Roche, Ivan Novoseltsev), but the ones that do (Andrew Raycroft, Raffi Torres, Ty Conklin) make the whole thing look really good. With most of these guys you can see there where opportunities that could have been present to em, some took advantage, some played 5 games in the NHL. Their will be busts, but their will hopefully be one or two hits. Who could break out next year (assuming their is a year)? Well its early, and many teams will look drastically different next season, but I can think of two guys who fit this mold already, Ray Giroux (dman for NJ) and Marek Svatos (Colorado). Their will be more, and I will look at it more later, but as of now those two could really enhance their value next season, they both will have opportunities it looks like, and could be put in very good situations. If you have a few guys you think could break out, send em to me and ill post that up in the feedback section of the next article.

Another tool that many GM's use in rebuilding is taking on salary dumps. When a team gets in trouble financially they often are "giving away" established players, if you can get them for cheap, their is often a good possibility that someone who is contending can find room for them for a cup run, at that time their value goes up, and all its really cost you is paying their salary for that season. I wouldn't advise having too many expensive guys on the roster at once, as you could get stuck with one or two of them, but having a few that have some value and could be flipped at a later time for more value than you gave up

Others opinions on rebuilding:

"in one league, I started off with a top line of Jason Wiemer, Brett Lysak and Milan Bartovic as my top line in 2000, I had no defence - top defencemen was Marek Malik, and a UFA goaltender...7 seasons later - approx 2 seasons per year - my top line was Ilya Kovalchuk - Steve Yzerman - Martin St. Louis, and I had Heatley, Calder, McAmmond, Reinprecht, among others at forward, some capable defencemen (Marek Malik, Filip Kuba, Nathan Dempsey come to mind quickly) and my goaltending was Burke, Cloutier, Ryan Miller and Mikael Tellqvist)

1. Patience is key. Especially when you have very little to deal with. I turned Roman Turek and his UFA status into 3 salary dumps: Luc Robitaille (who was still a high quality player at the time), Sean Burke and Tie Domi. I turned Robitaille (after almost a season) into Roman Cechmanek, Andy Delmore, and a 1st round pick; Burke turned into Cloutier and Nylander (I reacquired Burke, and got Yzerman, McAmmond and Shayne Corson when that team went bankrupt and sold off it's players for virtually nothing); Domi turned into Michael Ryan (at the time a Dallas prospect, now with Buffalo I believe) and a mid-round pick. It took 7 seasons or 3 years to become a quality enough team to make the playoffs. Most teams are not that devastated, however you see what I'm getting at.

2. Dedication. Especially when the league has been around a couple seasons, you have to be willing to stick it out. You cannot expect to turn a rebuilding team into a cup winner over night. This league allows for quicker rebuilding then most leagues because of the strict cap, however as a GM of a rebuilding team, don't expect it.

3. More patience/Don't be afraid to lose for a year or two. You're likely going to be trading off assets for picks a lot. Especially the first season. This is important to the strength of a rebuilding team. Compiling some young players or some older or Euro rookies onto the team will be vital to the team's success.

4. Don't be afraid to take chances (in the draft or in trading). Andy Delmore worked out for a couple seasons on a lower level, but Martin St. Louis could win the Hart this year. Most teams take on guys who have had a good season and pay a premium for those players...try to acquire guys who look like they might get more playing time in the future...but might not be ready for the big time right now. You'll get them more cheaply then when they become stars down the road, and if they don't work out, you didn't pay a lot for them.

5. Try to take advantage of some teams. Take a look at rosters. Try to determine what some teams are deep with, and try to help out their team with something you might have. Especially those teams that are running expensive. I can't remember but 6 or 7 teams lost players because of cap reasons last year. If you can take advantage, you might be able to acquire a star player or two. (remember though that you're taking on salary)

6. Be friendly and have fun. It'll be rough going. Have confidence in your own ability to turn the team around, but remember it takes time. You won't get along with every GM in the league, but take the time to just talk general hockey with some GM's, because most of the time you won't be able to talk trade due to limited resources. Remember this is just a game...and that with a little bit of time and effort, you can have a cup champion."

Eric Dolegowski, BRHL Co-commish

"When I took over my team, I looked at the process of rebuilding as my only option. I took a look at my team and started to organize some steps towards getting better. I looked at what I wanted to get accomplished with my team. I looked at my situation realistically, and set a timetable for how long this process would take. Together I had organized about 4-5 steps. I looked the "now" situation, and from there I went on to look at what I wanted in the future. I set aside a idea of the identity that I wanted this team to have. While completing my earlier steps, I kept my mind set on the future and what I wanted my team to eventually become. Im not known as a free wheeling GM, as I knew this rebuilding process would take its time. And to this point Im about halfway done, as its been about two years since I started it. The players who define the identity of my team started off with a small amount of players that I would like to keep, but has grown over the years. While keeping my identity in mind, I set out to only trade for players who would cater to my needs and wants. This allowed me to slowly but surely have a team that Im proud of. I made sure every move I took would allow me to progress. If I needed to make a trade in order to make another trade, I did so. And I only took a step backwards if I was going to be taking two forward."

Jesse Vansickle, EFHL commish

"Patience is one of the biggest keys. Don't get so desperate that you shoot yourself in the foot. If you are rebuilding you need to use every asset wisely. One of my favorite things to do on a rebuilding team is to take on salary dumps. In another league I took on Geoff Sanderson and Steve Konowalchuk for 3rd and 5th round picks. I sat on them for a while, turning down low offers and finally someone came along and offered Tomas Vokoun and their 1st. PATIENCE"

FHL Attribute Primer - What do those initials really mean?

This article discusses the attributes of the FHL simulator and how they effect the sim engine. In addition it will provide a comparison to what effect it has an actual NHL player. This information has been acquired through many sources, messageboards, discussions and experience in making ratings and working within the simulator itself.

This article discusses the attributes of the FHL simulator and how they effect the sim engine. In addition it will provide a comparison to what effect it has an actual NHL player. This information has been acquired through many sources, messageboards, discussions and experience in making ratings and working within the simulator itself.

IT – Intensity. Often discussed in two separate skills. Goalies use intensity in a different form than skaters. For Skaters, the attribute applies to hits & checking. One could use toughness as an application as well. Players like Darcy Tucker & Scott Stevens are intense NHL players that usually have high IT ratings in the sim. The Sim gives high marks for intensity and often, skilled, less intense players can get penalized in overall rating due to less intensity. All teams need some players with intensity, but too many is just as bad as too few…..Goalies are measured differently. Intensity for a goalie is how in tune he is to a game. Often, how alert he is to the slightest nuances of what is happening around him and his ability to anticipate ahead of time. Think of goalies that have a knack for finding the puck through screens as an indicator of how IT can help a goalie. Curtis Joseph is often a player who gets a very high IT rating in the simulator. IT would be on the top 5 attributes for determining a quality goaltending and when the goalie skill stats are equal, this can be the difference maker. Lastly, for skaters, IT is usually determined by the HITs statistic, whereas for goalies, it is a subjective stat.

SP – Speed is the first skill stat for goalies and skaters. It is often called a subjective stat. There is no NHL statistic in which it can be measured. Although the simulator seems to favor the super highly rated Speed players who are 80 & above. Anything above 60 is considered the NHL average or better skater. Speed is one of the Big Three for goalie skill stats. It pertains to how fast they can react for saves in both movement and glove/stick saves.

ST – Strength could be a misnomer because it is really measured by the overall size of a player. And while size & strength are really two different things, it’s the best measurement of statistics available. Since its nearly impossible to quantify strength without finding access to benchpress records of NHL players, it would have to be subjective and subject to all sort of misinterpretations of reality. By using size, you have a good example of a solid stat. Reading scouting reports you see the word "size" mentioned often, they are less concerned with strength and rightfully so. A larger sized individual will wear down even a player of small stature and strength. Size does matter in the NHL and it is reflected by the ST stat in the simulator. The sim gives high marks for ST and it is a stats that will effect skater ratings extensively. If you get a highly rated player without small size, you know he is a skill monster. For goalies, ST can be a difference maker when the skill stats and IT are all equal.

EN – Endurance is and interesting stat. It seems to be less influential to the OV rating than you might imagine. Endurance is based on the average Ice Time per game a player receives in the NHL. It is far more important for Defencemen than forwards. Your #1 Defenceman must have high Endurance and it is suggested that at least two of your defencemen have endurance rating of 85 or above. The 99 rating for endurance equals 30 minutes of ice time for defencemen and 25 minutes per game for forwards. Every 15 seconds less than that lowers the rating one point. It’s pretty easy to protect players with low endurance and is really only a factor to your key defenceman and top special teams players.

DU – Durability is a stat that hardly effects overall in any form. Durability is more of an odds of injury than any other description I can think of. Low DU is possible to go though an entire season uninjured as well as 99DU player getting injured. With DU there is no sure thing, only that your odds of injury increase as DU decreases. The one fact about DU is that a player is likely heal quicker the higher his durability & endurance. DU is usually acquired by prorating the player’s number of games played divided by 82 and applying a similar decrease to the DU number from 99. Leagues & ratings that use a player’s historical durability rather than based on just last year are far more accurate ratings

DI – Discipline is a player’s likelihood to end up in the box plain & simple. DI effects the OV rating in a minimal amount. The one thing that has always plagued me about DI – does it effect a player’s penchant for being out of position. Oddly enough players who historically make mistakes – defencemen who pinch at bad times, etc seemed to be saddled with lower DI than ones who possess uncanny hockey sense. If you were to try and quantify hockey sense in the simulator, it seems logical that DI would be part of the equation. Most rating use the PIM as a guide for arriving at a players DI giving credence for using it this more as a guideline for penalties, than mistakes

SK – Skating works hand & hand with Speed in that it is a subjective skill statistic. Skating refers to a player’s agility. The ability to turn quickly, deke and make other moves in tight places. It takes quite a few points in SK to effect the overall statistic in a skater, but for a goalie, its paramount. Moving side to side and the agility to go down, get up, etc while making saves. Skating is one of the top 3 skill stats for goalies.

PA – Passing Accuracy is most important in evaluation to the centers. It stands to reason that players with high PA are gonna rack up assists. Defencemen tend to be very effective when high PA is in concert with high DEF. All your power play defencemen should possess good to high PA numbers. PA is devised from the amount of assists produced by the player in the NHL with a different scale for defencemen & forwards

PC – Puck Control affects OV rating across the board as much as single attribute in my estimation. PC is huge in wingers, who need the ability to effectively move in traffic. For defencmen you can drop all other skill stats to your hearts content, but if there is a high PC rating, the OV will only drop so far. For goalies, this is a huge statistic. PC refers to the ability to control rebounds, right there is all you need to know about how important it is to goalies – the last of the big 3 skill stats for goalies. PC is a subjective attribute.

DEF – Defense awareness is most prevalent for defencemen. It effects their ratings tremendously. DEF is useful for forwards you use on the PK & Checking lines. Centers with high DEF are especially effective, since their responsibility & positioning on the ice are of greater importance than a winger is. DEF is basically a subjective stat, some leagues have tried to use +/- as a resource, but since that is more reflective of a team atmosphere, and I advise great caution when applying DEF to Plus/Minus. The attribute has an average effect for forwards.

SC – Scoring… Surprise! This has to do with ability to put the puck in the net!  But you knew that already. The stat is devised from the goals scored stat produced by the player in the NHL. The scale for defencemen and forwards are different in regarding SC. This is a huge stat for forwards as you can imagine and it takes good defencemen and turns them into great ones.

EX – Experience is based on the number of games a player has played with giving some extra weight to the playoff experience. It has a limited effect on the OV rating.

LD – Leadership is basically subjective and player ratings seem to be in line with common knowledge about a player’s ability to provide leadership. Most of the captains of NHL teams have very high leadership ratings. The effect on the OV rating is limited. But when the sim option of Experience & Leadership is turned on, these players provide a higher level of play, especially in key games and playoffs.

Doubleshifting and The Seventh Defenceman Strategy
by Widell of THE LEAGUE on Monday 24 November 2003

This article deals with a strategy you can use to guard against several problems within a game that is out of the GMs control. It is also something to try when your team is struggling and needing to be "shaken up". This strategy can be invoked to help an injury-riddled team or a "one-line" team

This article deals with a strategy you can use to guard against several problems within a game that is out of the GMs control. It is also something to try when your team is struggling and needing to be "shaken up". This strategy can be invoked to help an injury-riddled team or a "one-line" team.

Doubleshifting is one of the oldest FHL sim strategies around. I noticed this probably the first month of playing sim hockey. Check any leagues lines page and you will see the veteran players quickly by the amount of team’s doubleshifting players. Any top player will have the EN necessary to double shift effectively. The advantages are obvious. The best players play more, increases chances to score. The hidden advantage is you have a definite matchup advantage to any team not doubleshifting. The drawback is possible tiring and ineffectiveness as the game goes along. There are several ways to combat this. In order to draw conclusions we must look at how the Ice Time is dividend amongst the lines. Some sim studies come to the following percentages of a game played at even strength.

1st line – 40%
2nd line – 30%
3rd line – 20%
4th line – 10%

Based on this data we can see that if we doubleshift the first line they will play 50% of the game played at even strength. Couple this with Power Play and Penalty Killing duties, this will seriously tax even the highest endurance forwards. Besides fatigue the injury risk for these forwards increases immensely. Teams who doubleshift the top line and have them on the top PP/PK units will suffer an inordinate amount of injuries with their top forwards. One way to combat this is to eliminate PK duty for these forwards. This will allow them some extra rest time. But there is a better way to doubleshift and allow full PK/PP duty especially for the team with two good lines. The secret is in the data above. If we take the 2nd line and double shift them on the 4th line we have effectively made the ice time equivalent to the top line. Besides the fact this group can be better rested with the "rest" between shifts and get the "matchup advantage" you have created a more effective top line by combining them into the 2nd & 4th lines. So some GMs will take their best line and use them in the 2nd & 4th slot rather than the 1st line slot and put their 2nd best line in the top line slot. If you have two very good lines you have just found a way to play the top lines for 80% of the game at even strength. With this knowledge you can see the 3rd line only has to be a serviceable group of players who wont allow a bunch of goals to be an effective line. With this knowledge, we can see the need for top 6 forwards and a group of decent bangers to solidify any team into a contender.

Dressing Seven defencemen is not as nearly as common as the doubleshifting strategy. In fact, I am not sure it is even documented strategy at all. I stumbled upon it by accident. With a recent set of games where my team suffered Defence injuries early in the game, I found the results to be quite inconsistent. Since you cannot manually substitute for the injured defenceman, the sim finds a player not assigned and inserts him in the lineup for the injured player. In the case of an idle forward and no extra dman, the sim will put a forward in the defencemans spot – the results are hardly ever good. BUT, the sim does look for a defenceman available. So if you dress seven, it will take the extra dman and put him in the even strength spot as necessary. Dressing seven defencemen will give you peace of mind that a reasonable substitute will be made for you. This may be more prevalent when you doubleshift forwards, because there are idle forwards. In the case of "rolling four lines" the results may be different.

As a result, we are coupling dressing seven defencemen strategy with the doubleshift strategy as a combination strategy. There is a hidden advantage in this strategy. Besides the very top defencemen; The Lidstroms, The Blakes & The Prongers, very few defencemen are adept in all styles of play while carrying the endurance necessary to play even-strength, power play & penalty killing. What you get in the sim is a lot of "specialist" who play effectively PP while ineffective PK and vice-versa. These players are cheap in trade because most GMs recognize their deficiencies. What we can do with seven defencemen is take these "specialist" and put them in roles in which they can thrive. We can easily find one solid top dman who can play all three roles, both with the necessary skills and endurance to be effective in ES, PP & PK. From there, we can try and find three "offensive" type dmen and three "defensive" type dmen. Take the three offensive types and split them up and use them on the power play units. Take the three defensive types and pair them with the offensive guys and spot them on the penalty killing units. A lot of these "defensive" types are considered 5th or 6th dmen by GMs and usually available cheap in trade.

Lastly, the advantage of this strategy is the defencemen are well rested and hardly ever tired so they are naturally more effective than usual. If you take any sim hockey player (called player A) and decrease his current energy level by 15%, then all player A’s attributes are decreased by 15%. So if we take a well rested who is 10% worse (called player B ) to begin with than player A we have a player who is 5% BETTER currently than player A…..So, we have increased the teams overall effectiveness while not increasing the talent level. This can also carry over to the spare forwards of the doubleshift strategy. If we take a player with 68DEF and well rested and compare him to a player who is 75DEF and 15% decreased in energy (75 x 15% = 63.75) we theoretically have a player who is playing at 4.25 points better defence. This is the advantage to high endurance and the ways to work around the lack of high endurance by spot playing your roster…….

By keeping two spare unassigned forwards & one defenceman in even strength you will cover yourself for injuries and ejections. You can also gain effectiveness by playing these players on special duties like penalty kill – increasing their effectiveness and not taxing your top players. Leaving you to play your top forwards for 80% of the game at even strength and adding Power Play time to that number.

DISCLAIMER: This is advised if you are looking for something to try. It has worked for me and I believe in the theory. Some of this has come from experimenting within the FHL simulator. Some of this has come from knowledge of how simulators in general tend to work. I do not encourage you to make changes when you are having success with your lines in some other form. I do encourage you try this if you are at your wit’s end and looking for something to try and help your team improve.

Beware of Overall
by Widell of The League on Monday 24 November 2003

Ever wonder about the Overall rating of player in FHLsim? Ever wonder how it’s calculated? How it works in determining games? Ever wonder why some other team has a 75ov player who ended up with 38 goals and your 75ov winger did virtually nothing? Well, it’s our job to unveil some of those mysteries, both known and unknown in this article.

Ever wonder about the Overall rating of player in FHLsim? Ever wonder how it’s calculated? How it works in determining games? Ever wonder why some other team has a 75ov player who ended up with 38 goals and your 75ov winger did virtually nothing? Well, it’s our job to unveil some of those mysteries, both known and unknown in this article.

First and foremost, many simulators like Sierra FrontPage Sports series never used an overall rating for players. Those types of ratings just told the key attributes for each position and left it at that for the player to figure out which player was the best for his needs. The advantage of those ratings is that you learn in detail, which attributes are key and you develop a good sense of player value very quickly.

Sean Bates had every intention of doing such a rating system, but at the very end threw in an OV attribute for a quick synopsis of player evaluation and he actually devised a use for the OV in the simulator. What he didn’t intend was to confuse the player evaluation process and unfortunately, that is exactly what he did. The actual use in the sim for OV is for dividing class of player. Anything over 80 is called a superstar and the sim is programmed to calculate the number of 80+ov players on your squad and effect attendance proportionally. Although, ticket prices & winning are more effective attendance attraction tools, you can have an extremely high ticket price and/or a very poor winning record and still have more than adequate attendance by having a number of over 80ov players on your squad. For use in deciding games and as a predictor of how your team will perform Overall is an absolutely useless and meaningless statistic.

But the drawback is in player evaluation. There are so many styles of players in the NHL and to hockey in general that most of them cannot accurately be evaluated with one single number. Basically, you have your skill players, snipers, power forwards, checking types, defensive & offensive defencemen and of course, role players. The best ways to evaluate these players is within the individual attributes and ignore Overall. Granted, this is difficult. Hard to trade a 76ov player straight up for a 72ov player and feel you got the better player, although it is possible. But if you have this evaluation process in your confidence, you can make that deal and get another player/prospect or pick and make out like a bandit.

In order to make sense of this evaluation its best that we discuss how the sim evaluates overall with each position and which attributes it deems important.

Forwards – OV takes several factors into evaluation. Two factors that effect OV very much are ST & IT. Strength & Intensity are attributes that can soar up OV quickly. Hence that obsession both sim and NHL teams have for the prototypical power forward. While both strength & intensity are effective in the sim, they are not necessary components for all your players on the team. All you really need are three forwards with high strength & intensity. If you package a few low ST skill players around these guys, it will increase the effectiveness of the low ST players. The really big factors for forwards are SC/PA/PC, it stands to reason that Scoring & passing are the keys to getting points on the board. As a result, a few points in any of these categories will impact overall significantly. Speed & Skating will effect forwards more than defenceman but less than goalies. The sim has a bias for fast players, but it seems to be less than the bias for strength. It is always a good idea to try and find a few forwards with high DEF ratings for your checking line and penalty killing units, but the key here as with anything in the sim is to achieve a balance. You cannot win with just defensive forwards as much as you can’t consistently win with a group of skill only players. DEF will not effect forwards significantly as the PC/PA/SC statistic. Here are the major attributes that effect forwards:

High – SC, PC, PA
Medium High – ST, IT
Medium – SK/SP/DEF
Medium Low –EN/DU/DI
Low – LD/EX

Defencemen – Some research uncovered some very interesting data about overall with the defencemen. The simulator basically categorizes defencemen in two different ways. Offensive & Defensive types. It takes the data inputted and decides if the defenceman is a skilled Dman and evaluates overall on the principle of skill. Oleg Tverdovsky is just such a defenceman; his skill stats in SP/SK/PA are so high, no matter how dreadful his DEF rating is inputted it will not effect overall much, if at all. So, you find him at 77ov in many leagues, that would be a legitimate #1 Dman rating, but he basically a power play specialist and should valued as such in trade. Meanwhile, if the sim sees a particularly high DEF rating on a player coupled with low skill numbers it will rate the defenceman based on defensive type. The defensive types will always be a notch or two lower than the skill guys in overall, but in most cases will be just as or more effective. The top defencemen are the players that combine some skill and high defence ratings a’la Rob Blake. Defenceman should also be thought of as a group, it’s only as good as its weakest link. When you cant get skill guys or high DEF ratings, stick to trying fill the remaining slots with Dmen with high IT & ST, usually these players are effective in keeping shot on goal down as their size and intensity neutralizes more skilled players and they block many shot attempts.

Medium High: PA/ST/SC
Medium: SK/SP
Medium Low: EN/DU/DI
Low: LD/EX

Goalies – Goalies are the easiest position in the simulator to evaluate. If nothing else, than there isn’t a difference in the types and styles of goalies. They all have the same job, stop the puck. Basically, if you just evaluated on a goalie on four attributes, you will do fine. Those attributes are SP/SK/PC/IT. You could take these four stats and add them up to evaluate one goalie versus another and get a very good indicator on which goalie is the best puck stopper. There are some wildcards in goaltenders that must be used to decipher the difference in quality of goalkeeper. Experience & Leadership should be very important to goalies. They can keep a high level of play or raise their play in key games and crunch time of games. Passing Accuracy would help the defencemen out in their own zone and likely decrease the opportunity for the opponent to create a forechecking turnover. Strength is often a tiebreaker in evaluating goaltenders. High Endurance & Durability is really a must in a No.1 goalie regardless of how it effects overall.

High: SP/SK/PC
Medium High: IT/ST
Medium: PA
Medium Low: DI/EN/DU
Low: EX/LD

This article is meant to help you assess overall versus individual attributes in trading and drafting. If you don’t need a high PC forward, don’t worry about the overall about the player you are trying to acquire, because without it the overall can only get so high anyway. If you are looking for a Defensive defenceman, then use that high skill type with poor defense rating as trade bait and get yourself a package of players & picks. Defenceman are only so effective in putting up points anyway, mostly they score on the power play. On the flip side of this, you have been probably evaluating players in trade without overall in mind if you do any evaluations including the player’s age & salary. Now, if you can separate the individual attributes just as you have in age & salary, you have a head start on all your competitors.