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01-29-2013, 01:12 AM
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Originally Posted by OcAirlines View Post
I'm new to this section of the boards so sorry if my questions have already been asked and answered.
Alright man - going to do my best to help you.

Originally Posted by OcAirlines View Post

I wanted to ask for some general advice on how players usually develop. I'm in my third Be A GM season now and I'm playing every game myself and not simming anything, so it all moves along sloooooowly and I don't want to waste any time trying to develop players there is actually no hope for. It's a real pain to try and google this stuff though so I'm asking here...
No worries - right place to ask questions. Very friendly community.

Originally Posted by OcAirlines View Post
1. First of all, how do 2 1/2 star players usually develop? I know probably none of them will become good NHLers, but where do they usually top out, given that they are drafted with a normal Overall-Skill like around 60. As it probably is for most people my Prospect-Pool if full of those players who were drafted in the later Rounds. I've given up on 2 star players but what about the 2 1/2 star guys? And is there a general rule of thumb for other star ratings as well (3, 3,5, 4 etc)?
Prospects grow based on 2-rule system. The "star system" and the "color system".

The star system = the obvious one; the number stars relates to how good they will be. 5-star = great, 2.5 and less = non-NHLers.

The color system = accuracy. Along with stars, players are assigned colors to the potential stars. Star colors can be either:

Green = high accuracy that the player will reach the indicated potential.

Gold = Medium accuracy that a player will reach the indicated potential.

Red = Low accuracy that a player will reach the indicated potential.

As far as ratings go.. the general rule of thumb is that:

3.5 star = 4th line, or bottom 6 pairing. Depth guys(high 70s-low 80s)

4 star = 2nd or 3rd line, or top 6 Dman. (mid 80s)

4.5 star = 1st line, or top 4 Dman. (83-88ish). Green 5-star = superstars

5 star = 1st line, top 2 Dman. (88-90ish). Green 5-star = superstars.

Anything below 3.5 star is pretty much a long shot, unless they are green 3 stars. At least that's my experience.

Originally Posted by OcAirlines View Post
2. What role does green/red potential play? Does it just display the likelihood a player reaches his potential, does it have an influence on development speed or does it basically increase/decrease the star-rating? I currently have a few players with green potential (1x4 stars, 1x3,5, 1x3) and one with red potential (3,5 stars) and haven't noticed much difference in their development speed so far.
Explained above, but it pretty much is the likelihood that a player reaches his potential.

A couple of real-life examples.

Nazem Kadri, Toronto Maple Leafs - very gifted offensive player, weak defensively. Looks like he could develop into a solid NHLer without ever being a top line guy. Probably 4-star potential, but lots of question marks about him means he's probably 4-star gold.

Nail Yakupov, Edmonton Oilers - extremely talented offensive player, has great vision and a great shot. Super energetic. Looks like someone who will put up a lot of points in the NHL, and will only become harder to contain.

Probably a 4.5 star potential, but seeing how talented he is, probably 4.5-star green.

Most of the players in the game that you will find, are gold. That means that there is a good chance that he will reach potential. Lots of factors in play though as to whether or not he does.

Originally Posted by OcAirlines View Post
3. Does it make a difference if you develop a player in the NHL/AHL/CHL/Europe? For example is it better to give someone an extra year in Juniors or have him play Bottom-Six in the AHL? I haven't really been able to recognize a patter there so far. I've seen Grigorenko jump from 64 to 71 and then from 71 to 75 while in Juniors (I'm using an older File where he only has 3 1/2 stars). Another Junior (Tyler King, 3 1/2 Stars) jumped from 66 to 76 in just one season as well while playing in Juniors. On the other hand many of my Prospects, especially the one in the 57-65 range (most of them with 2 1/2 stars) have only progressed very slowly, just gaining a point or two a season. Is it just because of the stars? Or do players with good skills like 65+ usually develop great in Juniors but those with a lower Overall rating never get out of the cellar?

And what about the AHL, where I can actually control playing time via the lines. I've seen Rasmus Ristolainen (3 1/2 stars, signed as an 18 year old immediately after the Draft) jump from 70 to 79 in one season after spending his first year on the top-pairing. Other players with similar or better star ratings (Pysyk and Armia with 4, some other with 3 1/2 or 3), who had lower Overall-Skills though (around 65) and therefore played smaller minutes have developed much slower so far though, only gaining about 2-4 points each season. Does so much depend on playing time? Or is this just a coincidence.
Quick note - you can't decide whether a player goes to junior or AHL. A player is not allowed to go to the AHL if they are still eligible for junior hockey (normally the case until they are 20 years old). Once they turn 20, you can keep them in your AHL team.

Rule #1 of developing prospects? LET THEM PLAY!

Especially at the young, early ages (18-24).

As for juniors - unless a player can go straight into your team and play top minutes, send him back to junior (ie. don't keep them up playing on your 4th line, at 7 minutes a game, etc). See Morgan Reilly - first year needs to play in junior. Second year, can fit into your top 4 (low 80s). If you can't, then send him down again and wait until you have room (will come back as an 83 or 84).

NHL experience is always more valuable than AHL experience, but consider the minutes your prospect is playing. Your prospect is likely better playing 20+ minutes in the AHL, than playing 9 in the NHL on your fourth line.

Rule #2 of developing prospects - just because a player's overall doesn't appear to change, doesn't mean prospect isn't improving.

Keep an eye on your prospect's stats. Even if you don't have the memory for it, keep an eye on the star-system for each category (is his offensive category improving by half a star? What about his puck skills? etc).

Not every single player attribute is weighted evenly. For example, a goalie's POISE is weighed HEAVILY while many of his other stats play almost no role (look at James Reimer - he's normally a low 80s goalie, but when you look at this attributes, his low poise masks what Reimer really is: an 86-88 overall goaltender).

So be able to recognize if your player is improving, even if his overall is not. You might have a prospect that is so terrible defensively, that his overall might hardly move. You won't recognize that though unless you check his attributes out, and realize that over the course of 2 years, his offensive attributes have all of a sudden gone through the roof, etc.

Rule # 3 of prospect development - try and surround your prospects with success.

In previous NHL games, you could ice all your prospects, tank, and eventually your team would become great because your prospects would grow.

That still happens in this game, but the progress time is so much slower. This time, it appears success of your team has quite a bit to do with your prospect development. So if your AHL team has a ton of prospects, try and make sure you nab a cheap FA goaltender that can backstop your team into the playoffs, for example. You'll likely notice that in years where either your NHL team or AHL team have TERRIBLE years, your prospects won't grow nearly as much as if your teams went onto playoff rounds.

Always aim to make at least one round of the playoffs with your minor league team.

Originally Posted by OcAirlines View Post
4. I guess most of the stuff above comes down to this final question: Is a players Overall Skill actually much more important than his potential in Stars? Because it kinda looks like it's almost impossible to develop players who aren't at least at 65 Overall and play big minutes right away. It seems like it's very tough to slowly bring someone in pro-shape and that you have to force-feed them big minutes instead so they develop. Is that assumption correct or is that some mistake I am making while managing the team? Or is my point of view just skewed because of all the 2 1/2 players who are actually very crappy and I just don't know it yet?
In mos cases, provided you aren't doing anything goofy (sitting a prospect out for an entire year, etc), your prospects will reach their potential (or get close) as long as you are playing them.

The trick is to be patient.

Perfect example - 2015 draft, I drafted Connor McDavid. 4.5-star, but a horrendous 51 overall. But I gave him top 2 line minutes in the AHL for about 5 years. At 24, he was 69 overall. Horrible. But once he got to 25, he jumped to a 79 overall (even though his offensive and senses attributes are all 90s). Another year, and he might be a star. At the very least, he's NHL ready now.

Be patient with your prospects, and make sure they are put into positions where they can succeed, and they will.

Originally Posted by OcAirlines View Post
5. And to end it all, I'd like for your thoughts on some prospects. Are they actually worth developing or should I try to trade them?

- Nathan Pancel (20 years, 4 stars green, 57 Overall, just drafted, in Juniors)
- A bunch of pretty similar players (18-20 years, 3 1/2 years, all around the 57-62 Overall range, just drafted, in Juniors)
- Brett Connolly (22 years, 4 stars, 76 Overall, traded for and currently in the AHL)
- Joel Armia/Mark Pysyk (21/22 years, 4 stars, 68/69 Overall, played in the AHL for one/two years but have developed pretty slowly so far)
- Geoffrey Spencer (20 years, 3 1/2 Stars, 69 Overall, just drafted and signed to an AHL-contract)
- Jerome Gauthier-Leduc (22 years, 3 1/2 Stars Red, 64 Overall, starts his 2nd year in the AHL)
- Zemgus Girgensons (20 years, 3 Stars Green, 68 Overall, played two years in the AHL but has developed slowly so far, created manually since he didn't exist in the original file)
- Ken Appleby (Goalie, 19 Years, 3 1/2 Stars, 56 Overall, drafted a season ago at 52 Overall, in Juniors)
- Nathan Lieuwen (Goalie, 23 Years, 3 Stars, 67 Overall, starts his 2nd AHL-season)

Thanks in advance, I know it's a pretty long post
I didn't look through all of your prospect list.

What I will say, is that if they are 3.5 star or better, sign them up and develop them.

Two things will happen.

a) You will a nice source of cheap talent that you can use to fill out your NHL roster (anywhere between high 70s-low 80 overall for 3.5 star.

b) if you can't use them, at least what you've done is you've developed a young asset that you can now trade. While they don't have the GREATEST trade value, prospects can be used in all sorts of creative ways in trades. Can be traded for 2nd round picks, or packaged for a 1st round pick, or packaged with a marquee player to land a super star, etc. Even if you don't intend to use a prospect, develop him and then use him as his trade value increases. It's a great way to make trades, and means that you don't have to give up anything major off your roster.

Hope that helps man.

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