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Old 06-12-2016, 10:46 PM   #1
Bets
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AI Only Sim - "And So We Begin..."

I have always found it interesting to watch the league unfold in the AI's hands – without interference by a human-controlled GM. And so, I have decided to document the events as they unfold for anyone else that is interested in the results. My goal will be to present this data in semi-aesthetically pleasing way. Further discussion on the "AI Only Sim" is encouraged!

Simulation Milestone Reviews:
  • Opening Day
  • Monthly Recaps
  • All-Star Break
  • Trading Deadline
  • Playoff Race April
  • Stanley Cup Playoffs
  • NHL Entry Draft
  • Free Agent Frenzy
...and more!

And so we begin...

30 Teams. 2 460 Games. 16 Wins. 1 Stanley Cup.

Who will win? Will a dynasty be born? Will a "curse" be shattered? Who has what it takes to lead their team to eternal glory?

Stay tuned.

Last edited by Bets; 06-12-2016 at 10:55 PM.
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Old 06-13-2016, 02:12 AM   #2
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Leading Up To Opening Day

Leading up to opening day the AI was fairly quiet, lapsing the rights of a few players and signing some of their former draft picks to entry league deals. Apart from that, here is a look at the two other transactions that occured:

October 1st, 2015
Sign Todd Bertuzzi @ $2,200,000 cap hit for 2 years

At 40 years old, Todd Bertuzzi inks what will most likely be his final NHL contract and he'll be playing with what looks like a serious Stanley Cup contender.

October 5th, 2015
Trade Jaromir Jagr to for Damon Severson

Huge trade before the start of the season saw Jaromir Jagr return back to New Jersey – a team where he spent two seasons prior to signing with Florida. In return, Florida receives a prospect defenceman on a cheaper two-year contract.

Here is a look at both players in their new uniforms and a glimpse at their current contracts:

Standard NHL contract @ $3,500,000 cap hit for 1 year


Entry level contract @ $605,833 cap hit for 2 years
Quote:
Contract Breakdown:
2015/16: $575,000 ($67,500)
2016/17: $600,000 ($67,500)
And that recaps the transactions! Who do YOU think won? You can now cast your vote: Which team won in terms of transactions leading up to Opening Night?

Last edited by Bets; 06-14-2016 at 01:45 PM.
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Old 06-13-2016, 03:10 AM   #3
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Opening Night

The date is October 7th, 2015 and the teams are raring to compete. Unfortunately for an unlucky group, some NHLers will have to wait before they can lace up their skates for the start of the season. Here is a look at the pre-season injury report which highlights some of the more impactful injuries:

Marc-Andre Fleury out 10 more days with a strained posterior cruciate ligament
Michal Neuvirth out 12 more days with chronic back soreness
Torey Krug out 15 more days with shoulder soreness
Mike Fisher out 17 more days with a strained bicep
John Klingberg out 17 more days with recurring back spasms

In other news, with the start of a new NHL season comes the "oh-so-accurate" predictions. According to the analysts:
Quote:
With the National Hockey League season about to get underway, the early Stanley Cup favourites appear to be the New York Rangers, led by goalie Henrik Lundqvist. General Manager Jeff Gorton has built a squad that will be the team to beat this year, but they can expect challenges from Jim Rutherford's Pittsburgh Penguins and St. Louis, featuring winger Vladimir Tarasenko.

Among the darkhorses, Washington stands out as a possible challenger, with a big season by Alex Ovechkin capable of pushing them into contender status.

The scoring race will likely be Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby challenged by Alex Ovechkin of Washington and Tampa Bay's Steven Stamkos.

The top defenceman in the league is generally considered to be Ottawa Senators blueliner Erik Karlsson, with Nashville's Shea Weber and P.K. Subban of Montreal also in the running.

Finally, among goaltenders, Montreal's Carey Price stands out as the league's best, while New York Rangers netminder Henrik Lundqvist and Jonathan Quick of Los Angeles can also steal games for their teams.
Here is a look at my projected bracket starting at the conference finals:


As you can see, my predictions have the Chicago Blackhawks repeating as Stanley Cup champions after beating the Washington Capitals in 5 games!

On top of these predictions this is what I also expect to happen:
  • The Chicago Blackhawks will win the Presidents' Trophy
  • The Edmonton Oilers and San Jose Sharks will compete for the Western Conference Finals
  • The New York Rangers and Tampa Bay Lightning will compete for the Eastern Conference Finals
  • Conner McDavid will win the Calder Memorial Trophy
  • The Winnipeg Jets will finish last in the NHL
  • The Arizona Coyotes will win the "Auston Matthews Sweepstakes"
  • Steven Stamkos will sign a contract extension before the Trade Deadline
  • New Jersey Devil's Jaromir Jagr will be traded to another team that misses the playoffs

What do YOUR predictions look like?

(The first month of the season will be underway shortly, but your predictions are still more than welcome!)

Last edited by Bets; 06-13-2016 at 03:14 AM.
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Old 06-13-2016, 05:46 AM   #4
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October Recap

The month of October has concluded! Most NHLers were excited to show their general managers what they were signed big bucks to do while the rest are still trying to find their A-game. Regardless, there are already some interesting things to note.

First, let's recap the impactful injuries for the month of October:

October 14th, 2015
Matt Read out 21 days with recurring back spasms
Cam Atkinson out 22 days with chronic back soreness

October 15th, 2015
Braydon Coburn out 20 days with recurring back spasms

October 17th, 2015
Tuuka Rask out 330 days with a ruptured medial collateral ligament

October 22nd, 2015
Derek Stepan out 18 days with a calf laceration

October 28th, 2015
Chris Kunitz out 16 days with forearm tendinitis

October 30th, 2015
Carl Söderberg out 23 days with a strained back

As for transactions, it was a very quiet month of October. There was only a single minor trade and a handful of waiver claims as shown below:

October 19th, 2015
Trade Martin Gernat to for a 3rd Round Draft Pick (Vancouver), 2016 NHL Entry Draft

Waiver Wire Claims:
Jeff Zatkoff acquired on waivers by
Matt Donovan acquired on waivers by
Louis Leblanc acquired on waivers by
Taylor Beck acquired on waivers by
Tanner Glass acquired on waivers by

With those transactions out of the way, we look on towards the results for the month of October. It was a busy month for some clubs as a few teams got the ball rolling on their push for the playoffs. Take a look at the standings and stats leaders for the month of October:


As of October 30th, 2015

A number of interesting notes:
  • held the longest undefeated streak at 7-0-0
  • held the longest points streak at 7-0-2
  • Jaromir Jagr has 7 points (1G, 6A)
  • are 3-1-0 since Malcolm Subban took over for the injured Tuuka Rask
  • remain undefeated in their home rink at 4-0-0
  • Chris Kreider has the most shots without a goal with 40
  • Mike Condon holds the most impressive undefeated record amongst goalies at 4-0-0

Who's Hot?
A look at the hottest teams as of late. The record indicates their last few matches while the number in brackets indicates their position in the league standings.
  1. 4-1-0 (1st)
  2. 3-2-0 (3rd)
  3. 5-0-0 (4th)
  4. 3-1-1 (5th)
  5. 3-1-1 (2nd)
Is it luck or is it skill?

Who's Cold?
A look at the coldest teams as of late.
  1. 0-5-0 (29th)
  2. 0-5-0 (28th)
  3. 1-3-1 (30th)
  4. 1-3-1 (21st)
  5. 2-3-0 (18th)
Is it bad luck or is it fate?

Looking forward to the month of November, I expect the Calgary Flames to start running out of fuel in the Pacific, the Tampa Bay Lightning to win more games and pull closer to Montreal in the Atlantic, the Chicago Blackhawks to begin to run away in the Central, and the New York Islanders to switch places with Washington.

It will be interesting to see how the hot goaltending tandem of Jonathan Quick and Jhonas Enroth will do in November, how Boston handles the absence of Tuuka Rask for the rest of the season, and whether or not McDavid can find his rhythm in the NHL and lead the pitiful Edmonton Oilers to the playoffs – or at least a race for the final wildcard spot that does not end before the All-Star game. By the way, Anthony Duclair of the Arizona Coyotoes currently leads rookies skaters with 11 points (6G, 5A) and Jack Eichel in second with 10 points (3G, 7A) – Connor McDavid has only put up 6 points (3G, 3A).

That's it for the month of October! What are YOUR thoughts on how the season started? And what are YOU looking forward to in the month of November?
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Old 06-13-2016, 12:57 PM   #5
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If you are reading this and you recall my predictions, I want to make it aware that I only realized after the fact what my predictions implied. In past simulations, I have seen this conference finals match-up before around the 3rd/4th year, and thought it would be interesting to predict this for the 1st year.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bets View Post
Here is a look at my projected bracket starting at the conference finals:


As you can see, my predictions have the Chicago Blackhawks repeating as Stanley Cup champions after beating the Washington Capitals in 5 games!

On top of these predictions this is what I also expect to happen:
  • The Chicago Blackhawks will win the Presidents' Trophy
  • The Edmonton Oilers and San Jose Sharks will compete for the Western Conference Finals
However, I didn't completely realize what I had predicted until after the graphic was already made and felt that it would be cheating to change it after the fact.

Considering that both the teams in each match up (Pittsburgh/Washington and Chicago/St. Louis) are divisional opponents, my prediction assumes that both the Metropolitan and the Central will win a wildcard and play in the crossover.

But it doesn't end there, I also picked Chicago to win the Presidents' trophy, which means it has to be St. Louis in the west to finish in the 1st wildcard spot so they crossover to the Pacific.

It goes further...

I chose both Edmonton and San Jose – Pacific divisional teams – to play in the Western Semi-Finals. That means that either of those two teams must also win in the wildcard (alongside St. Louis) and finish last amongst the playoff teams.

Overall, either I am an absolute genius on these predictions and should start playing the lottery, or I should get some sleep before making predictions in the future.

I actually had Tampa Bay over Washington in the East but thought it would be boring to have a rematch of the Cup final the year before (I've had it in previous GM modes). Additionally, usually the San Jose Sharks are my prediction for the first year conference finals, but I decided to shake it up with a St. Louis pick.

Little did I know at the time how much I really shook things up!

Last edited by Bets; 06-13-2016 at 01:02 PM.
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Old 06-13-2016, 02:33 PM   #6
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November Recap

I was way too excited to get the next month underway! I am not sure if people are just uninterested in this sort of thing or if the boards are a little more inactive than I thought. Either way I'll continue this project as long as I am having fun doing so!

Without further adieu...

The month of November saw NHL action start to heat up. Some teams have even started pulling ahead of the pack while others are showing signs of a disappointing year and are falling behind. But, before we discuss the standings and stats, let's look at the monthly injury report and transactions!

There were a number of impactful injuries compared to the previous month of October:

November 7th, 2015
Brent Burns out 25 days with a strained groin
Brad Marchand out 27 days with a fractured foot
Aaron Ekblad out 28 days with a latissimus dorsi strain

November 10th, 2015
Craig Anderson out 25 days with a strained shoulder

November 12th, 2015
David Backes out 24 days with chronic back soreness
Tyler Seguin out 25 days with recurring back spasms

November 14th, 2015
Filip Forsberg out 20 days with shoulder soreness

November 21st, 2015
Andrew Ladd out 130 days with triceps tendinitis

November 23rd, 2015
Paul Stastny out 25 days with shoulder bursitis

November 28th, 2015
Martin Havlat out 328 days with a ruptured medial collateral ligament

And the minor league pickups via the waiver wire:
Reto Berra acquired on waivers by
Kyle Brodziak acquired on waivers by
Viktor Stålberg acquired on waivers by

Finally, there is one single trade to report on for the month of November. Unfortunately, however, it does not make as big of a splash as you would expect considering a player involved in the trade will most likely finish the season in the minors (unless injuries occur).

November 17th, 2015
Trades Cam Talbot to for Ian Cole

Cam Talbot is on a Standard NHL contract @ $525,000 cap hit for 1 year while Ian Cole has a Standard NHL contract @ $2,100,000 cap hit for 3 years.

How have some of these bigger name players faired with their new teams so far? Let's take a closer look:


Quote:
2 GP, 0 G, 0 A, 0 PTS, 0 PIM, 0 +/-, 16:09 AvgTOI, 70 GR

Quote:
25 GP, 6 G, 5 A, 11 PTS, 22 PIM, +1, 15:56 AvgTOI, 67 GR

Quote:
21 GP, 7 G, 7 A, 14 PTS, 14 PIM, -12, 18:55 AvgTOI, 70 GR

Quote:
9 GP, 2 G, 2 A, 4 PTS, 6 PIM, -2, 21:00 AvgTOI, 67 GR
Which player has been the bigger asset so far for his new current team?

Now let's take a look at how the month of November panned out for everyone else:

As of November 30th, 2015

As predicted, the Calgary Flames cooled off, Tampa Bay put together a 9-4-1 record to compete with Montreal and Detroit in the Atlantic, and the Chicago Blackhawks went on a monstrous 11-1-1 tear in the Central. My one incorrect prediction was the New York Islanders and the Washington Capitals switching places in the standings, however, the Capitals have kept the pace with the Metropolitan division leaders.

A number of interesting notes:
  • Chris Kunitz now has the most shots without a goal at 57, has he fully recovered from his forearm tendinitis injury at the end of October?
  • Martin Havlat (2 GP), Henrik Samuelsson (3 GP), Colin McDonald (8 GP), and Daniel Winnick (11 GP), all have a 100% shooting percentage – unfortunately, they all have only registered 1 shot on goal
  • Ryan Kessler is the King of Faceoffs with a record of 221-145 (60.4%)
  • Jean-Francois Bèrubè takes over as the best undefeated backup goalie with a 5-0-0 record, however, he currently resides in the AHL
  • are dominating as they lead the league in G/G (3.56) and GA/G (1.96)
  • lead the league in short handed goals with 5, Lauri Korpikoski & Mark Letestu both have 2
  • have an abysmal home attendance average of 11,876... are fans upset at the Jagr trade?
Looking forward to December, my predictions are:
  • The Edmonton Oilers will leap over the Calgary Flames & San Jose Sharks in the Pacific– they have already started picking things up as Connor McDavid kickstarted his rookie dominance
  • The Detroit Red Wings to fall behind the Montreal Canadiens and the Tampa Bay Lightning in the Atlantic
  • The Chicago Blackhawks to continue their tear in the Central and take the lead for the Presidents' Trophy
  • The Pittsburgh Pengins to find their flair and end up in a 3-way battle with the New York Islanders and Washington Capitals in the Metropolitan

To follow up on October's curiosity, Jhonas Enroth has fallen out of favour in Los Angeles, however, Jonathan Quick continues to put up top 10 numbers. The Boston Bruins struggle to win without Tuukka Rask and Malcolm Subban is struggling to put up comparable numbers to him. Lastly, as mentioned earlier, Connor McDavid has begun to tear up the rookie scoring race with 22 points (7G, 15A), Anthony Duclair a close second with 19 points (12G, 7A), and Jack Eichel pulling up in 3rd place with 16 points (5G, 11A).

It will be interesting to keep up with the rookie scoring race as well as the other scoring races – goals, assists, and points – in the NHL. It's nice to see names like Anders Lee and Max Pacioretty battle for the leaderboards, but will they be able to keep up the pace with the established scorers like Alex Ovechkin, Jonathon Toews, Steven Stamkos and Patrick Kane? Lastly, will the injury bug that the St. Louis Blues have ran into lately effect their standings heading into December?

That's it for the month of November! What are YOUR thoughts on how the season has progressed? And what are YOU looking forward to in the month of December?

Last edited by Bets; 06-13-2016 at 02:46 PM.
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Old 06-13-2016, 10:29 PM   #7
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Old 06-13-2016, 10:48 PM   #8
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following aswell
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Old 06-14-2016, 09:18 AM   #9
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This is fantastic, I'll be following for sure!
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Old 06-18-2016, 07:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bets View Post
I have always found it interesting to watch the league unfold in the AI's hands – without interference by a human-controlled GM. And so, I have decided to document the events as they unfold for anyone else that is interested in the results. My goal will be to present this data in semi-aesthetically pleasing way. Further discussion on the "AI Only Sim" is encouraged!

Simulation Milestone Reviews:
  • Opening Day
  • Monthly Recaps
  • All-Star Break
  • Trading Deadline
  • Playoff Race April
  • Stanley Cup Playoffs
  • NHL Entry Draft
  • Free Agent Frenzy
...and more!

And so we begin...

30 Teams. 2 460 Games. 16 Wins. 1 Stanley Cup.

Who will win? Will a dynasty be born? Will a "curse" be shattered? Who has what it takes to lead their team to eternal glory?

Stay tuned.

I've just bought FHM 2 in the last 5 minutes. I am the same as you, Bets, with my OOTP 17 baseball leagues. I enjoy letting the AI take over and watching the league unfold over the years. I would often step in to add new fictional players, sometimes to shake up the league. I would take players out, suspend them, all to see how the league and teams adapt to the changes. I will do the same with my fictional hockey league, too.

I will enjoy watching your league evolve, Bets.
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Old 06-20-2016, 09:03 PM   #11
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I do this as well sometimes on my free time, great stuff so far!
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Old 06-21-2016, 09:33 PM   #12
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I was looking forward to continuing this, however, all of my saved game files have been deleted somehow.

When I went to load the save, a message popped up that said "Invalid Database" and then when I checked my saved games folder, everything was deleted.

Maybe I'll try again, but I'll probably be less detailed as this setback is pretty demotivating.

Last edited by Bets; 06-21-2016 at 09:34 PM.
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Old 06-27-2016, 12:07 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bets View Post
I have always found it interesting to watch the league unfold in the AI's hands – without interference by a human-controlled GM. And so, I have decided to document the events as they unfold for anyone else that is interested in the results. My goal will be to present this data in semi-aesthetically pleasing way. Further discussion on the "AI Only Sim" is encouraged!

Simulation Milestone Reviews:
  • Opening Day
  • Monthly Recaps
  • All-Star Break
  • Trading Deadline
  • Playoff Race April
  • Stanley Cup Playoffs
  • NHL Entry Draft
  • Free Agent Frenzy
...and more!

And so we begin...

30 Teams. 2 460 Games. 16 Wins. 1 Stanley Cup.

Who will win? Will a dynasty be born? Will a "curse" be shattered? Who has what it takes to lead their team to eternal glory?

Stay tuned.

this is an awesome idea, i am looking forward to following this as you post more. (excitedly getting ready to read all that has been posted to this point as well thanks!)
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Old 06-27-2016, 12:15 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bets View Post
I was looking forward to continuing this, however, all of my saved game files have been deleted somehow.

When I went to load the save, a message popped up that said "Invalid Database" and then when I checked my saved games folder, everything was deleted.

Maybe I'll try again, but I'll probably be less detailed as this setback is pretty demotivating.
aw, that is unfortunate. i am sorry for the loss of the files.
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