A Solution for Probe League

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A Solution for Probe League

Post by Mets » Tue Jun 07, 2016 11:42 am

In theory, Probe League is perhaps the best feature that ZHL has to offer. It's supposed to be a league that offers competitive experience and development for novice players, but in practice it rarely offers either. More often than not, Probe League matches are nothing more than glorified pub games. I've watched several of them and constantly I see very basic mistakes being made (like having no third man, resulting in constant breakaway 1v1's vs the goalie), which leads me to believe that the developmental aspect of Probe League is not being stressed nearly enough. You can't blame team owners for not developing their probe players, as they already have enough to worry about with their ZHL team. So as a solution to this, I propose the following initiatives:

1. Separate ZHL and Probe League
ZHL and Probe League would have different owners. So, while in ZHL you have owners who are focused on running their ZHL teams, in Probe League you would have owners who are solely focused on coaching and developing players. Players interested in the Probe League would have to sign up for both ZHL and Probe League. The Probe League commissioner would have have to approve sign-ups for players, to make sure no one too good for the league was allowed in the draft. Since Probe would now be a separate league, it would have its own draft. This offers its own advantages, too. With the ZHL draft, owners will not always consider the makeup of their Probe team, instead still drafting with the thought of what they might need for their ZHL team as a sub deep into the draft. With Probe League having its own draft, however, owners could now better assemble a proper team.

2. Less teams, more activity
Since ZHL and Probe would be separate, you could have less teams now (since not every ZHL team would need a Probe team.) This means that you would no longer have the same inactivity issues in Probe. Furthermore, I would suggest removing the requirement to have Probe games casted, if no caster is available at the time.

3. Reward development, not just results
While it's great to see your Probe team win, is it all that helpful to the community if it's comprised of veteran players and EU stars? The Probe owner who was voted by the community to have done the best job developing his team should be given some sort of reward (trophy, skin, horn, etc.) for their service to the community. Not only would it be a deserving reward for the owner, but it would lead to increased competition between the coaches to do their best job developing players.

4. Rename "Probe League" to the "Zealot Hockey Developmental League" (ZHDL)
This would stress the new focused direction of the league.

As someone who is relatively new, I can tell you that it is not easy to break into competitive Zealot Hockey. If I didn't know several people in the community beforehand, I probably would not have been able to nearly as quickly as I have. There are many probe and even pub players who are skilled enough to be quality players, they just need the proper direction and coaching. Probe League has failed to do this, so let's try something new. If you have anything to add, please post it.
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Re: A Solution for Probe League

Post by ResSlayer » Tue Jun 07, 2016 12:03 pm

Having Probe completely seperate would definately benefit player improvement. Instead of drafting for ZHL backups, owners can draft players they want to coach and feel have potential. It also emphasizes the development of players skill over competition which I think is a really good thing, and I don't think thats a problem because players will still try hard to win the games to test their improvement.

The only problem with this is the additional organization required, and while having casting optional is definately a plus, I think it will be hard to find a commish/enough dedicated owners to make this work.

I do think something like this is what the community needs though. Mets is pretty much the only new player to break into high level ZH in a while and he has a background in banjoball, other than that is been goalies and skaters that have already been around for a while.

Great points brought up Mets, I hope this ends up working out.
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Re: A Solution for Probe League

Post by Cubs » Tue Jun 07, 2016 2:16 pm

I don't know if Mets is the only player to break into the ZHL as of recent, Yoda made a pretty quick jump and now he's arguably the best defender and Sir also went from probe hero to ZHL star in a similar fashion.

Unfortunately, Probe has been transformed from a system to farm potential ZHL starters to a second EU league on the NA server. If you look at the most competitive probe teams from season 7, most contained at least 1 if not more EU stars. All these spots given to people that are already proven in skill take up playing time for potential players and thus dissuade them as teams value being competitive rather than training.

I do not agree that probe and ZHL should be split up. From personal experience, having both together gives a greater experience for probes. In season 4, when I was a member of Shakuras, as most know Water made extensive efforts not only to improve the ZHL team but to train his probes up as well. If you break up the two sections you lose this as the probe players no longer have a mentor to learn from, because any probe owner will be a probe and a probe only, so it would be hard for someone who is at a probe level to coach someone up to a ZHL level.

While I've been against it in the past, I think we could add more teams to the league. While we may not have enough of the high tier talent such as Watermelons and Prosters to fit each team, we have plenty of talent in probe right now that could be competitive in ZHL. This then gets these probe players that are stuck on the bench a chance to improve because there will be spots for them now to fill on a team.

These are just my thoughts though, let me know if you agree or disagree.
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Re: A Solution for Probe League

Post by ResSlayer » Tue Jun 07, 2016 2:25 pm

Yoda and Sir both played before me so I wouldn't know how long they've been around but still that isn't many people. Your personal experience is quite outlying I think cubs, most of the owners in ZHL don't develop their probe players that much if at all. I'm pretty sure Mets is suggesting owners of this development league be ZHL starters that won't play in the league and will only coach.
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Re: A Solution for Probe League

Post by l)arkangel » Tue Jun 07, 2016 2:41 pm

Much love to EU, but cubs is right. It's become Lagging EU's League for the most part.

I don't agree with completely separating zhl and zhpl since zhpl wouldn't have the expertise of higher level players to guide them. I do agree with a separate zhpl owner though.

Thought:
  • ZHL owners pair up with a ZHPL owner before the season (ZHPL owner pre-approved by LM). Players who are deemed at a ZHL level and too good for ZHPL may choose to owner ZHPL without actually playing in it.
  • Both ZHL owners and ZHPL owners are assigned draft positions where they must choose to pick themselves.
  • ZHL owners draft for 5-6 rounds (probably depends on how many people leftover since we don't want ZHPL team size to be huge).
  • ZHPL owners then draft the remaining players onto their ZHPL team.
  • Players drafted onto ZHL may not play in ZHPL.
  • Players drafted into ZHPL may be brought up to ZHL, but this will not affect their ability to play ZHPL at any point in the season (including playoffs because if you improve that much during a season then good for you, you shouldn't be kept out of probe league playoffs because you got good quickly).
  • ZHL/ZHPL would be responsible for rescheduling individually. They would not be attached to one another.
  • disallow European players from ZHPL....... but allow them for ZHL....
Pros:
1. ZHPL will have more rigid eligibility rules so we won't have to go look at how many GP a player has at a level.
2. ZHPL owners will be able to PICK THEIR TEAM! They'll probably have a solid understanding of chemistry/attendance levels of these players.
3. Gives ZHPL owners a chance to practice being an owner without the regular season ZHL stress (since everyone would still make playoffs in ZHPL, but there should probably be bye's for top seeded teams in this format)
4. Since ZHL owners and ZHPL owners agreed to be on the same team from the get go, there's a high likelihood they'll have decent communication between each other as the season goes on (feedback on each others play, etc).

Cons:
The only issue with this that I see is that attendance locked players could drop to ZHPL level, but then again good enough attendance locked players would still be drafted by the 5th or 6th round probably.
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Re: A Solution for Probe League

Post by HALOUNSC » Tue Jun 07, 2016 4:28 pm

Make ZHL or Probe League ON SATURDAYS!!!!!
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Re: A Solution for Probe League

Post by Mets » Tue Jun 07, 2016 4:40 pm

Cubs wrote:I don't know if Mets is the only player to break into the ZHL as of recent, Yoda made a pretty quick jump and now he's arguably the best defender and Sir also went from probe hero to ZHL star in a similar fashion.

Unfortunately, Probe has been transformed from a system to farm potential ZHL starters to a second EU league on the NA server. If you look at the most competitive probe teams from season 7, most contained at least 1 if not more EU stars. All these spots given to people that are already proven in skill take up playing time for potential players and thus dissuade them as teams value being competitive rather than training.

I do not agree that probe and ZHL should be split up. From personal experience, having both together gives a greater experience for probes. In season 4, when I was a member of Shakuras, as most know Water made extensive efforts not only to improve the ZHL team but to train his probes up as well. If you break up the two sections you lose this as the probe players no longer have a mentor to learn from, because any probe owner will be a probe and a probe only, so it would be hard for someone who is at a probe level to coach someone up to a ZHL level.

While I've been against it in the past, I think we could add more teams to the league. While we may not have enough of the high tier talent such as Watermelons and Prosters to fit each team, we have plenty of talent in probe right now that could be competitive in ZHL. This then gets these probe players that are stuck on the bench a chance to improve because there will be spots for them now to fill on a team.

These are just my thoughts though, let me know if you agree or disagree.
Three new skaters in a year timeframe (two of them having extensive experience on a similar game), when there are dozens upon dozens of probe level players who play daily is a sign of failure.

Under this system, probe owners would not be players. They would be ZHL level players who are dedicated to coaching and developing players like Watermelon was for you in Season 4.

Adding two teams to ZHL and subtracting two from Probe could work. It would lead to more activity in Probe League and give more experience to borderline players.
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Re: A Solution for Probe League

Post by Mets » Tue Jun 07, 2016 4:45 pm

l)arkangel wrote:Much love to EU, but cubs is right. It's become Lagging EU's League for the most part.

I don't agree with completely separating zhl and zhpl since zhpl wouldn't have the expertise of higher level players to guide them. I do agree with a separate zhpl owner though.

Thought:
  • ZHL owners pair up with a ZHPL owner before the season (ZHPL owner pre-approved by LM). Players who are deemed at a ZHL level and too good for ZHPL may choose to owner ZHPL without actually playing in it.
  • Both ZHL owners and ZHPL owners are assigned draft positions where they must choose to pick themselves.
  • ZHL owners draft for 5-6 rounds (probably depends on how many people leftover since we don't want ZHPL team size to be huge).
  • ZHPL owners then draft the remaining players onto their ZHPL team.
  • Players drafted onto ZHL may not play in ZHPL.
  • Players drafted into ZHPL may be brought up to ZHL, but this will not affect their ability to play ZHPL at any point in the season (including playoffs because if you improve that much during a season then good for you, you shouldn't be kept out of probe league playoffs because you got good quickly).
  • ZHL/ZHPL would be responsible for rescheduling individually. They would not be attached to one another.
  • disallow European players from ZHPL....... but allow them for ZHL....
Pros:
1. ZHPL will have more rigid eligibility rules so we won't have to go look at how many GP a player has at a level.
2. ZHPL owners will be able to PICK THEIR TEAM! They'll probably have a solid understanding of chemistry/attendance levels of these players.
3. Gives ZHPL owners a chance to practice being an owner without the regular season ZHL stress (since everyone would still make playoffs in ZHPL, but there should probably be bye's for top seeded teams in this format)
4. Since ZHL owners and ZHPL owners agreed to be on the same team from the get go, there's a high likelihood they'll have decent communication between each other as the season goes on (feedback on each others play, etc).

Cons:
The only issue with this that I see is that attendance locked players could drop to ZHPL level, but then again good enough attendance locked players would still be drafted by the 5th or 6th round probably.
Under the system I described, the Probe owner would be a ZHL caliber player who wants to coach and develop players. They would not be able to play in Probe league.
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Re: A Solution for Probe League

Post by Blitz » Tue Jun 07, 2016 5:37 pm

Cubs wrote:I don't know if Mets is the only player to break into the ZHL as of recent, Yoda made a pretty quick jump and now he's arguably the best defender and Sir also went from probe hero to ZHL star in a similar fashion.
Just to clarify it took yoda 2 full seasons before he became elite in his third season. He also learned the majority of his fundamentals from me in season 5 when I spent 50+ hours coaching him. He didn't even want to be a defender until I told him he had the potential to be a great defender. So no he didn't really have a quick jump, he also may be the best defender (not sure I don't play anymore, but if so its only because me/Guer don't play much anymore... I haven't played in a month or so). So I think the point that mets is making is that he is the only decent player to blossom on his own in the timeframe of one season (which is 100% truth).
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Re: A Solution for Probe League

Post by Yoda » Tue Jun 07, 2016 5:51 pm

can I not be part of this discussion thx, im trash. ok bye :D !
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