PDN’s MVP Ballot

Deciding who should win the MVP of any league – no matter how large is small – depends on personal preference. Some people think of the MVP as the best player (which is also arbitrary) on the league’s best team. Others think that, to be the MVP, a player must be the best statistically speaking.

Keeping in mind that this discussion is a matter of opinion, here’s my take.

We’ll start with a list of the eighteen players that the AUDL posted on its Facebook for fans to choose from and select as the league’s MVP.

  • Brett Anderson
  • Ben Ayers
  • Nate Botti
  • Evan Boucher
  • Cameron Brock
  • Teddy Browar-Jarus
  • Rob Dulabon
  • KJ Dziak
  • Jonathan Helton
  • David Hochhalter
  • John Korber
  • Brandon Malecek
  • Timmy Meyers
  • Sean Murray
  • Greg Owens
  • Benjamin Parris
  • Jake Rainwater
  • Brodie Smith

Immediately, let’s eliminate any player whose team sported a below .500 record, which makes our list now look like this:

  • Brett Anderson
  • Evan Boucher
  • Cameron Brock
  • Jonathan Helton
  • John Korber
  • Sean Murray
  • Greg Owens
  • Benjamin Parris
  • Jake Rainwater
  • Brodie Smith

These eliminations also lead us to our first Not-MVP award of the day, the MVPOALPT (Most Valuable Player on a Last Place Team) Award

This goes to Rob Dulabon, who finished second in the AUDL in goals scored and total defenses. Dulabon, who will play for Oakland this club series, had himself a fantastic season, one of the only bright spots in an otherwise grim year in Buffalo. Without him, the Hunters may not have won a game.

So, we are left with players from the best four teams in the league, record-wise, and we’re going to think about the league’s MVP through this lens- to be the MVP of the league, you have to be the MVP of your own team.

For the Constitution, we have John Korber and Brett Anderson. While Anderson had himself a fine season, the Constitution’s MVP has to be John Korber, who had scored his league-high 72 goals without playing the last month of the season. Korber has continually provided Connecticut not only with points on the scoreboard, but with the team’s personality. Even after the financial trouble between the Constitution and the league began, Korber continued to be the team’s spokesperson.

Both Evan Boucher and Benjamin Parris had phenomenal seasons for BGR, providing the team with the two-pronged attack that continually left other teams helpless. To break this standstill, we’ll go to the stats, which slightly give the edge to Boucher. Parris had a hand in more of the team’s points with his 38 assists and 47 scores, but Boucher had similar numbers (40 assists and 30 goals), while sporting a better assist-turnover ratio. Parris turned over more discs than he assisted with, while Boucher only turned it over 24 times while assisting on 40 scores.

The Spinners’ Sean Murray, Greg Owens, and Jake Rainwater stood out whenever they took the field for Philadelphia, which makes this a difficult choice. We’ll eliminate Owens, who doesn’t have the stats to stay in the discussion with Murray and Rainwater. As for the two Spinners who are left, the stats don’t provide clarity. Rainwater assisted with 27 scores while pulling in 49 goals, while Murray had 27 and 43 respectively. Murray had just four more Ds than Rainwater as well.

In this case, we’ll give it to the player who stood out the most on the field, and that’s Jake Rainwater.

Murray’s elimination leads to our second Not-MVP award, MVG (Most Valuable Gymnast)

Murray’s backflips following his scores always got the crowd onto its feet this season, and his vertical jump give him the edge on 50-50 discs.

The Indianapolis Alleycats’ three stars- Cameron Brock, Brodie Smith and Goose Helton- are easily differentiated in regards to the MVP discussion. Brodie is the league’s MVIP (Most Valuable, Injured Player), as suggested by @PParris8 on Twitter. Who knows what types of stats he may have put up had he played an entire season, but the fact is that he only played through April, making him ineligible for MVP in my mind.

As for Brock and Goose, these guys were both fantastic for Indy. After Brodie injured himself in April, Helton filled in seamlessly, ending the season with 64 assists and 34 goals. Brock was no slouch himself, touting the second-most goals in the league with 63 in addition to 22 assists.

Rather than choose outright, we’ll leave both in the pool as we go to our mock-MVP ballot.

With Boucher, Korber, Rainwater, Brock, and Goose still in contention, we’ll count down from 5.

5. Evan Boucher- Bluegrass Revolution

A good season, but the four players above him were a little more deserving.

4. John Korber- Connecticut Constitution

Had Korber finished off the season, he’d hands-down be the MVP of the league, in my mind. He’d have scored over 100 goals, but sadly, in the same way that the fans were denied a Spinners-Constitution Eastern Division Championship, Connecticut’s legal tussle with the league keeps an MVP trophy (assuming they have one) out of Korber’s hands.

3. Cameron Brock- Indianapolis Alleycats

Brock was the MVP of the Western Division Championship, scoring 13 of Indy’s 22 goals on the night, but he finishes third in this voting. He places behind Goose due to Helton’s directly picking up the heavy assisting while Brock’s role didn’t change as significantly after Brodie went down.

2. Jake Rainwater- Philadelphia Spinners

Rainwater was the best player on the league’s best team, but that wasn’t enough for him to take home the MVP of the league. Fortunately for Rainwater, he’ll have a chance on Saturday to defeat Goose’s Alleycats for the AUDL Championship, and prove yours truly wrong about who truly was the league’s most valuable player.

1. Jonathan “Goose” Helton – Indianapolis Alleycats

Funnily enough, for as suspect as the Facebook voting for MVP is on the AUDL’s Facebook page, which could have allowed popularity to reign over quality play, the fans who voted got the top 2 correct (if the rankings hold).

Goose did it all for the Alleycats this season, leading them back from a 1-3 start and an injury to Indy’s star player to finish the season 9-8, which was good enough to take the Western Division.

Sure, Helton did have 51.5 turnovers to end the regular season, but he never was afraid to face the pressure head-on.

We’ll see how he handles the league’s largest stage to boot on Saturday, when he and his Alleycats take on Jake Rainwater and the Philly Spinners at the Silverdome to determine who will take home the AUDL Championship.

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