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PostSubject: WEEK 24 (FINAL)   Mon Apr 11, 2016 11:13 am

Agonizingly close to winning the FHL Cup in past seasons, the Polar Bears faithful were finally rewarded for their loyalty, GM Elya’s team claiming their first-ever championship on Sunday.

From the get-go, the Polar Bears appeared to be skating toward the FHL Cup. On October 9th, playing his first game of the season, the Bears Justin Abdelkader recorded his first (and probably last) career hat trick. The performance - coupled with a two goal game from the then suspect (both literally and figuratively) Patrick Kane - had the other GM’s scratching their heads, already.

A longtime advocate of "great defense wins Cups," GM Elya selected Erik Karlsson with his first pick - the first time in the 23-year history of the league that a defenseman was picked first overall. Karlsson would not disappoint, his 82 points (16g, 66a) labeling him the best NHL defender; remarkably, the 4th best player overall.

While the Karlsson pick was GM Elya's smartest move, his shrewdest pick was rolling the dice on Patrick Kane. A former first-rounder, the then-troubled star was ignored by the first 45 picks. The Bears brass scooped up Kane with the 22nd pick in the second round. A one-man wrecking crew during the first half of the season, Kane would lead all NHL scorers with 46 goals and 106 points.

With bonus games aplenty, Karlsson and Kane often hogged the spotlight, but Ben Bishop was largely responsible for keeping the Bears on course. A Polar Bears favorite, Bishop was the team's backbone, the workhorse goaltender finishing with 35 wins and 6 shutouts.

Brad Marchand also played a pivotal role. Trade bait during the first half of the season, Marchand would eventually land a full-time job with the Polar Bears; the undrafted winger pocketing 37 goals, many of them crucial late-season tallies when the Bears were under fire.

The Polar Bears were good all year, rarely floundering, however one day will be forever remembered as the turning point. On February 6th - having just fumbled the lead - the Polar Bears erupted for a single-day FHL record of 40.7 points. The jaw-dropping performance provided the Bears with a 34.6 point lead; a lead they would never relinquish.

In addition to the coveted FHL Cup, GM Elya will depart the season with $536.00 in winnings; $452.00 for finishing in first place overall, $50.00 for winning the H2H title and $34.00 for their 17 H2H wins.

All told, it was a great year to be a Polar Bear.

The Battle for 2nd Place (overall)
The Bluliners were denied their fifth FHL Cup but GM Hamilton still has reason to smile, his 2nd place team finishing 43.9 points in front of the Misconducts. The performance will drop $288.00 into the lap of GM Hamilton; $250.00 for the second best finish, $10.00 for finishing in 2nd place (H2H) and $28.00 for 14 H2H wins.

The Battle for 3rd Place (overall)
The Misconducts were wobbling as the clock ticked down but GM Smalley would finish the season standing, his 3rd place team defeating the 4th place SC Cobras by 9.1 points. For his teams effort the Misconducts will take home $156.00; $130.00 for finishing in 3rd place overall and $26.00 for 13 H2H wins.

The Battle for 2nd Place (H2H)
Badger Bob was unable to take down the Polar Bears in Week 24, the loss placing them in a three-way tie for 2nd place in the H2H division. The $30.00 prize will be divided among three teams; the Bobs, Between the Pipes and Bluliners all winning $10.00.

Polar Bears: 64.2
Badger Bob: 50.9

The victory left the Polar Bears with a three game lead in the H2H standings, their final record 17-7. Badger Bob closed the season with a mark of 14-10.

Bluliners: 59.3
Misconducts: 45.2

The Bluliners finished with a record of 14-10; the Misconducts, 13-11.

Between the Pipes: 72.3
SC Cobras: 59.0

Between the Pipes were one of the better last week teams, GM Miller finishing with a H2H mark of 14-10. The SC Cobras close the door on the season with a record of 11-13.

Boulder Flyers: 88.7
Ice Hogs: 56.9

The Boulder Flyers were the best team of Week 24, their final H2H record all square at 12-12. The defending H2H champion Ice Hogs depart the year with a mark of 11-13.

Ice Cats: 65.0
Wild Ducks: 53.1

The Ice Cats improved to 12-12 with the win; the Wild Ducks finish with a H2H record of 9-15.

Silicon Valley Slashers: 57.4
Central Red Army: 48.1

The Silicon Valley Slashers downed the Central Red Army, GM Murphy closing the year with a record of 9-15; the Central Red Army depart 2015-16 with a mark of 8-16.

Final Standings
Prize Money
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