The new format for GC has not changed anything for me because as of now I do not rely on GC for my survivability because it is inherently up to chance. I believe that most prot paladins feel the same way. So while the GC is (in theory) supposed to stop making prot paladins take dps plate with haste I do not think it will. When examining the theorycrafting that Theck does over at SacredDuty.net I noticed that once hit and expertise were both capped the difference between mastery and haste is less than 1% survivability (he uses matlab comparing strings of 5 attacks at max damage to what different gearing strategies give). When comparing haste/mastery vs avoidance the former takes approximately 5% more damage over a fight according to Theck (if someone has reason to believe his sims are wrong I would like to examine your evidence).
What does this tell us about Prot Paladins? The general consensus is to gear for control hit/exp and then haste. We are gearing this way for small gains in damage smoothing.
To sum the points above:
- 1)prot paladins care about damage smoothing,
2)we will gear this way at the expense of increased damage intake to aid healers,
3)we do not take avoidance because it is not controllable,
4)the new GC mechanic is still chance based.
Based on these four points, unless GC buffs avoidance to the point that it is giving me more control than haste does I will continue to use haste gear over avoidance gear.
I do however see a potential solution, I like the idea of avoidance giving resources. I think Divine Purpose should be made baseline proccing on avoids or some percentage of avoids (dependent on spec so ret would be based on melee attacks and holy would be heals, whatever works well) and some other ability should replace it. Or Divine Purpose is made baseline and the talent increases the chance of it proccing. I liked Divine Purpose in Cata, it meant that resources could be wasted by unskilled play. This proc based nature would be still semi-uncontrollable but by having it proc 3HP it adds survivability.
I am pretty sure my idea above is only half baked. However, I am sure that unless avoidance gives me equal control over my survivability I will choose haste, even at the risk of taking more damage overall.