With crafted and quested gear, it is relatively painless to obtain the most important of bear stats- being uncrittable- by obtaining 415 defense skill. After obtaining this goal, I find myself wanting more avoidance (the ability to avoid being hit by a mob or other player). I usually find myself at the top of the threat list and rarely run low on rage, so it is time to increase my avoidance until I hit the avoidance/threat trade off.
To achieve more avoidance, one needs to obtain more dodge% and miss%. The routes to these goals are +Dodge, +Defense and Agility.
Which is better? The numbers:
|60||Defense||2||Dodge + Miss%|
|15.6||Expertise||2||Less Dodge + Parry%|
+Dodge gives less dodge% than agility (per point) and is the clear loser, as +agility also gives more armor and increased crit%. Unless +dodge was available in large quantities per slot, this represents the worst way to acquire avoidance.
+Defense gives the least avoidance point-for-point, though may be necessary for maintaining 415 defense for 100% crit prevention.
Agility has the best avoidance per point and allows some increase in threat resulting from the increased DPS given by critical strike %, as well as a minimal amount of armor.
Keep in mind that Survival of the Fittest increases agility by 3%, while none of the other stats are increased by this or other talents. Those effects are included in the calculations below.
In terms of gems, this is what Blizzard offers druids for avoidance and some other melee stats (as obtained from easily acquired gems).
As you can see, the stat-per-slot budget is 8 for the avoidance stats of interest. Again, +agility gives the most avoidance, agility provides a balance of avoidance and threat and +dodge is not an efficient use for the budget available per gem.
As for what to do with the Heavy Clefthoof Set:
|Matching Slots w/ Agility to get slot bonus||All Dodge||All Agi||All Stam|
|Glinting Noble Topaz||Sublte Living Ruby||Delicate Living Ruby||Solid Star of Elune|
For pure avoidance, a +agility strategy seems the best. In addition, an appreciable amount of crit is gained in this manner. Expertise would be nice, but is not available on gems currently.
In summary, +8 agility gems, Delicate Living Rubies, offer a good amount of avoidance, while allowing an increase in critical hit% to help preserve some threat (though being hit generates the most threat).