If you are looking for a break from checking NFL picks and need to add another sport to your tool belt, take a look at hockey which is easier to understand than you think. If you know how to ice skate, you are just a few steps away from being hockey ready, as all you need to know next are the rules and stick handling.
The Rules of Hockey
If you guess that NFL predictions are difficult to make because of the complex rules, hockey is no different. To begin, we will start with the game’s object, followed by some setup and practices for the ice hockey fun.
Object Of Ice Hockey
Two teams battle over a rubber puck across the ice and shoot it with a hockey stick into the opponent’s net. A goal is awarded when a puck is shot and scored into the opponent’s net.
The puck can be passed to other teammates or stick handled by one player in order to get a goal. The team with the most goals at the end of the game wins.
Players On The Ice
Each team has roughly 15-20 players, but only five players and one goalie are on the ice at one time, so with two teams, you are looking at ten players and two goalies.
Positions and Equipment
Of the five players on the ice per team, they will have three forwards, which include a Center and Two Wingers (Left Wing/Right Wing), Two Defensemen, and one goalie.
The Forwards and Defenseman all have a hockey stick and ice skates and padding, which will likely include a face mask, helmet, padded pants, shoulder pads, elbow pads, shin/knee pads, and gloves.
Goalies have slightly different equipment in the sense that it is more padded. The goalie’s gloves include a blocker which is also used to hold their stick, and a catcher glove to catch incoming pucks.
Start of The Game
All players take their set positions around the center faceoff circle. Only the two centers are allowed inside the process during the faceoff.
The cause of the last stoppage determines any faceoff following the start of the gameplay. It also decides the location of that faceoff. Play begins with the puck drop from the referee.
To score a goal, a player needs to hit the puck in its entirety past the goal line. Most goals will occur with a shot from a player but also have the ability to use any part of their body or stick to get a goal.
A goal with a distinct hand motion such as throwing and a goal with any kicking motion will be disallowed. A puck on one’s own goal will be deemed a goal to the opposing team no matter how it enters the net.
Physical play is known in ice hockey as players can bodycheck their opponent to steal the puck. Like all sports, there are penalties/fouls players commit that are not allowed, and in hockey, they are broken down into minor sentences and major penalties.
Minor penalties include tripping, which is when a player trips an opponent with their stick. Holding, which is either with their stick or hands. Hooking, which is a player using their stick to delay a player’s speed, or body checking a player without the puck which is known as interference.
A player will go to the penalty box for two minutes when a minor penalty is called.
Minor penalties happen when checking from behind and fighting occurs. Typically, a major penalty results in a five-minute penalty, but when players get hurt, they could receive a significant penalty for 10 minutes and possibly be kicked out of the game.
These are just some of the basic rules of ice hockey. As with all sports, there are more in-depth rules, but if you know these essential functions of the game, you can understand. If you like to feel comfortable with NFL expert picks to immerse yourself in the NFL, for hockey you just need to trust in yourself and the right set of skills to possibly play whenever you want.