Hockey 101

Each team plays with six players; three forwards (one center, a left wing, and a right wing) two defensemen, and one goaltender.

Teams in the ECHL may dress a maximum of 18 players for a game. The 18 players are typically comprised of: 10 forwards, six defensemen, a starting goalie and a backup goalie.

Games consist of three 20-minute periods and two 18-minute intermissions. The ice is resurfaced at each intermission.

The game clock stops when the puck leaves play, a goalie freezes the puck, a goal is scored, or a penalty or other infraction is committed.

Each team is allowed one timeout per game.

Tripping: Act of a player using his stick or any part of his body to trip an opposing player. If two players trip each other simultaneously no penalty will be assessed. If a player makes contact first with the puck and subsequently trips an opposing player, no penalty will be assessed.

Cross Checking: Using the shaft of the stick, while both hands are on the stick, to check an opposing player.

High-sticking: Any contact with a stick on opposing player’s head or neck. May result in a double minor penalty if opposing player is injured as a result of the penalty.

Slashing: Act of a player swinging his stick at an opposing player’s body or stick.

Interference: Impeding any opposing player who does not have the puck.

Boarding: When a player checks or pushes a defenseless opponent in such a manner that causes the opponent to hit or impact the boards violently or dangerously.

Roughing: Using a punching motion with a gloved hand against an opponent. Usually happens in a minor altercation between opposing players. If the referees judge an altercation worthy of a major penalty, the player(s) will be given major fighting penalties.

Other Penalties Include

Charging: Violently checking an opposing player due to excessive distance traveled (usually defined as more than three full strides) before the check. Leaving the feet while making a check is also considered charging.

Delay of Game: When a referee judges that a player deliberately attempted to cause a stoppage of play. Examples include when a player shoots the puck out of play, or knocks the goal off its moorings.

Elbowing: Using the elbow to hit or check an opponent.

Goaltender Interference: An attacking player deliberately making contact with the opposing team’s goalie either inside or outside of the crease. When a player makes incidental contact with the goalie, it is not a penalty so long as the player made an attempt to avoid the contact. If a goal is scored due to a player impeding a goalie’s ability to move in the crease the goal will be disallowed, but the player will not be penalized with time in the penalty box.

Handling the Puck: Any player may use his hand to push the puck on the ice or bat the puck out of the air. When a non-goalie player closes his hand on the puck while the puck is on the ice, it results in a penalty. When a player closes his hand on the puck while the puck is in his goalie’s crease, it results in a penalty shot for the opposing team. A player is allowed to catch the puck in the air and then drop it down on the ice. If a player catches the puck and then carries it, it results in a penalty.

Too many men on the Ice: Team having more than six players (including the goalie) on the ice and involved in the play at one time. A player attempting to get off the ice is no longer considered part of the play when he gets within five feet of his team’s bench. A penalty is assessed if a substituted player makes contact with the puck before the player he substituted for has left the ice. The penalized team may choose any of its players to serve the penalty in the penalty box.

Offsides: When an attacking player enters the attack zone before the puck. Results in a stoppage of play and neutral zone faceoff.
Icing: When a defending player sends the puck, untouched, from behind the center red line across the goal line in the attacking zone. Results in a stoppage of play and a faceoff in the offending team’s zone. Offending team may also not make any substitutions.
Hand Pass: When a player moves the puck to a teammate with his hand. Results in a faceoff at the position where the puck was passed from. Hand passes are legal in a team’s defensive zone.
High Stick on the Puck: When the puck is played out of mid-air by a player whose stick is above his shoulders and his team regains control of the puck.

Minor Penalties: Player must serve two minutes in the penalty box. His team must play with one less man on the ice during those two minutes. If the opposing team scores during the two minutes, the player’s penalty is over.

Double Minor Penalties: Player must serve four minutes in the penalty box. His team must play with one less man on the ice during those four minutes. If the opposing team scores during the first two minutes of the penalty, the player must serve two more minutes in the box following the goal. If the opposing team scores during the last two minutes of the penalty, the player’s penalty is over.

Major Penalties: Player must serve five minutes in the penalty box. Typically the teams resume 5-on-5 play on the ice, leaving the player ineligible until the first whistle is blown after the five minutes has concluded.

Game Misconduct: When a player is given a game misconduct penalty he is forced to sit out the remainder of the game.

Misconduct: If a player is given a misconduct penalty, he must remain off the ice for 10 minutes. His team remains at full strength during those 10 minutes.

Penalty Shot: When a player on a breakaway loses his scoring opportunity as a result of an illegal infraction from an opposing player, he is awarded a penalty shot. A penalty shot is a skater going one-on-one with the opposing team’s goaltender.

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