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In ice hockey, a goal is scored when the puck entirely crosses the goal line between the two goal posts and below the goal crossbar. A goal awards one point to the team attacking the goal scored upon, regardless of which team the player who actually deflected the puck into the goal belongs to (see also own goal). Typically, a player on the team attempting to score shoots the puck with their stick towards the goal net opening, and a player on the opposing team called a goaltender tries to block the shot to prevent a goal from being scored against their team.
The term goal may also refer to the structure in which goals are scored. The ice hockey goal is rectangular in shape; the front frame of the goal is made of steel tube painted red (blue in the ECHL because of a sponsorship deal with the Government Employees Insurance Company) and consists of two vertical goalposts and a horizontal crossbar. A net is attached to the back of the frame to catch pucks that enter the goal and also to prevent pucks from entering it from behind. The entire goal is considered an inbounds area of the playing surface, and it is legal to play the puck behind the goal. Under NHL rules, the opening of the goal is 72 inches (180 cm) wide by 48 inches (120 cm) tall, and the footprint of the goal is 40 inches (100 cm) deep.
The object of the game of ice hockey is to score more goals than the opposing team. Goaltenders and defencemen are concerned primarily with keeping the other team from scoring a goal, while forwards are primarily concerned with scoring goals on the other team. Forwards also have to be defensively responsible while defencemen need to press offensively, and it is not unknown for goalies to attempt to position the puck for a counterattack, or even attempt to shoot against an unguarded net.
For a goal to be scored, the puck normally must entirely cross the goal line between the posts and under the crossbar of the goal frame. A goal is not allowed under any of the following conditions:
Additionally, in many leagues, a goal does not count if a player from the attacking team has a skate or stick in the goal crease before the puck. The National Hockey League (NHL) abolished this rule starting in the 1999-2000 season after the disputed triple-overtime goal in the 1999 Stanley Cup Finals. Brett Hull of the Dallas Stars scored the series-clinching goal against the Buffalo Sabres. There are those who believe that video replay shows Hull's skate in the crease prior to the puck.
A goal may be awarded if a player would normally be awarded a penalty shot, but the opposing team had substituted a skater for a goaltender. In such rare cases, a goal is awarded rather than allowing a penalty shot attempt on an empty goal net.
Typically, the last player on the goal-scoring team to touch the puck before it goes into the net is credited with scoring that goal. Zero, one, or two other players on the goal-scoring team may also credited with an assist for helping their teammate to score the goal. If another player on the goal-scoring team touched the puck to help score the goal before the goal-scoring player touched it without an opposing player intervening (touching the puck in between), then that player gets an assist. If yet another player on the goal-scoring team also touched the puck before that without an opposing player intervening, then that player also gets an assist.
For a hockey player, a goal or an assist credited to them is also considered a point; thus the number of goals scored by that player plus the number of assists for them equals the number of points for that player. However, a rule says that only one point can be credited to any one player on a goal scored.This means one player cannot be credited with a goal and an assist for the same goal scored; instead the player would only get credit for a goal and a different player may get credit for an assist, if applicable. It also means that one player cannot be credited with two assists for the same goal scored; instead the player would only get credit for one assist and a different player may get credit for the other assist, if applicable.
Usually on a hockey team, forwards score the most goals and get the most points, although defensemen can score goals and often get assists. In professional play, goaltenders only occasionally get an assist, and only very rarely score a goal when the opposite net is empty (without a goaltender).
The number of goals scored is a closely watched statistic. Each year the Rocket Richard Trophy is presented to the NHL player to have scored the most goals. The trophy is named after Maurice Richard, the first player to score 50 goals in a season, at a time when the NHL regular season was only 50 games (compared to 82 today). The player to have scored the most goals in an NHL season is Wayne Gretzky. Gretzky is also the fastest to 50 goals; during his record-setting 1981–82 season, in which he finished with 92 goals, he scored his 50th goal in the Edmonton Oilers' 39th game of the season.
The overall amount of goal scoring is also closely watched. In recent years, goal scoring has decreased. Many believe the game is less entertaining because of this, and blame the change on the increasing size of goaltending equipment and the advent of defensive systems such as the neutral zone trap. Fans of defensive hockey counter by saying the high scoring of the 1980s was an anomaly, and this shift represents a return to the norm. For the 2004-05 American Hockey League season, four major rule changes were made that were intended to increase the scoring in games and make it more popular among casual fans:
The AHL rules were slightly modified and adopted in the NHL and ECHL for 2005-06, when the NHL returned after the 2004 lockout.
There are a number of different types of goals for which separate statistics are kept, but all count equally:
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The goal judge is an official positioned off-ice behind each goal for the specific purpose of indicating when the puck has crossed the goal line and entered the goal. For arenas so equipped, the goal judge turns on a red light behind the goal when they see the puck cross the goal line. As in all matters, however, the referee retains final authority and can override the opinion of the goal judge.
The two teammates of the scorer who last touched the puck before them, provided that no opponent touched it in between, are each credited with an assist. Assists and goals count equally to comprise a player's statistical scoring total.
If a hockey player causes the puck to enter their own team's net — which in soccer is called an own goal — credit for the goal goes to the last player on the scoring team to have touched the puck. No assists are awarded. If a shot deflects off a defender and enters the net, it is not considered an own goal.
Other phrases include a garbage goal, for a goal scored more as the result of luck or opportunism than skill, and a breakaway goal for a goal scored when a player has gotten behind the defenders to face the goaltender alone.
When a player scores three goals in a game it is known as a hat-trick. If the player scores the goals consecutively, it becomes known as a "natural" hat trick. A Gordie Howe hat trick occurs when a player scores a goal, gets an assist and gets in a fight.
Any puck heading towards the net is counted as a shot. When the goaltender prevents the shot from entering the net, they are credited with a save . Shots resulting in saves by the goaltender or goals scored are considered shots on goal (or shots on net). A shot which is blocked by an opposing player before it reaches the goaltender is not considered a shot on net. Also, if the puck is deflected wide of the net by another player (regardless of team) it is not counted as a shot on net. If a goaltender traps the puck that was heading towards the goal, but wide, it is often not counted as a shot; nor are shots that bounce off the crossbar or posts.
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Ice hockey is one of the few sports along with box lacrosse or indoor soccer in which an air horn, car horn, train horn, foghorn, or siren is used to celebrate a goal. In every NHL arena, the horn blares after each home team goal. This has been a trend since the 1970s, when the Chicago Blackhawks installed one. The only exception to this rule is during the NHL All-Star Game, where the role of that sound is expanded to cover every goal scored, and that the horn only sounds once. The horns are different depending on the teams, some even have sound effects such as an alarm or the foghorn of a ship, or both combined, for the Washington Capitals and the Anaheim Ducks. Hockey fans[ who? ] have said that the loudest goal horn belongs to Anaheim, who have a very loud fog horn with high bass, or the Philadelphia Flyers, who have a very loud ship’s signaling horn. Also, during the 2006 Stanley Cup playoffs, the Edmonton Oilers added a second set of horns to the original horn for the second round. The reason was for that the Oilers had sold out games and the noise level was so loud, that the original horn was getting drowned out by the crowd. The result was a very loud horn used for the rest of the playoffs.
Along with the horn, it is accompanied by a goal song. Most arenas play sections of the song where the crowd can "sing" along or repeat. The two classic goal songs are "Kernkraft 400" by Zombie Nation (its "Sport Chant Stadium Remix" arrangement is used by the Boston Bruins) and "Rock & Roll Part 2" by Gary Glitter (first used by the New Jersey Devils). However, some teams have songs that are original to them, like the now-defunct Hartford Whalers' famous "Brass Bonanza", "Bro Hymn" by Pennywise (originally used by Anaheim and later adopted by Philadelphia and NY Islanders), "Crowd Chant" by Joe Satriani (originally used by Minnesota Wild and the Columbus Blue Jackets), "Chelsea Dagger" by The Fratellis (Chicago), "Maria (I Like It Loud)" by Scooter feat. Marc Acardipane and Dick Rules (originally used in Philadelphia), "Party Hard" by Andrew W.K. (Pittsburgh), "Holiday" by Green Day (originally used by San Jose, later by Vancouver), "Le But" by Loco Locass (originally used by Montreal), "Howling for You" by the Black Keys (Arizona), "I Like It, I Love It" by Tim McGraw (Nashville), "When the Saints Go Marching In" (St. Louis), and "Let Me Clear My Throat" by DJ Kool (Buffalo). If the home team wins, the goal horn will also sound at the conclusion of the game, instead of the normal period end horn, with some exceptions, such as the Bruins using their normal period end siren after a win and then followed by "Dirty Water" by The Standells.
Ice hockey is a contact team sport played on ice, usually in a rink, in which two teams of skaters use their sticks to shoot a vulcanized rubber puck into their opponent's net to score goals. The sport is known to be fast-paced and physical, with teams usually fielding six players at a time: one goaltender, and five players who skate the span of the ice trying to control the puck and score goals against the opposing team.
An own goal is an event in competitive goal-scoring sports where a player scores on his or her own side of the playing area rather than the one defended by the opponent. Since own goals are often added to the opponent's score, they are often an embarrassing blunder for the scoring player, but in certain sports are occasionally done for strategic reasons.
Short-handed is a term used in ice hockey and several related sports, including water polo, and refers to having fewer skaters (players) on the ice during play, as a result of a penalty. The player removed from play serves the penalty in the penalty box for a set amount of time proportional to the severity of the infraction. If a goaltender commits a minor infraction, another player who was on the ice at the time of the penalty serves, often but not necessarily the team captain.
In ice hockey, an assist is attributed to up to two players of the scoring team who shot, passed or deflected the puck towards the scoring teammate, or touched it in any other way which enabled the goal, meaning that they were "assisting" in the goal. There can be a maximum of two assists per goal. The assists will be awarded in the order of play, with the last player to pass the puck to the goal scorer getting the primary assist and the player who passed it to the primary assister getting the secondary assist. Players who gain an assist will get one point added to their player statistics.
Icing is an infraction in the sport of ice hockey. It occurs when a player shoots the puck from behind the centre red line, across the opposing team's goal line, and the puck remains untouched.
In ice hockey, the goaltender or goalie is the player responsible for preventing the hockey puck from entering their team's net, thus preventing the opposing team from scoring. The goaltender usually plays in or near the area in front of the net called the goal crease. Goaltenders tend to stay at or beyond the top of the crease to cut down on the angle of shots. In today's age of goaltending there are two common styles, butterfly and hybrid. Because of the power of shots, the goaltender wears special equipment designed to protect the body from direct impact. The goalie is one of the most valuable players on the ice, as their performance can greatly change the outcome or score of the game. One-on-one situations, such as breakaways and shootouts, have the tendency to highlight a goaltender's pure skill, or lack thereof. No more than one goaltender is allowed to be on the ice for each team at any given time. Teams are not required to use a goaltender and may instead opt to play with an additional skater, but the defensive disadvantage this poses generally means that the strategy is only used as a desperation maneuver when trailing late in a game or can be used if the opposing team has a delayed penalty.
A penalty in ice hockey is a punishment for an infringement of the rules. Most penalties are enforced by sending the offending player to a penalty box for a set number of minutes. During the penalty the player may not participate in play. Penalties are called and enforced by the referee, or in some cases, the linesman. The offending team may not replace the player on the ice, leaving them short-handed as opposed to full strength. When the opposing team is said to be on a power play, they will have one more player on the ice than the short-handed team. The short-handed team is said to be "on the penalty kill" until the penalty expires and the penalized player returns to play. While standards vary somewhat between leagues, most leagues recognize several common varieties of penalties, as well as common infractions.
In ice hockey, a penalty shot is a type of penalty awarded when a team loses a clear scoring opportunity on a breakaway because of a foul committed by an opposing player. A player from the non-offending team is given an attempt to score a goal without opposition from any defending players except the goaltender. This is the same type of shot used in a shootout to decide games in some leagues.
An extra attacker in ice hockey is a forward or, less commonly, a defenceman who has been substituted in place of the goaltender. The purpose of this substitution is to gain an offensive advantage to score a goal. The removal of the goaltender for an extra attacker is colloquially called pulling the goalie, resulting in an empty net.
In ice hockey, a shot on goal is a shot that directs the puck towards the net and either goes into the net for a goal or is stopped by the goaltender for a save.
Roller in-line hockey, or inline hockey is a variant of hockey played on a hard, smooth surface, with players using inline skates to move and hockey sticks to shoot a hard, plastic puck into their opponent's goal to score points. There are five players including the goalkeeper from each team on the rink at a time, while teams normally consist of 16 players.
The following are statistics commonly tracked in ice hockey.
The National Hockey League rules are the rules governing the play of the National Hockey League (NHL), a professional ice hockey organization. Infractions of the rules, such as offside and icing, lead to a stoppage of play and subsequent to the offending teams. The league also determines the specifications for playing equipment used in its games.
This is a list of common terms used in ice hockey along with the definition of these terms.
Delay of game is a penalty in ice hockey. It results in the offending player spending two minutes in the penalty box. In the NHL, delay of game is usually called under eight circumstances:
In several sports with goalkeepers or goaltenders protecting nets or goals, a save is credited to a goaltender that stops the playing object from entering the goal. These sports include football, ice hockey, and lacrosse, among others.
An empty net goal, or colloquially an empty netter, occurs in several team sports when a team scores a goal into a net with no goaltender (goalie) present. Also, if a goalie is pulled and the other team scores the goalie is not credited with a goal against them.
William John Smith is a retired professional ice hockey goaltender and is best known for winning four Stanley Cups with the New York Islanders and being the first goalie to be credited with a goal. In 2017 Smith was named one of the '100 Greatest NHL Players' in history.
In ice hockey, an awarded goal is an unusual situation in which a goal is awarded to a team rather than scored. A penalty shot is a type of penalty awarded when a team loses a clear scoring opportunity on a breakaway because of a foul committed by an opposing player. A player from the non-offending team is given an attempt to score a goal without opposition from any defending players except the goaltender. However, when such a lost opportunity occurs and the opposing team has pulled their goalie to allow for an extra attacker, a goal is simply awarded without a penalty shot taking place.