Hockey is played on ice with skates, sticks, and a puck. Players are also required to wear padding/protective equipment such as gloves, elbow pads, shin pads, long pants, a helmet, shoulder pads and a neck guard.
Puck – This is the small black circular piece of rubber. Players can pass, shoot and score with the puck. Pucks must be frozen before being used.
Stick – This is what players use to pass and shoot the puck. This stick has a long shaft and a straight or curved blade. Sticks can be wood or aluminum or composite.
Assist – An assist is awarded to the player or players (maximum of two) who touched the puck prior to the goal, provided no defender plays or possesses the puck in between.
Blue-line – These are two thick solid blue lines that are located between the centre line and the goal lines. These lines are used to determine off-sides.
Boards – These are the wooden boards which completely surround the ice surface.
Body Check – This is a legal type of hit where one player hits another player on the opposite team with either his shoulder or hip (no elbows or forearms) with the intent on knocking him down to cause a turnover. Hitting below the waist will be penalized.
Centre Line – This is the thick broken red line that divides the ice surface completely in half and is used for icings.
Checking – In order to get the puck legally away from an opposition player you can either poke the puck off his stick (Poke Check), skate up beside him and lift his stick up and take the puck away with your stick or body check him off the puck.
Circle – There are five circles on the ice surface: one in the neutral zone and four located at both ends. These circles have a dot in the middle for face-offs and places where players have to put their skates.
Crease – This area is shaded in blue and is located on the goal lines just in front of the nets.
Defensive Zone – When a team has its goal at one end, the area from the team’s blue-line to their end boards would be the team’s defensive zone. It is also called the defensive end.
Face-Off – To initiate play, the puck is dropped between two opposing players who face each other.
Forechecking – This is when a team is aggressively checking the opposition deep in its offensive zone.
Full Strength – This means both teams are playing with five players a side (not including goaltenders) in normal play. Each team would have three forwards (left wing, centre, right wing), two defencemen and one goaltender.
Game-Tying Goal – The final goal in a tie game.
Game-Winning Goal – After the final score has been determined, the goal which leaves the winning team one goal ahead of its opponent is the game-winning goal (example: if (A) team beats (B) team 8-3, the player scoring the fourth goal for (A) team receives credit for the game-winning goal).
Goal – A goal is called when the puck completely crosses the goal line.
Goal Line(s) – There are two thin red goal lines located at both ends of the rink which are used for icings and goals. The goal sits right on this line in the middle.
Goals-Against Average – Multiply goals allowed by 60 and divide by minutes played.
Glass – This is the Plexiglas that sits on top of the boards and which completely surrounds the ice surface. Most new arenas use seamless glass, which don't need metal dividers.
Hit(s) – This means a player has probably body-checked another player. Players can only hit or check the opposition player who has the puck.
Hat Trick – Three goals by one player in a single game.
Hip Check – This is a legal type of hit where one player will hit an opposition player carrying the puck by sticking out his hip and connecting with his opponent’s hip.
Icing – This is when the puck leaves the attacking player’s stick before it reaches the centre red line and after it crosses over the other team’s goal line. Some icings are waved off because the defending player could have stopped the puck because it was moving slowly.
Linesman – There are two linesmen per game. Their duties include dropping the puck at face-offs, except at beginning of periods and after goals, calling off-sides, breaking up fights, etc.
Minor Penalty – These are two-minute penalties.
Major Penalty – These are five-minute penalties.
Match Penalty – These are five-minute penalties for attempting to injure another player and include a game misconduct. Another player must serve the five minutes in the penalty box.
Misconduct – Players can receive a 10-minute or game misconduct.
Neutral Zone – This is the area between the blue-lines. Also called centre ice.
Offensive Zone – If (A) team has its net at one end of the rink, the area from (B) team’s blue-line to the end boards is the offensive zone for (A) team.
Off-side – This is when a player from the attacking team crosses the defending team’s blue-line before the puck crosses the blue-line.
Penalty – This is a foul called by referees against a player, who then must serve time in the penalty box. A penalty can be two, four or five minutes.
Penalty Box – This is where players have to go when serving a penalty or misconduct.
Penalty Killing – When one team is on the power play, the other team is penalty killing.
Penalty Shot – When a player pulls down another player who was on a breakaway, when a defensive player covers the puck in their crease, or when a goalie throws his stick in order to make a save, a penalty shot is called.
Period – There are three 20-minute periods and two 15-minute intermissions in a hockey game.
Plus/Minus – A player receives a “plus” if they are on the ice when his team scores an even-strength or shorthanded goal. They receives a “minus” if they are on the ice for an even-strength or shorthanded goal scored by the opposing team.The difference in these numbers is considered the player's plus-minus.
Point(s) – Goals and assists are worth one point each.
Power Play – This is when (A) team has a player (or players) in the penalty box and (B) team does not. (B) team will be on the power play until (A) team’s penalties have been served.
Power Play Goal – This is when a team scores a goal while on a power play.
Referee – There are one or two referees per game who call all penalties, goals and some play stoppages.
Rink – This usually means the ice, boards and glass. The rink dimensions are 200 ft. by 85 ft.
Shorthanded – This is when a team is playing down one or two players because of penalties. Teams can only be down two players at one time.
Shorthanded Goal – This is when a team scores a goal while killing a penalty.
Shutout – This is when a goaltender does not allow a goal to the opposing team. If two goaltenders combine for a shutout, neither receives credit for the shutout. Instead it is recorded as a team shutout.
Slap Shot – This is a type of shot in which the player takes a big back swing with his stick, and then follows through by slapping the puck off the ice and creating a big follow through.
Wrist Shot – This is a type of shot in which the player has to slide the blade of the stick on the ice, usually starting behind his body with the puck, and then follows through and snaps his wrists at the end in order to raise and get speed on the puck. This is a very accurate shot.