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If you are new to the hockey world, you are probably completely overwhelmed and flustered.  If you are watching the game on TV for the first time, you probably can???t even keep up with where the puck is half the time.  Sometimes I wish when the hockey commentators did the play-by-play, they translated it into sentences an average person would understand.  I am no hockey professional, but I will try and clear up some basic hockey terms and rules for everyone!

A backcheck is when a player who is playing defense tries to retrieve the puck by harassing the opposite player. 

A bodycheck as rough has it sounds is actually a legal move where a player uses his shoulder or hips to slam into the opposite player to distract them and try and get the puck.  The tricky part is that this move is only allowed on the person who has the puck or the last person to control the puck.  A player can???t just go skating around the ice bodychecking everyone he skates by.

A cover is when a player gets too close to the opposition, so they can block a pass.

Cross-checking is a small penalty that can turn into a big penalty.  Cross checking is when a player has both of his hands on his stick, and forces it into his opponent.  If serious injury or blood is drawn the penalty becomes major. 

    Falling on the puck is a minor penalty that happens when any player other than the goalie closes a hand on the puck.  If you are a soccer fan, it???s kind of like anyone on the field who is not the goalie touches the ball with their hand. 

To freeze the puck is when a player holds the puck up against the wall with his skate or stick to stop play for a couple of seconds, or to set up a play etc.

Hooking is when a player tries to obstruct the opposite players progress by hooking any part of their body with their blade or stick.  This is considered illegal use of one???s stick.

A power play which is really big in hockey is when a team with all players on the ice, attack a team who has some of their players in the penalty box.  It is very important for a team to optimize when this happens.  It usually last for anywhere between 2-4 minutes, depending on the penalty. 

A screen shot is when a player shoots the puck when he is standing behind a couple of his teammates, so the goalie is unable to see the puck quickly, or where it is coming from.  Some may consider this a ???cheap??? move, but you got to do what you go to do to win!   

Slashing is when a player intentionally swings his stick at the opposing player, whether or not contact is actually made, the actual motion is treated as a minor penalty.  

Spearing is a serious penalty when a player dishonestly jabs the point of his stick blade into his opponent.

Third-man in rule is something I found interesting.  It is when any third player involved in a fight gets penalized.  I think this is a very good rule used to discourage other players getting involved in a fight that they have nothing to do with.  The third man automatically gets thrown out of the game, even if he is just trying to break up the fight!

 

Hockey may look like a bunch of men skating around chasing a little puck, ramming into each other, starting fights, etc, but they have a lot of remember when playing the game.  These are just some of the basic terms used in hockey, there are much more rules and regulations that go much deeper! 

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