What's it all about?
Does gliding around on skates while holding a stick sound like a good time? Add in checking, laser-fast slapshots and cheering fans and you’ve got one of Canada’s favourite pastimes — ice hockey.
How it's played
The sport: One of the few team sports played on ice. Five players plus a goaltender on each side try to score goals by putting the puck in the other team’s net.
The equipment: There’s a lot of gear in hockey. Skates, hockey sticks, helmets, shoulderpads and of course, a puck.
The strategy: Defend your own net while trying to score a goal on the opposing team.
The points: A goal is 1 point. Finish the game with the most points and you win.
The athletes: Hockey players come in different shapes and sizes. But it helps to have speed, strength and endurance. And for goalies, lots of flexibility.
Did you know? Players with a "C" on their jerseys are the team captain. Players with an "A" are alternate captains. They're the only people allowed to talk to referees about rule interpretations during a game.
Things to watch for
She shoots, she scores
- Women’s ice hockey was added to the Winter Olympics in 1998.
- The Canadian women’s team has never missed the medal podium.
- They’ve won 4 gold and 2 silver medals in that time, losing only to the U.S.
- If there’s a tie when the game ends, they play a period of overtime.
- And if the game is still tied after overtime, they move to a shootout.
- No fighting allowed in Olympic ice hockey, if you do, you’re out of the game!
- The modern day version of ice hockey originated in Canada in the 19th Century.
- The word hockey comes from the French word hocquet, which is a shepherd’s stick.
- Until the late 1800s, hockey was played with a ball!
Canada has more medals in ice hockey than any other country, with a total of 22 as of PyeongChang 2018.
The Olympic hockey rink is about 4.5 metres (or 15 feet) wider than it is in the NHL. That gives players more room to pass the puck and maneuver.
Unlike in the NHL, in an Olympic game a player who is the victim of a foul doesn't have to take the penalty shot. Any player on the team can take the shot.