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Sports

Ice Hockey

Canadian Derek Roy with his hockey stick extended, handles the puck near the opposing team's net.
Derek Roy #9 of Canada skates with the puck during the men’s ice hockey playoffs against Germany at PyeongChang 2018. (Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

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.

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Things to watch for

Meghan Agosta of Team Canada skates with the puck during the women’s ice hockey gold medal game at PyeongChang 2018. (Harry How/Getty Images)
Meghan Agosta of Team Canada skates with the puck during the women’s ice hockey gold medal game at PyeongChang 2018. (Harry How/Getty Images)

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.
Switzerland's Jonas Hiller (#1) looks for the puck in the air during men's preliminary round ice hockey at PyeongChang 2018. (AFP via Getty Images)
Switzerland's Jonas Hiller (#1) looks for the puck in the air during men's preliminary round ice hockey at PyeongChang 2018. (AFP via Getty Images)

Olympic rules

  • 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!
Tomas Zohorna #79 of the Czech Republic handles the puck in front of Kevin Poulin #31 of Canada during the men’s bronze medal hockey match at PyeongChang 2018. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Tomas Zohorna #79 of the Czech Republic handles the puck in front of Kevin Poulin #31 of Canada during the men’s bronze medal hockey match at PyeongChang 2018. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Hockey history

  • 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!
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  • 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.

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