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Lesson Transcript

Braden: Top 5 Most Important Things to Understand about Hockey.
Ann: In this lesson, we’ll be looking at hockey. Hockey is one of the most popular sports in the world, but if you don’t already know the rules, then it can be difficult to understand the game.
Braden: To help with this, we’re looking at the top 5 most important things to know about hockey.
Ann: We wrote this lesson for people who don’t know anything about hockey yet.
Braden: Or at least know very little. But after this lesson, you’ll be able to watch a full hockey game and not be bewildered.
Ann: We have quite a bit to get through, so let’s get to it.
Braden: Our number 5 most important thing to understand about hockey is that it’s played on ice.
Ann: The area where hockey teams play is called a rink or an ice rink. The ice surface has painted lines on it, and each has a specific meaning and function.
Braden: That’s right. The most important lines are the red line and the blue lines. The red line indicates center ice, and indicates which side of the rink each team will defend. The blue lines indicate each team's defense zone. And at the end of each rink, there is a goal.
Ann: The goals are stationary and have a net attached to the back. The whole object of hockey is to put the puck into the goal more times than the other team.
Braden: That’s right. One important variable is that the puck must cross the goal line completely.
Ann: It can’t just touch the line or cross 50% of the line. It has to completely pass the goal line in order for a point to be scored.
Braden: Our number 4 most important thing to understand about hockey is the time frames.
Ann: Most importantly, you need to know that each game has three different periods. Each period lasts for 20 minutes.
Braden: During the normal season, a tie at the end of the period results in a five-minute overtime. During these extra five minutes, only five players may be on the ice.
Ann: The unique thing here is that these overtime periods are "sudden death." That means the first team that scores wins. This makes an overtime period extremely intense and very exciting.
Braden: Our number three most important thing to understand about hockey is the equipment.
Ann: Hockey players carry a stick and each player uses that stick to both pass and shoot the hockey puck.
Braden: The puck is the small circular black disc that the hockey players are hitting around.
Ann: Hockey players hit that puck really, really hard. Some hockey pucks have been clocked at going over 90 mph which is 145 kilometers per hour.
Braden: So, to avoid getting hurt, or possibly even killed, the hockey players are required to wear quite a bit of padding. The unique thing about hockey is that the players also wear ice skates.
Ann: So, instead of being on the ground where they run around, they're actually skating everywhere they go.
Braden: Our second most important thing to understand about hockey is the players. Now, there are only six players on the ice per team.
Ann: There are three main positions - the forwards (which are the people who score), the defenders (who try to stop the other team from scoring), and the goaltenders, which are often called goalies for short.
Braden: Now, goalies stand in front of the goal to block the puck from going in. Goalies are highly specialized players and rarely even leave the front of the goal.
Ann: They also wear a lot of padding because those 90 mph pucks are directed at them. And our number 1 most important thing to understand about hockey is checking.
Braden: That’s right. Hockey is a pretty harsh sport and it might seem odd to see players pushing each other around and even what seems like random hitting. However, there is a method to this madness.
Ann: Yes, there is. In hockey, you're allowed to "check" a player who is 1) moving the puck forward, or 2) has just received a pass, or 3) had just made a pass. However, there is a limit to the force or the way in which you "check" the other player.
Braden: For example, if you check with excessive violence, you'll be assessed with a penalty called "charging."
Ann: You can't, however, hit another player with a stick. This is explicitly forbidden in the rules, however, it does happen, usually because the hit has been disguised as an attempt to steal the puck.
Braden: That’s right. The one exception with checking is the goaltenders or goalies. They cannot be checked, ever. Even if they leave the goal. Just a rule, flat no. So, that just about does it for this lesson. Thanks for listening!
Ann: Have a great day!