Hockey Games is played between teams of varying standings. A “game” in this situation would mean any competitive situation where one or more teams are playing with one goal i.e. regulation, away, conference, semi-finals or finals. Most hockey games that you see would be played in a “conference” setting with two teams from the same conference playing each other. It’s important that if you don’t know much about hockey that the “conferences” are separate divisions of leagues (i.e. NHL Eastern Conference, etc. ).
Regulation hockey games are usually 60 minutes long, separated into three 20-minute intervals. The actual game length varies according to the type of game you are watching, but in most cases it is between two to four and a half hours depending on number of stoppages, commercials, Overtime, and penalties. In overtime periods, the game will go to a penalty shot. For the three periods, regulation hockey is normally played for three periods with three minutes of time left in the game after each period.
The “play-offs” are the last couple of regular season games played before the playoffs begin. Usually teams will play for three periods of ten minutes and the game will be completed at regulation length. The playoffs are a best-of-seven series. The first two teams to win three games will then advance to the playoffs. Usually, the teams have an equal number of points and the series is played to the team with the most points.
Regular season hockey games are usually split up into two groups: the “playoffs” and the “conference play”. The playoffs consist of seven games; five games in each conference. The first four games of the playoffs are played in the first round. The team coming from the Conference gets to face off against the other in the next round. The team finishing first in the Conference wins the whole thing.
The “play-offs” are played for the final four spots in the playoffs. Each team has a maximum of two play-off series. The “conference play” is a series of six games played throughout the rest of the regular season. The teams advancing to the “play-offs”, or the highest two seeds, are given the chance to represent the league in the World Hockey Championship.
Most professional leagues mandate that the home ice is maintained at an even temperature year round. This ensures that the quality of the ice and the playing conditions stay on top of their game. The heating and cooling units for the rinks are specially designed and built to ensure optimum comfort for the players and the spectators. The heating and air conditioning systems for arenas are specifically engineered to work with the capacities and needs of the game, ensuring that the players have a safe, comfortable and high quality playing experience every time.
Many fans are turned off by the bright red lines on the ice during a Hockey Game. This is not because the lines themselves are unpleasant, but because they force the players to pay more attention to the opposing teams red line. The blue line on the other hand is painted a different color, usually white or black to distinguish it from the red line. It serves a dual purpose; the white line helps show the play on the ice, but the black line shows the penalty call on the ice.
Time clocks are often considered a novelty when it comes to Hockey. Some people believe that playing time, like the length of overtime, should be eliminated or at least reduced in Hockey games. To eliminate the overtime feature from a Hockey game, an idea was introduced in which playing time in overtime could be cut by one minute. This overtime feature is still in place in some Hockey leagues today.