How Many Periods in a Hockey Game – Number and Length?

Most sports play their games at quarter or half. But in hockey, the game happens in periods. This use of the period is less than a quarter or half self-explanatory. How much time is there in NHL games? Is the period the same all the time? What is the overtime period? This article will go into detail about the duration of hockey and cover the overtime factors in the normal rules of the game.

Hockey games always have three periods. At the NHL stage, periods run for every 20 minutes. The duration of recreational and youth hockey is usually between 15 and 20 minutes. Games tied at the end of three periods go into overtime, which is a short time of overtime play. Overtime is five minutes in the regular season, but it changes to the 20-minute abrupt-death style of play-offs.


How many periods in a hockey game?

How many periods in a hockey game

For newcomers, it is a very common question how many periods in hockey. This is a very confusing question for them. Sports like basketball and football are played in “quarters,” which indicates the four parts of the whole game. Football plays “half”, dividing the game into two parts.

But period hockey is played. Every hockey game always has these three periods. These times can vary in length depending on the level of hockey playing. But three periods, each with the same amount of time, are standard regardless of their duration.

Everyone involved in the game, from players to spectators and commentators, calls the period “first period”, “second period” and “third period”.

The NHA later reorganized itself and in 1917 was renamed the National Hockey League (NHL) which we know today. The NHL has always maintained a three-period, 20-minute game structure. The only exception to the three-period structure comes if the game is tied at the end of control time. In that case, the game goes overtime.



How long is the hockey period?


The ideal duration of hockey lasts for 20 minutes. Professional hockey leagues, such as the NHL, minor pro leagues, major junior leagues, and European leagues always play 20 minutes.

These three 20-minute periods are combined for what is a 60-minute game. In the professional league, there is a break that separates the end of the first period from the beginning of the second period and the end of the second period from the beginning of the third period.

These breaks and stops in the game add to make the game longer than the actual 60 minutes of the game. But breaks, of course, do not count as the duration of the game.

In recreational and youth leagues, periods can be less than 20 minutes. Typically, though, they don’t run for less than 15 minutes per period. The 15 minutes is often used because arena ice bookings can only last between 60 and 90 minutes. These games will not have intermissions like professional leagues, so the game needs to be fitted to the briefer timetable. To calculate the play break and a transient break to rebuild the interval, shorter periods are arranged in advance.


Is Overtime counted a period in hockey?


Overtime hockey is counted as a time. But it is not exactly seen or referred to as the fourth time – it is seen more as extra time.

In other words, no one calls overtime the “fourth time.” This is simply called “overtime”. Overtime plays count like player and goaltender statistics as they would during controlled play. Overtime regulation is an extension of the game, so its results are reflected in the stat sheet.

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