Have you ever wondered how long the average hockey game really is? There space three periods, but how lengthy do they run? and also how lengthy are intermissions? Plus, how beforehand should ns arrive before the begin of the game? just how much time does this all add up to? we’ll crunch the numbers here on hockey video game times.

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Expect hockey games to average a full time of around 2 hours and also 20 minutes to 2 hours and also 45 minutes. But they can and also do go longer if there space injuries or many stoppages and also fighting. Overtime and shootouts deserve to also include extra time to the game. In the playoffs, sudden death overtime can likewise add significant extra time to the size of the game.

The official period of beat is 20 minute x 3 durations (1 hr), however the play stop every time the referee blows the whistle. Over there is additionally an intermission after the very first and second periods (2 x 17 minutes).


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Play breakdown

Total Playtime: 60 minutesTotal Intermission: 17 + 17 minutes = 34 minutesInjuries & stoppages (average): 15-25 minutes

Average complete game time: 2hrs 20min +

Play without any type of stoppages would certainly be 1hr and also 34 minutes, however with stoppages, the is at the very least two hours and often ideologies three hours.

For NHL video game television broadcasts, networks schedule a 2 hour and 30-minute time slot because that a video game to it is in played.

They will, however, frequently not schedule a time-sensitive program automatically following the game, given that gamings do commonly run over time.

Stoppages in play take it up as lot time together they do due to the fact that of commercials the run throughout the video game broadcasts. Yet there are likewise practical reasons for stoppages and also the intermissions.

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During commercial breaks, NHL groups will send out their ice crew come shovel excess ice cream shavings and also snow turn off the ice. Doing so allows for the puck to take trip with much more speed on the ice surface.

The intermissions enable for the Zamboni to resurface the ice cream that has been worn down by the period of play. The 17-minute intermission gives the Zamboni driver time to complete the whole ice surface and allow for it to dry because that a couple of minutes.

That’s why there are two intermissions: one complies with the an initial and 2nd periods the play, if the video game ends after the third period. The Zamboni bring away the intermissions come resurface the ice for the begin of the 2nd and third periods.

Players are additionally afforded the chance to rest and also regroup in the intermissions. The players value the break from the physically demanding game, when the coaches space afforded time to strategize. And advise football player on your tactics relocating forward.

But because that fans, the game is even longer, as you need to arrive before the start of the game. By the way -- here’s just how cold an ice rink is.

For competition games, girlfriend should likewise anticipate extra time to permit for medal ceremonies. In such cases, suppose to be in ~ the rink because that upwards of three hours.

How early on do human being typically come at hockey matches?

You’ll want to come well prior to puck autumn to acquire your seat and also be inside the arena in time. Permit time for getting through the queues and grabbing part snacks.

You may additionally want come arrive early specifically to see the teams take warmup. This deserve to be a distinctive experience, seeing experienced hockey football player preparing because that the game.


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If your video game starts in ~ 7 pm, aim to be lining up in ~ the best entrance door at 6:15 pm. The door lineups do relocate quite quickly, but the arena will likely be busy once you get inside the concourse.

The precise time you come does rely on the dimension of the arena, and the number of fans that will certainly be in attendance. If in doubt, contact the arena or come slightly earlier to avoid missing the start.

There room plenty that sights to view at experienced sports arenas, so you deserve to never it is in too at an early stage – so lengthy as you’re over there after the gateways open.

P.S. The actual game starts 15 minute after the proclaimed time. For this reason in this case, puck autumn is actually at 7:15 pm.

Hardcore fans generally arrive much earlier while casual fans have the right to arrive 5-10 minutes prior to the begin of the game. Season ticket holders may also arrive ideal at puck drop since they attend the gamings on a regular basis.

The anthem (sometimes 2 anthems if teams from different nations are playing) is sung at the moment the game is booked to start. Puck fall usually instantly follows the singing of the anthem(s).

Pregame ceremonies and also honors can additionally sometimes cause the occasion to operation longer before puck drop.

If she in a special seat or a box, then you’ll most likely want to come a bit earlier as well to gain some drinks. These seats are expensive, therefore you’ll want to take advantage of the sophisticated experience and savor every minute.

When carry out players arrive before a game?

Here room some approximate numbers for NHL level games. The team’s staff arrive beforehand to prepare the locker room and players arrive a bit later on to warmth up and also get in their gear.

Players will likewise likely have been at the arena earlier in the day for the morning skate. But they’ll leave and also return prior to the game in the evening.

Usual Gameday arrival Times

Home team staff: 2,5 to 3 hours before game time

Away Team: 2 hours

Home team Players: 1.5 hours prior to the game.

Off-ice officials: 1 come 1,5 hour before game time

On-ice officials: 45 minute to 1 hour before the game.

NHL Playoff Hockey game Times

The NHL Playoffs include another variable into the size of games since they beat sudden fatality overtime if the video game is tied after ~ 60 minutes.

Regular season gamings conclude their overtime after 5 minutes. If no team scores in the five minutes the extra time, the video game goes come a shootout – which commonly ends in ~ a few minutes.

But throughout the NHL Playoffs, overtime is prolonged to 20-minute periods that space played till one team scores. This potentially limitless style the overtime is called “sudden death.”

Because the groups play until someone scores, the games can periodically last for extra hrs on end.

In the NHL’s contemporary era, the longest overtime game lasted secondary 92 minutes and also 1 2nd of extra play time. That way the overtime goal was scored 12 minutes right into the fifth overtime period – do it, incredibly, the eighth 20-minute duration of the game.

But extremely long overtime gamings are rather uncommon. Though, the is a consistent occurrence come see gamings go into double and triple overtime a couple of times every playoff season.

All in all, experienced hockey gamings will at the the very least run for roughly 2 hours and also 20 minutes. Yet when you variable in her arrival time, you’ll probably spend closer to 3 hours at the arena. Pregame arrival, three periods of play, stoppages, 2 intermissions, and also the possibility of overtime will result in a funny night. Just be conscious that the video game runs quite a little longer than the 60 minutes of to run clock action.

Recreational Games

Lower league games from beer league to local area leagues have actually the exact same amount of ice time but due to the fact that the rinks room smaller and also the ceremonial aspects much shorter -- you deserve to comfortably arrive closer come puck drop. This method as a pan you can arrive later and leave earlier -- since there room fewer queues.

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Phew and also that’s the -- ns hope I’ve regulated to prize every conceivable question you could have around how long a typical games is.