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Faceoff

From Academic Kids

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Faceoff.jpg
A typical faceoff at centre ice

A faceoff is the method used to begin play in ice hockey. The two teams line up in opposition to each other, and the opposing centres attempt to gain control of the puck after it is dropped between their sticks by an official.

Faceoffs are typically conducted at designated places marked on the ice called faceoff spots or dots. There are nine such spots: two in each attacking zone, two on each end of the neutral zone, and one in the centre of the rink. Faceoffs do not always take place at the marked faceoff spots. If a puck leaves the playing surface, for example, the faceoff will take place wherever the puck was last played. However, all faceoffs other than those centre ice take place on one of the two imaginary lines parallel to the side boards extending from one end zone faceoff spot to the other.

An official may eject a centre from the faceoff if he or any of the players on his team violates the rules in an attempt to gain an unfair advantage during the faceoff. In this case, one of his teammates that is on the ice must switch positions with the centre and take the faceoff. Common faceoff violations include moving the stick before the puck is dropped and not placing the body square to the faceoff spot.

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