How Long Is A Hockey Game With Breaks

An average hockey game with breaks lasts for approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes. Here are five supporting facts to explain the duration of a hockey game:
1. Regulation play: A regulation NHL game consists of three periods, each lasting 20 minutes. This totals to 60 minutes of regular play time.

2. Intermissions: In between each period, there are typically two intermissions lasting 17 minutes each. These intermissions provide players with a break and allow time for ice resurfacing.

3. Stoppage time: Throughout a hockey game, there are brief stoppages in play due to penalties, timeouts, injuries, or end-of-period whistles. These stoppages can add roughly 30 minutes to the game.

4. Overtime and shootouts: If the game ends in a tie after regulation play, additional time may be added. Overtime periods last for five minutes, and if the tie persists, shootouts are used to determine a winner. These additional sessions can extend the game by approximately 15 minutes.

5. Television timeouts: In televised games, there are additional commercial timeouts that can further prolong the game. These breaks typically last for 2-3 minutes each and are scheduled at various points throughout the game.


1. When is the intermission time utilized during a hockey game?
– Intermissions occur between the first and second periods, as well as between the second and third periods. They provide players with a break and allow for important game preparations.

2. Do all hockey leagues follow the same game duration?
– No, while the NHL plays 60 minutes of regulation time, other leagues may have different durations. For example, international hockey games consist of three 20-minute periods, whereas college hockey games consist of three 20-minute periods as well, but with longer intermission breaks.

3. How long do penalties contribute to the game length?
– Penalties depend on the severity and context of the infraction. Minor penalties usually result in two minutes of power play time for the opposing team, whereas major penalties may lead to five minutes or even longer if misconduct or game misconduct penalties are given.

4. Can overtime periods extend beyond five minutes?
– In regular-season NHL games, if the overtime period ends without a goal, a shootout follows. However, in playoff games, overtime periods continue until a goal is scored, resulting in potentially multiple overtime periods of 20 minutes each.

5. Do all games include television timeouts?
– Television timeouts are primarily implemented in NHL games and other televised matches to accommodate commercial ad slots. Local or amateur games may not have scheduled television timeouts.

6. Do players rest during intermissions or remain active?
– Players utilize intermissions to rest, hydrate, discuss strategies with coaches, and analyze game performances. They often receive treatment for minor injuries and make necessary equipment adjustments.

7. Why is ice resurfacing necessary during intermissions?
– Ice resurfacing, also commonly known as Zamboni time, is crucial to ensure the playing surface remains smooth. The resurfacing process helps eliminate ice cuts, minimize uneven footing, and maintain an optimal playing environment for players.

On average, a hockey game with breaks lasts for approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes. A regulation game consists of three periods, totaling 60 minutes, with two intermissions of 17 minutes each. Stoppage time, potential overtime and shootouts, television timeouts, and penalties contribute additional time to the game. It’s important to note that game durations may vary between different leagues and tournaments.