Encyclopedia > Hockey puck

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Hockey puck

A puck is a hard rubber disk used in ice hockey, one inch thick (25.4 mm) and 3 inches in diameter (76.2 mm), and weighing between 5.5 to 6 oz (156-170 g). It is frozen a few hours before the game to prevent bouncing. Pucks can reach speed of 100 mph (160 km/h) when hit by players' sticks, and spectators at hockey games are occasionally injured. On March 18, 2002, a teenage girl was killed by a hockey puck at an NHL game.

The origin of the word is obscure, but evidently not connected to Shakespeare's Puck or the mythical Puck. The Oxford English Dictionary suggests the name is related to the verb to puck (a cognate of poke) used in hurling for striking or pushing the ball.

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