What Is A Short-handed Goal In Hockey

A short-handed goal in hockey occurs when a team scores with fewer players on the ice than the opposing team. When a penalty is assessed to a player he is sent to the penalty box for a short period of time.

This is referred to as a powerplay and in most instances is played with five players on the ice for one team and four for the other. When the team with fewer players scores on a powerplay it is considered a short-handed goal.

What To Know

Shorthanded goals is a stat kept on each player in just about every hockey database. When looking at a players stats just look for the acronym SHG. SHG is a shorter way to display short-handed goals on a stat sheet.

Additionally, short-handed goals are the only goals that count towards plus-minus when there is a man advantage. When a power-play goal is scored the players on the scoring team do not receive a plus.

This is also relevant to defenders as players on the penalty kill do not receive a minus if a goal is scored against them. But if a short-handed goal is scored all players on the ice are given a plus or minus.

Is An Empty Netter A SHG?

Since an empty netter is a goal scored when there is an uneven number of players on the ice many wonder if this counts as a short-handed goal. After all, the team that scored the goal is playing with one fewer player.

Though the answer is no an empty netter does not count as a short-handed goal as it doesn’t occur during a powerplay.

Has A 5 On 3 Short-Handed Goal Ever Occurred?

Though five on three short-handed goals are incredibly rare, they have happened a few times over the long history of the NHL. In order to get one of these goals, the scoring team must first commit two penalties putting two players in the box.

The penalty killing team will then have to score with only three players on the ice compared to the other teams five. Since these players are typically playing in a very defensive position this makes these goals even more unlikely.

In NHL history there has only been a total of 32 shorthanded goals scored during a five on three power play. Rick Nash and Mike Richards are the only players to score a shorthanded five on three goals on two separate occasions.

Who Has the Most Short Handed Goals?

The all-time highest scorer of short handed goals is none other than the great one Wayne Greztky. Gretzky holds the record with a total of seventy short-handed goals throughout his career. Second on the list is Mark Messier with sixty three followed by Steve Yzerman with fifty.

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