Hockey is one of the four professional league sports in North America (along with football, basketball, and baseball). It was played originally in Canada, where it's cold enough to have a lot of ice. Indoor arenas now make it a popular year-round sport.
The goal of the game is to shoot a small, round disk-the puck-into the goal. Six players on each team skate and use sticks to push the puck toward their goal. The other team defends its goal by trying to prevent them from scoring.
Obviously, it takes great skating skills to play hockey! It also takes good coordination and speed, among other things.
It also takes a lot of guts. Hockey is known as a dangerous sport. Players are injured by falls, smashed with sticks, beaned by the puck, cut by skates, and even punched in fights. (Fights are more common in professional hockey than in non-pro games.)
One of the most common injuries is having teeth knocked out by flying pucks and sticks. Players sometimes refer to this as "spittin' Chiclets." (You know, like those those little square pieces of chewing gum?) Even B.J. is missing a front tooth! His hero, Bobby Clarke, was known for missing about a dozen teeth. Fortunately, dentists and mouth guards are protecting players' smiles better now than in the past.
"It's not a sport for the faint-hearted," says B.J., who has been in his share of fights on the ice (according to the website hockeyfights.com): "I'm a pretty competitive person so I love being out on the ice, getting the chance to compete and trying to win every night."