Referee discretion is an important part of any sporting event.  Referees will be wearing NEON GREEN/YELLOW shirts. The Referee’s decision is FINAL. There should be no arguing of calls by participants or spectators. Arguing calls by either of these parties will result in a penalty shot being awarded to the other team on the first offense, and a team being disqualified from a game as a result of the second offense. Calls may be questioned, but only by a team captain, who is the sole representative of the team. These policies shall be strictly enforced with a zero-tolerance approach. Penalties awarded as a result of excessive arguing are made at the sole discretion of the Referee.


Please arrive 1 hour prior to your first game. These games are back to back so you cannot be late.
If you arrive late, it may result in a forfeit.

Each team must have a minimum of 4 but may have a maximum of 9 players on its roster.

Men’s teams are almost always all-male but may have women on them. Female teams must be all-female. Coed division teams must have at least two females on the roster and must have one female player on the Street Rink at all times.

Games may be started or completed with only 3 players, but not with 2 players (result is an automatic forfeit).

Teams will be placed in divisions based on information provided at time of registration. Register your team online and – after selecting your choice of conference – you will automatically be placed in the appropriate division based on gender, age, and where appropriate, skill level. Organizers will make every effort to place teams in divisions with players of the same gender, age, and skill. However, there may occasionally be challenges associated with doing so.

Online player changes may be made after initial registration is complete and prior to the close of the registration deadline. Some roster changes may be permitted after the registration deadline but prior to the team’s first scheduled game, though it will be up to the discretion of Play On! staff to approve any player changes / additions since the proposed roster change might affect tournament brackets (which cannot change once finalized). No roster substitutions are allowed after a team’s first scheduled game.

All players must carry ID during Check-in and throughout the event (photo ID for players 16 and older, and birth certificates for players 15 and under). Officials reserve the right to check ID at any time throughout the event and to disqualify players and/or their entire team for not carrying ID, for submission of false information, use of non-roster players, unauthorized substitutions, and/or bad sportsmanship of any kind. Any team wishing to challenge that a player is not registered on the opposing team must do so before the game starts. If the challenge is correct, the team may be disqualified, subject to the tournament director’s discretion. The unregistered player is absolutely disqualified and the challenging team earns a penalty shot at the start of the game. If the challenge is incorrect, the team with the player in question is awarded a penalty shot. No player challenges can be made after the game has started.

All players must individually sign the score sheet before each game.

All games will be played 4-on-4, including the goaltender (i.e. 3 out players plus one goalie on the street at all times). A team may play without a goaltender, if it chooses to do so, at any time during the match.

Games and halves will begin with a face-off.

The ball will change possession after every goal scored.

During play, alternates can substitute as teams deem necessary and/or “on the fly”. No stoppage in play is necessary to make substitutions. However, a team needs to be especially careful not to get penalized for too many men on the street when making on the fly changes. Changes must always be made from the team’s defensive end of the street rink. Trying to change in the offensive end may result in a penalty shot (if an advantage is created, and according the referee’s discretion).

Hand passes are permitted, unless the official deems that a hand pass created an unfair advantage. Under such circumstances, the play is stopped immediately and ball awarded to the opposing team.

There can be no goal changes made during games, except in the case of injury. If a goalie leaves a game due to injury, he/she cannot return to the game in an “out” position.

When the ball is covered by the goaltender, the defending team gets possession of the ball behind their net. The other team must give the team with the ball 3 metres of space to make a play. The team with possession is allowed 5 seconds to put the ball in play

When a ball leaves play:

If the ball goes over the backdrop OFF THE OFFENSIVE TEAM

The defending team receives possession of the ball behind their own net. The opposing team must give the team with the ball 3 metres of space to make a play. The team with possession is allowed a maximum of 5 seconds to put the ball back into play (after retrieving it).

If the ball goes over the backdrop OFF THE DEFENSIVE TEAM

The team on offense receives possession of the ball at the place closest to where the ball left play. The defending team must allow the offensive team 3 metres of space to make a play. The team on offense is allowed a maximum of 5 seconds to put the ball back into play (after retrieving it).

If the ball leaves play at either side of the rink

The team that the ball did not go off of receives possession at the spot where the ball left play. The referee will determine which team should have possession. Again that team is given 3 metres of space and 5 seconds of time to make a play.

Sidewalks may or may not be considered in play depending on the discretion of the referee and as explained prior to each game.

Goals may be scored directly upon play resuming (i.e. no need to start play again with a pass. Shots are live!)

There is no face-off. The team that was scored on gets possession and may execute play immediately. They also must execute play (i.e. cross the center line) within 10 seconds. If they fail to do so, the other team may encroach aggressively.

The team that just scored must always clear and cannot cross the centerline until the ball, or an offensive player, crosses that line (or the 10- second rule expires).

However, during the final 5 minutes of play, the team that just scored must still (in its entirety) clear half – but after so doing may then encroach immediately. The purpose of this rule is to avoid stalling by the team who was scored on and to intensify the final minutes of each game.


Teams will be given a 3-minute warm-up before each game


There shall be no slashing, hooking tripping, crosschecking, high sticking, or inappropriate stick work of any kind. Doing so shall result in a penalty shot for the other team. More serious offenses, including, but not limited to, spearing and/or butt-ending, shall result in an individual being immediately removed from a tournament. Given the location of Play On! events (in public streets) participants may also face legal consequences for any inappropriate actions.
Fighting is unacceptable and will always result in the individual being removed from tournament. From an organizer’s standpoint, fighting is defined as one punch. The public setting of these events means that fighting may also have legal ramifications.
There shall be no pushing, shoving, checking, roughhousing, or unsportsmanlike conduct of any kind. Doing so shall result in at least a penalty shot for the other team, but may be punished more severely according to the discretion of the referee and/or tournament supervisor.
There shall be no stalling. Stalling is called at the discretion of the official. Doing so shall result in a penalty shot for the other team.
Any player that gets penalized two times during one game for incidents mentioned above will be disqualified from participating in the remainder of that game. The team will also then be forced to play the remainder of the game short-handed (i.e. 3-on-4. It’s like a red card in soccer!) The player in question may be subject to more serious punishment (i.e. ejection from the tournament), if the Tournament Supervisor deems necessary. In addition, the entire team may be removed from the tournament based on the questionable actions of one team member.
If any player touches the ball while his/her team has too many players on the street, it shall be ruled a “too many players on the street” penalty and the opposing team shall be awarded a penalty shot. There is no 10 metre grace given for player changes! Too may men (or women) on the street penalties are not applied against the two penalties and you are out rule.
Slapshots are only allowed. Slapshots are defined as any shot that involves a wind up that begins above the shooter’s waist. If a participant intentionally and knowingly takes a slap shot, the opposing team will be awarded a penalty shot. Penalties awarded as a result of slapshots being taken do not count against the two penalties and you are out rule.
Any contact made with the ball when the stick is above the crossbar will be penalized with a penalty shot. Penalties awarded as a result of making contact with the ball with a high stick also do not count against the two penalties and you are out rule.
The result of all penalties is a penalty shot awarded to the other team. Penalty shots are taken immediately after an infraction, and are taken with the ball being placed at center ice according to breakaway type format.
For penalty shots, the ball is dead after the shot or at the conclusion of forward progress. Possession is always given to the defending team regardless of the outcome of the shot. After the shot, the ball is immediately live to the defending team. Any individual can take all penalty shots for a team if it so chooses (i.e. the shot does not have to be taken by the player that was infracted or a player that was on the rink at the time of the infraction).

Shoot Outs

If the game reaches the time limit in a tie, the teams will go into a shootout to determine the winner. Each team will nominate 3 players from their own team to participate in the shootout. Each of these shooters will be given one breakaway on the opposing goaltender. The team with the most goals at the end of the shootout will be declared the winner. If the score remains tied after the initial shootout round, the shootout will move to sudden death format. In the sudden death shootout, the same 3 players must shoot in the same order as they did during the initial shootout round. Sudden death shoot out rounds continue until a winner is declared.


Goaltenders should bring their own goaltender equipment. The Referee reserves the right to reject the use of this equipment if it is deemed unsafe or unfair to the opposing team. Pads may be no wider than 13″. Challenges on the width of a goalies pads made by an opposing team must be done before the game starts. If the challenge is correct, the goalie is no longer allowed to use the pads and the team must either borrow equipment from the equipment tent, or play without a goalie (4 out players). If the goalie chooses to borrow pads, the game will not wait for the goalie to be ready and will start on schedule. The challenging team will also be awarded a goal. If the challenge is incorrect, the challenging team must forfeit a goal.
Sticks and running shoes will NOT be provided and are required by all participants. All sticks are subject to examination by the referee prior to each game. Any type of stick (wood, graphite, plastic blade, etc.) can be used, but if the stick is chipped, sharp, or deemed potentially dangerous at any time before or during game action, its use will not be allowed. Curves of all kinds are allowable; all true street hockey players know that there is no such thing as an illegal curve in street hockey!
Some form of eye protection (either masks or goggles strapped around the head) is encouraged for all players but REQUIRED for all participants age 13 and under. Such protection must cover the entire eye, and is subject to examination / approval of the referee and/or tournament supervisor.
Gloves, helmets, eye protection, jocks, mouth guards and shin guards are STRONGLY ENCOURAGED FOR ALL PARTICIPANTS, but are not mandatory.

Other Rules

Unless otherwise notified, all printed schedules are operative only through the first game for all teams. After that, each team is advised to check the Master Scoreboard for all schedules, times, rinks, revisions, and other important information. We reserve the right to reduce the number of games or shorten games in the case of inclement weather or any other unforeseen circumstances. Be aware that if you choose to leave the event site, you might miss out on important event related / scheduling information.
A player must leave the game when an abrasion has flowing blood. Once the flow has stopped and there is no chance of blood contacting other players, the player with the abrasion may re-enter the game.
Drug use is prohibited on site.

These rules are official Play On 4 on 4 Rules.