Some thing I've always wondered about minutes played per game - I don't understand why it's discussed as if it's something the player determines, or do players (notably d-men) decide when they go onto the ice? I remember when Brett Hull retired, one of his concerns was he was only playing 8 minutes a game. Well, why didn't he just ask Gretz for more minutes? When someone says "let's hope (insert player name) plays 20 minutes a game" isn't that a decision the coach or defenceman coach makes - when to send him out and when not to send him out?
Some thing I've always wondered about minutes played per game - I don't understand why it's discussed as if it's something the player determines, or do players (notably d-men) decide when they go onto the ice?
So much determines the minutes a player plays, obviously skill and physical ability is the main consideration
Chemistry and particular coaching choices made in game like line matching or shutting down players
For lower deck players icetime hints to how "useful" they are
compare Lessard and Winchester kind of thing
For higher tier players icetime is usually indicative of special teams
so if a player logs lots of minutes he is playing man up/down
When I personally refer to icetime in hockey banter
it is often refering to how used they were in game
it is a relative measuring stick
The coach will put out whoever has the best chance of helping his team win. It is pretty simple.
In the dying minutes of the game when you are down by 1 goal. The coach will role 2 lines made up of his most offensive players. If they are up by 1 goal, the coach will play the most defensive players.
Throughout the course of the game the coach will role through his lines depending on how much stamina his top guys have.