For decades, the term “five-hole” has been well-known among hockey players and fans, but hasn’t been widely recognized in an official capacity outside hockey phraseology — until now.
Merriam-Webster added more than 1,000 new words on Tuesday, including some modern-day classics like “photobomb” and “binge-watch.” In the sports category, the dictionary added “five-hole” from the hockey world, along with “up-fake” and “airball” from basketball terminology. (The dictionary also added “humblebrag,” a minor sin that plenty of sports figures are definitely guilty of committing.)
According to Merriam-Webster, the concept of the five-hole likely originated with Hall of Famer and goaltending innovator Jacques Plante, who numbered the five areas of the net that goalies need to protect. Obviously, no one ever refers to the first four holes by their number — but the five-hole stuck.
Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks gives us a lovely example of going five-hole in the video below: