Forty hockey players are set to hit the ice for 248 hours, as they attempt to beat their own world record for longest marathon ice hockey game ever played.
The puck dropped Sunday morning on the "Hockey Marathon" at the Chestermere Recreation Centre in Chestermere, Alta. Players will take to the ice in four- and eight-hour rotations as they play from May 4 to 14, Global News reported.
It's the second time that many of these players will try to set the record as they did in 2012. They will score goals and try to raise $2 million in support of Alberta Children's Hospital, Alberta flood relief and Samuel's Ride for Rescue.
"The kids get you through the game," participant and organizing chair Alex Halat told the network.
Participants in the hockey marathon range in age from 24 to 57 years old. They have trained for months and even sought the help of a sports psychologist, The Calgary Herald reported.
Players will eat sleep and live in the arena for the nearly two weeks during the new record attempt. Guinness World Record rules state they cannot leave the venue.
But Halat said it's the least they can do for children who suffer from serious conditions.
One of them, nine-year-old Samuel Seehawer, who Samuel's Ride for Rescue is named for, was born in Cambodia without his hands and one leg, likely due to Agent Orange.
Another child, eight-year-old Sienna Wood, has undergone 29 surgeries in 15 months after doctors found a cyst on her head when she was six months old.
Both Seehawer and Wood have been chosen to serve as honourary coaches of the two teams for the marathon game. One of them is named "Team Hope," the other "Team Cure.
If anything is certain, the two-week long game will be grueling.
Two years ago, players battled staph infection, swollen feet and even a heart attack as they tried to set a world record, organizer Lesley Plumley told CBC News.
Some players had feet so swollen on the third day of play that a doctor drilled holes in their toenails to release some fluid, she said.
If anything, what these players are about to do puts lengthy NHL games into perspective.
The longest game in NHL history was played in 1936, when Montreal faced Detroit for 176 minutes before Mud Bruneteau scored to win in the sixth overtime to win it for the Red Wings, according to Collections Canada.
You can follow the progress of the game right here.
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