Hockey is an extremely diverse sport that attracts talent from all around the world. From Russia to the United States. Or from Kyiv, Ukraine to Thunder Bay, Canada. It’s amazing.
One of the few negative aspects of global sports is trying to pronounce various European names. Hell, sometimes I have difficulty pronouncing the names of players born in North America. As such, I’ve compiled a small list of NHL players who’s names I regularly struggle with. If you could provide help, I would really appreciate it.
- Garnett Exelby
It’s not that Exelby is a terribly difficult name to pronounce. It’s that I never hear his name called by TV commentators – something I often rely on when learning players names. In fact, the only time I hear Exelby’s name called is when PA announcers reveal the healthy scratches.
- Tomas Plekanec
This is a name I am legitimately confused by. I’ve heard eight or nine different pronunciations. It’s heard “Ple-kan-ek”, “Plek-an-ix”, “Plek-an-ich”,”Plak-in-axe”, “Plek-an-ex” … actually that’s not very different from the second one. You get my point.
- Phil Ke$$el
I’m unsure how to say this name. Are $’s pronounced like ‘sh’ or ‘sc’? Would you pronounce it like Keshel or Keschel? I find this very confusing. Perhaps Boston fans can help me.
- Zarley Zalapski
I don’t find this name very confusing at all. It’s a name I strongly feel should be included on any list that features cool, hilarious, obscure or strange NHL players names. I would go as far as saying Zalapski is a groovy name!
- Milan Michalek
How do you pronounce his last name? Milan and his brother Zbynek Michalek say their last name differently. What the hell? Zbynek says it like “Me-hal-ek” while Milan says it “Mi-ck-alek”. This isn’t supposed to make sense, right?
- Luke Schenn
I don’t know too much about this player. He’s rarely on the ice. Especially in critical moments and third periods. However, I’m starting to identify the name “Schenn” with “turnover leading to goal against”. Hopefully I’ll learn the correct way to say his name after the next Battle of Ontario.
Stay classy, difficult to pronounce NHL players names. You have me thoroughly confused.