After the first grouping of the 2000s (where Bubba Berenzweig is running away with the show; be sure to vote here if you haven't yet), I come to the second group with equal parts nostalgic for contests past. Just to recap the contenders for the final Most Interesting Name showdown:
1920s & 30s: Dit Clapper
1940s: Peanuts O'Flaherty
1950s: Fred Sasakamoose
1960s: Orland Kurtenbach
1970s: Larry Goodenough
1980s: Jeff Beukeboom
1990s: Zarley Zalapski
I got my money on Peanuts, but it's hard to bet against double Z. Continuing on...
Our primary purpose:
...hockey history is chock full of names that can pique a person's interest, whether it's because it's unintentionally funny to the English sensibility (Petr Pohl), almost regal (Normand Rochefort), or lends itself to entertaining wordplay (Darius Kasparaitis). The criteria for our 'most interesting names' is a bit loose, in that the name can strike you as any one of the above descriptors, or all of them, but ultimately you are going to vote on the name that 'strikes' you the strongest.
The second group:
- Petr Pohl - Sorry, he doesn't qualify, never played a lick in the NHL. Damn.
- Rico Fata - One of those colossal early 1st-round failures, Rice Suave was taken 6th overall in 1998; in his only full NHL season with the Pittsburgh Penguins, he managed a whopping +/- of -46 as part of their 2003-04 disaster season.
- Justin Pogge - Simply adorable.
- Peter Mannino - Just realized this fall that his last name, in Spanglish, translates to Man Boy.
- Jakub Cutta - Sounds like a hockey Mafioso.
- Fernando Pisani - "There was something in the air that night..."
- David Schlemko - A miserable name. Possibly the last name of a nerd in a John Hughes script.
- Jonathan Cheechoo - The Cheechoo Train.
- Brian Bonin - And here I was concerned we'd leave the 2000s without a porn name.
- Espen Knutsen - He put Norway on the map, and took names to a new Scandinavian level.
One more grouping left from the 2000s before I (finally) start wrapping things up. Be sure to vote!