Jimmy Fallon calls Roberto Luongo ‘Count Chocula’, has no clue how to pronounce his name [VIDEO]

It’s the NHL playoffs, which means it’s time for television newscasters and personalities who haven’t the first clue about hockey to start pretending like they care about the NHL. This is particularly true for those on NBC, the American rights holder for the NHL.

Poor Jimmy Fallon was clearly asked by his bosses at NBC to work the NHL into his show on Monday night. Games have already been shown on NBC Sports Network and CNBC, but the main channel will start showing games starting on Saturday, May 18th, and clearly want to build some buzz. Fallon has shown an ability to create some virality in the past and NBC hoped he’d do the same for the NHL playoffs.

One problem: it’s not that Fallon doesn’t know the first thing about hockey — he doesn’t know the second, third, or fourth thing either. One of those things he doesn’t know is how to pronounce the names of any hockey player with a name more complicated than “Ryan.” Fallon worked the NHL into one of his existing bits — Late Night Superlatives — with simultaneously hilarious and horribly awkward results.

I apologize for the quality of the video. The entire segment was available on Late Night’s official YouTube channel on Monday night, but was mysteriously taken down this morning. This was the only other option available.

Actually, there isn’t really a mystery: Fallon’s mispronunciations of players’ names had to be an embarrassment for NBC, who obviously don’t want people to think they’re treating it like a second tier sport. They’ve taken the clip down not only from YouTube, but also from Hulu and the Late Night With Jimmy Fallon website. It’s telling that a previous edition of Late Night Superlatives covering the NFL Draft is still on the Late Night YouTube channel.

The only way to watch the entire segment is by going to the appropriate time on the episode online. For Canadians, CTV’s website has the video available. Fallon’s bit on the NHL starts at around 6:45 of the first clip.

The conceit of Late Night Superlatives is pictures in a yearbook, with captions in the vein of “Most likely to succeed.” Fallon and his writers took the headshots that players take during training camp and riffed on them, which is a perfectly legitimate source of comedy, even if it’s about four months late.

Saying that Tuukka Rask is the “most likely to be the love child of David Letterman and Dexter” is the early highlight, but my personal favourite comes when he gets around to Roberto Luongo or, as Fallon calls him, “Longo.”

Yep. “Most likely to be the human version of Count Chocula.” As Flickr user Darren Barefoot points out, it’s a pretty apt comparison.

Luongo didn’t seem to care that Fallon mispronounced his name, likely because he’s been inured to such things by Don Cherry’s many inventive interpretations over the years. He did, however, take offence to being compared to Count Chocula.

Fallon was quick to respond and defend the description, then followed it up with some gentle self-mockery.


Of course, Luongo had the last — and best — word:

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  1. Abby
    May 14, 2013

    Oh Lu.

    Gold, as we’ve come to expect.

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    • Neil B
      May 14, 2013

      Hells yes. I just wish there was a way to keep the guy.

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  2. gumby
    May 14, 2013

    I always thought Weise looked like Frankenberry.

    (And I am posting comments too quickly. Just the one, but man, I am lightning apparently)

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  3. TubaNat
    May 15, 2013

    We shouldn’t be too hard on Jimmy, he did also mispronounce “Jesus”…

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