I was watching the the US play Russia last night in the World Cup of Hockey on ESPN2. Russian last names sometimes present a bit of trouble for broadcasters; I thought I’d share some of the details from the game caller’s renditions, as the names on the Russian team’s roster offer several noteworthy observations. Among them, a stressed epenthetic vowel.
Here are my transcriptions from the game. Note I use acute and grave accents for primary and secondary stress, for easy readability.
Some random notes to make:
The initial tv of Tverdovsky is broken up with an epenthetic vowel, but since this results in a four-syllable name, the epenthetic vowel bears stress – and oddly becomes [ɛ]! The “v” was misread as “r” several times, but I remember this guy from last year’s Stanley Cup Final – back then they just deleted the /v/, but the epenthetic [ɛ] was there anyway.
“a” tends to be nativized as [æ], probably because the broadcaster (might be) Canadian (or is surrounded by them).
Chubarov‘s stress pattern is unlike Kovalev‘s. Is this a transfer of the actual Russian stress pattern?
Word-final “v” is devoiced in –ov but not –ev (although there’s only one example of –ev).
“kh” is nativized as [h], not [k].
“v” is not realized before [sk].
The “sh” in Vishnovski is non-palatal and voiced, ending up as [z]. It would be interesting if the voicing is a relic of regressive voicing assimilation, but the alveolarity shows an intolerance of the [žn] sequence with which this guy presumably pronounces his name. Just for a parallel, Yushkevich (who is not on this roster) is also nativized by the sports media with [s] rather than .
Russia won the game 3-1. The game winner was one of the most impressive goals I’ve ever seen.