Skip to content

Neil blasts ‘gutless’ Franzen: ‘The guy has never fought a day in his life’

Feb 28, 2014, 5:04 PM EDT

Chris Neil Getty Images

The war of words between Chris Neil and Johan Franzen continues.

On Friday, less than 24 hours after Franzen said Neil “tried to be the hero” by picking a fight in the late stages of Detroit’s 6-1 blowout win, the Ottawa tough guy fired back with a litany of disparaging remarks.

Plenty to material to cover, so let’s just excerpt. From the Ottawa Sun’s Don Brennan:

“I’m there first shift and any shift he wants,” said Neil. “He wants to drop his purse, take the lipstick out, put it on his lips and ‘Let’s go.’ Anytime. Any day. Anywhere.

“I’m 6-foot-1, 215 lbs. He’s 6-foot-4, 240 lbs. I’m giving up height. I’m giving up weight. I’m not scared of him. Bring it on.”

And more…

“He was chirping about my cape or something…I will take my cape off whenever he takes the yellow streak off the middle of his back,” Neil said.

“You know that streak? It means a gutless streak,” said Neil. “When a guy comes across the blueline and pokes you in the groin with his stick in a 6-1 game and chops guys that’s a no brainer. He’s going to get it.”

Still more, from the Citizen’s Ken Warren:

“The guy has never fought a day in his life. I go out, stick up for my teammates day in day out, he just goes out and causes problems for his teammates.”

Barring an unlikely playoff match-up between the teams, the Senators and Red Wings won’t meet again this season, but it sure sounds like Neil will have a long memory.

“It doesn’t go unnoticed, we will be playing them again,” he said. “For a guy of his stature, who has won Stanley Cups, a gold medal (for Sweden)…I have respect for the good players in the league, for all the players in the league, and for him to go out and play like that, you lose some respect for him.”

As Warren points out, a playoff matchup between Detroit and Ottawa is unlikely — which is kind of unfortunate, because Thursday’s game was the last regular-season meeting of the year between the two.

Oh, and for what it’s worth, the Sens and Wings split the season series 2-2.

  1. missthemexpos - Feb 28, 2014 at 5:12 PM

    Come on Chris, tell us how you really feel.

  2. sjsharks66 - Feb 28, 2014 at 5:16 PM

    That’s comical… Since we are on the topic of “lipstick and purses”. Sounds like Neil’s panties get bunched up real easy.

    • c9castine - Mar 1, 2014 at 3:40 AM

      yeah even if he has a point on franzen. which i don’t know if he does or not. shut the hell up.

      i don’t know. i was taught from an early age you become a man based on the way you carry yourself and the decisions you make, not wether or not you fight. in fact fighting is a sign of weakness, something to be done only in the most pressing of circumstances.

      fighting shows a lack of control. its one thing to do it in a hockey setting, its another to plan it out through the media cause you got all butt hurt about some stick jabs.

  3. imleftcoast - Feb 28, 2014 at 5:16 PM

    Weak sauce.

  4. rpiotr01 - Feb 28, 2014 at 5:17 PM

    Franzen doesn’t fight because he’s too busy actually using his hockey skill to, ya know, play hockey. Neil is an anachronism, his kind will be gone from the league sooner than later.

    • hennessey1200hp - Feb 28, 2014 at 9:09 PM

      So tired of these types of players open a spot in the lineup for a real player!

      • bigtganks - Feb 28, 2014 at 10:02 PM

        Exactly. Reminds me of Kevin Bieksas comment on players with no skill who want to fight players with skill.

        “When a guy 6-8 challenges you that can’t skate? Usually you say no and you go around him and score,”

        Lol. Love it.

    • tdrusher225 - Mar 1, 2014 at 11:14 AM

      I agree with the point but Neil is not a good example. He can play. He’s certainly not as good as Franzen, but I would love to have Neil on my 3rd or 4th line.

  5. bringbackthevipers - Feb 28, 2014 at 5:17 PM

    Franzen starts a lot of crap and will never fight, so I understand where Neil is coming from. However, no way am I fighting up 6-1, just scored a Hatty and only 2 games removed from a concussion. Again, not saying Franzen is innocent, but Neil is bush league.

  6. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Feb 28, 2014 at 5:20 PM

    What Franzen did is nowhere near as embarrassing as this tough-guy act. Going after an unwilling opponent is stupid. Ripping him through the media is pathetic.

    It’s quite needless, too – we already knew embarrassing, stupid, and pathetic are what Neil is all about.

    • hockeyflow33 - Feb 28, 2014 at 6:07 PM

      It’s not an act, Neil will pummel him.

      • c9castine - Mar 1, 2014 at 3:43 AM

        no he won’t. because franzen won’t fight him. because he shouldn’t. because its a waste of time

        and even if he did SO WHAT?? what then??

  7. bcisleman - Feb 28, 2014 at 5:20 PM

    I am beginning to agree w/ the Leaf fans who despise Neil.

  8. beelza - Feb 28, 2014 at 5:36 PM

    Neil will have plenty of time to punch his clown when the playoffs start, because he won’t be playing in them. Neil is a third line punk, and his coach can’t handle getting beat by his old boss. Sens, top to bottom are a joke.

  9. wingz101 - Feb 28, 2014 at 6:05 PM

    Chris Neil is a loser. In Ottawa’s previous game against Boston, a 7-2 beat down he was minus 3 and had ZERO penalty minutes. Why did he have ZERO penalty minutes? Well that’s because he turned down at least two invitation to ‘go’ and barely played 13 minutes. I guess he is an expert on yellow streaks….

  10. rodgy10 - Feb 28, 2014 at 6:17 PM

    There is some truth to his words. I remember when The Red Mule knocked Jackman out for a month with a semi-cheap shot. He then “Fought” Matt Walker….I’m not sure he even got a punch off.

    • blackhawksdynasty - Feb 28, 2014 at 9:07 PM

      Jackman deserves every hit he takes

      • jhaegs - Mar 1, 2014 at 10:59 AM

        Awwww, leave Homer Simpson alone…

      • ljacks11 - Mar 1, 2014 at 9:07 PM

        Couldn’t of said it any better myself….

  11. brklynblueshirt - Feb 28, 2014 at 6:54 PM

    Instead of Neil blasts gutless Franzen, headline should have read: Franzen ignores clueless Neil. “That guy has never thought a day in his life.”

  12. muckleflugga - Feb 28, 2014 at 6:56 PM

    just in …

    frozen and snow-bound ottawa is in a frenzy after reports a baboon with the intellect of a three-toed sloth escaped from the papanack zoo sometime yesterday

    wrenched from a somnolent free-loading pork-barreling existence … ottawa citizenry armed with tickets bought on government expense accounts and able to be at last night’s shellacking from a clearly superior red wings contingent … report seeing the missing monkey playing the role of the missing link

    all kong and no dong by all accounts

    chris neil … ape incarnate … swung down from a lofty perch in the rafters of canadian tire centre where he had a clear view of johan franzen’s artful hat trick … a view unimpeded by messy banners and pennants it would seem

    like a chimpanzee exploring its nether holes for an evening treat … neil foraged iceward for a combatant … the living definition of a poor loser … not with young keeners like abdelkader ericsson glendening lashoff quincey sheahan or smith

    but with a man bothered by concussions and a goonshot away from the end of a career featuring brilliant goal scoring … in bunches a neanderthal like neil could only imagine in his vacuous flattened brain pan … cement … head … gloves

    by inland … talentless thug

    the only lipstick neil can recount is the ring he leaves on the turgid members of the members he can no longer remember in their multitudes … hey hey we’re

    the monkey

    • 101starmymedic - Feb 28, 2014 at 7:32 PM


  13. nogoodtomedead - Feb 28, 2014 at 7:16 PM

    Yeah- cause he is busy scoring goals and playing hockey. Doesn’t Neil realize how stupid he looks?

  14. vm113 - Feb 28, 2014 at 7:41 PM

    This guy needs a serious reality check.

  15. ducksk - Feb 28, 2014 at 8:13 PM

    Niel’s IQ matches his season goals. Stupid is what stupid does. He’stupid. 1 too many punches to his noggin.

  16. 7mantel - Feb 28, 2014 at 8:48 PM

    I think Neils helmet being 2 sizes to small effects his thinking !

  17. pwshrugged - Feb 28, 2014 at 8:51 PM

    Whatever. This coming from a guy who, in the third period of a 6-1 blowout, went unprovoked after Franzen, who was in his first game back from a concussion that, in part, kept him out of the Olympics.

    Franzen knows his role – with Zetterberg out for the season, he needs to step up, stay healthy, and produce. Fighting Neil represented nothing but injury risk, and simply wouldn’t have been worth it. Another time, maybe he would have scrapped, but Franzen and the Wings have bigger worries right now than what Chris Neil thinks.

  18. bobusch1 - Mar 1, 2014 at 1:29 AM

    wow Franzen scored a hat trick, that means no more goals for the next 5 games he plays before injured again, and I agree, he never fights but starts stuff and turns and lets team on ice take care of it, its hard to back a guy that plays 35 games a season and has 7 great games, and also hard to back anything braindead Neil says, but I am a wings fan, but Franzen can’t do the cheap stuff he does, and then skate away and let his teammates clean up the mess, and btw Errickson is the biggest candy-ass in the NHL……go wings, but don’t defend the cowards on the team Wings fans, and don’t llet anything Neil says effect you, hes always been an idiot, but he was right in this case

  19. muckleflugga - Mar 1, 2014 at 4:24 AM


    you’re not a wings fan … in my experience wings fans are imbued with common sense and understandings in hockey born of supporting truly great hockey teams and players

    you clearly did not watch the game … change hands and read

    neil was running around all night hacking and cross-checking and attempting to crash every red wing in sight … always from behind like the chicken-ass he is … he ran abdelkader and got laid-out … then he went nuts … the big hero

    ditto cowen … stood-up and had his cage rattled by the smaller but harder glendening … time to start hacking in earnest

    the old story … a team doesn’t play goon hockey so roll out the goons in counter … the senators are a joke rapidly becoming low comedy … third rate franchise with a second rate coach outplayed and out coached … yet again

    so after the senators were hacking all night … franzen taps methot … another ape … remember in the old days the senators iced good hockey teams … no … me neither

    according to neil he has to stick-up for his teammates … stick being the operative word … following that philosophy wings would have been fighting all night in defense of senators continual stick work

    the senators play in calgary wednesday

    look for neil and cowen and methot to go braaaak bruck braaaak bruck bruck bruck here in ranch country

    mcgrattan’s drooling at the prospect

    chicken dinner at the dome

    • imgoingtowichita - Mar 1, 2014 at 12:55 PM


  20. pens5829 - Mar 1, 2014 at 9:54 AM

    34 and still a rockhead.

  21. jhaegs - Mar 1, 2014 at 11:00 AM

    Remind me not to let Neil hug my pet bunnies…

  22. ljacks11 - Mar 1, 2014 at 9:05 PM

    When the words purse and lipstick showed up in this article I thought Sean Avery was back in town…..

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kane (1775)
  2. P. Kessel (1681)
  3. M. Richards (1436)
  4. P. Datsyuk (1266)
  5. N. Backstrom (1161)