The Malik Report
by George Malik on 02/28/14 at 03:09 PM ET
Updated 6x at 6:10 PM: As noted this morning, Chris Neil and Johan Franzen got into a dust-up in the 3rd period of the Red Wings-Senators game last night, and Franzen was not amused by Captain Caveman's antics...
And Neil is apparently affirming that he is in fact still a dick:
Not agreeing to fight two games into return from concussion, after scoring three goals, with 6-and-a-half left in the 3rd period = "Yellow?"
Chris Neil = dumbass.
I may not follow up on this one, because we all know Neil's spiel by now. As Franzen said, when SuperSkunk comes in with his cape on after the fact, he tends to leave a self-righteous stink behind him.
Update #2: Via RedWingsFeed, here's more Neil from the Ottawa Sun's Don Brennan...
Neil wasn’t happy, at all. The incident happened at the end of the game when it was completely out of reach and Neil felt that he’d gotten a stick from Franzen to start the trouble.
“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.”
Right, because Neil totally didn't instigate anything. All game long.
“I’d take my cape off he took the yellow streak off down the middle of his back,” said Neil.
What does that mean?
“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.
“He doesn’t even try to defend himself. That’s the worst part about it. He’s saying, ‘Hit me, hit me.’ Yeah, I will hit you. That’s the bottom line. A good player like that and he can’t stick up for himself? It’s a joke. Especially when you play like that.”
Update #3: Here's even more from the Ottawa Citizen's Ken Warren:
A day after Detroit’s Johan Franzen ripped Neil for his antics during the Red Wings’ 6-1 romp of the Ottawa Senators, Neil responded in kind by questioning Franzen’s toughness.
“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 before the Senators boarded their afternoon flight for Vancouver.
“It’s a 6-1 game and he’s jabbing and slashing guys, hacking guys and he doesn’t think he has to defend himself?,” Neil said. “He’s 6-4 and 240 pounds. I’m 6-1, 215. He should be able to defend himself.”
The Senators winger insists the comments didn’t sting.
“It doesn’t hurt me at all,” he said. “I look at who it is coming from. 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.”
Update #4: From MLive's Ansar Khan:
Franzen, despite his size, is not a fighter. And having missed 22-of-23 games before the Olympic break due to a concussion, the last thing Franzen needs is a punch in the head.
“He doesn’t even try to defend himself. That’s the worst part about it,” Neil said. “He’s saying, ‘Hit me, hit me.’ Yeah, I will hit you. That’s the bottom line. A good player like that and he can’t stick up for himself? It’s a joke. Especially when you play like that.”
Franzen wasn’t available for comment Friday. The Red Wings had the day off.
Update #5: Here's a bit more from the Macomb Daily's Chuck Pleiness:
Franzen’s growing concern is concussions becoming a recurring thing.
“It’s always going to be in the back of my head that it might come back because it did the last time,” Franzen said. “(I’ve) just got to go out there and try and see what happens.”
And that’s what made the incident Franzen, who notched his third career hat trick earlier in the game, had with Senators tough guy Chris Neil in the third period Thursday very alarming.
Neil ripped Franzen’s helmet off and then began to rough up the Wings forward.
“It’s probably not the best thing to do, getting hit in the face, but I don’t know, maybe the ref can stop that before it happens, I don’t know,” Franzen said. “He hit me once, but then the ref came in.”
Franzen began laughing on the ice when Neil, who received a roughing and a 10-minute misconduct penalty, tried to engage him to fight.
“I think he got a little upset,” Franzen said. “I don’t know (why), I have no clue. He usually shows up when the game’s over and tries to be the hero. Puts his cape on and goes and flies around out there. He doesn’t like to take heat from fans and coaches, I think. He usually steps up when the game is over and shows everyone that he really fights hard.”
Franzen also received a 10-minute misconduct.
“He tried to high-stick me after the draw right away and then he came after me, so I tried to stay close to him,” Franzen said. “(I don’t know) if he was going to run me into anything. He decided to rip the helmet off and hit me in the face.”
So yeah, Franzen says Neil instigated it.
Update #6: I have no idea whether Harrison Mooney feels that this is meant in jest:
Kudos to Johan Franzen, who may be one of the NHL's most passive-aggressive troll. Recall the time he snatched Patrick Kane's mouthguard and threw it on the ground.
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