Tag: Chris Neil

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Giordano on his visor: ‘I’ll try to get used to it’


Flames captain Mark Giordano is wearing a visor, for now.

The defenseman had a close call Saturday night after Chris Neil’s stick caught him near his left eye.

Giordano left for repairs, which included stitches on his eyelid, and came back sporting a visor.

“It was close — a close call,” Giordano told the Calgary Herald. “But nothing (damaged on) the actual eye, so that’s a good thing. The stitches are on the outside — it didn’t go through (the eyelid) or anything.”

Flames coach Bob Hartley would like to see all his players wear a visor.

“We’re in an era right now when the game is so quick — pucks are flying, sticks are flying — you need to protect your eyes,” he said. “I would like everyone to wear a visor.”

Giordano was part of a group of six Flames not wearing a visor. Dennis Wideman, Brian McGrattan, Brandon Bollig and Deryk Engelland currently don’t wear one.

“It’s just personal preference. They fog up and get water on them from time to time. So that’s a bit of a bother,” Giordano said. “But I’ll try it again because it was pretty close to being a bad eye injury. And I don’t want to, obviously, put myself at risk if I don’t have to. I’ll try to get used to it over the next few weeks.”

Any rookie entering the NHL now must wear a visor part of new rules, which grandfather them in for first year players – something Giordano is in favor of.

“I think it’s a good thing,” said Giordano. “I just think certain guys — myself included — for whatever reason, it was tough to get used to it. I’m going to try it again. Hopefully, I can keep it on for good.”

Video: Neil gets his stick up on Giordano (Updated)


Ottawa Senators forward Chris Neil high sticked Flames Mark Giordano on the follow through after a dump in catching the defenseman near the eye.

There was no penalty on the play since it was on the follow through. Giordano has left the game.


Giordano has returned wearing a visor. He received four stitches near his left eye.


Chris Neil forgot about that time he told Johan Franzen to drop his purse and put lipstick on

Detroit Red Wings v Ottawa Senators

You may remember a brief skirmish from February between Chris Neil and Johan Franzen, in which Franzen said Neil “usually shows up when the game is over and tries to be the hero,” to which Neil responded by calling Franzen gutless before suggesting he “drop his purse, take the lipstick out, put it on his lips.”

But you know who doesn’t remember it?

Chris Neil.

From MLive.com:

“I forgot about that,” Neil said. “This is a new year. We have more important things than that. We have to worry about getting two points. This doesn’t change my style of game; just go out and play the way that I do.”

Asked if the hostility might be rekindled, Franzen said, “We’ll see. It’s up to him.

“I know what he’s doing and he’s been doing that for a long time, and he’s been doing a great job of doing it.”

Neil fights numerous times a season. Franzen doesn’t fight. Asked how he will respond if Neil challenges him, Franzen said, “Hopefully he gets a penalty and I don’t.”

In Neil’s defense (for forgetting), I forgot about this too. I had to go back and watch the video:

Fun stuff. That was the final meeting between the two clubs last year, meaning tomorrow night’s tilt in Ottawa will be the first time Franzen and Neil have met since all that went down. And much like the last time they met, Franzen is coming off an injury (groin, not a concussion as earlier stated — he returned on Sunday after a six-game absence) so it’s unlikely he’ll want to engage in any shenanigans.

Yes, shenanigans.

Sens won’t name captain ’til after camp, but Phillips wants it

OTTAWA, ON - DECEMBER 1: Chris Phillips #4 of the Ottawa Senators skates during an NHL game against the Detroit Red Wings at Canadian Tire Centre on December 1, 2013 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Ottawa won’t announce its third captain in as many seasons until the end of training camp, but one player is already throwing his hat in the ring.

“I’d love to have it,” veteran d-man Chris Phillips said, per the Ottawa Sun. “I said that last year and nothing’s changed.”

Phillips, 36, has spent his entire 16-year career in Ottawa and re-upped with the club on a two-year, $5 million extension in March. That’ll keep him in the Canadian capital through 2016, and given the instability surrounding Ottawa’s captaincy in recent years, there is a thought Phillips — who’s served as an alternate for several seasons — could be the guy moving forward.

In fact, Phillips was a touch disappointed he didn’t get the “C” last year, which eventually went to Jason Spezza.

“I wanted that responsibility, I wanted that role,” he said. “I think it’s quite an honor to be a captain in the NHL. So to say I wasn’t disappointed, it would be a lie.

“At the same time, Spezz wasn’t the wrong pick, he was the other pick. I said then, I’ll say it again, he was deserving of it as well.”

With Spezza now in Dallas, Phillips and fellow veteran Chris Neil appear to be two of the leading candidates for captain, though the likes of Erik Karlsson and Clarke MacArthur will likely garner consideration as well.

Under Pressure: Turris, MacArthur & Ryan

Bobby Ryan

With the off-season departure of Jason Spezza and Ales Hemsky, the Ottawa Senators top line heading into the 2014-15 season will feature Kyle Turris between Clarke MacArthur and Bobby Ryan.

The team’s best line during the 2013-14 season, the trio now has the pressure of getting it done against other team’s top checking units and shutdown defensive pairings.

With Turris leading the way netting 26 goals last season, the trio scored nearly 32 percent of the Senators goals in 2013-14.

“I think we learned a lot from last year,” Turris told NHL.com this week. “I think the previous two years before that was kind of a step forward, and I think last year was a step back. We really got to evaluate everything and it was a great lesson because we learned a lot, we took a lot out of it.”

MacArthur, who scored a career-high 24 goals and 55 points in 79 games last season while riding shotgun with Turris, signed a new five-year, $23 million contract extension on Thursday and is looking forward to a second season playing alongside Turris.

“I think Turris would click with anyone, if they want to say I’m the guy who’s good with him I’ll take it,” MacArthur told the Sens website. “He does everything well. He’s a centreman with great speed, he’s got a great shot, he sees the ice.

“As far as making things easy out there, we obviously have to keep working at it, there’s things we want to improve for sure, but he’s got a good attitude and he’s a player willing to listen to other people’s ideas.”

MacArthur, who spent three seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs before joining the Senators, knows about playing under pressure.

“I think when I was in Toronto I came off of a million dollar contract and ended up taking two years at $6.5 million and that was big money for me at the time and you feel a little bit of the pressure. Just because I got a five-year deal doesn’t mean I have to change a whole lot. I want to play the same game.

“As far as what I need to do on the ice, I want to do similar to last year — obviously we want a better result — but for myself I want to try and bring a similar game every night.”

Behind the MacArthur-Turris-Ryan combo is a line likely to feature Milan Michalek, Mika Zibanejad and newcomer Alex Chiasson. Zibanejad and Chiasson have a combined 42 career NHL goals.

The Michalek-Zibanejad-Chiasson trio along with Colin Greening, David Legwand, Mark Stone, Erik Condra, Zack Smith and Chris Neil will all have to pick up the slack as Ottawa looks to return to the playoffs for the third time in four years.

The Senators finished just five points back of Detroit for the eighth and final playoff spot last season with a 37-31-14 record.

The lack of goal-scoring prowess behind the first line also puts pressure on the Turris combo. Ottawa finished 11th in the NHL in goals for last season.

Ryan, 27, who scored 23 goals and 48 points in 70 games will be expected to have a bigger contribution. His first season in Ottawa was a career-worst for the forward, who averaged over 30 goals a season while with the Anaheim Ducks.

It helps that the New Jersey native is a pending unrestricted free agent and has the added motivation of playing for a contract.

MacArthur admitted he’d be having a conversation with Ryan about re-signing long term in Ottawa.

“He’s a player you want on your team,” said MacArthur. “If I can nudge him towards staying I’m definitely going to try to. He’s definitely a complement to our team.”

Murray doesn’t believe contract talks will begin until next month.

“We’ve talked to Bobby at length through his agents,” he told the Sens website. “I believe it will take until he comes to Ottawa for training camp to continue the discussions. He’s one of the next guys we’re definitely going to try to keep here.”

According to Turris, the team needs to get back to the mindset of two seasons ago, where the injury-plagued Senators surprised many by qualifying for the playoffs.

“We need to bring back that consistency and kind of getting back to our pesky ways that we were before,” Turris said. “There are lots of things that we’ve taken into account that we’re going to work on moving forward. We’ll make those corrections and be back to where we want to be this year.”

It’ll have to be a big season for Turris and Co. or else Ottawa will once again be sitting on the outside looking in when the playoffs begin.

Related: Looking to make the leap: Robin Lehner