Dan Feeney’s journey from Jets backup lineman to beer-chugging Islanders cult hero


So the query for Dan Feeney was as follows:

If beer chugging was an Olympic sport, might you win a gold medal?

Dan Feeney chuckles and says:

“I don’t know. There’s loads of good drinkers in america, so I don’t know. I’d prefer to suppose I’d be on the USA Ingesting Workforce, for positive.”

Humorous how life works generally. You spend your soccer profession toiling within the anonymity of being an an offensive lineman, you signal a free-agent contract with the Jets as a key backup, and subsequent factor you already know, you develop into a viral cult hero, raucously cheering on the Islanders, whose followers are abruptly cheering you on because the Beer Chug Man.

He would be the one with the mullet and the mustache at The Barn for Recreation 3 of Islanders-Lightning. He would be the one in an Islanders No. 67 jersey — his Jets quantity — whipping himself and a crew of Jets teammates and his new band of brothers, the Islanders followers, into much more of a frenzy.

“Oh my God,” Feeney stated. “The ambiance at The Barn is unreal. … It’s electrical.”

He would add: “It’s contagious. It looks like that factor’s dang close to shaking.”

The electrical energy appears to crackle by means of Feeney’s 6-foot-4, 305-pound physique. Requested what will get into him, he says with a chuckle: “Clearly pleasure, when you couldn’t inform from the movies. It’s an unbelievable place to be, man. We love having enjoyable there, we love supporting a fellow New York workforce. We love going on the market, having a few cocktails and, you already know, having a pair bits of enjoyable.”

Feeney typically caps his beer chug by smashing the beer can in opposition to his head a number of instances. The place did that originate?

“Years of apply in school,” Feeney stated.

Indiana College.

“I don’t know, I simply bought actually excited,” Feeney stated. “It appeared becoming for an electrical ambiance.”

His beer of selection? “I assume Budweiser’s form of my go-to recently,” he stated.

Feeney grew up within the Chicago space as a Blackhawks fan, however by no means performed hockey. “I’m not too good on skates,” Feeney stated. “I seem like Bambi.”

He by no means attended a Blackhawks playoff recreation there. The Islanders — at all times the workforce of selection for Jets guard Greg Van Roten, a local Lengthy Islander — have gained him over.

“They’re superior,” he stated. “There’s no, clearly, like no enormous famous person, however they’re a really well-oiled machine, they play so effectively collectively, simply good basic hockey.”

Dan Feeney attends a first-round Islanders home game.
Dan Feeney attends a first-round Islanders dwelling recreation.
Getty Photos

He particularly likes Mathew Barzal, Anthony Beauvillier and hard man Matt Martin.

“I really like that the Islanders are simply this gritty workforce. … All these guys are in sync with one another, their traces have been strong, they’re clearly switching each 23 seconds, they’re on the market for a minute, they’re grinding it out,” Feeney stated.

He loved being acknowledged by Islanders followers because the Beer Chug Man, and his household is on board along with his sudden fame.

“My household’s form of operating with it,” Feeney stated.

His mullet and his mustache now adorn charity Feeney T-shirts for the MS Society, the place his sister Shannon works. “She’s a do-gooder, at all times has been,” Feeney stated.

Feeney attends an Islanders-Penguins game with Zach Wilson.
Feeney attends an Islanders-Penguins recreation with Zach Wilson.
Getty Photos

Feeney is hoping rookie Jets quarterback Zach Wilson will once more be a part of him and his different teammates on Thursday evening. Feeney blocked final season for Chargers phenom Justin Herbert. I requested him to match the 2.

“It’s laborious to match, as a result of they’re too totally different personalities, two totally different types of quarterbacks,” Feeney stated. “However I feel clearly Zach, he’s bought an important head on his shoulders. I feel the sky’s the restrict for this child. I feel he’s gonna be within the league for some time. He appears very understanding, he’s selecting up the offense very effectively, so I’m simply excited to see him progressing.”

Feeney might by no means think about turning into an web sensation and cult determine. Who might?

“Probably not, probably not,” he stated. “The ball rolls, gotta roll with it.”

He plans to maintain rolling with the Islanders on their Stanley Cup journey. And with Islanders followers. “They’re fairly passionate folks, I do know that,” Feeney stated. “They’re diehards for positive.”

In fact he watched Recreation 2 on Tuesday evening. Feeney gained’t be tough to identify on Thursday evening. Mullet or no mullet. Will he maintain sporting it?

“It form of looks like I’ve to,” Feeney stated, “however you by no means understand how the world seems.”

You positive don’t.


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