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7/26/2006 10:14:58 AM

The Ottawa Senators avoided arbitration with Chris Neil on Wednesday, re-signing the gritty winger to a multi-year deal.

Financial details were not released.

Neil, a restricted free agent, was scheduled for an arbitration hearing later in the day.

In his fourth season with the Senators, Neil reached five career milestones and set single-season highs in goals (16), assists (17) and points (33) over 79 games. His 204 penalty minutes on the season made him the Senators' all-time leader (776) in that category.

The 27-year-old was also just one of three NHLers this season to record 15 goals or more and over 150 penalty minutes.

In 301 career games with Ottawa, Neil has recorded 40 goals, 36 assists, 76 points and 776 penalty minutes.

The Senators have one more player scheduled for an abitration hearing - forward Peter Schaefer on Friday.
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