Brendan Bell is coming home. The former Ottawa 67's captain spurned offers from three other NHL teams and accepted a two-way deal to join the Senators.
Bell, 25, Toronto's third-round selection (No. 65 overall) in 2001, spent part of last season with Phoenix and was an unrestricted free agent.
"I wouldn't have signed here if I didn't think I had the chance to be on the roster on Day 1," said Bell from his Ottawa home. "I'm really excited. It's just a bonus that it's in my home town."
The Senators have been looking for a puck-moving defencemen and many believe that Bell might be the player who fits the bill if given the chance. He had 171 points in 238 games over four seasons with the 67's.
Last year, Bell played 69 games with the San Antonio Rampage (the Coyotes' AHL affiliate), where he scored seven goals with 24 assists.
Before signing Bell, who will make $500,000 if he's in the NHL, it's believed Senators GM Bryan Murray spoke with 67's coach Brian Kilrea.