Lightning re-sign center

Oct. 5, 2001 at 10:56 AM

TAMPA, Fla., Oct. 5 (UPI) -- The Tampa Bay Lightning have re-signed budding star center Vincent Lecavalier to a multi-year contract, the team announced Friday.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but the Tampa Tribune reported that Lecavalier recently turned down a deal similar to the four-year, $9.2 million contract signed last week by Ottawa Senators right wing Marian Hossa.

Since being chosen with the top overall pick in the 1998 draft, Lecavalier gradually has become a team leader. The 21-year-old was named captain last season and finished third on the team in scoring with 23 goals and 28 assists, despite missing 14 games.

Lecavalier already ranks fifth on the Lightning's all-time assists list with 85 and sixth with 61 goals and 146 points.

"I am excited that I have this behind me and I can't wait to get back with the boys," said Lecavalier, who sat out the entire exhibition campaign and was not expected to be in the lineup for Friday night's season opener against the New York Islanders.

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