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Plekanec heading to arbitration

by Staff Writer / Montréal Canadiens
TORONTO (CP) – Tomas Plekanec is among a group of 20 restricted free agents reportedly seeking salary arbitration in the coming weeks, the NHLPA announced Sunday night.

Plekanec scored 20 goals and 19 assists for 39 points in 80 games last season, raking in $1.6 million US for his efforts.
The 26-year old Kladno, Czech Republic native has spent all five of his NHL seasons with the Canadiens, hitting career-highs with 29 goals, 40 assists and 69 points in 81 games in 2007-08. 

Other RFAs set to head into arbitration hearings include New York Rangers Nikolai Zherdev and Ryan Callahan, the Detroit Red Wings’ Jiri Hudler, Buffalo Sabres’ Clarke MacArthur, Carolina Hurricanes’ Tuomo Ruutu, New Jersey Devils’ Travis Zajac and Vancouver Canucks’ Kyle Wellwood.

Zherdev tied newly-acquired Montreal Canadien Scott Gomez for the Rangers’ scoring lead last year, chipping in 23 goals and 35 assists for 58 points on the campaign.  He is looking for a substantial boost in his reported $3.25 million US salary from 2008-09. 

Hudler recorded 23 goals and 34 assists for 57 points this past season.  He added four goals and eight helpers in the postseason, including three assists in the Stanley Cup Finals against the Pittsburgh Penguins.  The Wings’ forward collected upwards of $1.15 million US last year.

Arbitration hearings will take place in Toronto from July 20 through August 4.

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