Chris Neil leaving the Sens: report

One of the most popular Ottawa Senators of all time appears to be getting set to test the waters of free agency.

Postmedia's Bruce Garrioch reports Chris Neil is leaving the team because he wants to play one more year.

Neil has spent his entire career with the Sens, playing over 1000 games since making his debut in 2000.

In that time, he scored 112 goals and recorded more than 2,500 penalty minutes.

He's been recognized mostly for his grit, regarded as the team's number one tough guy for nearly two decades.

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson weighed in on the report during an interview on CFRA's Ottawa Now with Evan Solomon, saying he hopes Neil keeps Ottawa as his home.

"Chris has been a great community building at Roger's House and CHEO, and has been teriffic on and off the ice," said Watson.

"We wish him well whatever his decision is."