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Coveted defenseman Reilly chooses Wild: report

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Defenseman Mike Reilly is expected to sign with the Minnesota Wild, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported Friday.

Reilly, who played at the University of Minnesota, was chosen in the fourth round (No. 98) by the Columbus Blue Jackets in the 2011 NHL Draft. He elected not to sign with the Blue Jackets and became an unrestricted free agent June 15 but cannot sign a contract until July 1.

"I've got to try to earn a spot," Reilly told Michael Russo of the Star-Tribune. "There will be learning curves and mistakes, but I'm ready to learn from the older guys."

Reilly turns 22 years old next month. He developed into one of the top NHL prospects playing NCAA hockey for the Gophers, and reportedly was coveted by several teams when he became a UFA.

The contract with the Wild is expected to be for two years and $1.85 million plus bonuses, the Star-Tribune reported.

Reilly had six goals and 42 points in 39 college games last season. He had 18 goals and 89 points in 117 games over three seasons for the Gophers.

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