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RFA O’Reilly gets out of KHL contract (Updated)

Jan 24, 2013, 8:36 AM EDT

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Ryan O'Reilly #37 of the Colorado Avalanche skates against the Buffalo Sabres at the First Niagara Center on March 14, 2012 in Buffalo, New York. The Avalanche defeated the Sabres 5-4 in the shootout.
(March 13, 2012 - Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

It looks like forward Ryan O’Reilly‘s tenure with the KHL’s Metallurg Magnitogorsk is over, according to the Denver Post and R-Sport.

Although the 21-year-old inked a two-year deal with the KHL club, it came with an out clause and the two sides appear to have agreed to mutually terminate the contract.

One factor in the timing could be that the window for Metallurg to sign a potential replacement will end on Jan. 31, so this gives them ample time to do so. However, the team also claims that he “aggravated” a foot injury in his last game and it’s not clear how serious that is.

Either way, the big question now is if a deal between O’Reilly and the Colorado Avalanche is imminent. O’Reilly is a restricted free agent that has reportedly been offered separate two-year, $7 million and five-year, $17 million contracts by the Avalanche. To this point O’Reilly has held out and has already missed Colorado’s first two games as a result.

His two-way game would be a great addition to the Avalanche at any time, but they could especially use his help now that forward Steve Downie, 25, has suffered a torn ACL that will require season-ending surgery.

O’Reilly broke out with 55 points in 81 games last season.

Update: TSN’s Bob McKenzie confirmed that O’Reilly is no longer under contract with KHL Metallurg, but he emphasized that there has been no progress in the negotiations between O’Reilly and the Avalanche.

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