Gophers' hockey star Amanda Kessel won't return due to concussion


Concussion-related symptoms have put an end to the collegiate career of Gopher women's hockey superstar Amanda Kessel.

Gophers head coach Brad Frost told the Grand Forks Herald that Kessel values her health more than her playing career.

"It's just not worth it for her and her health," Frost said.

The Star Tribune notes that Kessel, 23, suffered a concussion prior to the 2014 Winter Olympics, where she was cleared to play and led the U.S. with 3 goals and had 3 assists en route to a silver-medal finish.

In a written statement released last September, Kessel announced that she would skip her junior season due to lingering concussion symptoms. Sports Illustrated points out that Kessel used her second and final redshirt last year to recover from the concussion. She used her first redshirt in 2013-14 to prepare for the Olympics. The NCAA allows athletes six years to complete four years of playing eligibility.

NBC Sports adds that Kessel has seen some of the best doctors in the world, including a specialist in Atlanta that has worked with NHL star Sidney Crosby, who has battled concussions throughout his career.

Kessel is regarded as one of the best players on the planet. As a sophomore she tallied 101 points in 37 games and was named the top player in women's Division I college hockey. The Gophers went 41-0 and won the national championship that season.

She finished her career at the U of M with 97 goals in three seasons.

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