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Gophers freshman Ryan Chesley almost quit hockey before he started

Ryan Chesley is a top prospect for the 2022 NHL Draft, but if he didn't give the game another shot at age 7, he may not have ended up where he is today.

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Ryan Chesley began playing hockey in earnest at age 7.
Contributed / USNTDP

MAHTOMEDI, Minn. — Where would Ryan Chesley's life have taken him if he didn't play hockey? The 2022 NHL Draft top prospect is at the top of his game, but there was a time when he walked away from hockey.

"My dad got me into it (hockey) when I was about 5 years old," Ryan Chesley said. "I got on the ice with all my friends and I couldn't recognize them because we had the helmets and the cages on. I started crying, got off the ice, quit for two years and then I tried it again when I was 7 and loved it ever since."

When Chesley got back on the ice, he began to excel at his game and always played a level up. He moved away from home in the eighth grade, where he took his game to the next level at Shattuck St. Marys where he would spend a few years. His career took another turn when one program took interest in his skill-set.

Profile

Age: 18
Hometown: Mahtomedi, Minn.
Position: Defenseman
Height: 6-foot-0
Weight: 201 pounds
Current team: University of Minnesota
NHL Rights: Top prospect eligible for the 2022 NHL Entry Draft
Elite Prospects Profile Link

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Kirsten Krull covers juniors and prospects for The Rink Live. She is a 2020 St. Cloud State graduate, and has been working in the hockey world for over six years, covering many levels of the game from juniors to the NHL.
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