2008-09: Lucas Lessio played for the Toronto Marlboro Midget AAA team in the GTHL. In 72 games, he scored 53 goals and added 60 assists for 113 points. Lessio was chosen in the first round, 7th overall, of the 2009 OHL Priority Selection by the Niagara Ice Dogs.
2009-10: Prior to the 09-10 season, Lessio’s rights were dealt from the Ice Dogs to the Oshawa Generals. Lessio played junior A hockey for the St. Michael’s Buzzers of the CCHL. In 41 games, he scored 30 goals and added 42 assists for 72 points to go along with 87 penalty minutes. In 5 playoff games, he registered 3 assists. Lessio played for Team Ontario at the 2010 World U-17 Hockey Challenge, scoring 2 goals and adding 3 assists for 5 points in 6 games.
2010-11: In his OHL rookie season, Lessio played in 66 games for the Generals. He scored 27 goals and added 27 assists for 54 points to go along with 66 penalty minutes. In 10 playoff games, Lessio scored 5 goals and added 4 assists for 9 points. Lessio played for Team Orr at the 2011 CHL Home Hardware Top Prospects Game. Lessio was chosen in the second round, 56th overall, of the 2011 NHL Draft by the Arizona Coyotes.
2011-12: Lessio returned to Oshawa for his second OHL season after attending camp with the Coyotes and was the General’s second-leading scorer behind Rangers’ prospect Christian Thomas. Lessio scored 34 goals with 28 assists in 66 games and was minus-six with 71 penalty minutes. Nine of his 34 goals were scored on the Generals power play. Oshawa finished third in the East Division and lost to OHL playoff finalists Niagara in a first round series. Lessio scored 3 goals with 2 assists and was minus-one with 6 penalty minutes in the six game series with the Ice Dogs. He signed a three-year entry level contract with the Coyotes in September, 2012.
2012-13: Lessio made his pro hockey debut with the Coyotes’ AHL affiliate in Portland following his third OHL season with Oshawa. In five AHL regular season games he scored 1 goal with 1 assist and had an even plus/minus with 4 penalty minutes. The Pirates finished second in the Atlantic Division and were swept by Eastern Conference champion Syracuse in the first round, losing two of the three games in overtime. Lessio skated in all three playoff games and was +1 with 2 assists. He scored 19 goals with 15 assists and was +11 with 38 penalty minutes in 35 OHL games — missing much of the season and an opportunity to represent Canada in the World Junior Championship due to a hand injury. In nine playoff games for the Generals he scored 1 goal with 2 assists and was -2 with 20 penalty minutes.
2013-14: Lessio made his NHL debut as a 19-year-old, skating in three early season games with the Coyotes before being assigned to AHL affiliate Portland. He had no points and was -2 with 2 penalty minutes averaging 11:21 minutes of ice time for Phoenix. Lessio led Portland with 29 goals and was the Pirates’ second-leading scorer behind Andy Miele. He had 25 assists and was -13 with 63 penalty minutes in 69 games. The Pirates finished at the bottom of their division and missed the AHL playoffs.
2014-15: Lessio skated in 26 games for the Coyotes in his second pro season — playing in three games for Arizona in November and then re-joining the club for an eight-week stint in January — and was an offensive threat for the AHL’s Portland Pirates. He scored 2 goals with 3 assists and was -10 with 8 penalty minutes, averaging 12:45 minutes of ice time for the Coyotes. Lessio scored 15 goals with 16 assists in 49 regular season games for the Pirates and was -9 with 26 penalty minutes. Portland finished fourth in the Atlantic Division, falling to eventual Calder Cup champion Manchester in a first-round playoff series. Lessio had 3 assists and was -3 with no penalties in five playoff games.
2015-16: Lessio made his debut with the Canadiens on February 2nd, seeing 6:43 minutes of ice time against Philadelphia before suffering a lower-body injury that kept him out of the lineup for six games. In 12 games with Montreal he scored 1 goal with 1 assist and was +1 with 2 penalty minutes, averaging 10:29 minutes of ice time. Acquired from Arizona on December 15th in exchange for forward Christian Thomas, Lessio spent most of the year in the AHL; first with Springfield and then joining Montreal affiliate St. John’s. In 42 AHL games between the two clubs he scored 10 goals with 11 assists and was -16 with 41 penalty minutes.
Lessio was an offensively gifted winger in junior hockey. He has above average skating speed and decent puck skills but has not shown that same production at the pro level. Lessio has an athletic build and possesses the ability to play either a power game or a finesse one. His role at the NHL level will likely be a lower line forward and penalty killer who can chip in offensively from time to time.
Lessio was acquired by Montreal from the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for Christian Thomas in a swap of former second-round picks who have yet to stick at the NHL level. Eight months younger than Thomas and selected in the 2011 draft (one year after Thomas), Lessio appeared in 12 games with Montreal in 2015-16, spending most of the season in the AHL. He will be given an opportunity to earn a lower line role with Montreal in 2016-17 but his offensive potential appears limited.