Laval Rocket's Lucas Condotta during practice at Place Bell in Laval on April 5, 2022.

“I saw guys go to (major junior), have no schooling and basically relying just on hockey,” Condotta said on Tuesday, after participating in his first practice — an optional workout — with the Laval Rocket at Place Bell. “I thought it would be a good idea to develop and get my schooling done, come play and have that to fall back on if things don’t work out.”

At age 24, it’s difficult to predict what Condotta’s future holds after the 6-foot-2, 209-pound forward signed a one-year, entry level contract last Thursday as a free agent with the Canadiens for the 2022-23 season. He then signed a pro tryout deal and reported to the Canadiens’ AHL affiliate when the Rocket returned from a four-game road trip.

Condotta, a native of Georgetown, Ont., completed his collegiate career at UMass-Lowell on March 24, when the River Hawks lost 3-2 to Denver in the opening bracket of the NCAA tournament. Condotta scored a goal in the loss. In 33 games as a senior, he produced 10 goals and 13 assists. During his four Hockey East seasons, he scored 24 goals and had 52 points in 121 games.

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