Tampa Bay Lightning sign defenseman Sean Day to one-year, two-way contract

Julien BriseBois is getting an early start on building up the minor league defense.

The Tampa Bay Lightning have signed defenseman Sean Day to a one-year, two-way contract. Day had his contract terminated by the New York Rangers at the end of May while he had one year remaining on his entry level contract. Over the past two seasons as a professional hockey player, he has skated in 62 AHL games with four goals and 18 points and 55 ECHL games with nine goals and 35 points.

Day is a left handed defenseman that clocks in at 6’2” and 227 pounds giving him good professional size on the blue line. Prior to turning pro, Day spent five seasons in the OHL playing for the Mississauga Steelheads, Windsor Spitfires, and Kingston Frontenacs. In 291 OHL games, he posted 42 goals and 158 points. Day was drafted in 2016 in the third round, 81st overall by the New York Rangers.

Day was originally born in Belgium, but grew up in Michigan. He holds dual citizenship in the United States and Canada. Day’s claim to fame was being granted Exceptional Player Status by Hockey Canada so that he could enter the OHL a year early as a 15-year-old. Unfortunately, he did not have the same kind of career that John Tavares, Aaron Ekblad, and Connor McDavid had in the CHL after they were granted Exceptional Player Status. Tavares, Ekblad, and McDavid all ended up being drafted first overall in the NHL Entry Draft.

For the Lightning, Day will bring some depth in the minor leagues on the blue line. He should be given a chance to earn a spot with the Syracuse Crunch on the third pairing or as a 7th defenseman. If he can’t crack the line up though, he’d be a welcome addition to the Orlando Solar Bears in the ECHL.

While details of the contract have not been released yet, I would speculate that the contract is for a minimal minor league salary probably in the $70,000 area. The NHL Salary is certainly the league minimum of $700,000, but I do not expect him to see any NHL playing time in 2020-21. Because of his age, Day will be a restricted free agent after his contract expires at the end of 2020-21.