From Canes Now

Canes forward Erik Cole does appear headed to free agency on Friday.

Cole’s agent, Steve Bartlett, confirmed today that Cole would like to test his market value at age 32 and explore what teams might be interested in signing him.

“Erik wants to see what the options are on July 1st,” Bartlett said via email. “That is in no way a slam on the Hurricanes or his appreciation of the role they have played in his career. He has never really explored free agency in his career and feels that he is at the age when it makes sense to see all offers before deciding on what he wants to do.

Cole made $3 million last season in the second year of a two-year contract. He played 82 games and scored 26 goals, third-best on the Canes, and also had a team-high nine game-winning goals.

Canes general manager Jim Rutherford said today he was pessimistic about re-signing Cole, as well as forwards Jussi Jokinen and Chad LaRose. All become unrestricted free agents on Friday.

“I’m very disappointed,” Rutherford said.

See. Told you. I think the LA Kings go for him or, possibly, Jussi Jokinen. GO KINGS!