Could this be Cole’s last season in the NHL?


Will this be Erik Cole’s last season in the NHL?

Pat Hickey reports that Cole, speaking to the media Friday in Brossard, said family considerations and unhappiness over the new collective bargaining agreement will force him to review his situation at the end of the season.

“I enjoyed my time at home and the kids are in school here until the end of June and we’ll reevaluate things after that,” said Cole, who first raised the prospect of early retirement in October.

“I want to have a conversation with the (players association) about some of the escrow stuff and some of the fearsome things in the new CBA. Family-wise it’s a transition year with my daughter in school next year and I think it’s something to be considered and everybody should consider this when they look at the new CBA, not just the way it affects the group but how it affects you individually.”

Cole touched on one of the key issues in the lockout when he noted players won’t receive the full value of their contracts with the players’ share of hockey-related revenue dropping from 57 per cent to 50 per cent. Cole is in the second year of a four-year deal with an annual cap hit of $4.5 milion.

With the players expected to ratify the CBA Saturday, Canadiens players will report for “voluntary” physicals Saturday with training camp slated to open in Brossard at 9 a.m. Sunday.  

Read Hickey’s full report on Cole by clicking here.

(Photo by Dave Sidaway/The Gazette)


  1. rvm says:

    Anyone else in Cole’s shoes would selflessly move his family back to the US and take a studio apartment in the city for himself. Cole is a selfish, petulant whiner.

  2. J.Ambrose.OBrien says:

    I used to be a fan of this guy. But his comments during the lock-out, and now this, have absolutely turned me off him. To the point where he can’t retire soon enough for me.

    It’s too bad, because I saw him as a positive element in the Habs of today and tomorrow. But instead, he has emerged as yet another self-entitled whiny spoiled athlete with zero grip on reality.

    I remember Dec. 31, 1975

  3. caliHabb says:

    How is this different then what Hamerlik did. It’s kind of hypocritical of Cole to speak out now.

  4. H.Upmann says:

    Well he’s a millionaire. Guess he can wake up everyday and ponder retirement anytime… I have no sympathy for this guy snymore.

  5. D Mex says:

    I’m late in on this (left coast).
    – Doesn’t retirement carry cap implications for the team ?

    ALWAYS Habs –
    D Mex

  6. PeterD says:

    Well said Cole…what is everyone so upset about Cole saying what’s on his mind and that he is going to re-evaluate his families situation at the end of the season?
    He and his family should come first in life, and if they are concerned about his daughter starting high school in Quebec versus their home country of USA…then he is entitled to that thought process…
    I actually admire it when hockey players say something real and honest instead of spitting out the politically correct stuff all the time.
    Same as I respect Tim Thomas for him having an opinion that differs from what other hockey traditionalist think he should have.
    They may get paid big buck to play a game for a living, but first and foremost they are real living people with real lives to be concerned about…and I don’t think fans should get worked up when a player says something that is not part of the fans script for them.

  7. db says:

    I’m pretty sure he’d make more money if he played next season than if he didn’t…

  8. J Haul says:

    Cole, shut up and play. He really has become less and less endearing throughout this entire process.

  9. Sean Bonjovi says:

    Do I ever not miss Hal Gill one bit!

  10. frontenac1 says:

    Viva Cole! Viva Gomez! Los Habs Para Siempre!

  11. B says:

    So Cole now has no problem if a contract isn’t honoured in full?

    –Go Habs Go!–

  12. Sportfan says:

    OH God I hope he changes his mind, I really enjoyed watchign Cole and he is one of our best right now and could really use him in his last 2 years of this deal. I think if we make the playoffs this season, that’ll change his mind!

  13. pmaraw says:

    he just needs to lace em up and get on the ice, he’s probably delusional from all the time off.

  14. bwoar says:

    What a tool.

  15. Ian Cobb says:

    This very few game season for our Hab’s. It is just a getting to know you, warm up and try out for everyone in the organization.

    From management to the farm in Hamilton. These 48 games will be used to evaluate everyone and get our house in order for next year.

    This half games schedule means very little as far as standings are concerned. It is all about putting the total product together for the future, here and on the farm!!

    • HabsWinn-ipeg says:

      I agree – there wasn’t a whole lot that MB could do with the roster this off-season. He added some character guys to help build a winning atmosphere. In a year or two the team will look a lot different as we shed some salary (Gomez, Kaberle, Gionta?, Markov? Cole?). This year I think all we will see is improved play from what we have (hopefully) and maybe we sneak into the playoffs (but not likely). I’d like to see us compete on a game in game out basis, and play some interesting /exciting hockey – when’s the last time we did that?

  16. Hobie Hansen says:

    Nothing good can come of saying what Cole is saying. His agent should tell him to put a lid on it. Bad timing.

    • Ron says:

      I just think it is very poor timing on his part that is all. With camp not yet started for a few days I hope his indecision being put public does not bring a few of his teammates down. We most likely all can see his wondering how the money aspect of the new CBA may affect him. Maybe he should produce a new cap which says ” Puck Fehr ” to demonstrate what he lost from the old CBA.

  17. malmn says:

    His logic is in the toilet. 10 – 20 years from now he’s gonna read what he said here and look back and realize how stupid he was.

    GO HABS GO!!!

  18. Price07 says:

    Hope I’m wrong but Cole doesn’t sound like he has a passion to play. Could negatively affect his performance going forward.

    Also, pisses me off that the players complain about having their contracts honored when they decide when they want to stop honoring their own contracts. Ungrateful…

  19. The Jackal says:

    Seems a few people are getting their feathers ruffled over what Cole says.
    Good for him. He’s a good player and will keep produce for us. Even better that he speaks his mind and actually has views he supports and sticks by – better than the usual cliches we hear from athletes.
    So what if he does not like the new CBA? The process is over, he was from the start trying to get a good deal for the players, he knows a lot more about it than the ironically whiny commenters calling whiny. And so what if he wants to retire because of the new CBA and the what he sees as the future of hockey? Again, he knows a lot more about what is going on and what could happen, and his point of view provides fresh insight into a world what is full of general platitudes. Cole probably isn’t the only player who feels like this either. So let him speak his mind, and make his decisions. He is a professional and will continue to perform at his best, he is a respected player and does not warrant the petty insults some commenters have throw.
    I realize it’s hard to sympathize with him, but everyone looks out for themselves, and in the same position, people would be trying to get a better deal, and would want to ensure that the game, for future players, remains on a good path, Obviously, judging by this lockout/negotiation process, some owners would put their interests before what is best, and that left players with a bad taste. Good for them to speak up.

    Not all oysters produce pearls, thankfully, Price is a pearl producing oyster.

  20. frontenac1 says:

    Cole gave Hammer sh*t, Cole doesn’t like CBA,Cole didn’t go to Church! Who friggin cares. If he let’s rip like last season ,I’m happy! Make it happen Eric!!!

  21. piper says:

    Wow! I hope that attitude doesn’t carry onto the ice. This doesn’t sound good to me.

  22. HabFab says:

    So first we are rated to finish 9th in the East and next 18th out of the whole league.
    How did we do last time we were projected to finish here?

  23. Bill says:

    First of all, Cole is entitled to whatever decision he wants to make. If he wants to retire, it’s nobody else’s business. I don’t understand why anyone calls it whiny or anything else.

    That said,, I just can’t see him leaving 7-8 million dollars on the table by retiring two years early. Maybe if his last name were Rockefeller. No way he retires, unless it’s a legit medical thing.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

    • shiram says:

      Moody might be better than whiny.
      I’m hoping he still likes playing and that getting back on the ice will have a positive effect on him.

    • BJ says:

      It is his business, but its also our business (Habs fans) that he continues performing. We need positives going into the season.

    • commandant says:

      Exactly. The guy wants to look over the CBA and consult his wife before committing to playing last season.

      He gave an honest answer to the question.

      I don’t see the problem. Anyone with a family should know that consulting them with major decisions is normal.

      Go Habs Go!
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  24. shiram says:

    Cole seems like an extremely moody guy, or very close to his emotions at the very least.
    Seems to me he should try to censure himself some, especially in a place like Montréal.
    Of course you have to respect whatever choices he makes for his own life and family.
    I guess I just don’t feel this paints him in a good way, he does sound eh whiny as some have said.

  25. likehoy says:

    I just noticed that the habs missed the playoffs after Gillett left as owner, and Liverpool hasn’t challenged for a champions league spot since Gillet left as owner there too.

    He might have had a midas touch on both teams!

  26. jols101 says:

    RE: Subban, There is probably a deal in place, I hope it isn’t the deal reported on here because that makes no sense, but they had to put a freeze on the story until the Players ratify tomorrow morning. As per League rules it is still not allowed for contracts to be signed or trades to be made until full ratification is complete.

  27. Ian Cobb says:

    PK just left for Brossard half hour ago. He is driving down the 401.!!!
    I know this because I helped him put air in his front tire at the garage in Belleville.
    He is driving Malcom’s new 10 speed bike and should get there in a few days.!!

  28. habsfan0 says:

    If Bettman and friends are truly sorry for the angst they put NHL fans through, they would conduct some type of online poll asking these same fans what the league could do to make amends. I’m not holding my breath waiting for that to happen,though.

  29. HabFab says:

    Stubbs big PK story is that we should get a story in 24-48 hours…maybe!

  30. HabFab says:

    Oh, the irony!!

    CanadiensMTL – Mega-banner’s up! Name the five featured players and two of you will win a signed Erik Cole cap!

  31. Filthy Phil says:

    Testing montrealais a denver avatar

  32. Timo says:

    Right. What a load of crap. He’ll be back once someone flashes some green at him.

  33. Ozmodiar says:

    more money for Corey Perry!


  34. vince8_31 says:

    PK SUBBAN: 4 years 22mil.

    you heard it here first.

  35. commandant says:

    Guys give cliched answers in interviews – everyone complains

    Guy gives an honest answer that he needs to talk to his agent and family about the future of his career – everyone complains.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  36. Jarshman says:

    How does this benefit anyone? We finally have hockey and cole has to come out and say this.

  37. Ron says:

    If, at the end of this season, which as stated above is his second year and he retires does that make the remaining 2 years count againist the team cap ?

  38. mark-ID says:

    Wow, this is not what I wanted to hear from one of our top players. Especially with the way he acted during the lockout. Some may disagree, but I think the way he handled the Hamrlik situation was kind of childish. As a fan…..all I wanted was hockey, and at least Hamrlik spoke up about some of the downfalls of holding out on a deal.

    I respect everyone who decides it is time to hang up the skates a little early…..but to come out and consider retirement now because the deal still isn’t fair? Come on buddy. He is letting down the fans and team who supports him, and at the end of the day….Mr.Molson wasn’t one of the people who wanted this lockout to begin with.

    I hope I am wrong, but I am a little worried Cole won’t show up this year like he did last for us.

    “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

    • The Jackal says:

      Yeah, all YOU wanted was hockey, the players were there with a lot more on the line.

      Not all oysters produce pearls, thankfully, Price is a pearl producing oyster.

      • malmn says:

        “a lot more on the line”

        yeah, a lot more than any of will ever make. some lost more than we will ever make. whatever the outcome of the lockout, the players were gonna be rich millionaires. i can’t feel sad for them one bit.

        eric cole’s comments today demonstrate once again how some of the millionaire pro athletes are disconnected from society.

        GO HABS GO!!!

  39. Cal says:

    Let me be the first to say, “Puck Cole.” There, all better.

  40. Kooch7800 says:

    Wow, I used to really like Erik cole. Now he is a whiny female dog.

    In real news – Stubs is saying that there will be PK news released shortly

    “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  41. aj says:

    I like for Cole to stay after the season’s done. At least 1 more year before he officially retires. However, he knows more of himself than anybody else on how his body will endure the pressure. I think he can still play hockey at 34 or 35 yrs old.

  42. yeah making millions will drive him away from the game…..good grief! suckit up Buttercup, no one is buying your jersey off the rack and you get 50% revenue from players like Crosby, OV, Price….. be happy you have a job that pays millions to play a game…arg

    They Call Me Shane
    “They never asked to be Canadiens, they were Chosen.”
    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    Custom Sports Figures

    • commandant says:

      No one is buying Erik Cole’s jersey?? Since when?

      Sure he isn’t in Crosby, Ovechkin, etc… territory… but 35 goals for the Montreal Canadiens likely means he’s an above average seller.

      Go Habs Go!
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

      • I better see you in one then at the Summit next season, becasue I haven’t seen one on any racks here. I see Price, Subban, Markov, and now Max but no one talks Cole’s name in the same sentence when it comes to sales, or the future.

        As for his 35 goals, the Habs would do well do sell now and get a return on this 34 year old warrior.

        FYI if you wait a few weeks his jerseys will be on sale, because he’ll be moving.

        They Call Me Shane
        “They never asked to be Canadiens, they were Chosen.”
        Shane Oliver
        Twitter @Sholi2000
        Custom Sports Figures

        • commandant says:

          There are 700 players in the NHL… and you think he isn’t above average playing on the first line in Montreal of all places?

          Think about all the third and fourth liners in the league and tell me again how he’s not above the average.

          Never mind the fact that as a first liner on the 3rd highest revenue team in the league, he’s contributing quite a bit towards ticket sales and concessions and tv money for the team.

          Go Habs Go!
          Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

          • I don’t remember saying he wasn’t above average, my point is more towards he doesn’t sell the game like others on the team.

            My point about him is he should be happy he gets paid to play hockey.

            And at this very moment 5 days later he maybe should focus his comments towards his game, and how he will help the Habs.

            I am sure right now at this very moment, management is now planning his departure parade. You do not bite the hand that feeds you……isn’t that right Allen Walsh? 😆

            Talk more later, have a minor hockey game to prepare for.

            They Call Me Shane
            “They never asked to be Canadiens, they were Chosen.”
            Shane Oliver
            Twitter @Sholi2000
            Custom Sports Figures

          • commandant says:

            What did he say? That he has to look over the CBA and consult his family before committing the play next season?

            I think thats an honest answer and shows his priorities in the right place (family) vs hockey.

            Go Habs Go!
            Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

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