Before the Devils began this five-game road trip in Edmonton Monday night head coach Pete DeBoer said he thought Czech natives Patrik Elias and Jaromir Jagr “should” be able to develop some chemistry playing on a line with Dainius Zubrus.

One of the positives of the first two games of the trip is that it’s looking like DeBoer was right. Jagr and Elias each had a goal and an assist in tonight’s 3-2 overtime loss in Vancouver after both also scored goals in Monday’s 5-4 shootout loss in Edmonton.

“I thought they were very good again tonight” DeBoer said.

Neither Jagr nor Elias was sure what to expect out of playing together. They had never played on the same line on the Czech national team and lasted only one period together in Friday’s 4-3 shootout loss to the Islanders.

Elias is seeing progress though particularly tonight in the second half of a back-to-back set.

“A little better today” Elias said. “I thought it was our best game because we were better on top of the puck. I skated well tonight. I felt good out there and still I’ve got to be more patient and make the play. In the neutral zone coming up make better plays for those guys to get some chances.”

Elias noted that Zubrus is a key to the line’s success because he’s backing him up defensively and giving him the freedom to be more creative offensively.
“I felt we played a little bit better than last game today” Jagr said. “It was a little bit tougher too it was back-to-back and (the Canucks) didn’t play last night. Even Zubie we spent more time in the offensive zone and we created a lot more chances than we did yesterday.”

Elias was skating at left wing on a line with Travis Zajac and Steve Bernier when he narrowly missed winning the game for the Devils in the final seconds of regulation when he deflected a Marek Zidlicky shot just over the crossbar.

“I was hoping for that one get another lucky bounce” Elias said. “I saw that I was in front and their forward took the lane away and I kind of stepped inside a little bit and it just hit my stick and went right over.”