NJ Devils LW Patrik Elias on Having Jagr as Teammate: 'Surreal'

New Jersey Devils left wing Patrik Elias describes having Jaromr Jagr as a teammate is "surreal."

Jul 25 2013, 12:23am CDT | by

NJ Devils LW Patrik Elias on Having Jagr as Teammate: 'Surreal'
Photo Credit: Getty Images

New Jersey Devils left wing Patrik Elias is in awe of the fact Jaromir Jagr is now his teammate. 

Elias was teammates with fellow Czech Jagr on several national teams, but never thought they'd end up playing for the same NHL team. He also says Jagr's addition will be ultimately good for the Devils. 

"For me, it's kind of surreal. I don't think I ever thought about playing with him on the same team, but we're at the point in our careers, both of us, that we know our roles, we know our situation, we know our place and I think he will be good for the team."

He also maintains the Jagr signing made sense in the light of Ilya Kovalchuk's NHL retirement and departure to Russia's KHL. 

"If you look at it fans-wise and PR-wise and what we needed after losing Kovy, there were maybe only three or four guys available that we could possibly get or think about getting and he's one of them. I think PR-wise, I think for fans he is still a big name that has accomplished something tremendous in his life and his career, so I'm pretty sure the fans will be excited to have him as a Devil."

The loss of Kovalckhuk as well as those of forwards Zach Parise and David Clarkson to free agency two seasons ago further magnify the need for Elias and Jagr to supply a much-needed scoring punch for New Jersey. 

Elias, who signed a three-year contract to remain with the Devils, reiterates they never played on the same line with the Czech national team. 

"We played maybe two years ago (at the world championships), we played a couple of power plays together during the tournament, but never a regular shift together. 

"I wonder as much as you guys how it's going to work out, how he's (Jagr) going to fit in."

Joining them in the Devils' lineup are Marek Zidlicky and Rostislav Olesz to increase their Czech representation. Olesz hasn't lived up to expectations since being drafted seventh overall in 2004. Perhaps Jagr's acquisition could help invigorate his play.  

The 41-year-old Jagr signed a one-year, $2 million contract with New Jersey on Tuesday. 

 
 
 


Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.

 

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