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Published: Sat, January 07, 2017
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Blue Jackets' win streak snapped at 16 with loss to Capitals

Blue Jackets' win streak snapped at 16 with loss to Capitals

But having lost in such staggering fashion against Washington, the Blue Jackets remain the story of the league because how they respond to this loss and how they move forward from the end of the streak will tell us nearly as much as what we learned about them during the streak.

When the Rangers (27-13-1) last played Columbus (27-6-5, ) 11 days before the Blue Jackets' streak began, they lost, 4-2, on November 18 after their three wins in Western Canada.

Troy Loney of the '92-93 Penguins felt the emotional toll of that winning streak late in the season contributed to their second-round post-season exit, and the Blue Jackets should expect at least a lull. And it's not close.

Columbus goes for its 17th straight win in a game featuring the first- and fourth-place teams in the Metropolitan Division.

A key overtime win for Chicago, despite a Wild win in San Jose, has put Minnesota just one point behind the Blackhawks. When Washington got back to its locker room after the 6-5 overtime win against the Toronto Maple Leafs, players wanted to know the result of the Blue Jackets' game against Edmonton. Instead, still atop league standings with a three-point lead over Pittsburgh in the juggernaut Metropolitan Division, they'll host NY and the Flyers in a weekend back-to-back, looking to at once keep building and start anew. The goal stood after Columbus challenged for offside, giving the Capitals the commanding lead they enjoyed heading into the final period.

"This is an unforgiving league".

"There is no burden with our team and that's what I like about it", Tortorella told the Columbus Dispatch. And I think we've crossed that bridge, . that we know we're a good hockey club.

The tight race is great entertainment and should fuel an exciting stretch run this season.

"It's still the same team", Henrik Lundqvist said after Friday's practice in Greenburgh. "They should feel really good about it", head coach John Tortorella said. That could be particularly true for the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"As soon as our game was over last night, guys were checking to see if they won or night", defenseman Brooks Orpik said. The reward for the Montreal Canadiens (24-9-6, 54 points) for finishing first in the Atlantic by double-digit points? As the coach of the New York Rangers, his teams were eliminated twice in the playoffs by Washington and twice sent the Capitals packing. Unbeaten through all of December, the Blue Jackets had rocketed, from damn near nowhere, atop the league. Nick Foligno has three goals and five assists in his last five, and Brandon Saad and Alexander Wennberg have two goals and four assists each in the last five.

The 2012-13 Penguins won the Atlantic Division and were the top seed in the Eastern Conference.

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