Nothing lasts forever.
Friday, the Chicago Blackhawks historic streak without a regulation loss to begin the 2013 season came to an end at 24 games. Their franchise-best 11-game winning streak also concluded.
The Colorado Avalanche upset Chicago’s remarkable run with a 6-2 victory.
Jonathan Toews opened the scoring, giving Chicago a 1-0 lead less than six minutes into the first period.
But it was all Colorado after that.
Paul Stastny evened the score at 1-1 late in the first period. The second period was all Colorado.
The Avalanche scored four times in less than 10 minutes into the middle frame, putting the Blackhawks streak in jeopardy.
The two teams traded goals in the third period.
It is Chicago’s first regulation loss since March 25 of 2012 – almost an entire calendar year, although the offseason and a lockout also contributed to the span between losses.
Since last March, the Blackhawks had gone 30 games without a regulation loss. That streak is the second longest in National Hockey League history.
The 1979-80 Philadelphia Flyers still hold that record, at 35 games.
Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren, who played on that record-setting Philadelphia team, had high praise for the Blackhawks.
“It’s probably a more difficult task now because of the parity in the League,” Holmgren recently told NHL.com.
“There were teams [in 1979-80] that weren’t great. The parity in the League today makes it very difficult to do what they’re doing and makes it more incredible than anything.
“It’s a different era. I think what they’ve done … it’s a more difficult thing to do today.”
Chicago’s streak had recently drawn a debate about which team was on a more impressive run – the Blackhawks, who at the time had 23 straight games without a regulation loss this season, or the Miami Heat’s then 15-game winning streak.
Just an FYI: the Heat won Friday, making it 17 straight victories for them.