The Columbus Blue Jackets are no longer in the Central Division with the Chicago Blackhawks, yet their former divisional and conference foes continue to torment them when they can.
Far more was on the line for Columbus on Friday, yet Chicago won its 13th consecutive game against the Blue Jackets, and they did so in dramatic (and heartbreaking) fashion.
With about four seconds left, Ben Smith scored the game-winner, denying the Blue Jackets at least one standings point on Friday:
The Blue Jackets still hold the second Eastern wild card spot, but their grip seems a little looser now. With 85 points and five games remaining, they still hold a decent lead over the likes of the Toronto Maple Leafs (84 points and four games remaining), New Jersey Devils (82 points, five games left) and Washington Capitals (81 points, five games left), yet that margin doesn’t seem so imposing after this loss.
It remains to be seen if this ends up being the type of loss that might haunt Columbus; one may even say that they’ll need to be as resilient as a rat.