Nothing lasts forever in the NHL, especially when it comes to extended strings of success. The ebb and flow of an NHL season can be brutal at times, with the joys of victory quickly ruined by the sting of defeat.
Just ask the San Jose Sharks about that.
Entering this past weekend, the Chicago Blackhawks had experienced a string of success that no other team in NHL history previously had to start a regular season. Recording points in 24-consecutive games, Chicago had compiled 21 victories without a regulation loss.
Having set the record for most games with a point to start a season, the Blackhawks were within striking distance of the all-time point streak set at 35 games by the 1979-80 Philadelphia Flyers.
The team was scheduled to play the tail end of a home-and-home with the Colorado Avalanche on Friday night. Having won the first game of the mini-series in Chicago on Wednesday night, the Blackhawks carried a franchise record 11-game winning streak into the contest.
Colorado -- the NHL's 24th ranked team at the time -- carried their own streak into the night, a two-game losing streak.
Despite the seemingly unbalanced matchup, Chicago experienced their first moment of cruel fate as only the NHL could provide -- a 6-2 defeat at the hands of the Avalanche to end the historic run.
With both the point streak and the franchise-record winning streak behind them, the Blackhawks returned to action against the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday night. It didn't go according to plan.
Edmonton opened the contest with four-consecutive goals in the first period. Chicago battled back in the second period, scoring four of their own. However, the Oilers managed to produce two more goals in the period, which ultimately proved to be sufficient enough to earn a 6-5 win.
Prior to Friday night, the team had allowed an opponent to score more than three goals only once over the course of their previous 24 games.
By Monday morning, the team had allowed six goals in consecutive performances. Having entered the weekend on a winning streak, the Blackhawks ended it on a losing streak.
Such is life in the NHL.
Now, the team will look to put an end to their current streak much more quickly than their previous one. With half the season already gone, the team's sights will be focused on replicating their previous success where it matters most -- in the league's second season.
While their accomplishment over the first 24-games of the year will be remembered fondly by some, it will be their final games that will be remembered most vividly.