Alternate captain Brandon Dubinsky epitomized those qualities on a hard night for himself and his teammates inside the Verizon Center.
The bid for history ended with a thud.
Alex Ovechkin picked up an assist on Nate Schmidt's goal.
"Disappointed in myself right now", Dubinsky said. "I'm thankful that I got the opportunity". This was one of my worst big-game performances I've had in my career. We talked about this: Don't hope you're going to win, know you're going to win.
Oscar Klefbom tied it in the second period with his seventh goal of the season, but another power-play marker from Columbus (William Karlsson at 10:43) gave them the lead, 2-1, after 40 minutes. Tortorella acknowledged he "stretched" Bobrovsky by playing him too much during the streak, and he would like to balance the playing time more with backup Curtis McElhinney moving forward.
There aren't many instances when a team can take a victory lap after losing by five goals, but Tortorella not only allowed it, but led the parade. The league is so competitive, and to be able to pull that one off is impressive and I think it shows they really bought into the system and they've paid attention to a lot of different details, because that's what you have to do. "It's a good test for them".
"I probably won't appreciate it until we're done this season, but it's something I'm very proud of this group", said captain Nick Foligno, who along with linemates Brandon Saad and Alexander Wennberg had a six-game individual point streak snapped.
If there is one coach who will be able to shake his players back into form, it would seem Tortorella is that kind of guy. Henrk Lundqvist stopped 15 shots in defeat.
Columbus failed in its attempt to match the National Hockey League record of 17 straight victories, established in 1993 by the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The turnaround is notable both for how well the Blue Jackets, clearly the surprise team of 2016-17, have played to date. The Capitals' motivation is to beat the Metropolitan Division leader and gain some ground on the standings "and it'd be cool to end their streak, I guess", defenseman Matt Niskanen said. In a bit of scheduling irony, Washington will be trying to stop Columbus from tying the mark set by the 1992-93 Pittsburgh Penguins - the Capitals' bitter rivals. Through two periods, Columbus levied 21 shots and 36 attempts against Washington but could only muster 8 shots and 14 attempts in the final frame. "But even more so, the biggest motivation for us is the last two games".
Columbus outscored opponents 62-27 during their winning streak, excluding goals awarded for shootout victories, before falling 5-0 to the Capitals on Thursday. Columbus trailed for the first 17:44 of the third period.