The finish was good but the Nashville Predators still ended a five-game road trip in disappointing fashion.
Chris Mueller and Mike Fisher scored 47 seconds apart in the final 3:01 Tuesday, but the Predators still fell short with a 4-3 loss at Columbus.
It was their fourth straight defeat on a trip that started a week earlier with a victory in Dallas. It also dropped them to last place in the Central Division, two points behind Columbus, and to 13th in the Western Conference.
Nashville trailed 2-1 at the start of the third period but fell behind by three when the Blue Jackets scored twice in a span of 2:41, the second with 7:19 remaining. Vinny Prospal assisted on both as well as the Blue Jackets’ second and finished with a game-high three points.
Mueller, playing in his 21st game over parts of three seasons, scored his first NHL with 2:01 to play, and Fisher got the Predators within one with 1:14 to go. They got one more shot on goal before the finish but failed to get the equalizer.
Shea Weber assisted on both third-period goals, which gave him eight points (two goals, six assists) in the last eight contests.
Gabriel Bourque became the first Nashville player with 10 goals when he cut a two-goal deficit in half with a deflection at 14:45 of the second period. He scored once in four of the last five games.
The Predators outshot the Blue Jackets 35-31, including 15-7 over the final 20 minutes but matched Colorado and Florida for the NHL’s longest active losing streaks.
Nashville has played more road games (18) than any other team, but also has more regulation road losses (11) than any club other than Philadelphia. The last two defeats were by a single goal.
Of the remaining 18 games, 12 are at Bridgestone Arena beginning Thursday against Calgary.