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Stars 6, Flyers 2: This game definitely happened

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Perfectly fine. It’s fine.

NHL: New York Rangers at Philadelphia Flyers Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

I don’t have an intro to this. This was a dreadful game. They lost and I didn’t feel anything. I don’t think they felt anything either. Fitting.

This is the first lick of hockey I’ve had a taste of since before the Elimination, and I was waiting with bated breath to see what the post-crushed-hopes Flyers looked like. I imagined they looked pretty similar to the Flyers from December and early January—no effort, deep overwhelming ennui, all of that sweet stuff I craved—but I don’t think I had prepared myself for what lay ahead of me. Like an innocent babe unwise to the cruel ways of the world, I stepped into this blindly and without fear.

I mean, good grief, these guys look just sad. I wouldn’t even say it’s just that they’re bad, or even that they’re not giving any effort. We’ve all seen this team and we know what they are capable of and what they aren’t. Now, though, they have nothing to live for, nothing left to play for. The gleaming hope of playoffs on the horizon finally faded, and now they’re just angry. I don’t blame them. I feel similarly about my entire adult life.

Anyway, yeah, Jason Dickinson scored for the Stars at 1:34. It felt merciful. They knew what I was after—a swift, painless death, like snuffing out the dwindling flame of a Yankee scented candle (not sponsored)—and they delivered.

A large man by the name of Sam Morin, perhaps you have heard of him, took an ill-advised hooking penalty at 2:50. Penalty kill, my good friend, you rarely let me down these days, but I know what you are going through. I can only imagine your pain, your suffering. If you were to let in a goal, I would be okay with that. I wouldn’t be mad. I wouldn’t even be disappointed. It’s been a long year, and you are tired. Are we not all tired?

Esa Lindell scored a power play goal at 4:14. Which state is it that assisted suicide is legal? It has to be Texas, right?

A delayed penalty was called on Travis Sanheim at 6:48, and once again, we return to the penalty kill. This time, however, they pulled through. What absolute champions. Sometimes things happen that are neither good or bad, but simply Are.

The rest of the period was not worth talking about. Truthfully, was any of this worth talking about? Does anyone want to talk about Tyler Seguin? I like that guy.

AFTER ONE: 2-0 Stars, shots 9-5 Flyers; Stars goals scored by Jason Dickinson (1:34) and Esa Lindell (4:14)

It’s unfair of me to keep up this melancholic tone. It’s not all bad. Hockey is still being played, after all, and we like this sport, don’t we? I asked many times all season for the Flyers to be mathematically eliminated, and all they’ve done is give this to me. Why am I complaining? What right do I have?

Just as I decided I would attempt to have fun with this game, a stellar effort from Nolan Patrick to rush to the front of the net with the puck wound up in a goal by Oskar Lindblom at 1:13. See? Positivity is key. I just learned that Google Chrome doesn’t think “positivity” is a word. Interesting world.

I’ve come around to the idea of the Flyers winning this game, and that is only because I discovered that if the Stars win here, they will clinch a playoff berth, and it would be nice to crush their dreams for just one more night.

And hey, look at that. Radek Faksa took a hooking minor at 11:11 and Shayne Gostisbehere took the opportunity to tell those power play naysayers what for and blast a shot from the blue line. He would score his ninth goal of the season at 11:33.

You know, the Flyers aren’t really playing a bad game. I know that’s surprising to hear; the loss against the Rangers on Sunday was a devastating affair to watch (allegedly, as I myself was working, and also could not put myself through that tragedy). I think as a whole this is a better effort, and even a good one. It’s like they really want to rain on the Stars’s parade, and I can only relate to that level of pettiness.

Of course, the Flyers still squander chances. That is what they are good at.

Nolan Patrick took a penalty for what appeared to be interference or something at 13:12. Nothing dreadful happened here, but that happened not too long after.

Alexander Radulov, who looks like a neanderthal, scored just a minute or so after the power play ended at 16:39. 3-2 Stars. I mean, yeah.

Roman Polak would send the Flyers to a power play at 16:56 when he inexplicably committed a violent crime for some reason, elbowing Ryan Hartman in the goddamn face. What did that guy ever do to you, Roman, with your stupid ass name? It is time to see the power play back in action. Surely this will be good, as the last one was.

Well, not everything can be good all the time, as we know. Shayne Gostisbehere, in a very earnest attempt to prevent Mattias Janmark from scoring, was called for hooking at 17:57, and we can now say goodbye to the power play, hello to the 4-on-4 hockey.

If you thought this would be fine, well, I don’t know. Tyler Pitlick scored during this stretch of play at 18:40. Whatever, I guess.

The Stars were able to start/finish the rest of their power play, but they couldn’t get much done with it. I guess that’s fine. Is literally anyone reading this?

AFTER TWO: 4-2 Stars, shots 24-13 Flyers; Flyers goals scored by Oskar Lindblom (1:13) and Shayne Gostisbehere (11:33), Stars goals scored by Alexander Radulov (16:39) and Tyler Pitlick (18:40)

There’s still an entire period left?

A ref got mad about something a Flyers player said. I wish I knew what it was. I am dying to know what it was. I hope we get some clarification about this, because I am brimming with curiosity. Anyway, he really did not like it, and decided to showcase this by giving the Flyers a bench minor penalty. I am sure that we deserved it. The Stars went back to the power play at 1:16.

The Flyers killed that one off, how exciting! Of course they would immediately take another penalty at 4:15 on a roughing call on Hartman. This was a dubious one—the other guy certainly should have been called for something—but at this point, like, whatever, you know? Whatever.

We killed that one off too. How about that?

It sort of fell apart after that. You sort of knew it was going to, right? Then it happened, and it felt correct and true, right? Just me? No?

Blake Comeau (never heard of him, et cetera) scored on Cam Talbot at 9:33. Before I’d had enough time to think of something witty and biting to say about it, Radulov scored ten seconds later at 9:43. I just sort of laughed. You have to laugh.

Radulov went to the box for cross-checking at 14:01. I was thrilled to see the comeback. I knew it would have to happen now.

It didn’t happen.

Final observation: Tyler Seguin is very cute, and I love him. I wanted to say that one thousand times in this recap and I held back. You’re welcome.

AFTER THREE: 6-2 Stars, shots 35-29 Flyers; Stars goals scored by Blake Comeau (9:33) and Alexander Radulov (9:43)