A wide swath of soccer fans have been clamoring for a promotion/relegation system for MLS. Hell, even a small slice of fans of other sports with the loosest grip on reality, especially with the rash of tank-jobs in MLB or the NBA, have said promotion/relegation would put a halt to that phenomenon, as far-fetched as it would be. Well, who knew that the perpetually and terminally backward NHL would be the first North American sports league to side with the rest of the world and simply boot a team out of its borders for ineffectiveness… at least according to ESPN:
Yep, the Philadelphia Flyers have been relegated from the NHL, to parts… well, who really gives a shit? They’re gone!
It’s been a long time coming for the Flyers, who really haven’t been relevant since the early 90’s to anyone outside of the section of the population that thinks vomiting up a gas station sandwich is worthy of knighthood. And even then it’s debatable. Their two Final appearances in the past 30 years have seen them go 2-8. There’s been a couple other conference finals appearances, but no one remembers them. Also, Bobby Clarke is an idiot.
That’s the thing about the Flyers, and why they’ve earned this relegation. If it were not for the volume of their fanbase, treading on a reputation that hasn’t really applied since the team moved out of the The Rectum to stop paying rent to a cabal of rats the size of a Buick, you’d never think about them. Claude Giroux racks up 80+ points that definitely make you say, “Oh, huh, Claude Giroux had 83 points last year. Who knew?” Shane Gostisbehere only exists to be in trade rumors that get rival fanbases excited because they remember him scoring like seven power play goals in a month once. Then they look up his current stats and are like, “Oh wow, this guy sucks! Why do Flyers fans never shut up about him?” Because Flyers fans never shut up, period.
The Flyers have been the NHL’s Raiders, an organization and fanbase that keeps bloviating about its importance and personality simply because their dads told them they were important once long ago. They are the kid in the playground telling everyone their dad could beat up your dad, even though dad is unemployed because he punched his last boss over a Carson Wentz argument and is on his 10th cowboy killer of the day by 11 a.m. while on the toilet. Their rebel outlaw persona is only a marketing ploy now.
So finally, we will be free of the 12 Flyers-Rangers games NBCSN subjects us to every year, watching Keith Jones nearly pass out trying to hype Ryan Strome-Scott Laughton as the second coming of Messier-Nieuwendyk. Sweet freedom.
A Flyers-less world. We really can work toward a utopia. It was always right there, all we had to do was grab it.