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Tale of top lines as Flyers fall

DALLAS — It was a tale of the two top lines Saturday as Dallas, despite playing without two injured defensemen, trounced the Flyers, 5-1, at the American Airlines Center.

The Flyers' top line of Claude Giroux, Scott Hartnell and Jake Voracek was invisible. They were pointless and combined for a minus-9 rating.

The Stars' speedy top line — Tyler Seguin centering Jamie Benn and rookie Valeri Nichushkin – combined for nine points and a plus-11 rating.

The Flyers (13-14-2) missed a chance to go over .500 for the first time this year.

Do not be misled by the final score. Goalie Steve Mason was outstanding before being replaced by Ray Emery at the start of the third period.

The Flyers allowed at least a half-dozen odd-man rushes, and gave Mason virtually no support.

"We gave up too many easy goals," said defenseman Kimmo Timonen, who suffered an unspecified second-period injury that is not believed to be serious.

The Flyers were coming off a 6-3 win in Detroit.

"You can't have big dips. You have to find a level to play," Timonen said. "You have to be consistent."

The Flyers are a curious team. They figured to have momentum from a first period in which they were shorthanded for nine minutes but built a 1-0 lead.

But they were dominated in a second period, getting outscored, 4-0, and outshot, 13-6. Dallas scored three goals in a 62-second span to take a 4-1 lead.

It was the third-fastest three goals allowed by the Flyers in franchise history. The fastest three were surrendered in 42 seconds in a 1991 game against New Jersey.

Breakaways. Tyler Seguin's natural hat trick (see story) was the first scored against the Flyers since Tampa Bay's Fredrik Modin in its 6-0 win over the host Flyers on Jan. 28, 2006…..Wayne Simmonds notched his 100th career assist….The Flyers, 2-2 on the six-game trip, play in Ottawa on Monday.