Before Tuesday, the Wells Fargo Center was the Tampa Bay Lightning’s playground.

They had defeated the Flyers eight straight times in Philadelphia, and with both teams scratching and clawing for a playoff spot, they were hoping to finish off their three-game road trip by making it nine in a row.

Then the building nearly imploded.

OK. That’s an exaggeration. It wasn’t really that dangerous of a situation, but it wasn’t just a blip on PECO’s power grid either As the power partially went out in the NEW Wells Fargo Center, delaying the game.

A transformer on the event level of the stadium went kaput. Or, as Wells Fargo Center President Phil Laws put it, it “blew up.”

“It blew up,” he said. “Burnt up. I don’t know why. I don’t know if it came from external stuff or inside the building.”

Fortunately, Laws said, it didn’t catch fire, and no one was injured. But it did cause a nine-minute delay in the first period when it occurred – with just 13:43 remaining and the Flyers leading 1-0 in a game they’d win 6-2.

The power outage affected about 25 percent of the lighting in the entire building, but there was still enough safety lighting for everyone to see. However, the East part of the building had a lot of dark spots – on the concourse, in the clubs and suites, and up on the balcony level, where the entire BetRivers Sportsbook, as well as the Press Box, the GM’s box, and all the broadcast booths were plunged into darkness. Also on that side of the building is the game presentation control room. It lost power, which also impacted the center scoreboard, which was frozen in time, and eventually went out altogether. All the LED boards that circle the arena were out as well.

Not only that, but the transformer fried the audio, so no music could be played and there was no public address system, meaning there was no Lou Nolan and no PECOOOOOOOOO Power Play announcements.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the whole thing was the Wells Fargo Center refrigeration system that keeps the ice frozen, was impacted.

Laws added that the chiller plant that chills the ice was not affected, however two of the three chillers used under the ice were. He also added that the building’s HVAC system was down.

“We have three chillers and like to run two at a time,” Laws said. “Right now, we’re running on one. We do believe it will get us through the night. I wouldn’t want to do this though in June during the Stanley Cup Finals when we get there.”

It was a fair point, but it also had to be concerning that it was unseasonably warm in Philadelphia yesterday, with temperatures climbing into the 60s outside, making for an uneasy feeling about operating with just one chiller.

Once the game resumed, Flyers defenseman Travis Sanheim said the players could tell the ice wasn’t in great shape and that the one chiller was enough to keep the conditions playable, but not for an extended period of time.

“It felt like the outdoor game with the darkness around us,” Sanheim said. “But it started to get really hot, and the ice started to get terrible there as it got warmer.”

In what had to be one of the most ironic tweets ever by the Flyers, they put this out a couple hours before puck drop:

I mean, that’s unintentional comedy gold.

Still, as fun as it was to laugh about that, the game almost didn’t resume.

While there was still enough lighting on the ice for the players to see, there were definitely many more shadows. The players could still see the puck without concern, but the two guys everyone was worried about were the goalies – Andrei Vasilevsky for Tampa and Sam Ersson for the Flyers.

The referees skated over to both benches and asked both coaches if they wanted to continue playing in these less-than-ideal conditions.

“They asked me if you want to play,” said Flyers coach John Tortorella. “I did. And (Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper) did. We both decided, let’s ask the goalies.”

Both goalies gave a hesitant blessing to continue.

“When you try to prepare yourself for a lot of challenges that’s probably one you don’t prepare for,” Ersson said. “It was just weird because it was different. It felt old school. Maybe hockey from 50 years ago. That’s kind of what it looked like for me.”

Torts didn’t want to really hear any thoughts on the subject, other than if Ersson could see the puck.

“We’re up 1-0 at the time,” Torts said. “I don’t think Ers was too crazy (about it). I didn’t really give a shit what Ers thought. We’re up 1-0.”

Cooper said the Lightning provided a digital clock to be used in the scorer’s box so they could have a real countdown somewhere on ice level since Nolan couldn’t announce over the P.A. system how much time was remaining in penalties or periods.

“We did our part and brought the clock over, so I felt like we contributed to try and help the situation,” Cooper said. “It’s interesting because you take out replays and the scoreboard and it actually becomes a quiet game. No one can really scream at the refs and their music’s not really getting anyone going. So, it was really like an old school pond hockey game with the little electric clock keeping score. It was so weird.”

Morgan Frost said he felt like it affected the game for much of the first two periods, as both teams were a little out of sorts, dealing with the distractions of different conditions, both on the ice and the atmosphere in the building.

But by the third period, the lights were back on – mostly. And the music was playing and Lou Nolan was on the mic, and in the final 20 minutes, the Flyers were excellent.

They were sparked by a dazzling toe drag goal by Tyson Foerster, who has been a revelation for the Flyers this season.

From there, the defense took over… offensively. Sanheim scored a goal to make it 3-1 and Sean Walker scored to make it 4-1. Cam York added one of two Flyers empty-netters en route to a five-goal third period.

“I think we shook it off pretty well,” Walker said. “It was definitely kind of weird. That’s the first time it ever happened for me and I’m sure for most guys. It was unique, but I think it ended up working in our favor.”

And that was the one thing that Torts was most-impressed with everything that happened in the game:

“The biggest point I take out of this is we didn’t lose our concentration,” he said. “It was an easy game to get caught up in all the delays and the lights. For two periods it was two teams not doing much, so to come out and play a good third period, it’s a good sign.”