The winnings of the semi-finals are 2–2 and the goals of the fifth match are 1–1. HPK and JYP will decide in overtime which will advance to the finals of the Finnish Championship.
The counterattack launched from HPK’s own territory has been permanently limited to the memory boxes of all those present.
Marko Palo sees the JYP defenders in front of him at the red line, but treads uncircumcised with his neck curled forward and as if carrying both in his backpack towards the goal.
Despite the violent harassment of the defenders, the deception succeeds: the puck in the backpack and Rinkelinmäki explodes!
The fire slides on the ice on its knees, hands upright, until it remains at the bottom of a joyous pile.
– I got in the middle Varjosen from Tommi feed. There was a small space between the pair of packs, and I thought that now but brazenly in between, he repeats.
– I would not have been able to pen them, but I thought that either I would get out of it or they would have to break and we would get superiority. Did not dare to break, and then I planned to open my legs.
The puck went into the goalkeeper Marko Leinosen between the legs, and HPK went to the SM League finals for the first time.
Marko Palo’s legendary paint can be seen – or rather audible – on this Youtube video.
That spring didn’t bring gold to the Club yet, when TPS was better in the finals, but Palo’s feats are still one of the most significant in club history.
– It’s a great memory. Yes, people remember it.
Gold Fire was celebrated twice in 1995, and both times in Sweden.
First he was Esa Keskisen with winning the Elitserien championship in the ranks of the HV71. The championship was the club’s first and came against all expectations from the eighth starting box.
– The second last game was against Djurgården, who won the series, and we lost it all the way up, Palo explains.
– Of course, they thought they were running over us in the semi-finals.
The Stockholm shock was complete as HV71 advanced to the semifinals with a win of 0-0.
– Then Malmö was second in the series. We lost 0–2 in wins and went to Malmö to play. Already brought straight pants, Palo remembers the team already prepared for the end of the season.
– But we won that game in overtime. They also won at home, and in the last game they had no split.
In the finals, two surprises met when HV71 challenged Brynäs, who finished fifth in the series. HV won the decisive fifth match again in overtime, and that was it.
– No one had become the champion from the eighth place, ie from the last playoff place. There was quite a bit of a hooligan in Jönköping, and we went around the city on the truck stage, Palo, who finished third on the playoffs, recalls.
World Cup gold
Marko Palo’s game career received its brightest crown in the same spring in Stockholm.
There is no need to repeat the story that led to the first gold of the lions, it is known in Finland by everyone who follows hockey and many others.
– That spring came two unique championships when both were first. Those were amazing moments.
– That team was together for two years, Palo reminds us of Leijon.
The core group, which also included Palo, had achieved Olympic bronze and World Championship silver in the previous season.
– Quite brilliant memories, he is in the mood and says that people still take Globen’s gold as a topic of conversation even in working life.
– Of course it has brought wildness. I won’t mention it, but if anyone talks, then I’ll talk about it.
A gold lion is always a gold lion.