Mon May 16 10:54am EDT
At the IIHF world championships on Sunday, Finland won the gold medal, defeated its arch rival Sweden with a five-goal third period to win that gold medal, and captured the first world title for the hockey nation since 1995, having lost in the finals four times since then.
As you can imagine, there was a bit of cathartic revelry in the streets of Helsinki after this championship win, as thousands of fans crammed the public squares, climbed on cars, climbed on light poles, sang victory songs … and got naked in a giant fountain. Which is a reasonable response to beating Sweden for gold, we think.
By 1 a.m. on Monday morning, both the Esplanades in downtown Helsinki were packed with jubilant hockey fans, such that the earlier rally of cars hooting their horns and with flags waving from the windows was no longer possible.
The nude statue of Havis Amanda in the Market Square was decorously draped with a Finnish team jersey, and a crowd estimated in the tens of thousands had congregated around the statue in high spirits, some of them stripping down to their underwear and jumping into the chilly water of the fountains.
Concerns of shrinkage have no place in a euphoric hockey celebration! Here's the scene from the Finnish capital:
There are many, many other videos from the celebration on YouTube, including some from Sannathrocks and a great clip from inside the party on the streets (some images are NSFW).
MYV3 has a large gallery of party photos and game shots. The image up top is from photographer Vitalii Semenenko; via reader Aarre Kanapeura, who writes:
There are some hilarious pictures of the humble and shy people of Finland gone crazy after Finland beat the crap out of our biggest rivals Sweden. Naked people all around, fist bumps for everyone!
Visit Vitalii Semenenko's gallery here, but WARNING on some NSFW images of nudity.
Is there any greater expression of hockey's incredible emotional power than 2,000 guys named Teemu dancing with their suomi's out? We don't believe so.