Down the hill

Lauri Mononen and Jouko Öystilä left Jokerit after the championship season. To replace them, Jokerit got Matti ”Mölli” Keinonen, Keijo Puhakka, Seppo Laakkio and Timo Saari from the ruins of HJK.  Ilpo Kuisma came from Tappara, and sat a full quarantine at first before becoming invaluable for Jokerit in the next seasons.

Down the hill

On the coaching side, there was a change that proved to be temporary. Matti Lampainen got tired of traveling between Lahti and Helsinki. The Training Coach Jorma Borgström stayed with the team. The new head coach was Rauli Virtanen, the director of the Koho ice hockey stick factory from Forssa. Even though Jokerit was in the fourth place after the first quarter of the season with a single loss, Lampainen decided to come back to coach the team. Players did not like the aggressive Canadian style of playing style nurtured by Virtanen.

Lampainen did not manage to steer Jokerit to any more medals. The team placed fourth during the championship hangover season. HIFK won their third championship. The Jokerit players still placed high in scoring tables. Sutinen was the top scorer for the second season in a row, and Turunen came in third.

During the summer of 1974, Jokerit lost three key players in goalie Valtonen, defenceman Seppo Suoraniemi and forward Pertti Arvaja. The club brought in a couple of rookies who turned out to be great later on. The brothers Hannu and Jari Kapanen and goalies Kyösti Majava and the promising young Hannu Kamppuri arrived from the Championship Series dropouts HJK/Karhu-Kissat. From Jokerit juniors, Ari Mäkinen and Ismo Syvähuoko rose to the first team. Another young player coming in was Risto Kermanen who had moved to the capital from Pieksämäki.

Boris Majorov, a big name from the Soviet Union came in as a new head coach. He was not able to get the team to working at the start of the season, and after the first quarter Jokerit was placed last in the standings. Towards the spring the situation got better. The bronze medal slipped right past Jokerit during the last round of the season and Jokerit placed fourth place for the second time in a row.