Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Dutch speed skater Sjinkie Knegt took home the silver medal in the men’s 1,500-meter race on Saturday, and his hand ended up in a troubling position while he was standing on the podium. Was it merely a mistake or a pattern of behavior?

Photos showed Knegt with his middle finger extended while he held a plush toy of PyeongChang Olympics mascot Soohorang in his right hand.

If this were any other Olympian, the topic probably would not have come up. However, Knegt is the same speed skater who was infamously disqualified from the 5,000-meter relay at the Sochi Olympics in 2014 after he flipped the double-bird at a fellow skater who beat him in a qualifying event.

While the 2014 gesture was obviously intentional, Knegt insists what happened on Saturday was an unfortunate coincidence.

“It looked like I put up the middle finger. It’s not intended … I just looked very bad in the photo, but it was not on purpose,” he said during Sunday’s medal ceremony, according to The Korea Times. “I was just holding the medal.”

If you remember, we also had a middle finger controversy following a boxing match during the 2016 Olympics in Rio, so that makes three straight Olympic Games where the one-finger salute has become a topic of conversation.

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This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.

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