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Non-Football: Hafþór Björnsson Finishes Second In World’s Strongest Man Competition

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He’s a Viking. Sort of.

2016 Arnold Classic Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

The last time fans of the Minnesota Vikings probably saw Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson, he was setting up the 2017 NFL Draft selection of linebacker Ben Gedeon from his native Iceland.

(Just to clarify, Björnsson is from Iceland, not Gedeon.)

Björnsson, who is more well-known as “The Mountain” from the hit HBO series Game of Thrones, is not just a world-famous actor, but he’s also one of the strongest men in the world.

Seriously, he just competed in the annual World’s Strongest Man competition in Botswana. The competition ended on Sunday, and Björnsson did a pretty solid impression of the Minnesota Vikings in his own right. . .meaning he came very, very close to winning, but he didn’t quite get there.

Björnsson finished second in this year’s competition, just one point behind Eddie Hall of Great Britain. Hall became the first Brit to win the event in nearly a quarter of a century. It’s the sixth consecutive year that Björnsson has had a “podium” (or top three) finish. In those six years, he’s finished in second place three times and in third place three times.

The World’s Strongest Man competition is something that used to be on ESPN all the time, particularly as a part of the overnights where ESPN just needed something to fill airtime with. I still remember watching guys like Magnús Ver Magnússon and Chief “Iron Bear” Collins lifting heavy objects in various events at about two in the morning. I’m not sure if ESPN actually airs the competition any more, but certainly someone is showing it somewhere.

In any event, congratulations to Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson on his strong finish in the 2017 World’s Strongest Man competition. Hopefully, much like we always say about our own Vikings, next year will be the year that he finally breaks through.