All-time Jeopardy! champion, Ken Jennings, believes he could give current record-breaking James Holzhauer a run for his money. Holzhauer recently snagged his 31st consecutive win on the trivia game show and does not appear to be wavering.
Hosted by the iconic Alex Trebek, the game show consists of presenting contestants with clues in the forms of answers, to which players must phrase their responses in the form of a question. The unique platform, blue box panels, and Trebek have created a formula that’s kept the show in syndication for over 35 seasons. Jeopardy! has made waves in the headlines over the years with a mid-game marriage proposal, a contestant winning with just $1, numerous parodies on SNL, and shocking news of Trebek’s cancer diagnosis. Recently, a professional sports gambler from Las Vegas is dominating the game. In April, Holzhauer became the second person ever to surpass $1 million in non-tournament play. Holzhauer has attributed his vast array of knowledge to children’s literature - claiming those books were easier to dive into than adult reference books.
As it stands, the reigning Jeopardy! champion is Ken Jennings, who tapped out at just over $2.5 million in 74 games. Now, Jennings claims the throne could remain his. According to ABC news, Jennings expressed his feelings about Holzhauer closing in on his record. The current Jeopardy! champ believes referring to Holzhauer as “Jeopardy James” needs to stop, as that title belongs to him. Jennings' Jeopardy! record includes holding the consecutive games win streak mark of 74 games, and Holzhauer is still 44 games behind that total. Jennings was dethroned in 2004 after providing the wrong answer to a question about taxes. He shared his thoughts on facing off with Holzhauer:
"You know, the thing is it's been 15 years for me. You know, we'll never know how Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron would have played at the same time because they were decades apart. Can I have my 2004 brain back if I play this guy? But I think I could hold my own against him, even today, but I would need some breaks."
While Holzhauer is on track to surpass Jennings at this rate, there is no telling what question will stump the champion. Holzhauer’s aggressive gameplay and encyclopedic knowledge have closed the gap to less than $150,000 from Jenning’ all-time Jeopardy! total. For those curious about Holzhauer’s winning breaking the show’s bank, the streak is causing viewers to tune in more than ever, with Jennings evidently one of the most fixated viewers.
Jeopardy! is America’s favorite game show for multiple reasons. The program has become part of the family during its syndication and welcomed into the homes of millions. However, it is inevitable that one day the show will change for good. Amid Trebek’s cancer diagnosis, there was speculation of Jeopardy! seeking out a new host, but for now, the encouragement of Trebek behind the podium and excitement of Holzhauer’s winnings are reminders to viewers why they keep tuning in.
Source: ABC News