Ken Jennings entered Tuesday’s edition of “Jeopardy: The Greatest Of All Time” with a chance to win the titular crown. He succeeded.
Jennings dominated the night’s first game, earning 65,600 points. James Holzhauer took second with 34,181, while Brad Rutter closed game one with 0.
Thanks to a clutch Daily Double in game two, Holzhauer nonetheless had the chance to make up the difference. He, unfortunately, missed in Final Jeopardy — and thus eliminated any chance of winning the night. He naturally risked all 44,000 of his game two points, ending the round with zero and the match with 34,181.
Jennings was the only contestant to ace the second game’s Final Jeopardy, but his accuracy proved moot given Holzhauer’s miss. Jennings correctly wagered 0, ending his night with a dominant 85,600 (65,600 from game one + 23,000 from game two).
Brad Rutter finished game two (and the match) with 1,400.
With 3 wins, Jennings walks away with The Greatest Of All Time trophy and $1 million. Holzhauer took second with 1 win (and $250,000), while Rutter took third with 0 (and also $250,000).
Jennings seemed to have a clear edge throughout the four-night competition, in part due to his willingness to co-opt the aggressive wagering style Holzhauer made famous during his 2019 run on the show. The Daily Double chasing and high wagers amplified his extensive knowledge and strong buzzer game.
Whereas Jennings benefited from the “James strategy,” Rutter seemed to suffer. He missed multiple “all-in” Daily Double wagers, killing any momentum he seemed to develop. He also seemed slower on the buzzer than his fellow contestants and thus never appeared to be in contention for the crown.
Holzhauer was generally strong from a knowledge and buzzer standpoint, but he did not find Daily Doubles as frequently as he did during his run on the regular show (in part because he was competing against stronger opponents and thus couldn’t retain a lengthy control of the board). Coupled with a few costly misses (none bigger than tonight’s crucial Final Jeopardy), and he found himself unable to top Jennings.