Game Recap – Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time, Match 3 (Thursday, January 9, 2020)

Warning: There may be spoilers in the post below at any point after 8:00 PM Eastern.

Tonight’s the night for Match #3 of the Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time! Here’s tonight’s game recap (for Thursday, January 9, 2020):

Today’s contestants:

Brad Rutter, currently on 0 wins
Brad Rutter on Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time
Ken Jennings, currently on 1 win
Ken Jennings on Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time
James Holzhauer, currently on 1 win
James Holzhauer on Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time

This is currently a placeholder post which will be updated with Final Jeopardy! information and a game recap once it is known.

Preview: James and Ken have both run very evenly through two matches so far; both of them are very close on the buzzer and have split the first two games. Brad will have had a chance to regroup before this third match; it felt as though his confidence is shot after two games, but a good match tonight and a win will mean he’s back on level pegging after a disaster of a start. James is still slightly stronger than Ken in Final Jeopardy, which is one reason why the prediction model still shows James as a favourite to take this.

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(Content continues below)

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Part 1, Final Jeopardy! category: U.S. POLITICAL HISTORY

Part 1, Final Jeopardy! clue: These 2 now-defunct parties each gave the U.S. 4 presidents in the 19th century

Did you know that you can now find game-by-game stats of everyone, now including Jason Zuffranieri and James Holzhauer, who has won 10 or more games on Jeopardy!, here on the site?

Part 1, Final Jeopardy! correct response: What is Democratic-Republican & Whig?

Part 2, Final Jeopardy! category: 21st CENTURY OSCAR WINNERS

Part 2, Final Jeopardy! clue: These 2 foreign-born directors have each won 2 Best Director Oscars, but none of their films has won Best Picture


(Content continues below)

Part 2, Final Jeopardy! correct response: Who are Alfonso Cuarón and Ang Lee?

Since Alex Trebek’s diagnosis of stage 4 pancreatic cancer, many community members have been raising money. The Jeopardy! Fan Online Store is as well! All proceeds from any “Keep The Faith And We’ll Win” shirt sold will be donated to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. To date, over $440 has been raised.)

Game 1 results:
Brad 8,800 + 8,800 = 17,600
James 13,600 + 13,600 = 27,200
Ken 25,600 + 25,600 = 51,200

Game 2 results:
James 7,400 – 908 = 6,492 + 27,200 = 33,692 (Who is the GHOST? (Greatest Host of Syndicated TV) Pat Saj Alex Trebek)
Brad 10,000 – 4,133 = 5,867 + 17,600 = 23,467 (Ken es el Hombre Eagles Super Bowl LII Champs)
Ken 17,600 – 1,200 = 16,400 + 51,200 = 67,600 (Winner) (Who are Lee and Gonzalez-Inarritu)

Tonight's Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time result (for January 9, 2020.)

Daily Double locations:
1) THE ALPS 1000 (7th pick)
James 1400 +1400 (Ken 3000 Brad 0)
2) WORD ORIGINS 1600 (1st pick)
Brad 3400 -3400 (James 7600 Ken 6000)
3) GOVERNMENT IN CRISIS 1600 (6th pick)
Ken 9200 +9200 (James 9600 Brad 1600)
James 5000 -5000 (Ken 0 Brad 0)
5) THE DAM BILL 2000 (12th pick)
Brad 1000 +2000 (Ken 12400 James 5400)
6) MUSIC & LEGEND 1600 (14th pick)
Brad 3000 +3000 (Ken 12400 James 5400)
Overall Daily Double Efficiency for this match: 200


Unplayed clues:
Game 1, J! round: None!
Game 1, DJ! round: None!
Game 2, J! round: None!
Game 2, DJ! round: None!
Total Points Left On Board: 0

Game Stats:
Ken 35,600 Coryat, 43 correct, 3 incorrect, 36.84% in first on buzzer, 3/3 on rebound attempts (on 6 rebound opportunities)
James 25,600 Coryat, 46 correct, 7 incorrect, 42.11% in first on buzzer, 2/3 on rebound attempts (on 4 rebound opportunities)
Brad 20,800 Coryat, 21 correct, 2 incorrect, 15.79% in first on buzzer, 2/2 on rebound attempts (on 8 rebound opportunities)
Combined Coryat Score: 82,000
Lach Trash: 11,000(on 8 Triple Stumpers)
Coryat lost to incorrect responses (less double-correct responses): 15,000

Cumulative Tournament Stats:
Ken 108,600 Coryat, 135 correct, 10 incorrect, 38.01% in first on buzzer, 9/11 on rebound attempts (on 18 rebound opportunities)
James 93,600 Coryat, 134 correct, 13 incorrect, 40.06% in first on buzzer, 5/6 on rebound attempts (on 15 rebound opportunities)
Brad 53,200 Coryat, 67 correct, 12 incorrect, 18.71% in first on buzzer, 6/6 on rebound attempts (on 19 rebound opportunities)
Combined Coryat Score: 255,400
Lach Trash: 24,800(on 17 Triple Stumpers)
Coryat lost to incorrect responses (less double-correct responses): 43,800

James Holzhauer, stats to date:
1,447 correct, 59 incorrect
43/47 on rebound attempts (on 91 rebound opportunities)
54.54% in first on buzzer (1327/2433)
82/89 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $696,388)
40/43 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $27,991

James Holzhauer, to win (per the prediction model):
Wins in 3: 0.000% of the time.
Wins in 4: 0.000% of the time.
Wins in 5: 23.143% of the time.
Wins in 6: 10.281% of the time.
Wins in 7: 3.434% of the time.
Overall: 36.858% of the time.

Ken Jennings, stats to date:
3,072 correct, 306 incorrect
116/144 on rebound attempts
57.62% in first on buzzer (2968/5151)
147/177 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $482,999)
58/89 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $26,022

Ken Jennings, to win (per the prediction model):
Wins in 3: 0.000% of the time.
Wins in 4: 29.584% of the time.
Wins in 5: 20.892% of the time.
Wins in 6: 7.819% of the time.
Wins in 7: 2.100% of the time.
Overall: 60.395% of the time.

Brad Rutter, stats to date:
763 correct, 90 incorrect
44/47 on rebound attempts
38.34% in first on buzzer (720/1878)
46/57 on Daily Doubles (Net Earned: $61,100)
18/30 in Final Jeopardy
Average Coryat: $17,661

Brad Rutter, to win (per the prediction model):
Wins in 3: 0.000% of the time.
Wins in 4: 0.000% of the time.
Wins in 5: 0.000% of the time.
Wins in 6: 1.132% of the time.
Wins in 7: 1.615% of the time.
Overall: 2.747% of the time.

Andy’s Thoughts:

  • Brad found a Daily Double on the first clue of Double Jeopardy in 4 games. He missed all four.
  • Ken absolutely put himself in this tournament’s driver’s seat by both his True Daily Double and True Final Jeopardy. He has absolutely come to play this week.
  • Kudos to all three players for their levity in the last Final Jeopardy with everything all decided.
  • This is also the Ken Jennings that a lot of people were expecting to see in the Ultimate Tournament of Champions final in 2005.
  • All 18 Daily Doubles have had the maximum amount bet on them this tournament.
  • Game 4 is scheduled for Tuesday, January 14, 8:00 PM Eastern (7:00 PM Central).

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65 Comments on "Game Recap – Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time, Match 3 (Thursday, January 9, 2020)"

  1. Denny D'Andrea | January 9, 2020 at 7:01 pm |

    After seeing all the ‘mindless’ crap that is aired 24/7 I wonder what is going to happen after this GOAT runs its course. Obviously, Alex is at the end of the line. I believe he is running on empty to get this much anticipated GOAT finished so he can relax and deal with his plight. He still has that sharp sense of humor and the three guys really look like they are enjoying themselves. Take care Alex. You ran the show like the ‘pro’ you are. ‘D’

    • I agree, he does seem to be running on empty but without a mistake when reading the answer. He seems quick minded still and in good spirits. I think this would be a good time to pass the torch, give the show to the winner of this GOAT contest and to spend his time with his loved ones. Also, he has a bit of makeup on in these tapings. I wonder where he was at in his treatments during these tapings.

      May God bless Alex. I appreciate him hosting Jeopardy all these years, especially lately, bringing intelligence to a society plagued by mindless TV.

  2. At the risk of sounding fetishish, I would be suprised on bit if Brad wins tonight. They want the series to last.

    • I’ve heard that a lot, but that implies Jeopardy is rigged, and I don’t believe that. Brad NOT winning tonight proved those people wrong. They should step and eat their crow

    • Jim Thompson | January 10, 2020 at 1:40 pm |

      I will step in and eat my crow. I picked Brad and I was completely wrong. Not only is he slowest on Buzzer; he’s missed a handful of responses that I think both others would have gotten. On the comet final, for example, he picked Hale-Bopp instead of Shoemaker-Levy–thus ending up with “Hale” as his response. I think pretty much any Jeopardy contestant would have narrowed the choice to Shoemaker or Levy…
      Anyway, I was wrong. This series won’t hurt James much if Ken goes on to win. But it is going to reduce Brad to a distant third among these three…

  3. not suprised if Brad wins tonight.

  4. Here’s to Alex the GOAT game show host.

  5. Being from Florida, it was a little fustrating watching James miss the Florida State Daily Double. Congrats to Ken for a 2nd win!

    • Jim Thompson | January 10, 2020 at 1:44 pm |

      More of a gemstone DD. And garnets are not necessarily red. I thought it was easy but then I have bought a lot of sandpaper. And I am always surprised when James misses anything.

  6. Yay! One more. Go Ken!!!
    And, may Alex be hosting Jeopardy! for many years to he said to Congressman Lewis, may 2020 be the year they both beat pancreatic cancer!

  7. We end game two with a triple stumper.

  8. Appreciate the levity from Brad and James on a meaningless FJ. How great would it have been if Ken had put “Who are two people who have never been in my kitchen.”

  9. Didn’t Cuarón and Lee both have Best Picture wins for their films? Roma and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, respectively? Did I misunderstand the question?

  10. R. B. Smada | January 9, 2020 at 9:38 pm |

    Yay! Brad didn’t play like crap! One decent game out of him, that’s all I wanted.

  11. Great game tonight loving this tournament. Definitely rotting for Ken to finally win.

  12. Ken is playing like the GOAT! I would love to see James tie it up on Tuesday, to set up a dramatic Game 5. But the way Ken is playing, Tuesday may be his coronation day.

  13. Vasilios Vasilounis | January 9, 2020 at 9:54 pm |

    Interesting game 3 by all players. Ken seems fired up for this tournament, I think a bit more than James. Brad seems lost at times. Is this the same player who won all the major tournaments? He seems a shadow of his former self. Although I’m rooting for James, there’s a strong chance Ken may win it all. I just hope the tournament reaches 7 games–we direly need intelligent, classy entertainment such as this.

  14. I think how tonight played out proves my point from the first night that Ken played FJ too conservatively on the first game. I mean I think James should’ve bet at least 2/3 the first game as well given all of the scores in the second match, but I know he also likely wanted to make sure his daughter got a shout out.

    I know everyone had gone “all in” on each DD, but with Ken having gone for it on the final the game before, he squeezed both Brad and James to the point where they needed a BIG lead going into final. James having a 5k/0/0 lead, would not have needed to double down there, and without kens lead.

    Ken’s adjustment to how the game is playing has been so impressive. I have thought his in game/tournament adjustments with game theory to be lack luster before, but how he’s shifted is interesting. I’m stunned at how James’ presence has some how blocked brad from ringing in — guy is averaging 20% vs. 42% AND he usually beats Ken 1-on-1!

    For me, however, a GOAT will forever encompass someone, who takes greatness and then fundamentally changes the way a game is thought of or played.

    • I’m not sure he played too conservatively in the first game, but he still made the proper adjustment this game. FJ is arguably the weakest part of his game, as in previous big tournaments he’s led going into FJ during a match and then lost it. Going into the first match, it wasn’t unreasonable to expect a super difficult FJ and he probably shouldn’t have risked too much without getting a feel for the difficulty and how James was betting. Yes, James has a history of aggressive bets, but you also didn’t know if he’d play any differently given the competition and similar difficulty concerns.

      However, by the 3rd match trends are emerging. The FJ so far haven’t been ‘easy’, but they’re also far from triple stumpers. It’s worth taking a big risk and doubling down to a huge advantage. And James is obviously betting just as aggressively, so there’s no reason to be conservative given the difficulty level. I have a hard time criticizing Ken’s match 1 bet, hindsight is 20/20, but would have been super critical of him had he done the same thing match 1 today.

      • Ken’s adjustments have been the x-factor. I have been markedly impressed by that. If anyone were to adjust I thought it would have been Brad.

        I also think Brad must use a hybrid method to ring in of cadence and timing the light, proving to be much weaker than a purist method. I agree that it’s not terrible to be conservative w the weakest part of his game, but I think given his past experiences w Brad, I’d rather take the risk, knowing Brad, and having James as an x-factor, than play it safe because this is a weakness in my game.

        Ken still got most of his FJ correct, and a 2/3 bet puts him at a marked advantage, while a 1/3 bet really doesn’t, given how fickle DD can be in the DJ! round. Given the category and competition and ability… really?

        I actually think how the 3rd match went, he might have been too aggressive. He’s lost to Brad on the buzzer so much. Lost on so many levels, and here Brad is floundering…. he’s had 7 dd in the DJ! Round, vs 3 for Ken and 2 for James. Here brad can’t ring in… some how James has neutralized him. Here’s a situation that Ken feel more comfortable.

  15. Brad (not Rutter) | January 9, 2020 at 10:01 pm |

    James missing the daily double after a great start to game two really took the air out of the back half of the show.

    Through 3 contests, ken has answered (correctly) one more question than james (135 to 134) and Brad has exactly half of James(67). Was surprised to see that James had more correct answers than Ken tonight, considering the blowout.

    • It shows the importance of the Daily Doubles and Final Jeopardy in determining the winner. Ken getting that DD where he risked 9,200 points made a difference of 18,400 which he doubled up to 36,800 with FJ. He just managed to get that one right and if he missed it he would have had 36,800 less points.

  16. I was surprised at Alex seemingly mispronouncing “Jean-Luc Picard”. Every Trekkie knows that “Picard” was consistently pronounced with a hard “d”, regardless of its language of origin.

  17. Definitely a different game today. It almost felt like all three were a bit off. During the first two matches, there wasn’t a single triple-stumper that I would have come close to answering. Tonight, there were four of them I would have gotten.

  18. very disappointed with James in game 2 tonight and I’ll be floored if KJ wins this 3-1-0 tomorrow …. if KJ wins it 3-2-0, that’ll be alright with me even though I still want James to win

  19. BARBARA EPSTEIN | January 9, 2020 at 11:47 pm |


  20. Thanks to Ken’s huge lead from game 1, James’ 5K DD miss early in game 2 wouldn’t have made a difference (numerically, anyway — whether it affected James’ confidence and thus buzz speed is not for me to guess).

    Of course, it also meant that the only way Ken was likely to lose the match was for James to get timely Daily Doubles in game 2’s DJ, which was rendered moot by Brad getting both of them. Hence Brad’s “your welcome” to Ken after getting the second one. After that I think they all knew the match was pretty much over, since after that they seemed to just play to run out the clock, so to speak).

    It also really speaks to the dynamics of the three-person format compared with head-to-head. With this match-play format it’s technically possible (though unlikely) to win the tournament without actually winning a single game.

  21. Pizza Face Fred | January 10, 2020 at 1:09 am |

    I’m here for the “rooting” misspellings and Ismael’s helpful comments,,,

  22. The biggest surprise to me so far is Brad, but a deeper look and I wonder if this shouldn’t have been somewhat expected. It feels like he’s getting demolished, but looking at Coryat (for Games 1 and 3 at least) he’s clearly 3rd but not outclassed. So what’s happening? At first I was just figuring he’s gotten older and far from his peak, and surely he’s a little off his peak, but I don’t think that’s it. When he beats Ken, often he outbuzzers him, while Ken knows lots of random crap that keeps him close or gives him a slight lead, and then Brad has the advantage for the really tough FJ clues with some time to think. You feel like Ken knows more random trivia, but Brad can beat him at the advanced FJ clues and outbuzzer him for the other clues he knows.

    James has completely thrown a wrench in that, because he can outbuzzer Brad. So Brad is having trouble building points to make himself a factor in FJ. To compensate, he has to be much more aggressive in daily doubles and hope he knows random clues, which isn’t his game. He’s getting a bit unlucky with the DD clues he’s getting, but still having to go all in on random DD clues to build points is a much better Ken strategy than Brad. Meanwhile, the random crap and wordsmith type clues that Ken can excel at are still there for him, so he can still build his points while playing more aggressive on DDs because of James. And James has to play a riskier style on normal clues when he falls behind, which isn’t HIS style (see 7 missed responses today). Point being, I’m not sure a whole lot has changed from previous Brad vs Ken matches on paper, but the James dynamic is changing everything.

    I thought the FJ comedy was funny, but do wish to know if Brad had that answer. He got both DDs in double jeopardy today right. With just a few more points, he’d have quadrupled up and made himself a factor. With just 5000 more points before pulling that first DD, Brad might have been able to win that match, as crazy as it sounds, if he knew that final jeopardy. Though I did find it funny when Brad acknowledged he did Ken a favor by drawing the DDs, as James landing a DD was the only chance Ken had at losing that match.

  23. Brian Green | January 10, 2020 at 3:36 am |

    I hope when Jennings wins the series 3-1-0, Alex Trebek says in front of 15 million people watching: “Ken, come on over here. You grace us with your presence.”

  24. James Allen | January 10, 2020 at 4:24 am |

    Wow! Like I noted two days ago (and Ken said in his filmed piece), Ken is all-out to win. A strategic DD wager helped him win game 1, but after James dominated match 2, Ken responded by dominating match 3. The thing to remember is that not only does Ken want to beat the new kid on the block, he wants to beat Brad (whom he has never beaten). Brad, for whatever reason, has been a total non-factor. The messed up part is that he’s picking almost every DD, and picking every DD while having a paltry score, and picking every DD and getting them all wrong, and by picking every DD he is helping whomever is in the lead (which he even acknowledged today.)

    I’m all for Ken at this point. We’ll no doubt see James again, but this could be Ken’s long awaited cherry on the top of his Jeopardy! career.

  25. Brad has rendered the DD moot and, as someone pointed out earlier, that has favored the person leading the match. Interesting how James has been animated with the other two contestant, Brad just seems stunned and Ken all business. Ken, looking like a GOAT it’s almost palpable.

  26. Please help – I’m confused by the betting on game 3 – Going into FJ, James had 7,400 + 27,200 = 34,600, Ken had 17,600 + 51,200 = 68,800. Why didn’t James bet it all, where he could have caught Ken? Did I add wrong? What am I missing?

  27. Predicting Ken in 4, maybe Ken in 5. He’s all business and at the top of his game, having fully adjusted to James’s game.

    Interviews where he says “I’m always a Brad’s maid” never a Brad.” and him saying Jeopardy! is a young man’s game and he may not be as quick at the buzzer is a smokescreen that he is quicker and more accurate than ever. His wagering 25,600 in the first FJ with a lead to essentially wrap up the match is like hell freezing over–what I thought I’d never see! Same with his all-in 8600 DD in game 1, first match to turn the tide. He’s reinvented himself to a new, improved Ken.

    James could come back and win two matches, but definitely advantage Ken. I don’t see Brad winning any games. Fully agree his getting a disproportionate 9 DDs (4 right, 5 wrong, net -11,000), half the 18 DDs, despite buzzer < 20% is a statistical anomaly that’s helped the winner in all three games.

    • Marty Cunningham | January 10, 2020 at 12:39 pm |

      Brad’s finding so many of the DD’s, regardless of his responses, has really taken away some of James’ play. Everytime Brad or Ken finds a DD, it is one less for James to find, and play his normal style. I thought I saw James kind of drop his head after Brad or Ken found one of the DD’s on Thursday’s show, as though he was either sad about it or upset that he did not find it. Plus, I think James has actually zeroed out on a couple DD’s that he did find, which I don’t think ever happened during his earlier appearances. Nice to see James’ backstory piece and learn more about who he really is. Audiences have seen enough of Brad and Ken over the last decade or more to feel comfortable with them whenever they are on. James has still seemed cold and almost mechanical in his play sometimes, but he needs to remember the old adage that “people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” Interesting that he was the only one of the three who highlighted charity work as a result of his Jeopardy! fame. And he did fairly well with his imitation of Dhruv Gaur, tanking his regular FJ response for a shout-out to Alex. And i am not sure if James or Brad really did know the FJ answer about the directors, or if they had already planned their responses before the clue because they knew Ken could not be caught.
      Brad may have come to realize that he might not win, but he can still play the “spoiler”, as he kind of joked at with his “You’re welcome” comment to Ken after finding a DD, which meant that James did not find it. It would be nice to see him one match, but at this point, it seems like Ken may take it all next Tuesday. There has been talk about whether former players, who are great at answering the clues, would be as good at giving them (i.e. to replace Alex) since there is a shift from being a player to being the host. Ken had alluded to his podcast so he may be more comfortable (and accepted) as a possible host than Brad or James.
      Hard to say what may happen at the end of this tournament, but I think Alex will do his best to at least finish out the regular season 36, which should wrap taping in May, and then the new producer might have some changes to make. They are already promoting the online test so they are still looking for contestants for future seasons.

      • Jim Thompson | January 10, 2020 at 1:59 pm |

        Agree that James has had a chance to show less familiar viewers the great side of his personality. Along with his LV charities and FJ shout-out to Alex, a nod to Ken for helping James prepare with Ken’s Jeopardy books. Plus a very sportsmanlike congratulation.
        He’s also shown the ability to relate well, such as with the “Pat Saj” line-out to keep his FJ response from becoming too maudlin.

  28. Andy,

    As there appears to be some confusion about this, do you know if the next match will be aired Friday 1/10 or Tuesday 1/14? The program guide on my cable box says Tuesday but I’ve read several articles that say Friday. Thanks for your help!

  29. Speaking of mispronouncements, sulci is pronounced “sul-sigh” not “sulkie”.

  30. Hey, Andy – I think when you wrote “Brad found a Daily Double on the first clue of Double Jeopardy in 4 straight games”, you had Match 1 and Match 2 switched around in your head. He “only” accomplished that feat once in Match 2. Ditch the word “straight”, and you’re … uh … straight.

    Interesting to note he always finds them under a $1600 clue. Then again, maybe he’s just playing the odds: in this tournament, the DJ! DDs have been under a $1600 clue 58% of the time (vs. $2000 33%, $1200 8%).

    PS: This website is so cool. Thank you for all the work you’ve put into it.

  31. The ratings for these games on ABC have been phenomenal and total viewers have gone up each night, with over 15 million for match 3 (a big number for broadcast in today’s multimedia environment).

    I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if ABC pulled a “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” and started ordering more gimmicky Jeopardy tournaments, if not simply a weekly “super” edition of the show to go along with their other prime time game shows, but likely someone other than Alex hosting it (Will Ferrell, maybe?). Of course, without the GOAT hook they’d need some sort of marketing hook to retain interest with the inevitable viewership declines. Weekly celebrity Jeopardy, perhaps?

    • I don’t think adding celebrities would ultimately do much ratings-wise. When prime time Millionaire flamed out after being so super hot at first, the conventional wisdom was that it was due to over-exposure…airing up to three or four nights a week. I’ve always thought it was because they aired so many celebrity episodes. Celebrities playing for charity is nice, but it’s not compelling…my interest level for any game show declines when it’s not average Joes playing for the big money, be it Jeopardy!, Millionaire, or any show. Ken, James, and Brad are celebrities now, but they’re playing for a million bucks for themselves, and even for them that’s still life-changing.

      • Apparently ABC is interested in bringing Ken, James and Brad back for something else, even if not Jeopardy related. Not sure what it could be. Have them play Wheel of Fortune? Create a new game show?

        I would think sentiment over Alex and his health news might be partly responsible for some of the viewership

        • Elizabeth Harris | January 14, 2020 at 3:09 pm |

          I would love to see the three of them in The Chase, the game where James first came to public attention.

  32. Brad (not Rutter) | January 10, 2020 at 9:54 pm |

    I can’t see celebrity jeopardy working in primetime over the long haul, but it would be cool to see them try. The ratings for this are huge because its genuinely amazing to see these trivia masters go head to head. Personally I would love to see James get a head to head rematch with Ken (yes, I am writing James off) with no daily doubles and some type of amended final jeopardy so as to minimize the element of luck. It could be this generation’s Fischer vs. Spasky, without the international element.

    • James Allen | January 11, 2020 at 2:18 am |

      I’ve heard these kind of suggestions before regarding the rules and it irks me every time I hear it. The fact of the matter is without the DD’s and FJ! it wouldn’t be Jeopardy! You know, the game these guys are famous for playing? You might as well ask Fischer and Spassky to play without those pesky queens on the board (too powerful a piece, you know.)

  33. if it goes to 6 or 7 matches (yes, Brad picking up the pieces to win a match or two, even more miraculously win), I see a rematch, “GOAT—The Rematch!”. Hey, it happens in sports like boxing all the time. If the ratings continue high until the end, and Alex is able, I see it happening within a year. But without Alex hosting and Brad present it wouldn’t be Jeopardy! as we know it.

    Currently, the difference between Ken and James In this tournament so far is not clear even though someone has to win. But without Brad, no one else has the pedigree to be in the debate as one of the top three.

    If Ken or James win in 5 and its close, another remote matchup is them versus Watson. I think Ken and James would give a stronger performance, possibly even win in man verses machine, round 2! However, I mean versus the original processor. But if IBM upgrades to produce a Watson 2.0 with 10x the processing power and better algorithms Ken and James would likely be toast!

    • I’m pretty sure they’re onto Watson 10.0 by now. Last I heard the Wagson algorithms were being used for medical diagnosies. I’m not sure what it would take to redeploy for trivia

  34. Brad (not Rutter) | January 11, 2020 at 10:58 am |

    I’ll push back. Wouldn’t it be sort of novel and interesting to see a 2 way jeopardy? What we seem to have in this tournament is mike tyson vs muhammad ali, with joe frazier stepping in once every thirty seconds to land a jab on one of the guys. I know three way is “the nature of jeopardy,” but if you’ve isolated the 2 best trivia minds and are trying to find the best, maybe it shouldn’t be.

  35. I agree! If Ken and James are clearly the top 2, why not! If so, let the rematch happen quickly. If the winner changes, there could even be a rubber match! But I don’t see either happening without a healthy enough Alex.

  36. Marty Cunningham | January 13, 2020 at 2:39 pm |

    Very good, and interesting, comments for the middle period of the GOAT Tournament.

    No! Do not try to make this a regular thing. I think the timing is good now, because of James’ recent phenomenal success, and partly too because of Alex’s health. There really is a good case for which of these three could be the best player. And people who have been in and out of watching the show over the years may want to get one last glimpse at Alex. Jeopardy! has always worked the best when it has stuck to its most basic format. I don’t regularly watch Millionaire, but every time I tune in it seems like they have added a new element to the game, like a new lifeline, etc. Keep these PrimeTime events for special occasions, like this “Greatest” tournament.

    Whether he does win on Tuesday this week, or it does go clear to Friday, the math seems to favor Ken. He said he feels at home on the set and holding a clicker; he should. He has stood behind one of those podiums more times than Brad and James combined! And, out of the 8,000+ shows that have already been taped Ken has appeared on 1 percent of those, the only contestant to even account for a full percentage point of appearances! Ken has seemed very relaxed, which I have found, does help to keep the fun in playing the game.

    Still, this tournament has been a great master class in how to play the game, hosted by the best, and played by three of the best who have had an impact on the game. After 36 seasons and 8,000 shows of this version, whoever does win this deserves to be called the greatest.

    • The stats show that Ken and James are neck and neck in terms of questions answered. The difference in Ken’s two match wins basically amount to the same two factors: Ken hitting a big early Daily Double, and Brad exposing the DDs early in DJ to prevent James from coming back.

      That’s not to say it’s the only factor since even without DDs he holds a slight edge. But it will be interesting to see who luck favors in the next game(s)

  37. Marty Cunningham | January 14, 2020 at 12:42 pm |

    I hear people talk about buzzer speed and listening to the cadence of Alex’s voice, but I believe reading ability plays a great part in answering clues and ringing in. If you can finish reading the clue in your head before Alex gets done reading it out loud, that gives you an advantage over whether to ring in or not, if you know the answer. Yes, this does also involve relying on his cadence. I never knew about the “enable” lights until I went to my first audition and, truthfully, I can’t recall that I ever even noticed them when I was on the set. Contestants read the clues in their actual locations on the board, not enlarged on a monitor, like the clues are displayed when watching at home. So, you also have to have good enough distance vision to read something about 20 feet away. but again, I was usually focused on reading the clue, and listening to Alex, to not notice the lights that run down each side of the board and indicate when contestants can ring in.
    That said, I would be interested to know how much reading is a factor for Brad, James or Ken. Is one of them a slightly faster speed reader than the others? Maybe after the tournament they might share a few more of their secrets that helped them through this tourney. Everybody talks about their different techniques for holding and clicking the buzzer, but no one has ever said that they can outread Alex.
    Also interesting, the first time I saw a live show, I smiled because Final Jeopardy! is displayed in the studio the same way it was way back on the Art Fleming version. The info is displayed in the fourth column from the left, and the subject is in the the third screen down, and the clue is below it, in the fourth screen. Again, the contestants do not get an enlarged version of the clue, like we seem to get watching at home. I think that the reading also helps with this, as Alex noted in a show last week (I think one of the regulars) that two of the contestants were on the answer “like a shot”, writing down their responses almost as soon as he was done reading the clue. So, again, if they were able to read the clue internally before he got done reading it out loud, they have those few extra seconds to think more about the correct answer. every so often, they will show the board in the Final set-up during the Think! music for Final.
    And friends have also asked me how I know so much, but the real trick for Jeopardy! is not how much do you know, but how quickly can you recall it. Some other shows seem to give contestants a seeming eternity to answer a question, but Jeopardy! has always maintained strict standards about time limits, which is one of the things that has made the show a classic, and all the contestants have adapted that discipline as they practice to get on the show. I have noticed in the Greatest tournament that it does not seem like there is as strict of a time limit on the contestants, although the lights on the top front of each podium are supposed to act as a timer, but I have not heard Alex caution the players of how much time is left in a round, and they have cleared every board. But again, these guys are very good at using shorthand when calling for clues and avoiding any small talk that eats up seconds and slows down play.
    Interested to see what happens tonight in Game 4. My DVR still has the show listed at 7 pm from tonight through Friday, but that could be a small programming red herring from ABC, but it has brought them good ratings so far.

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