Reigning Jeopardy! champ Matt Amodio ended his winning streak on Monday, losing his 39th game. The Yale Ph.D student had the second-longest winning streak in the game’s history and the third largest amount of prize money earnings.
In total, he racked up $1,518,601, which puts him behind Ken Jennings ($2,520,700) and James Holzhauer ($2,462,216) for regular-season play, as Variety notes. Amodio is also only second to Jennings for all-time consecutive wins; Jennings holds his top spot with 74 wins. While his streak ended, it won’t be Amodio’s last Jeopardy! appearance as he’s slated to return for the next Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions series.
“I always wanted to be a Jeopardy! champion, and I accomplished that,” Amodio said in a statement. “l know going into every bar trivia game that I play that I’m going to come in with a little intimidation factor. But also, I just like the badge that it represents. As somebody who prioritizes knowledge and knowing things, this is really a good one to have following me everywhere.”
His incorrect answer to the Final Jeopardy clue — “Nazi Germany annexed this nation and divided it into regions of the Alps and the Danube; the Allies later divided it into four sectors” — was Poland (the correct response was, “What is Austria?”), which paved the way for contestant Jonathan Fisher to take the game, with a winning total of $29,200.
The show has been in the midst of transition in the wake of the death of longtime host Alex Trebek, who hosted for more than 36 years. After he died last year, interim host Mayim Bialik served as a guest host alongside Levar Burton, Robin Roberts, Aaron Rodgers, Anderson Cooper, and George Stephanopoulos. The actress was initially named as a cohost with Mike Richards before Richards stepped down over a string of controversies, including allegations of pregnancy discrimination, and derogatory comments he made between 2013 and 2014 about women, Jews, and people receiving unemployment.
Bialik and former Jeopardy! champion Jennings are now alternating host duties as interim hosts for the remainder of the season. Bialik was the host on duty during Amodio’s historic game on Monday.
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