Ken Jennings is the Greatest of All Time on “Jeopardy!”
But Lancaster native Brad Rutter is still the top money-winner in game-show history.
Smart wagers on Daily Double and Final Jeopardy clues took Jennings, with a record 74-game winning streak on the quiz show, to victory at the end of a four-match “Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time” tournament that he often dominated.
The episode in which Jennings defeated Rutter and the 2019 high-wagering phenom James Holzhauer was recorded last month and aired Tuesday night on ABC.
Jennings won two two-game matches in the tournament last week in addition to Tuesday’s match; those three wins secured a $1 million prize for the Seattle-based author.
Rutter, a Manheim Township High School graduate and a writer, director and producer in Los Angeles, finished the “Greatest” tournament in a distant third place and without winning a single match.
But, despite Jennings’ million-dollar prize, Rutter has still won the most money on the show, adding a $250,000 runner-up prize to his nearly $4.8 million from several tournaments.
Jennings adds $1 million to his $3.37 million “Jeopardy!” winnings.
Holzhauer, who seemed poised to beat Jennings at the end of Tuesday’s match, missed a Shakespeare-themed clue on Final Jeopardy and lost all the points he had accumulated in the second game.
Holzhauer adds a $250,000 runner-up prize to his nearly $3 million in “Jeopardy!” winnings.
Throughout the tournament, Rutter was often beaten on the buzzer, and struggled on Daily Double clues — sometimes losing all the points he had accumulated to big wagers.
Jennings soared at those moments, often doubling his money on correct answers and wagers.
Host Alex Trebek, who has been battling advanced pancreatic cancer, told the three contestants that this may be the last time all three would appear together on the show.
“I’m going to miss you, Alex,” Rutter told the host. “It’s been a privilege and an honor to be associated with this program in any way.”
The final score of Tuesday night’s match was $88,600 for Jennings, $34,181 for Holzhauer and $1,400 for Rutter.