View Poll Results: Which mega-champion do you think will win the Jeopardy! contest that starts tonight?
Ken Jennings 42 59.15%
Brad Rutter 3 4.23%
James Holzhauer 26 36.62%
Voters: 71. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 01-07-2020, 07:51 PM
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Jeopardy! Contest of the Titans


Whom do you think will win the Jeopardy! contest between Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter, and James Holzhauer that starts tonight (first one to three wins will be considered the winner)?
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Old 01-07-2020, 08:14 PM
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I'll take Brad Rutter for one million, Alex.
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Old 01-07-2020, 08:47 PM
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I meant to vote Brad, but my hand slipped and I put my vote on James.
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Old 01-07-2020, 09:10 PM
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I meant to vote Brad, but my hand slipped and I put my vote on James.
The first commercial break is where you're supposed to work out issues like this.
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Old 01-07-2020, 09:19 PM
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Watched the first night. Rutter wasn't too impressive. That could easily change as the tournament continues.

James? I get the feeling he's playing conservatively. Waiting for the right moment to make a big daily double run.

Ken wants this win. He's mentioned Rutter beating him before. I voted Ken as mega-champion.

Last edited by aceplace57; 01-07-2020 at 09:21 PM.
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Old 01-07-2020, 09:52 PM
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I liked the way they cleared the board in the first round without a single wrong response. Very impressive.

Unfortunately, they seemed to tire as the game progressed. Neither Ken nor Brad is exactly a spring chicken anymore, but I thought for sure that James would do better.
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Old 01-07-2020, 09:56 PM
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I wondered if they got a break between games.

They did seem to struggle in game 2.
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Old 01-07-2020, 10:58 PM
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I thought they said that the person who went first in each game was determined by a coin toss. How do they do that between three people?
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Old 01-07-2020, 11:31 PM
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I thought they said that the person who went first in each game was determined by a coin toss. How do they do that between three people?
They all flip a coin. If they all get the same thing, they flip again. If they don't all get the same thing, the odd one is the winner.
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Old 01-08-2020, 12:17 AM
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Watched the first night. Rutter wasn't too impressive. That could easily change as the tournament continues.

James? I get the feeling he's playing conservatively. Waiting for the right moment to make a big daily double run.

Ken wants this win. He's mentioned Rutter beating him before. I voted Ken as mega-champion.
I noticed during the special team tournament last January that Rutter didn't do as well as he had been in the past so even though he's mostly gotten the better of Ken Jennings in the past (as Ken Jennings, himself, is always so quick to remind everybody) I don't expect him to this time. Personally, I'm pulling for either Holzhauer or Rutter to win. Since I don't expect Brad Rutter to win this time - Go, James Holzhauer!
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Old 01-08-2020, 02:05 AM
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I'm not watching, but I suspect James will crush them. He's not necessarily smarter, but his strategy is unmatched.

Fuck 'em all, I say. I'd rather watch Law & Order re-runs. Haven't these guys got enough money already?
  #12  
Old 01-08-2020, 05:46 AM
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I liked the way they cleared the board in the first round without a single wrong response. Very impressive.

Unfortunately, they seemed to tire as the game progressed. Neither Ken nor Brad is exactly a spring chicken anymore, but I thought for sure that James would do better.
This is exactly my take.

I didn't vote because I already knew who won round one when I saw this thread.


mmm
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Old 01-08-2020, 07:39 AM
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This poll needed a end date on it before the first matches were played.

Did I read right that this is Brad Rutter's first loss to human players?

Last edited by Mahaloth; 01-08-2020 at 07:39 AM.
  #14  
Old 01-08-2020, 09:07 AM
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I noticed during the special team tournament last January that Rutter didn't do as well as he had been in the past so even though he's mostly gotten the better of Ken Jennings in the past (as Ken Jennings, himself, is always so quick to remind everybody) I don't expect him to this time.
Jennings would have won their most recent match had he not made a mistake on the final Final Jeopardy (the answer was something like, "The two Secretaries of State who never married," and I think he said James Buchanan and Madeline Albright instead of Buchanan and Condolezza Rice.

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Did I read right that this is Brad Rutter's first loss to human players?
Yes, you did, although I don't remember whether he finished ahead of or behind Jennings in their match against Watson.

And I for one am still waiting for any of these players to go up against Kevin Ashman.
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Old 01-08-2020, 10:08 AM
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While it's not exactly fair to keep the voting open after the first show has aired, I just picked Holzhauer because I commented as such to my brother last night before the first match.
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Old 01-08-2020, 10:10 AM
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I wondered if they got a break between games.

They did seem to struggle in game 2.
I suppose. Maybe they just didn't know the answers.
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Old 01-08-2020, 10:26 AM
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They all flip a coin. If they all get the same thing, they flip again. If they don't all get the same thing, the odd one is the winner.
Of course. My brain was running on little sleep yesterday, and all I could come up with was scenarios where there was a flip between two people, then between the winner and the third person. Which didn't seem fair, and how do you determine who flips first? (With another coin toss, of course! It's coin tosses all the way down!)
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Old 01-08-2020, 10:46 AM
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Like most ToC, it looks like this one is going to come down to the Daily Doubles. James probably would've won if Brad hadn't grabbed all the DDs. Brad probably would've won if he had gotten any of those DDs right. Ken's strategy is pretty simple: just answer all the damn questions right.
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Old 01-08-2020, 12:34 PM
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I like the point system. Ken got 1 point for winning last night.

Whichever player gets 3 points wins the tournament.

That means Holzhauer can't win the whole thing with one of his crazy daily double streaks. He may get 95k. But it's still only 1 point for winning that night.
  #20  
Old 01-08-2020, 12:40 PM
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I want Ken Jennings to win.
I believe James Holzhauer, with his betting strategy & near-perfect memory recall, will win.
  #21  
Old 01-08-2020, 01:26 PM
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It was interesting that Brad mentioned, during his interview, that his recall has been getting a little weaker lately. His poor performance last night, particularly on the various Daily Doubles that he missed, may be evidence of that. James, being the youngest, may have the advantage of sharper reflexes and quicker reaction time.

On the other hand, according to the stats at thejeopardyfan.com, Ken was able to ring in first 44% of the time last night, compared to James's 33%. If he can keep that up, he's got a good chance to win. Buzzer speed was always one of Ken's greatest strengths, and frankly I think this competition is basically going to be decided by who rings in fastest.

As for betting strategy, Ken and Brad have both adopted the Bet It All strategy in Daily Doubles. They may not like it, but they both know that they have to in order to compete with James.
  #22  
Old 01-08-2020, 03:17 PM
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Did I read right that this is Brad Rutter's first loss to human players?
Personally, I've A-L-W-A-Y-S rooted for Brad Rutter in his head-to-head match-ups with Ken Jennings. And he's usually gotten the better of him. But as I recall Brad Rutter actually finished 3rd in the contest between him, K.J., and Watson so I think B.R.'s claim to have never lost to a human on Jeopardy! before last night is suspect.
  #23  
Old 01-08-2020, 03:20 PM
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Jennings would have won their most recent match had he not made a mistake on the final Final Jeopardy (the answer was something like, "The two Secretaries of State who never married," and I think he said James Buchanan and Madeline Albright instead of Buchanan and Condolezza Rice.
Yeah, well - in that "Jeopardy! Tournament to end all Jeopardy! tournaments" a few years ago Ken Jennings, in my opinion, should have finished 3rd, not 2nd - there was another contestant named "Ken" in the Final who missed a critical Final Jeopardy! which ended up costing him. Otherwise he was every bit the match for K.J. (back then) that Brad Rutter was.
  #24  
Old 01-08-2020, 03:23 PM
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I want Ken Jennings to win.
I believe James Holzhauer, with his betting strategy & near-perfect memory recall, will win.
K.J., despite comments to contrary ahead of time, was almost as good last night as he was 15-odd years ago on the show. I was hoping James Holzhauer would win last night, but this competition is going to come down to between K.J. and J.H. Brad Rutter isn't the same player he used to be. He's not as quick on the buzzer OR with responses as he once was. Frankly, if he wins even one game (a half-match) in this Clash of the Titans I'll be surprised.
  #25  
Old 01-08-2020, 03:25 PM
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It was interesting that Brad mentioned, during his interview, that his recall has been getting a little weaker lately. His poor performance last night, particularly on the various Daily Doubles that he missed, may be evidence of that. James, being the youngest, may have the advantage of sharper reflexes and quicker reaction time.

On the other hand, according to the stats at thejeopardyfan.com, Ken was able to ring in first 44% of the time last night, compared to James's 33%. If he can keep that up, he's got a good chance to win. Buzzer speed was always one of Ken's greatest strengths, and frankly I think this competition is basically going to be decided by who rings in fastest.

As for betting strategy, Ken and Brad have both adopted the Bet It All strategy in Daily Doubles. They may not like it, but they both know that they have to in order to compete with James.
Buzzer speed is something that Brad Rutter was ALWAYS better than Ken Jennings at. But that doesn't appear to be the case anymore. Which is a shame 'cause that makes this "Clash of the Titans" a two-horse race, really.
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Old 01-09-2020, 12:17 AM
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Watched the first night. Rutter wasn't too impressive. That could easily change as the tournament continues.

James? I get the feeling he's playing conservatively. Waiting for the right moment to make a big daily double run.

Ken wants this win. He's mentioned Rutter beating him before. I voted Ken as mega-champion.
K.J. does seem especially motivated for this one. Brad Rutter hasn't seemed himself, at all. If he doesn't win tomorrow night then I think it's pretty much "curtains" for him in this competition.
  #27  
Old 01-09-2020, 08:37 AM
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Anyone else annoyed by the new Think Music?

I don't think Brad has a chance, which is a shame because he seems like a nice guy. I think he already knows he's toast.

I'm frankly surprised that James is not dominating. Going in, it would not have surprised me if he won the tournament 3-1-0 or even 3-0-0.

I like Ken and I'm rooting for him. I was happy to see him take command of Night Two.

I bet Alex is having the time of his life.


mmm
  #28  
Old 01-09-2020, 08:47 AM
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K.J. does seem especially motivated for this one. Brad Rutter hasn't seemed himself, at all. If he doesn't win tomorrow night then I think it's pretty much "curtains" for him in this competition.
Lacy, gently wafting curtains.

Seriously, though, Brad is looking pretty disappointing for the guy who's won the most money on Jeopardy! ever. I missed Day 1, but in Day 2 Game 2 he even finished in the red and couldn't play in Final Jeopardy. That's gotta sting. I hope he comes roaring back and makes this a three horse race again, because so far he's looking completely out of his depth, which is a weird thing to say for such an accomplished player.
  #29  
Old 01-09-2020, 09:14 AM
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Lacy, gently wafting curtains.

Seriously, though, Brad is looking pretty disappointing for the guy who's won the most money on Jeopardy! ever. I missed Day 1, but in Day 2 Game 2 he even finished in the red and couldn't play in Final Jeopardy. That's gotta sting. I hope he comes roaring back and makes this a three horse race again, because so far he's looking completely out of his depth, which is a weird thing to say for such an accomplished player.
A few people who have talked to me about the tournament have said, "I know James and Ken, but who is this Brad Rutter guy?" Unfortunately, his performance so far is probably not making them think that he really belongs up there. He just hasn't played like he usually does in this tournament, to the point where I wonder if there's something going on with him that's affecting his performance.
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Old 01-09-2020, 09:46 AM
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Rutter is tanking because I voted for him in post #2. Sorry about that.

Seriously though, I'm surprised at his performance. Most of what I know about Rutter was from Bob Harris's book, where he was presented as pretty much a Jeopardy Terminator, just ruthless and unstoppable. (But a heck of a nice guy!) But yeah at this point it looks like a two-man tournament between Jennings and Holzhauer.
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Old 01-09-2020, 10:19 AM
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K.J., despite comments to contrary ahead of time, was almost as good last night as he was 15-odd years ago on the show. I was hoping James Holzhauer would win last night, but this competition is going to come down to between K.J. and J.H. Brad Rutter isn't the same player he used to be. He's not as quick on the buzzer OR with responses as he once was. Frankly, if he wins even one game (a half-match) in this Clash of the Titans I'll be surprised.
So far Rutter's biggest contribution has been DD sniping. Didn't he get one on the first clue of Double Jeopardy 3 times out of the 4 games so far?

Ken and James are both playing very well - with only a few strange slip-ups from Ken in the second game of round 1 standing out as odd (of course he won that round anyway). And missing the FJ in game 2 round 2, which wouldn't have actually mattered, but is a bit ironic since I think one of Ken's minor quibbles with James' record-setting feats is that Final Jeopardy questions are in general noticeably easier now than they were when Ken was on (making super-high scores in runaway games easier, and betting hugely more rational).

On FJ, I really hate the kind of question they had on one of the first round games (the one about the first line of the gospel of John) where you either know it or you don't - absolutely no room for "educating guessing". The one yesterday about the short rulers was much better I think since you can sort of work it out with some knowledge about the time period.
  #32  
Old 01-09-2020, 12:29 PM
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I'm really surprised by the way Brad Rutter has performed. He looked good in that team tournament they did last year, but this time around he seems a step slow and he's missing a lot more answers than I would ever have thought he would. It's almost like watching Tom Brady in last week's playoff game. But Ken obviously came loaded for bear and he's going to give James a tough challenge. James would have seemed to be the favorite to me going in just because he's played a lot more recently and is fresher and should have better timing.

Anybody know when they taped these games? I'd guess that they were taped more recently than regular games to keep the chances of the results leaking out to a minimum.

And I'm really glad that they put this together to give Alex one more time to host one of those special tournament events. It wouldn't have been the same if they did this after he's gone.
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Old 01-09-2020, 01:11 PM
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I was wondering if his negative score would be added to his previous game -- at least it was upped to zero.

Brian
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Old 01-09-2020, 06:06 PM
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Anyone else annoyed by the new Think Music?
YES
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Old 01-09-2020, 06:47 PM
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I'm really surprised by the way Brad Rutter has performed. He looked good in that team tournament they did last year, but this time around he seems a step slow and he's missing a lot more answers than I would ever have thought he would. It's almost like watching Tom Brady in last week's playoff game. But Ken obviously came loaded for bear and he's going to give James a tough challenge. James would have seemed to be the favorite to me going in just because he's played a lot more recently and is fresher and should have better timing.

Anybody know when they taped these games? I'd guess that they were taped more recently than regular games to keep the chances of the results leaking out to a minimum.

And I'm really glad that they put this together to give Alex one more time to host one of those special tournament events. It wouldn't have been the same if they did this after he's gone.
Actually, it was B.R.'s performance in the All-Star tournament last January that led me to believe that he's lost something in the interim. His team won that tournament but my wife and I agree that that had more to do with his teammates than it had to do with him.
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Old 01-09-2020, 07:29 PM
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Anyone else annoyed by the new Think Music?
The show's open and close themes have been re-orchestrated as well. Rather dark, and definitely gives my subwoofers something to chew on instead of the usual flutes for Think!

And how did all three of them miss a question that a friend's kid got right?

Good day, Sir!
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Old 01-09-2020, 09:53 PM
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Brad seems to be slowly getting back in the groove, but it's coming too slow, and too late. Bummer.

James doesn't seem to be handling having actual competition well - he seems to have started taking getting questions wrong far more personally than he used to (though he remains congenial when someone else (*coughKencough*) beats him to it, at least), and I think that was affecting his performance in the second game.

Ken, though. Goddamn, man.
  #38  
Old 01-09-2020, 10:29 PM
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A few random thoughts:

Ken's performance tonight was amazing! Going into FJ of the second game, he could have bet everything and gotten it wrong, and he still would have won!

James made a completely uncharacteristic number of errors tonight.

Before the tourney started, I was worried that James might just walk over both of them, so I'm glad it's a real competition. I'd really like to see Brad get into the swing of things and win at least one match.

I'm really enjoying the banter and joking among the three of them.

The new version of the Think music is horrible!
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Old 01-09-2020, 10:33 PM
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The new version of the Think music is horrible!

I assume this is it? Surprisingly, it seems the masses love it, judging by the upvotes and comments. I'm still partial to this Think music.
  #40  
Old 01-09-2020, 10:55 PM
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James made a completely uncharacteristic number of errors tonight.
That's why I'm thinking he might have gone on tilt - he seemed to be missing more as the night wore on, so I think (and I might be projecting a bit, here, I admit) that his annoyance with himself on missing was throwing him off on later clues, which just made the whole situation worse, and spiraled. Hopefully the rest between matches will give him a chance to recenter... I'm not rooting for him, but I'd hate to see him go out like that.
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Old 01-10-2020, 10:43 AM
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So Ken is a riot. From the "I can't believe I get to say this to Alex, What is OK Boomer" to "I also reek of cow-pies and Norwegianism", I couldn't stop laughing.
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Old 01-10-2020, 11:19 AM
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So Ken is a riot. From the "I can't believe I get to say this to Alex, What is OK Boomer" to "I also reek of cow-pies and Norwegianism", I couldn't stop laughing.
He's pretty good outside of Jeopardy!, too. This tweet from James followed by Ken's response is just hysterical.
  #43  
Old 01-10-2020, 11:32 AM
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(night 3)
The last Final Jeopardy question stumped all three Champions. I thought it was an incredibly hard question. Naming even one of the film directors would have been hard enough.

I wonder if Brad has slacked off on studying for Jeopardy? He seems so unprepared for this tournament.

Ken is getting stronger and more impressive every night. Reminds me of his history making winning streak.

Last edited by aceplace57; 01-10-2020 at 11:34 AM.
  #44  
Old 01-10-2020, 11:46 AM
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(night 3)
The last Final Jeopardy question stumped all three Champions. I thought it was an incredibly hard question. Naming even one of the film directors would have been hard enough.
James and Brad threw the question since they had no chance of catching Ken. So who knows if they knew the answer.
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Old 01-10-2020, 12:58 PM
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James and Brad threw the question since they had no chance of catching Ken. So who knows if they knew the answer.
I can't imagine they wouldn't have put down the right answer if they knew it. It was a tough question.
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Old 01-10-2020, 01:13 PM
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I can't imagine they wouldn't have put down the right answer if they knew it. It was a tough question.
I think they basically saw it as a chance to put in a shout-out with no risk, since they didn't know if there would be another total runaway.
  #47  
Old 01-10-2020, 01:54 PM
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I loved it when Brad said "You're welcome" to Ken.
  #48  
Old 01-10-2020, 06:42 PM
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He's pretty good outside of Jeopardy!, too. This tweet from James followed by Ken's response is just hysterical.
Yes, KJ is well worth following on The Twitter.


mmm
  #49  
Old 01-11-2020, 02:48 AM
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Whom do you think will win the Jeopardy! contest between Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter, and James Holzhauer that starts tonight (first one to three wins will be considered the winner)?

I would not nitpick like this in almost any other thread, but that should be "Who do you think...?". "Who" is not the object of "think" but the subject of the clause "will win...". Just like you would say "I think he will win..." rather than "I think him will win".


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He's pretty good outside of Jeopardy!, too. This tweet from James followed by Ken's response is just hysterical.

OMG, that's awesome!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by aceplace57 View Post
(night 3)
The last Final Jeopardy question stumped all three Champions. I thought it was an incredibly hard question. Naming even one of the film directors would have been hard enough.

Yeah, I'm a huge film buff/nerd, but I was stumped. I'm well familiar with the work of both directors (as well as the incorrect response, Inarritu), but the format of the question just made it too hard to pull out of thin air, given the entire history of the Oscars.
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Old 01-11-2020, 07:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SlackerInc View Post
I would not nitpick like this in almost any other thread, but that should be "Who do you think...?". "Who" is not the object of "think" but the subject of the clause "will win...". Just like you would say "I think he will win..." rather than "I think him will win".
"First one to three wins" doesn't make much sense either. I think there's a verb missing....
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