One of the best things about Jeopardy! is its consistency. It’s on at the same time on the same local station for everyone, and it’s pretty much the same show every night, with slight variations from the various annual tournaments held by the show. Sometimes Alex Trebek grows or shaves a beard, but that’s about it.
Jeopardy! only really makes the news if a contestant goes on a ridiculous run or Trebek makes his own news, but an upcoming special is upending all of that consistency, and we are totally here for it.
Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time is a special event that will air on ABC as a primetime special. It will feature a matchup between Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter, and James Holzhauer, three of the greatest champions in the history of the show.
The top three contestants in JEOPARDY! history will face off in an epic primetime special event: “JEOPARDY! The Greatest of All Time,” starting January 7 at 8|7c on ABC. #JeopardyGOAT pic.twitter.com/7PJUi57206
— ABC (@ABCNetwork) November 18, 2019
All three have eye-popping statistics to their names. Jennings won 74 games in a row in 2004, more than double the still bonkers 32-game streak Holzhauer had earlier this year. Those two are also one and two in winnings for regular season play, while Rutter’s nearly $4.7 million in all-time winnings (including tournaments) easily bests both of them. And spots one through ten in the highest single-game winnings in the history of the show? They all belong to Holzhauer.
Together, the trio has taken home cash winnings of $10,521,352. While there are certainly other players who’ve acquitted themselves well on the show, it’s hard to argue with choosing these three for a GOAT special, and we’re psyched to see the three of them share the Jeopardy! stage.
Jennings and Rutter have a long history. Rutter won both 2005’s Ultimate Tournament of Champions and 2014’s Battle of the Decades when facing Jennings in the finals. In a special 2011 series, Rutter placed third, Jennings second, and IBM’s Watson computer first.
Holzhauer has yet to face either of these champions on the Jeopardy! stage.
But the best piece of news about the special? Alex Trebek will be hosting. The venerable host recently announced that he would be resuming treatment for the pancreatic cancer diagnosis he announced in March and seemingly bested by the time he returned to the show in September.
Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time will debut on January 7 at 8 p.m. eastern time on ABC.