Jeopardy! contestants usually manage to stay calm, cool, and collected while competing against each other, but one person revealed that there’s one thing players don’t want to see—a champion contestant competing against them.
Why Contestants ‘Don’t Want To See’ Cris Pannullo
Cris Pannullo, one of Jeopardy!’s most successful contestants, recently showed up for another round of games. Before starting the competition, host Ken Jennings asked his fellow players what it was like to come out on stage and face off with the champion.
“Is there any element of, ‘Hey, this is great, no pressure?’” he asked. John Dorsey, a Maryland loan operations specialist, told Jennings how he really feels. “Well, I think you might know what this is like,” he joked. “Walking into the parking structure and seeing a familiar face, going ‘Uh, oh.’”
As the audience and other players cracked up, Jennings added, “It’s what you don’t want to see when you get to the studio: someone you recognize from TV.” The third contestant, Katy Rudolphy, said that it was “exciting” to go up against a super champ, even if that means losing.
Pannullo’s Intimidating Game Stats
Jennings, Dorsey, and Rudolphy were clearly joking around with Pannullo, but there’s some truth to their comments. It would definitely be intimidating to know that you’re playing against someone with a double-digit winning streak.
Before going up against Dorsey and Rudolphy, Pannullo played against Etienne Lepine and David Stiasny. No surprise, Pannullo destroyed the competition with 27 correct answers and no incorrect answers. In the game before that, Pannullo took down Marianne dos Santos and Rhianan Thomas with 36 correct answers and zero incorrect answers.
Is He The Best-Ranked ‘Jeopardy!’ Player?
Pannullo defended his streak for 21 straight wins. He made $748,286 in winnings through those 21 games. This puts him at #6 on the list of greatest Jeopardy! champs, behind Jennings, Amy Schneider, Matt Amodio, James Holzhauer, and Mattea Roach.
Jeopardy! champions work hard to move up the rankings of best players, but their intense game play and winning streaks can be intimidating to their fellow contestants. It’s no surprise that Pannullo’s opponents joked around about not wanting to see him on the game show set. Fortunately for future contestants, his streak is finally over—now he’s only a threat if they make it to next year’s Tournament of Champions!