‘Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions’ Episode 2 Recap & Spoilers

Jeopardy Greatest of All Time

ET Canada - YouTube Brad Rutter, Ken Jennings and James Holzhauer prepare for the Greatest of All Time Tournament

The Jeopardy: Tournament of Champions Greatest of All Time (GOAT) tournament continues tonight, January 8, 2020, and it will run until one of the champions wins three matches. The contestants are Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter and James Holzhauer.

The title of “Greatest of All Time” champion will be given out on Friday, January 17 at the latest. Since the tournament is running as best-out-of-seven matches, the earliest the title can be given out is now Tuesday, January 14. The three champions are competing for bragging rights and $1 million dollars. The runners-up will both receive $250,000.

Prior to the tournament, Ken Jennings held the longest streak in Jeopardy history, as well as the record for earnings in the regular season. Brad Rutter’s claim to game show fame is his title as highest-earning champion in Jeopardy! history. James Holzhauer has won the most money in a single game and holds the record for the top ten highest-earning Jeopardy! games.

Going into episode two, Ken Jennings was ahead, having won the first match with a slight margin above James Holzhauer. Jennings won the first game of match one, and Holzhauer won the second. Since Jennings finished in first at the end of the two games, he was the only one with points on the board for the tournament.

SPOILERS: We’re recapping episode 2 of the tournament below, so only keep on reading if you don’t mind spoilers or have already seen the episode. 

James won tonight’s match. After this match, Ken and James are both tied with 1 win. Brad has 0. The earliest the tournament could wrap up at this point is Tuesday, January 14 if either Ken or James win both tomorrow’s game and Friday’s game.


Game One

ET Canada – YouTubeBrad Rutter, Ken Jennings and James Holzhauer prepare for the Greatest of All Time Tournament

The first game of the episode began with James picking the first clue. James hit the daily double; he only had $800 at the time, but he was able to risk $1,000. He got the question correct to bring him up to $1,800.

After the single jeopardy round and going into the first break, James was in the lead with $9,600, Ken had $3,200, and Brad had $1,200.

After the first break, Alex asked Brad why he was in third place for most of the competition up until this point and Brad told him that there’s only so much he can control. Ken said he plays more against the board than he does against the other contestants. James joked that he hates fun and the game is about winning and putting pressure on his opponents. He also said he felt like he needed to set the bar extra high because of the level of competition.

James found the first daily double about halfway through the double jeopardy round; he got it correct and doubled his score, bringing him to $27,200. Ken found the second daily double soon after and made it a true daily double after making a joke about whether or not James had copyrighted the “all in” hand symbol. He got the answer correctly and ended up with $16,800.

At the end of the Daily Double round and going into final Jeopardy, James was at $32,400, Ken was in second with $22,000, and Brad was in a distant third place with $7,200. The Final Jeopardy category was “Influential Writing.” The clue was “Its second line is ‘all the powers of old Europe have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this spectre: Pope & Czar, Metternich & Guizot…”

The answer was “What is the Communist Manifesto?” All three contestants got the answer correct. Brad doubled his score, ending up with $14,400, Ken ended the first game with $40,000, and James ended up in first place with $44,314.


Game Two

James got to choose the first clue for the second game of the night as well. He started off strong, answering three clues before anyone else could get on the board.

Brad found the first daily double, wagering the $1,000 max amount. He got the answer correct, bringing his total up to $1,800. Going into the Double Jeopardy round, James had $6,400, Ken was sitting in first place at $6,800, and Brad had $3,800. After the break, the show played a feature about Brad Rutter. He has won over 4 and a half million dollars on Jeopardy!

Brad was in third place, so he got to go first in the double jeopardy round. He found the daily double right off the bat. He got the question wrong and got put back down to $0. James found the second daily double and wagered all he had. He initially hesitated, but got the question correctly, ending up with $16,800.

Going into final jeopardy, the standings were: James with $22,800, Ken with $21,200, and Brad in the negative with (-3,600). Brad was not able to participate in Final because of his score. The category was 19th Century Leaders. The clue for the category was “Tall, lanky Joel Barlow was an ambassador carrying messages between these 2 world leaders, both mocked for being short.” The answer was “Who are Napoleon and Madison?”

Brad’s two-game score was $14,400. Ken got the final answer incorrect. His two-game score was $57,400. James ended up with $82,414, which means he wins the match.

James won tonight’s match. After this match, Ken and James are both tied with 1 win. Brad has 0. The earliest the tournament could wrap up at this point is Tuesday, January 12 if Ken or James win the games tomorrow and Tuesday.

READ MORE: Meet The ‘Jeopardy!’ Greatest of All Time Contestants


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