‘Jeopardy! Masters’ tournament schedule and contestants: Get clued in
It’s time to welcome James Holzhauer back to the Alex Trebek Stage. The quiz show champion, who racked up nearly $2.5 million in regular-season games due in part to his affinity for high-risk wagers, returns for ABC’s “Jeopardy! Masters” tournament kicking off Monday (8 EDT/PDT).
The three-week tournament, hosted by Ken Jennings, pits “Jeopardy! James” against five other contestants who competed in last fall’s Tournament of Champions: Matt Amodio, Sam Buttrey, Andrew He, Mattea Roach and Amy Schneider, who walked away with the $250,000 grand prize. “Masters” offers a $500,000 pot.
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of the primetime tournament, which offers two games each night.
When is ‘Jeopardy! Masters’ airing?
Schneider, Amodio and He will battle in the first game of the tournament Monday. Holzhauer, Roach and Buttrey will see who can rule the board in the second battle on Tuesday. The tournament continues with games on Wednesday and Friday. For the showdown’s second week, starting May 15, the tournament airs Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. The semifinals air May 22 and 23; a winner will be crowned after the finals on May 24.
The tournament is points-based, with no cash total, executive producer Michael Davies said on the “Inside Jeopardy!” podcast. “Each player will appear in every episode, either in the front-half game or the second-half game,” Davies said. “Everyone will play each other in every combination and everyone will, every single one of those Masters, will play 10 games.”
The winner of each game receives three points, and the second-place contestant gets one. Cumulative totals determine who advances to the next round.
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Who are the ‘Jeopardy! Masters’ contestants?
With the exception of Holzhauer, all “Masters” participants competed in the 2021-22 season, making them eligible for the 2022 Tournament of Champions. Holzhauer concluded his 32-game streak in 2019.
Last month, Holzhauer joked of the tournament lineup on Twitter, referencing a promotional image for the tournament: “This poster screams ‘We know you saw this tournament last year, but a new supervillain has joined the cast for the sequel!’ and I am here for it”
Contestants’ track record
Matt Amodio: Won 38 in-season games.Sam Buttrey: Won the “Jeopardy!” Professors Tournament; placed third in Tournament of Champions (winning one game).James Holzhauer: Won 32 games in-season games.Andrew He: Won 5 in-season games, placed second in Tournament of Champions (winning two games).Mattea Roach: Won 23 in-season games.Amy Schneider: Won 40 in-season games; winner of 2022 Tournament of Champions.
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In a first, Daily Double locations are revealed to viewers
The Masters tournament adds a new wrinkle: Viewers — but not contestants or the studio audience — are shown the location of each Daily Double before a round begins. This marks the first time the show has previewed where the bonus clues, which enable the contestant to double their scores with a correct response, are hidden.
‘Jeopardy! Masters’ ‘does not disappoint’
Buzzy Cohen, a 2016 competitor who triumphed in the Tournament of Champions the following year, attended games during the “Masters” tournament. Cohen, who hosts a new podcast detailing the history of the quiz show, says he observed the contestants experience a sense of ease.
“One thing you start to see is the more time that people have spent on the ‘Jeopardy!’ stage, the more relaxed they are, the more fun they have,” he says. “That doesn’t mean the competition is less intense; it just means, ‘I’m not white-knuckling it through this. I know I can win here.’ And you have six people who have won so much and had a blast doing it.”
“Everybody kind of shines, and everybody is challenged,” Cohen adds. “And that’s exactly what you want out of one of these special tournaments. It does not disappoint.”
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