David PurdumESPN Staff WriterClose
- Joined ESPN in 2014
- Journalist covering gambling industry since 2008
Las Vegas sports bettor James Holzhauer is rewriting the “Jeopardy!” record book on an almost nightly basis.
On the episode that aired Wednesday, Holzhauer topped his own single-game winnings mark with $131,127 to capture his 10th straight victory.
He has won $697,787 during his 10-day run and is already second on the show’s all-time, regular-play winnings list, behind only past great champion Ken Jennings.
Jennings won more than $2.5 million during his 74-game winning streak in 2004. Holzhauer is on pace to surpass Jennings in just 36 games and now owns the four most prolific single-day performances ever on the show.
In Wednesday’s episode, he went 40-for-40 on responses in the first two rounds and went into Final Jeopardy! with $71,114 and a commanding lead. Fellow contestants Lorelle Anderson and Hannah Pierson-Compeau had $5,400 and $5,000, respectively, and were chuckling about their deficit heading into the final.
Holzhauer risked $60,013 on the final category “20th Century Literary Characters” and had the answer for “His first name refers to the ancient district in which you’d find the Greek capital; his surname is a bird.”
“Who is Atticus Finch?” Holzhauer wrote in his response. He added: “This is for you Granny
The $131,127 win bested his previous mark of $110,914 from his fourth game. which aired April 9. Holzhauer has won more than $100,000 three times. No other contestant has ever won more than $77,000 on a single show.
Holzhauer, 34, has been betting on sports seriously since 2006 and is considered a respected player by multiple Las Vegas sportsbooks.
During Wednesday’s show, host Alex Trebek asked Holzhauer how he was planning to handle the fame from his run.
“I don’t think the bookies in Las Vegas are going to be as willing to accept my action after this,” Holzhauer said.
Trebeck followed up by asking Holzhauer if he was on a first-name basis with the bookies.
“They know me,” Holzhauer said.