Mattea’s slim victory: Canadian former contestants on the science of ‘Jeopardy!’ bets

TORONTO – Canadian “Jeopardy!” champ Mattea Roach prolonged a powerful win streak Thursday together with her 18th consecutive triumph.

It permits the 23-year-old to face one other pair of challengers Friday, when victory would transfer her up the rating for prime consecutive wins.

She at present has the eighth-longest win streak in this system’s historical past however yet another places her right into a three-way tie with 2005’s David Madden and 2019’s Jason Zuffranieri.

On Thursday’s episode, Roach earned US$42,001, bringing her cumulative payout to US$438,183.

The win cements an exhilarating star flip by the affable Canuck in edge-of-your-seat play.

That has included a latest nail-biting episode through which Roach squeezed out a victory by simply US$1 – a reminder that it takes way over simply trivia smarts to dominate the sport, in response to former Canadian contestants.

Roach’s seventeenth win Wednesday got here right down to some cautious wagering within the ultimate clue about Irish poet William Butler Yeats.

After Roach’s third-placed competitor bought the clue mistaken, her second-placed rival guess his whole $13,600 bounty and received – tying him with the Toronto-based regulation tutor.

Roach, who spent a part of her childhood in Halifax, additionally answered appropriately however solely guess $1, vaulting her by the slimmest of margins whereas netting $27,201 on prime of her earlier winnings of $368,981.

Brock University enterprise professor Eric Dolansky, who filmed three episodes in February 2006 and received about $46,000, says a wholesome lead could be blown by an ill-planned ultimate spherical – even for those who get the clue proper.

“When I watched the show as a kid, it was always that the person in the lead wagered just enough to cover the person in second place plus $1, and the person in second place would bet everything,” notes Dolansky.

The drawback there’s the one manner the second-placed contestant may win is that if they get the clue proper and the chief will get it mistaken.

“If I don’t bet everything knowing that you as the leader are going to bet enough to cover me, if we both get it wrong, I could still win. And so there’s a bit of game theory in there about how to wager final Jeopardy.“

Former “Jeopardy!” contestant Emma Badame, who received $15,000 over the course of two video games that aired in March 2019, additionally acknowledges “a kind of science behind wagering and betting” on the present.

“I didn’t read up on any of that stuff before I went and I kind of enjoyed watching Mattea because she seems to have a similar style,” chuckled Badame, a Toronto-based digital producer and advertising and marketing strategist.

“There’s whole chat groups and stuff on online that are dedicated to what people should wager and how they should have wagered.”

She factors to single-game winnings champ James Holzhauer as a notable participant to determine easy methods to maximize not simply the ultimate spherical however the mid-game wagers.

The 2019 champ famously dominated with large bets that paid off, and holds all 10 spots on the sport present’s Top 10 record of single-game winnings.

Holzhauer additionally ranks second on the Top 10 record of highest winnings in regular-season play, with $2,462,216 collected over his 32-game streak. He’s second solely to Ken Jennings who earned $2,520,700 however had a streak that ran twice as lengthy at 74 consecutive video games.

Dolansky says he finds that the majority contestants don’t guess sufficient on their “daily doubles,” noting it’s “an opportunity to have a clue all to yourself.”

“One thing that first frustrates me to no end watching the show is that people do not bet enough,” he says.

“Remembering that most contestants will get most of the clues right given the chance, you have an opportunity to really separate yourself from the pack. And we saw this of course with James Holzhauer, who would make incredibly large bets.“

Dolansky argues that not wagering big could keep a contender from victory. That’s because heading into the final round with less than half the cash than the leader is futile, he notes.

“There’s no way to win. So you need to build that up and potentially risk ending up with even less,” he says, noting the second and third place finishers take dwelling a flat fee no matter their ultimate tally.

“There’s a certain amount that they get to take home so you might as well go for it.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first revealed April 28, 2022.


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