Jeopardy! champ Ryan Long responds to claims he 'threw the game' & reveals how he foresaw loss after 16-game streak | The Sun

JEOPARDY! contestant Ryan Long has addressed claims that he purposely bowed out of the game, ending a 16-game winning streak.

The game show champ was defeated during the June 6 episode by Minneapolis Minnesota meteorologist Eric Ahasiac.


Ryan has since opened up about the devastating loss as some fans accused the father of one of willingly ending his time on the show.

In an interview with USA Today, Ryan explained that he didn't throw the competition but wasn't exactly sad to exit either.

"I saw somebody say that I threw the game. I didn't throw the game. I didn't lay down for it, but I wasn't sad that I lost either. I felt like I was maybe ready to go, but I didn't lay down."

He continued to detail what led to his surprising loss, claiming that his actions were a "sign" that his streak was up.

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"But I knew I wasn't on my top form that day when the Daily Double with Dr. King came up. I've done projects on Dr. King. I've studied Dr. King. My mother told me about Dr. King growing up.

"I knew he went to Boston and lived there, but when I got that question when I blanked on it, I was like, 'Alright, well. That's probably a sign.'

"And I was just a little slower on the buzzer that day than normal. But I'm not taking anything away from Eric [Ahasiac]. He played a hell of a game," Ryan concluded.

The Pennsylvania rideshare driver earned a total of $299K after his 16 wins on the show – the ninth-longest streak on the show ever.

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So, naturally, viewers questioned how Ryan let his 17th win fall through the cracks.

DEVASTATING LOSS

The trouble began during a Daily Double when the beloved player drew a blank while Mayim Bialik, 46, was hosting.

Her co-host, Ken Jennings, announced that he would be out for "months" just weeks ahead of the decision on who would nab the permanent hosting spot.

Wagering $2000 earlier on, he did not have a reply to the often helpful clue, as one fan lamented on Twitter, "HOW did Ryan miss that Daily Double?? HOW??!"

Going into Final Jeopardy, Ryan was in last place – and drew a blank once more.

Right podium's Eric – already with $10,200 – correctly responded "Castor and Pollux" to the Greek Mythology clue.

Ryan entered FJ with just $6800 – even middle podium's Stephanie got it – he wagered $6799, incorrectly guessing and ending with $1.

With $18K, new winner Eric pumped his fist, having done what 16 previous pairs of players couldn't.

On Twitter, sad fans could not believe their eyes and wondered what had happened.

"I'm so sad I don't even have a #blindguess answer #Jeopardy," one wrote – guessing the final clue a classic Twitter move – when Ryan could not cruise ahead.

"@Jeopardy Ryan you had a great run! Thanks for sharing your knowledge w us! We enjoyed watching you play!" wrote another.

'THREW THE GAME'

However, a third claimed, "What the hell was that? Ryan stopped ringing in!"

Another agreed, "Ryan Long was ready to go home. He definitely threw that game."

A fifth wrote, "Ryan was more than tired and threw in the ti[t]le."

A sixth celebrated his amazing go, "Ryan Long, you're one of my favorite #Jeopardy contestants! See you at the Tournament of Champions!"

Another wrote, "Gonna miss you! You were a joy to watch. You earned every penny!"

Another wrote, "Gonna miss you! You were a joy to watch. You earned every penny!"

Another bashed on the defeat, "I just wish it wasn't this d**che that ended Ryan's streak," as someone else tweeted in not such gameshow-like language, "F**k Eric."

One more wrote, "I think Ryan just wants to go home," while another user replied, "He didn’t seem like himself tonight."

FAN-FAVORITE

The top-scoring Philly-based contestant ever, Ryan began his run on May 20th.

Fans fell in love with the 39-year-old for his big personality and openness about his troubled past.

He told The Philadelphia Inquirer that his father died before the start of his senior year of high school, which he "barely" graduated.

In January 2021, he was hospitalized for several weeks after contracting COVID-19 – and could no longer work his public bus driving job.

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He began driving for various rideshare drivers to provide for his eight-year-old boy Nathan.

He told USA Today that he does not plan on returning to his rideshare gig and hopes his Jeopardy! success will inspire others to pursue their dreams.



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