Who won Jeopardy! tonight? December 26, 2022, Monday

Players from the December 26 episode
Players from the December 26 episode (Image via Jeopardy)

The new week started with a brand new episode of Jeopardy! Season 39, featuring the return of 7-day champion Ray Lalonde.

Hailing from Toronto, Canada, the scenic artist played his eighth game against two new players — Sarah Schmeer, an executive assistant from Portland, Oregon, and Bobby Freitas, a middle school teacher from Long Beach, California.

Explaining the format, the official synopsis of the Emmy-winning competition series reads:

“The answers are given first, and the contestants supply the questions. Three contestants, including the previous show's champion, compete in six categories and in three rounds (with each round's ‘answers’ being worth more prize money).”

It further states:

“In the third round, the contestants can name their own jackpot -- as long as it's within the amount of money they've already earned. If a player finishes the second round with zero dollars, they are eliminated from ‘Final Jeopardy.’”

Today's Jeopardy! winner is Ray Lalonde

Since Cris Pannullo’s exit, the game show didn’t see any player surpass the eight-day mark. Ray Lalonde became the first player to win eight games.

In the December 26 episode, the categories for the first round included “Word Puzzles, The 18Th Century, The Office, Vacation Isles, Apps & Websites, Remember The Alamo Bowl.”

Ray had a great start in round 1 as he found the first Daily Double before the commercial break. He delivered 11 correct and one incorrect answer, banking $7,000. New players Bobby Freitas and Sarah Schmeer were also not far behind as they picked up after the commercial. Both of them delivered an equal number of correct (8) and incorrect (2) answers. The only difference was that Sarah picked up high-value questions and thus, her total score was $4,400. Bobby earned $3,400 in the first round.

In the second round, the categories were “Sounds Like A University, Stage Musicals By Song Lyrics, Africa, Your Elemental Hit Parade, Write Place, Wrong Time.”

Sarah and Ray found two Daily Doubles in the Double Jeopardy round. While Sarah wagered a conservative amount, Ray bet a slightly higher amount and his score went up to $13,000. Their total score for round 2 was not far away from each other. Sarah scored $11,600 and was just $10,000 behind Ray’s total ($21,600). Bobby played decently well and landed in third place. His score going into the final round was $3,400.

Ray and Sarah’s competition continued in the Final Jeopardy round as well. They gave the correct answer to the final question, while Bobby failed to do so. Despite wagering a higher amount, Sarah couldn’t surpass Ray’s total score and landed in second place. The difference between her total score and Ray’s was just $3,500. The latter topped the scoreboard, while Bobby ended up in third place once again.

Hence, Ray Lalonde won Jeopardy! today.

Ray Lalonde: Tonight's winner (Image via @OneEclecticMom/Twitter)
Ray Lalonde: Tonight's winner (Image via @OneEclecticMom/Twitter)

Final Jeopardy! results today

The final round’s category in the December 26 episode was “TV Finales,” and the final clue read:

“In a reunion over 40 years in the making, Dolly Parton appeared as an angel named Agnes in the final episode of this comedy in 2022.”

The correct answer to the final question was “Grace and Frankie.”

Ray and Sarah gave the correct answer, while Bobby didn’t write any response to the question. Take a look at the final results of the December 26 episode:

Ray Lalonde: $21,600 + $5,000 = $26,600 (What is Grace + Frankie?) (8-day total: $219,300)

Sarah Schmeer: $11,600 + $11,500 = $23,100 (What is Grace + Frankie Frankie?)

Bobby Freitas: $3,400 – $3,200 = $200 (What is …)

With today’s win, Ray became the 8-day champion with a total score surpassing the $200,000 mark. He will return to defend his win for the ninth time against two new players.

Hosted by Ken Jennings, the syndicated game show will air the next episode on Tuesday, December 27, 2022.

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Edited by Sushmita Sen