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Ken Jennings is done playing Jeopardy!: "I think this is a perfect time to go out on top"

  • Now that he's won Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time tournament, Jennings tells Variety he doesn't expect to compete on the game show again. “I don’t see how I can top it,” he says. “The win was great. It’s a great punctuation mark, and I absolutely mean what I said about not wanting to play past my prime. And at some point Alex (Trebek) is going to retire, I assume, and it just wouldn’t feel right to play with a different host. It’d be like cheating on Alex. I think this is a perfect time to go out on top.” Besides, Jennings says that despite his recent performance, his Jeopardy!-playing skills are diminishing. “It’s not like how running backs pretty much have to retire at 29 because their bodies fall apart,” says Jennings, who turns 46 in May. “But in this case I had noticed myself slowing down – mostly (in the way of) recall, no longer automatically quick to remember names and facts like I used to. And I notice it every day; it’s like living inside ‘Flowers for Algernon’ – you feel a tiny bit dumber every day, as I move into my 40s. And I think there’s a reason why all the big Jeopardy! champs are men and women around 30.”

    TOPICS: Ken Jennings, ABC, Jeopardy!, Alex Trebek, Game Shows