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‘Jeopardy!’ contestant Jason Zuffranieri wins 17th straight game

WATCH: Jason Zuffranieri, the third-highest prize winner on 'Jeopardy!'

Mathematics teacher Jason Zuffranieri from Albuquerque, N.M., is taking the Jeopardy! attention away from James Holzhauer, who won $2.4 million earlier this year.

Zuffranieri debuted on the show in July, and on Monday, he won his 17th consecutive game, which brings his total winnings to $472,096 so far.

He holds two Jeopardy! records at the moment, including third place for highest winnings during regular-season play behind Ken Jennings, whose total winnings amounted to $2.5 million, and the $2.4 million Holzhauer took home after winning 32 times in a row.

READ MORE: ‘Jeopardy!’ champ James Holzhauer donates to pancreatic cancer fund in Alex Trebek’s name

He’s also in fifth place for consecutive games won.

 

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On Sept. 23, Holzhauer tweeted a story about Zuffranieri titled “Is new ‘Jeopardy!’ champ Jason Zuffranieri the next James Holzhauer?”

“All he needs to do is average $126,570 for his next 16 games and the prophecy will come true,” Holzhauer wrote alongside the story.

READ MORE: ‘Jeopardy!’ host Alex Trebek reveals he needs more chemotherapy

The excitement over Zuffranieri comes after host Alex Trebek revealed he needs more chemotherapy.

While appearing on Good Morning America, the TV show host said doctors urged him to undergo another round of the treatment after he lost a significant amount of weight.

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WATCH: ‘Jeopardy!’ host Alex Trebek says he needs more chemotherapy

‘Jeopardy!’ host Alex Trebek says he needs more chemotherapy
‘Jeopardy!’ host Alex Trebek says he needs more chemotherapy

“I lost about 12 pounds in a week, and my numbers went sky high, much higher than they were when I was first diagnosed,” he shared. “So, the doctors have decided that I have to undergo chemo again, and that’s what I’m doing.”

Trebek said one of the toughest parts of his journey is the toll cancer has taken on his body and mind. He revealed that he’s suffered “depression” and a “surge of sadness” that often left him teary-eyed in front of his audience.

“Cancer is mysterious in more ways than one,” he explained. “When it happened, early on, I was down on myself. I didn’t realize how fallible each of us is in his or her own way.”

He continued: “I talk to the audience sometimes and I get teary-eyed for no reason. I don’t even bother to explain it anymore, I just experience it. I know it’s a part of who I am and I just keep going.”

— With files from Meaghan Wray