Pat Sajak Retiring From ‘Wheel of Fortune’

( – Pat Sajak is retiring from “Wheel of Fortune” following a week of episodes paying tribute to the longest-running game show host. The 77-year-old has hosted the game show for 43 seasons and over 8,000 episodes. Sajak will spin the wheel for the last time on June 7.

Sajak started his work on the network version of the show and stayed as host when it began its syndicated run in 1983. He has solely hosted “Wheel of Fortune” ever since, in contrast with Alex Trebek, who hosted the sister show “Jeopardy!” for 37 years in addition to several other game shows.

“The Price is Right” host Bob Barker was the previous record-holder for the longest-serving single host of a game show. Chuck Woolery hosted “Wheel of Fortune” when it debuted in 1975 before Sajak took on the role in 1981. His time on the show was not without its moments of controversy; in May 2023, he snapped at a contestant who gave three incorrect answers in a row, asking her why she was bothering.

Fans slated Sajak in August and claimed he “robbed” a contestant of $100,000 in an “unfair” decision. The contestant, Alexa, got the correct answer, but Sajak said it was invalid due to her answering after the buzzer. Viewers claimed they heard Alexa give the correct answer just before the buzzer went off. The host, who announced his retirement plans in 2023, said he intends to focus on spending time with his grandchildren and continuing with crossword puzzles.

Renowned for his conservative views, Sajak said that the show will not die. Ryan Seacrest is set to take over the role of host. Seacrest described the veteran host as a “legend” who he had always looked up to. He added that Sajak’s legacy was a lot to live up to and that he could not wait to meet the contestants on the show. Sajak’s fellow “Wheel of Fortune” veteran Vanna White, who joined the show in 1982, will stay on past Sajak’s departure.

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