‘Wheel of Fortune’ fans confused by Pat Sajak’s hosting anniversary

December 30, 2021
'Wheel of Fortune' fans confused by Pat Sajak's hosting anniversary
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“Wheel of Fortune” has fans scratching their heads once again this week.

Tuesday marked the 40th anniversary of host Pat Sajak’s time on the show. Sajak acknowledged the career milestone in a tweet on Christmas Eve, where he also listed other upcoming dates of significance, including his wedding anniversary and the obvious: the New Year.

“What a week!” Sajak wrote last week. “Dec 25…Christmas Day. Dec 28…40th anniversary of my first ‘Wheel’ on NBC daytime. Dec 31…32nd wedding anniversary. Jan 1…2022 begins.”

“And it almost has to be better than 2021, doesn’t it? Well, doesn’t it?” he concluded. 

Sajak’s wife, Maggie, also acknowledged his “Wheel-iversary” Tuesday by posting a throwback photo of the Daytime Emmy-winner. 

“Happy 40th Wheel-iversary to this guy!” she tweeted. “On this day in 1981, @patsajak hosted his very first episode of @WheelofFortune…and the rest is history!”

‘Wheel of Fortune’ fans perplexed with rule after woman loses Audi: ‘Give her the car’

However, some viewers were thrown off when Sajak’s anniversary went unacknowledged on Tuesday’s episode, including Twitter user @wellsy57.

“Not one mention of Pat Sajak’s 40 year anniversary on last night’s Wheel of Fortune???” the user wrote. “This is unacceptable.”

Twitter user @RDin1114 was also surprised by the oversight, writing: “Wow! No mention of Pat’s 40th year on #WheelofFortune tonight?”

USA TODAY has reached out to representatives from “Wheel of Fortune” for comment on Sajak’s show anniversary.

Some “Wheel” fans were also puzzled by contestant Eric’s win Tuesday. Eric appeared to hesitate before giving his final answer during a bonus round puzzle, but his response was still considered correct by Sajak. The category was “Food & Drink.” Per the bonus round rules, Eric could only choose three more consonants and a vowel. 

He chose “H,” “W,” “P” and “A.” The board then filled up and only left one obvious space open. The phrase was “Whole Wheat Pasta,” and Eric solved the puzzle correctly. 

Eric walked away with a Mazda MX-30 as his game-winning prize. In addition to the new car, he left the show with $59,150 in winnings. 

“That’s the way we like to go out,” Sajak said. 

Fans typically react to the series on social media, whether it’s calling out rules they don’t like or making fun of wrong answers.

“Hold up!! Eric added ‘I think’ before solving the final puzzle after Pat told him not to add anything and still won. Wth? Rules are rules, right?” Twitter user @TroyTrotter2 wrote.

Twitter user @cmm2323 was also taken aback by Eric’s win.

“Surprised #WheelofFortune didn’t ding him for saying ‘I think uh’ before Whole Wheat Pasta,” the user tweeted.

Response technicalities were also a point of contention last week when a contestant named Charlotte lost her chance to go home with a brand-new Audi Q3 for not meeting the show’s standard “pause” length in between guesses.

“This one’s tough because you said all the right words,” Sajak said at the time. “We’ll allow for a little pause but not four or five seconds. I’m sorry, you did a good job in getting it, but we can’t give you the prize.”

More:‘Wheel of Fortune’ contestant wins Audi after narrowly missing out: ‘We tracked down Charlene!’

Contributing: David Oliver



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