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Wheel of Fortune viewers debate whether Pat Sajak made the right call denying a contestant’s answer

pat sajak guest co-host on Live with Regis and Kelly
Wheel of Fortune viewers are torn — did Pat make the right call? Pic credit: ©Lane Ericcson-PHOTOlink.net

Wheel of Fortune viewers are taking sides after host Pat Sajak made a judgment call that cost a contestant a trip to Mexico.

Dee Merritt, a Navy sexual assault response coordinator from Portsmouth, Virginia, made her Wheel of Fortune debut last week.

The hopeful contestant faced off against her competitors, Kerry Ruiz, a wellness studio co-owner from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Amanda Morris, a billiards player from Wilmington, North Carolina.

All three contestants were given the opportunity to solve a puzzle during the Express Round in the Phrase category.

The six-word phrase on the board read “_ N O _ _ / I T / O _ T / O F / T H E / _ _ _ _,” and Dee was the first to buzz in, confident she could solve the puzzle correctly.

“I would like to solve,” Dee told host Pat Sajak. “Knock it out the park!”

After a few seconds of silence, the buzzer sounded; Pat told Dee, “I’m sorry,” and the game turned over to Kerry, who was given a chance to spin the wheel or solve the puzzle.

Wheel of Fortune contestant takes the win after Dee’s incorrect answer

Like Dee, Kerry wanted to take a crack at solving the puzzle, giving Pat his answer.

“Knock it out of the park,” Kerry said, offering the correct solution.

Being that Dee left out the word “of,” she wasn’t able to cash in, and Wheel of Fortune viewers on social media are debating the issue.

While some are bent out of shape that Dee was denied a win, others feel as though Pat made the right call since she omitted one word in the phrase.

On X (formerly Twitter), Wheel watchers sounded off, taking sides in the heated discussion. Several viewers at home shared clips of Dee and Pat’s exchange.

Wheel watchers take sides: Did Pat Sajak make the right call?

“Man, do people not realize Wheel of Fortune has ALWAYS required people to say the whole puzzle solution in order to win? Doesn’t matter if you normally say ‘Knock it out the park’ if the puzzle clearly says ‘Knock It Out OF The park,’” wrote @devo_gx.

wheel of fortune viewers discuss an episode on X
Pic credit: @devo_gx/X

Others chimed in, with another fan of the show adding, “One of the challenges of Wheel of Fortune is enunciation.”

“Exactly. Contestants are clearly told this as well,” added @devo_gx.

More Wheel watchers expressed their opinions, with some siding with Pat and others siding with Dee.

“Honestly, people act as if a contestant has never missed a word,” wrote @CTMyrtleBeach, who took Dee’s side.

“Sajak made the right call,” was @RicDavis01’s opinion.

wheel of fortune viewers discuss an episode on X
Pic credit: @Parabellum2021/X

Another Wheel watcher voiced that Dee’s “variation” was incorrect, and therefore, Pat made the right call.

“She left [an] entire word out,” added another X user. “Of course she’s incorrect.”

Unfortunately for Dee, her efforts weren’t enough to advance her in the game, but her opponent, Kerry, won the episode and took home $20,000.

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Diana Loucks
Diana Loucks
26 days ago

You can’t leave one word out of the puzzle and expect it to be correct!! Pat Sajak was correct! It’s a hard lesson, but a good one!!

Duke DeFesi
Duke DeFesi
26 days ago

You may not like it, but rules is rules, as they say. If Sajak bends one rule, the rules will bend until they break! He has no choice or take the show off the air. Correct answers are not based on the whim of the questioner or questionee!

Jayne Wingrove
Jayne Wingrove
26 days ago

Pay was correct in his decision…a word was omitted. Never in all my years has this EVER been questioned!