PAT Sajak has announced that he is retiring from the Wheel of Fortune after 40 years.
There were some clues pointing to Pat walking away that some fans might not have noticed.
Pat will be leaving the show after the next season, which he announced in a shocking Twitter post.
The game show legend began hosting Vanna White in 1984 and has been at it for 40 years.
The biggest news for Wheel of Fortune comes after the Season 40 season finale, which aired on Friday, June 9th.
The following Monday, June 13, 2023, when no new episode was airing, Pat, 76, dropped the announcement just as the show would be airing on many affiliate programs (7 p.m. ET).
The TV presenter tweeted: “Well, it’s time. I’ve decided that our 41st season, which begins in September, will be my last.”
“It has been a wonderful ride and I will have more to say in the coming months. Thanks to you all. (If nothing else, it will keep the clickbait sites busy!)”
Pat will host until June 2024 and then step down.
In addition to the regular Wheel, Pat is also hosting the Celebrity Wheel of Fortune with Vanna, which he will most likely refrain from doing as well.
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So far, no host successor has been named.
However, many fans believe Pat’s daughter Maggie Sajak will be named as his successor.
Others believe Vanna could take Pat’s place as she hasn’t announced she’s leaving the show.
There are some hints Pat may have given that suggest he was leaving the show.
THE END IS NEAR
The Chicago native has hosted the show since 1981, and was joined by his co-host Vanna the following year.
During an interview with entertainment tonight In September 2022, Pat admitted, “The years go by quickly. We are nearing the end.”
“On most TV shows at this point, you would have said, ‘That’s probably enough,’ but this show is not going to die.”
“Looks like I’m going before the show,” added Pat.
“It was long ago [time]. We won’t do that for another 40 years.”
“The years go by quickly. We are nearing the end. It was long ago.” [time]. “We’re not going to do that for the next 40 years,” Pat explained.
“It’s an honor to have been in people’s living rooms for so long. The people out there greeted us. We are happy and proud.”
Fans were devastated to learn Pat was giving up his post and took to Twitter to share their sadness.
“It’s hard to imagine. If Pat Sajak goes I think Vanna White will go too,” one person tweeted.
“I don’t know if I could watch it without Pat and Vanna. But then again, I’m still watching Jeopardy!” said another.
“You should ask her [Vanna] to take on his role. Like a promotion for the poor lady!” begged a third.
In April, Pat decided to step down from hosting an episode.
The game show host left the stage in place of the announcer during the bonus puzzle round Jim Thorton.
A contestant named Sarah revealed that she “loved” Jim, who became the voice of Wheel of Fortune in 2011.
She announced: “I love Jim Thornton so much. And how could anyone not? His voice is so soothing and energizing, he’s hilarious and just a good person.
And when I don’t hear his voice, I worry about him.”
The camera caught Jim’s voice booth, where he joked, “I’ll give you an hour to cut that out, Sarah.”
However, in a rare moment, the game show granted Sarah’s wish to get some bonus time with Jim since they let him do Pat’s job for the final puzzle.
Sarah emerged with the highest score and chose “Location” as the bonus puzzle while still with Pat.
When the show dropped the commercial, it was instead puzzling with Jim — an incident that seemingly has never happened before.
Jim told her she had done a great job so far when the winning plaque was presented: “Let’s see if you can add something, good luck!”
“Just give Vanna a second for this!” as her letters were displayed – then the additional letters “CMPA”.
Sarah guessed “Giant Family Farm” for the 3 word puzzle and Jim didn’t guess anything, it turned out to be “Quant Family Farm”.
“You were so close,” Jim assured as she missed an additional $40,000.
She said, “It’s fine,” and Jim turned to the camera and said, “And I need to meet Sarah!”
Pat Sweetly was then seen walking to Jim’s voice booth and saying, “In case you missed it, here’s tonight’s bonus riddle!”
He then returned to the stage for the credits and asked Vanna, “What’s up, did I miss something?” She said, “Not much, just the bonus round.”
Although Pat is stepping down as host, he will continue to be involved with the show in some capacity.
According to producer Sony Pictures Television, he will continue to serve as a consultant.
“Pat has agreed to continue as a consultant for the show for three years after he hosted it last year,” said Suzanne Prete, executive vice president of game shows at Sony diversity.
“We are delighted that he remains close to the Wheel of Fortune family!”
Suzanne continued, “As the host of Wheel of Fortune, Pat has entertained millions of viewers across America for an amazing 40 years.”
“We are incredibly grateful and proud to have had Pat as host all these years and look forward to celebrating his outstanding career in the coming season.”
Viewers can tune into Wheel of Fortune on ABC every Monday through Friday at 7:30 p.m.
Fans can also stream the show on Hulu and Pluto TV.