Insiders reveal what’s actually behind Pat Sajak’s weird habits on ‘Wheel of Fortune’

In current weeks, there’s been a “Wheel of Fortune” puzzle that may’t be solved by shopping for a vowel or guessing one other consonant: What on the planet is happening with host Pat Sajak?

The 76-year-old sport present legend has been performing fairly bizarrely.

Within the final month or so, Sajak has put a contestant in a chokehold; claimed he hides in letter-turner Vanna White’s backyard; requested a contestant to take away his shirt and tugged on a contestant’s beard.

On this previous Monday night time’s present, he even scolded a contestant who grabbed the envelope within the present’s bonus spherical: “Don’t ever do it once more!”

One can’t assist however surprise if America’s longest-running sport present host has lastly had sufficient — or perhaps he was at all times this unusual and grumpy.

Getting bored with the wordplay grind can be comprehensible.

He’s been internet hosting “Wheel” for 4 many years, since 1981. The fashions have modified, however the sport has remained very a lot the identical.

By comparability, Johnny Carson’s seemingly endless reign on “The Tonight Present” was simply 30 years — and the King of Late Evening took 15 weeks of vacation on the finish of his run.

Pat Sajak places “Wheel of Fortune” contestant Fred Jackson in a chokehold on a present that aired in March.
Wheel Of Fortune

Sajak’s current hijinks aren’t the primary time he’s exhibited unusual habits.

Within the fall of 2020, in a span of 10 days, there have been quite a few incidents.

He snapped at a contestant for “interrupting” him whereas he learn a industrial promo on one present.

On one other, he advised a competitor to “cease making sound results” once they set free a celebratory yelp. “Ungrateful gamers! I’ve had it!” he stated to a different participant once they questioned a solution as “redundant.”

Pat Sajak and contestant Christian Dixie, who's trying to grab the envelope out of Pat's hand as Pat looks grumpy.
Pat Sajak scolded fan favourite “Wheel of Fortune” contestant Christian Dixie this week when he grabbed the envelope out of Sajak’s hand in the course of the bonus spherical.
ABC/Wheel of Fortune

In 2021, he even mocked a younger man’s speech obstacle on air.

The next yr, he made viewers cringe when he requested longtime letter-turner Vanna White, “Have you ever ever watched opera within the buff? I’m simply curious.”

Such moments reportedly put Sajak on skinny ice together with his bosses.

“Pat has put his foot in it one too many instances and offended individuals together with his off-color humor and temperamental habits,” an insider told OK! final September. “Community brass and top-level producers have come down laborious on him and skim him the riot act.”

(Representatives for “Wheel of Fortune” and Sajak didn’t reply to repeated requests for remark.)

Sajak with WWE star and "Wheel of Fortune" contestant Austin Theory, who's lifting up his shirt as Sajak looks away and smiles.
Sajak despatched tongues a-waggin’ when he requested contestant and WWE star Austin Principle to take his shirt off in the course of the sport.

Off-camera, Sajak’s habits can be edgy.

Like his “Wheel of Fortune” predecessor Chuck Woolery, he’s identified for publicly expressing his conservative views on a variety of topics, corresponding to COVID vaccines and climate change.

He as soon as tweeted, “World warming alarmists are unpatriotic racists knowingly deceptive for their very own ends” — solely to later apologize and delete the missive.

Politics apart, Sajak is understood for his cutting sense of humor.

Maybe he’s tried some unhealthy jokes of late, however many say he’s a pleasure to be round.

“Pat was great to work with … and I’ve nothing however good issues to say about him. He couldn’t have been nicer,” an business insider who labored with Sajak for a number of years on “Wheel” advised The Put up.

A feminine contestant on the present in 2019 had equally constructive issues to say.

“He was truly tremendous humorous and sharp. I didn’t get the ick,” she advised The Put up.

Viewers and advertisers appear, for probably the most half, blissful.

“Wheel” stays on the prime of the syndicated heap with its sister present “Jeopardy!” — which can be produced by Sony Photos Tv.

Photo of Vanna White posing with Maggie Sajak and Pat Sajak. They're on the show's set and smiling at the camera.
Vanna White, Maggie Sajak and Pat Sajak.
ABC through Getty Pictures

Within the week ending April 17, it pulled in over 8 million viewers every weeknight — and it’s displaying no indicators of slowing down even amid its host’s outbursts.

Sponsors will not be pulling adverts, nor are they threatening to take action — at all times an indication of bother in TV land.

There’s an off likelihood that Sajak’s current habits is expounded to some well being concern unknown to most of the people.

In 2019, he revealed that he’d virtually died after struggling an intestinal blockage that required emergency surgical procedure.

“I keep in mind considering, not in a morbid means, ‘I believe this have to be demise. This have to be what demise is like,’” he told Good Morning America.

Photo of Vanna White and Pat Sajak from 1975. Vanna is wearing a red dress and has dark hair; Pat is wearing a blue checked sports jacket with a red tie and also had dark hair.
Vanna White and Pat Sajak of their early days on “Wheel of Fortune.”
©Sony Photos/Courtesy Evere

Seemingly extra doubtless is the likelihood that Sajak’s acting-out is a contract ploy.

He and White, 66, with whom he reportedly will get on famously, are both signed through 2024.

Sajak earns an estimated $15 million a yr and added a profitable government producer credit score to his internet hosting duties in his final deal.

He’s estimated to be value between $65 million and $75 million and owns both a sprawling hilltop home in Los Angeles and a brick mansion in Severna Park, Maryland.

He and his spouse — Maryland native Lesly-Brown Sajak — divide their time between the 2.

Their youngsters — son Patrick, 32, and daughter Maggie, 28 — are grown, however Maggie is entering into the household enterprise, in addition to carving her personal path as a rustic singer.

She’s been the present’s “Social Correspondent” since 2021 — taking pictures behind-the-scenes clips and interviews with the present’s workers and contestants and sharing them on-line.

Every now and then, Maggie has even stepped in for White because the present’s letter-turner — although neither she nor present officers have stated something publicly about what that would imply when each her father and White ultimately depart the present.

Sajak has acknowledged that his closing puzzle is coming pretty quickly.

In 2021, he advised “Entertainment Tonight” that he and White are “actually nearer to the tip than the start” and that “I’d like to depart earlier than individuals tune in and take a look at me and say, ‘Ooh, what occurred to him?’”

Certainly, that point could also be now.

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