Pat Sajak Announces That The Upcoming Season Of ‘Wheel Of Fortune’ Will Be His Last

Pat Sajak Wheel of Fortune
Wheel of Fortune/YouTube

This one hurts…

Anytime these “end of an era” announcements happen, they really make you feel old, and Pat Sajak deciding to step away from Wheel of Fortune after 41 years is a real punch in the stomach.

The 76-year-old longtime TV host took to Twitter to make the announcement that the upcoming season of the beloved evening gameshow would be his last. He stepped into the host role in 1981 when the show’s original lead man Chuck Woolery decided to leave Wheel of Fortune behind.

Sajak led the daytime version of show until 1989, and has also acted as the host of the evening version since 1983 with co-host Vanna White.

Well tonight, the longtime host took to Twitter moments ago to make the announcement that he would be stepping down, as well as teasing some more information that he will release in the coming months:

“Well, the time has come. I’ve decided that our 41st season, which begins in September, will be my last.

It’s been a wonderful ride, and I’ll have more to say in the coming months. Many thanks to you all. (If nothing else, it’ll keep the clickbait sites busy!)”

In a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight, Sajak had formerly hinted that the show would continue on without him. He stated:

“In most television shows by this time, you would have said, ‘That’s probably enough.’ But this show will not die. It appears I may go before the show.” 

So it seems, like Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Sweet Home Alabama” song says, that the big wheel will keep on turning. Which begs the question, who will step in to fill the big shoes that Sajak lives behind?

One obvious option would be the longtime co-host of Wheel of Fortune Vanna White, who has even guest hosted the show before. The 66-year-old TV personality could easily step into the main role if she wished, having familiarity with the ins and outs of the production.

That is, if she would want to continue on without her co-host Sajak. There hasn’t been a “big search” for a new game show host since Alex Trebek was forced to give up his hosting duties on Jeopardy. Before that, longtime host Bob Barker left Price is Right and was replaced by Drew Carey.

Each time a long running game show host has to be replaced marks an end of an era, and with Sajak leaving Wheel of Fortune, all of the traditional hosts of America’s most popular and beloved game shows have seen changes at their helm.

Fans of the show were sad about the announcement, but happy that Sajak would get to ride off into the sunset on his own terms:

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock