James Holzhauer has certainly been unafraid to comment on all things Jeopardy!, even as the show spirals through a series of controversies over picking Mike Richards to host the show. But one joke he made about another guest host, Joe Buck, earned a response from the sports broadcaster.
Buck closed out Season 37 of Jeopardy! with a hosting stint, and while the ratings for his showing aren’t in just yet, it’s safe to say that Holzhauer — a professional sports gambler who has assuredly heard a game of 500 that the veteran broadcaster has called — wasn’t exactly a fan of Buck in general. He tweeted two jokes about Buck on Twitter that essentially said he wanted Buck to stop broadcasting football games.
The tweets did pretty good in the likes department, but Buck got wind of them and certainly wasn’t a fan. Buck addressed the tweet on Sports Illustrated’s Media Podcast with Jimmy Traina with a pretty dismissive comment about one of the best Jeopardy! players in show history.
“I wouldn’t know James Holzhauer if he was sitting here in my room,” Buck said. “I don’t know much about him. I know about his success on the show, but I don’t know what kind of a guy he is. I have no idea. I couldn’t care less. I’m at the point now where I am so overreacting to Twitter.”
Buck kept going, which is weird for someone claiming that he “couldn’t care less” about the tweet from someone he doesn’t know at all.
“I don’t know who he roots for. I don’t know where he’s from,” Buck said. “I don’t know what his favorite team is. I have no idea. So that’s how I took it and kind of did a little eye roll and moved on to the next 3-year-old’s diaper I had to change. That kind of stuff is becoming less relevant in my life.”
“It’s one of those things I would never see if not for people in my life who can’t wait to go, ‘Oh, I don’t know if you saw this, but James Holzhauer is ripping you, so I don’t really have any context,’” Buck said. He continued, “I’m not going to bed crying, sucking my thumb because James Holzhauer doesn’t like me.”
It’s understandable to be upset about the comments, which certainly came without a real reason other than to roast Buck. And he’s had his fair share of criticism throughout his career, so that kind of thing can get tiring. But saying he had “no idea” who Holzhauer was is odd considering Buck is one of the few people who can say he’s hosted Jeopardy! during their stretch of guest hosts, a period that was meant to help the show find its next host during that tryout period.
Downplaying his knowledge of Jeopardy! is certainly, well, an interesting approach considering the job is now open again. But maybe he’s only interested in the gig that Holzhauer seems keen on watching him lose.