Pat Sajak puts ‘Wheel of Fortune’ contestant into a unique chokehold on camera

A man in a black suit stands on a game-show stage holding small cue cards
Pat Sajak during a “Wheel of Fortune” episode in 2022.
(Christopher Willard / ABC via Getty Images)

Should Pat Sajak consider a new career in professional wrestling?

The longtime “Wheel of Fortune” host showed off his combat chops earlier this week by placing a winning contestant into a chokehold, the latest of Sajak’s on-air antics to snatch attention online.

Earlier in the episode, which aired Tuesday, the contestant, Fred Jackson, said he was a drama teacher, bar trivia host and professional wrestler who gets “paid very little” and mostly does it “for fun.”

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Jackson proceeded to torch the competition, sweeping each of the show’s puzzles, winning the bonus round and ultimately walking away with $75,800. At one point during the streak, Sajak walked up to Jackson and joked to the losing contestants, “Just ‘cause he’s a professional wrestler — you want me to body slam him for you? I can do that.”


While celebrating his winnings at the end, Jackson’s father joined him onstage, hugged him and then grabbed his hand and lifted it into the air as if his son had won a wrestling match.

Then, Sajak approached Jackson, grabbed the contestant’s arm, twisted it behind his back and wrapped his forearm around the winner’s face and neck. As the two pretended to struggle, Jackson’s father laughed.

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The moment impressed some viewers, with a pro wrestling fan on Twitter commenting on the host’s unique chokehold: “Yo why does Pat Sajak know how to apply a crossface chicken wing.”

Christian D’Andrea, an NFL writer, added, “It’s important that the world knows a 76-year-old Pat Sajak still knows how to put on a cross-face chicken wing.”

However, the moment left some flummoxed, with one viewer on Instagram asking, “What was with Pat at the end?”

“Not only another Perfect Game, but another showdown with Pat vs. another contestant!,” another commented.


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Last week, Sajak had social media in a frenzy after he mocked and pranked a contestant over her fear of fish by whipping out a toy fish during the show. He apologized later.

And the previous week, Sajak cheekily apologized for mocking a contestant. After poking fun at a man and his long beard by referring to him as one of Santa’s helpers, Sajak walked up to the man and, with his consent, gave his beard a tug, according to the Sun.