A “Wheel of Fortune” contestant surprised the host and viewers alike with some strange letter choices during the final puzzle of a recent show (video below).
But it wasn’t long before host Pat Sajak figured out what veteran Nura Fountano was trying to do, KTVI reported.
Fountano had been successful in the previous rounds and held a lead. She then made some odd choices while trying to solve the puzzle “Following footprints.”
Fountano chose the letter “Z.”
“Say that again for me? Did you say ‘Z’?!” Sajack asked, according to the Independent Journal Review.
“As in Zulu. Z,” Fountano answered.
She went on to select “X” and also missed the opportunity to answer twice because she took too much time.
“You called some unusual letters in that round?” Sajak asked her afterward
“That’s what I saw,” she said in response.
Sajak was unconvinced.
“Well that was an unsatisfactory answer… but she’s not under oath,” he added, according to KTVI.
Some of those following the show on social media could not explain what was going on.
“Z? Then no letter? Then Q? Is Nura drunk?” asked one user, according to IJR.
“Why is this lady guessing Z, X and Q for this puzzle?” asked another.
But Viewers gradually began to notice that Fountano had acted deliberately to enable her fellow vet to win some money on the last puzzle. He started the round with $1,600 and ended with $6,400.
“Just saw the classiest move on ‘Wheel of Fortune.’ Nura threw the final puzzle to let a fellow military person win it. Much respect,” wrote Jeremy Pond on Twitter.
“Way to go Nura!” wrote another user.
“What this veteran did is awesome. A terrific human being!” wrote Shannon Terry, according to My News LA.
Fountano’s generosity paid off. She still had enough winnings to progress to the final stage despite throwing the last puzzle.