Today's NYT Connections hints and answers — Friday, February 9, #243

NYT Connections
(Image credit: Future)
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Looking for today's Connections answers? The Connections answers on February 9 for puzzle #243 are easier than yesterday's, with the Connections Companion rating this puzzle's difficulty at 3.0 out of 5.

Every day, we update this article with Connections hints and tips to help you find all 4 of today's answers. And if the hints aren't enough, you'll find all 4 answers below, with the category titles and the correlating words. Plus, we're including a reflection on yesterday's puzzle, #242, in case you're reading this in a different time zone.

Spoilers lie ahead for Connections #243. Only read on if you want to know today's Connections answers.  

Alternatively, visit our how to play NYT Connections guide for tips on how to solve the puzzle without our help.

Today's Connections answer — hints to help you solve it

Unlike our guide to today's Wordle answer, where we recommend the best Wordle start words as your strategy, solving Connections relies on identifying connecting categories among 16 words. Each category's difficulty level is represented by a color; yellow is the easiest grouping, and purple is the most challenging. Once you've made 4 mistakes in your guesses, the answers will be revealed, so hints can be helpful.

If you need hints to solve the groupings, then here are the themes of each, based on the order of difficulty:

  • 🟨 Yellow: Walkman's keys
  • 🟩 Green: On the air
  • 🟦 Blue: Artistic ambition
  • 🟪 Purple: A scrambled countdown

These hints should get you at least some of the way towards finding today's Connections answers. If not, then you can read on for bigger clues; or, if you just want to know the answer, then scroll down further.

Alright then, here's a larger hint: Today's puzzle may have you skipping forward and backward as you figure out the right combinations. Remember that not all that broadcasts is fit for the air, and some numbers may need a bit of rearrangement before they make sense. 

Today's Connections answers

So, what are today's Connections answers for game #243?

Drumroll, please...

  • 🟨 Music player buttons: Rewind, shuffle, skip, stop
  • 🟩 Broadcast: Air, run, screen, show
  • 🟦 Things you can draw: Bath, card, curtain, picture
  • 🟪 Number anagrams: Eon, ether, net, tow

Today's brain-bender kicked off with a techno-twist – 'Ether Net Card' flashing before my eyes immediately. But was it a digital red herring? I had to compute further.

I caught Rewind and Shuffle cutting a rug in tandem, and Skip and Stop joined for a full-on button bash. And just like that, the yellow category grooved into place, hitting every beat.

Further exploration brought me into the broadcasting booth where words like Show, Air, Screen, and Run were airing out, neatly linking to make the green category.

For the next group, I considered whether you can hang up a Picture, Card, Curtain, and a Net? It sounded like a decorator's inventory list gone wild. But then I realized – you can draw a Curtain, a Bath, a Card, and a Picture. We weren't meant to be hanging up things here, but drawing them! 

The remaining words were a jumbled lot. I donned my linguistic fedora, channeled my inner word-whisperer, until – Eureka!  – they're anagrams of numbers. The purple category was complete, and the puzzle was solved without a single digit out of place.

Yesterday's Connections answers

Reading this in a later time zone? Here are the Connections answers for game #242, which had a difficulty rating of 3.3 out of 5, according to the Connections Companion.

Today's puzzle board was as scattered as the contents of a plundered treasure chest, gleaming with nautical terms fit for Pirates Of The Caribbean. I set sail into the briny deep, lifting my eyepatch to better scan the grid before me.

Confidently, I attempted to assemble a crew with Bridge, Deck, Bow, and Anchor. Surely these were all parts of a ship? Alas, by Davy Jones' locker, that was not to be the first treasure I'd haul aboard.

Undeterred, I spied the proper assembly of my archery arsenal: Bow, Quiver, Arrow, and Target. These tools of the sharpshooter's trade were my bounty, and I marked one on the ship's ledger.

Peering through my spyglass, I then found a quartet of brutish moves: Deck, Slug, Belt, and Clock. Each could be a solid hit across the face of an adversary if you couldn't find your cutlass in time.

  • 🟨 Archery equipment: Arrow, bow, quiver, target
  • 🟩 Card games: Bridge, Gin, Spit, War
  • 🟦 Wallop: Belt, clock, deck, slug
  • 🟪 Classic Tattoos: Anchor, dragon, heart, rose

So, where would you find an Anchor if not aboard the ship? It struck me like the flash of lightning - it belonged not to the vessel but to the skin. Alongside the Anchor, the Dragon, Heart, and Rose were classic tattoos, emblazoned on many a pirate's brawny arm. The purple category was now in my possession.

With my map nearly complete, only the green category remained. Aha! 'Twas a gamble as sure as any pirate's luck, the card games of Bridge, Gin, Spit, and War. The final piece of the puzzle clicked into place like a trap in The Goonies.

With all categories conquered, it was a victory worthy of Blackbeard himself. I raised my flag high, the grid as conquered as the seven seas, no longer a peril but a ship under my command. Yo ho, a puzzler's life for me!

Richard Sutherland

Richard is a technology writer with over 20 years experience in website development, marketing, and SEO. A graduate in Computer Science, he has lectured in Java programming and built software for companies including Samsung and Walmart. Richard writes for TechRadar, IT Pro, Tom's Guide, and PC Gamer.