Melissa Gilbert was not only a no-show on Tuesday’s Dancing with the Stars, her partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy questioned whether it made sense for the actress to return to the dance floor.
“She’s in pain. She’s got a big headache,” Chmerkovskiy told reporters after the show. “I was a bit confused about the injury yesterday because she said that she hit the floor and I was like I was looking at you the entire time, and I was trying to carry her, you know, through some of the moments, and being kind of careful and gentle with her. She hit my knee. I honestly didn’t feel it. I thought I slipped on her dress.
“I think the doctor said that she had a minor concussion. I know that’s very not pleasant,” he continued. “I wish she could take a couple of days off. And honestly, at this point, with Sherri Shepherd getting eliminated I’m not really sure if it’s worth killing yourself and, you know, trying to put on a show when it is what it is. Look, you know, I think the only aspect on our side is our fans, and I’m beyond grateful. I mean, coming back from being in the bottom, and then again being in the bottom, and then again being in the bottom in a competition like this, we owe it all to the fans. So this is my kinda dilemma. What do you do? Do you take it easy and go well listen, it is what it is, or do you try to put on a show? But then, you know, it sucks that she got injured on my, so to speak, on my watch, and this is something that I don’t want to see happen.”
On Monday, the Little House on the Prairie star was treated for a mild concussion and whiplash after performing a Paso Doble with her partner. She was taken to the ER for observation and tests before the ABC show was over, where she managed to tweet her 80,000-something fans during her hospital stay. “Very soon I will be safely home resting and being taken care of,” she wrote.
“She had her doctor come and visit, and they reviewed the dance,” Chmerkovskiy said. “They picked out where she hit it. It’s a big deal for Melissa, not because she’s trying to make it a big deal, but because she has a metal fusion-fused spine in her neck, as well as her lower back. So that was the big scare, and so when I heard that she took my leg out with her head, I’m a big guy, and I’ve rarely been bothered with something like this. We know how to keep ourselves on our feet. Very grounded. So for her to take me out must have been a big deal. So I’m worried about her neck.”
Chmerkovskiy couldn’t say when Gilbert would return to rehearsals. “It’s not up to me. It’s up to her. I think we are coming back. I’m pretty sure, you know, I haven’t heard talks about not coming back. But then again, she’ll wake up tomorrow, and she continues to have a headache that even garcinia cambogia extract, I won’t let her in the studio.” — With reporting from Steve Gidlow