The Athletes face two rounds of dancing and even more sports puns!

By Maggie Fremont
May 07, 2018 at 11:32 PM EDT
Kelsey McNeal/ABC

Welcome to week two of this truncated season of Dancing With the Stars. In case you haven’t figure it out: We’re halfway through the season! The speed at which we’re moving is really not conducive to getting way too attached to certain couples, which, as any good DWTS fan knows, is what this show is all about.

There’s two rounds tonight, including a team dance, and look out for Season 24 champ Rashad Jennings, our special Athletes Edition Guest Judge for the evening. He has a seat at the panel, but his greatest contribution to the festivities is a reprise of his and partner Emma Slater’s “24K Magic” routine. That routine forever and ever, please.

Since we’re all expected to move faster than a quickstep, let’s dive in.

Josh Norman and Sharna Burgess
Paso Doble, “The Plaza of Execution” by James Horner
Josh and Sharna were tied at the top of the week one leaderboard, so the pressure is on to keep that momentum going. Josh listens to music scores to get amped up before games, and he does the same here. That’s why he and Sharna are dancing a paso to the Mask of Zorro theme. Josh is all about that hero life. Although he could have been a bit sharper in some of his movements — Carrie Ann and Bruno call out his arms and the need for him to continue his lines — but man is Josh’s shaping on point. That opening pose? Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.
Judges’ Score: 30/40

Jennie Finch Daigle and Keo Motsepe
Cha Cha, “Do It Like This” by Daphne Willis
Jennie throws Keo a, ahem, curveball this week (if Athletes is good for anything, it is the puns), when she decides on Thursday that she doesn’t feel comfortable with their cha cha song and they need to change it. Good on her for doing what feels right, but also, poor Keo! The lack of rehearsal with the new song seems to have an effect on the routine. All the judges note that Jennie’s timing is really off. She tries to sell it as best she can, but this is a downgrade from week one. Carrie Ann and Bruno also point out that Jennie needs to work on extending through her arms. Girl has some long limbs, she needs to use them!
Judges’ Score: 26/40

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Lindsay Arnold
Salsa, “La Malanga” by Eddie Palmieri
YOU GUYS: How have we gotten through 25 seasons of DWTS and not had the old “double person under an overcoat” move before? Of course, the DWTS version is Lindsay sitting on Haley’s shoulders, covered by a dress, which honestly, is the best version of this move in history. Haley danced those first few counts of the routine completely blind. She is a rockstar. The whole routine is pretty fun — Lindsay is a excellent choreographer — and it is dedicated to Kareem’s father, a jazz musician who played in Latin bands and could dance along with the best of them, too. The judges are happy to see Kareem improving, but mostly they’re happy he’s enjoying his experience.
Judges’ Score: 26/40

Chris Mazdzer and Witney Carson
Viennese Waltz, “Next To Me” by Imagine Dragons
Chris Mazdzer is the surprise of the season, right? He and Witney perform an excellent Viennese waltz by any standard, but for week two? Uh, more please and thank you. Chris has ADHD, so he and Witney are working together to figure out the most effective way to teach him his routines, and whatever they are doing is working. Unlike most others who have gone before him, Chris has excellent arm extension, and ya boy has heel leads down. Len is also pretty pumped to see that in hold Chris has sway. He’s a great partner to Witney and Bruno is impressed with how well they filled the space around them. Who is this person and can he stay forever?
Judges’ Score: 33/40

Tonya Harding and Sasha Farber
Quickstep, “Redneck Woman” by Gretchen Wilson
This routine is actually a trio dance featuring Tonya, Sasha, and…A BEAR. What a delight week two is, huh? Sasha wants to show off the real Tonya — the hunting, fishing, truck-driving Tonya Harding. Tonya dons some cowboy boots and she, Sasha, and Troupe Brandon as a Bear dance around the campfire. It’s fast and a bit frantic at times. The judges think the routine really shows off Tonya’s energy and strength and are impressed she could keep up with the speedy routine. Carrie Ann finds it a joy to watch Tonya dance. She offers no critique to the bear lurking behind her, which seems like a missed opportunity.
Judges’ Score: 33/40

Mirai Nagasu and Alan Bersten
Foxtrot, “It’s a Small World” by The O’Neill Brothers Group (”We Love Disney”)
Mirai is a competitor, so she wasn’t thrilled to receive a ‘7’ from Carrie Ann in week one. She cries a little, then, like a true champion, gets back to work. Okay, actually, first she and Alan go to Disneyland to get some inspiration for her foxtrot, and then she goes to work. Who knows if Mirai really loves Disney, or this is simply because we can’t have ‘Disney Night’ in this shortened season, but who really cares? This routine is gorgeous. Mirai is a princess, Alan her prince, and we are all but mere peasants in their presence. Carrie Ann lets Mirai know that the girl’s done good this week.
Judges’ Score: 37/40

Arike Ogunbowale and Gleb Savchenko
Foxtrot, “What About Us” by Pink
Listen, no one really wants to put on heels, but Arike is up for a challenge and is more than willing to play the DWTS game by its own rules. Aside from heels, those rules also include fringe, more fringe, and pretending like you understand what Bruno is frantically yelling at you during your critique. The shoes seem to make a huge difference. The judges point out her excellent posture, her great footwork, and an overall elegance. Let’s be honest: The real standout of this whole thing is Arike’s mom, who teared up when she saw Arike step out of her trailer all glammed up. Another DWTS rule: Proud parents will always make you cry.
Judges’ Score: 33/40

Adam Rippon and Jenna Johnson
Quickstep, “Make Way” by Aloe Blacc
Still thinking about how incredibly in sync Adam and Jenna were during their week one routine? You are not alone. It was wonderful. During rehearsals for their quickstep, it seems like matching that synchronicity in this routine might be impossible. Adam’s schedule is bananas. False alarm, you guys! Adam and Jenna are in fine form. Their quickstep is extremely fast, but Len applauds the fact that every move is crisp and clear. Adam always looks in control. The judges once again can’t get over the impeccable timing and fabulous partner work. [Insert anger for only getting four weeks with these two here.]
Judges’ Score: 37/40

 

TEAM DANCE

Team 1950s Tennis: Chris and Witney/Josh and Sharna/Kareem and Lindsay/Tonya and Sasha
Jive/Swing, “… Baby One More Time” by The Baseballs
What is this world? There are old-timey tennis outfits that turn into Elvis jumpsuits, hella tight sideburns, a tennis match in the middle of a dance routine, and it is all set to a Britney Spears cover. Hold me, I’m scared. The individual sections aren’t so bad, but some of the group work doesn’t go as smoothly as one would hope. The pros are creative in working around Kareem’s height, and the overall the routine is a good time. Also, who thought it would be a good idea to give these guys two dances in one week? Haven’t we asked enough of them?
Judges’ Score: 33/40

Team 1970s Football: Adam and Jenna/Arike and Gleb/Jennie and Keo/Mirai and Alan
Disco, “Instant Replay” by Dan Hartman
These team dances are really bringing their best hair game and I am living for it. This team number has a lot going on as well: Glittery football uniforms, body rolls, Bruno dancing along from the judging panel, 70s fros, and group portions that are very in sync. That last item is the most important. This number isn’t just fun — it’s well-rehearsed and well-executed.
Judges’ Score: 37/40

It seems crazy that we’re eliminating two more couples, but dems the rules. Finding themselves in jeopardy are: Kareem and Lindsay, Chris and Witney, and Arike and Gleb.

Week two’s casualties? Kareem and Lindsay and Arike and Gleb. Fare thee well! Oh and also, next week we’re eliminating THREE couples. So that should be fun and not at all heartbreaking.

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