Spoiler ahead about the season premiere of Dancing with the Stars. Read at your own risk!
Another week of Dancing with the Stars: Athletes and another double elimination.
It was the first time in DWTS history that Team Dance Week came in the second week of the competition. (That said, in the hyperspeed mini-season, we’ve already reached the halfway point!)
Head judge Len Goodman said he expected to see a “dip” in the scores since the couples had to learn two dances instead of one for this week’s episode, but, for the most part, the judges — including guest judge (and former DWTS champ Rashad Jennings) — were pleasantly surprised.
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Olympian figure skater Mirai Nagasu (and partner Alan Bersten) and Adam Rippon (and Jenna Johnson) were awarded the top solo dance scores — 37 out of 40 — for their foxtrot and quickstep, respectively. On the other end of the spectrum were former NBA superstar Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (and Lindsay Arnold) and former softball pitcher Jennie Finch Daigle (and Keo Motsepe), who scored 26 out of 40 for their salsa and cha-cha.
For the team dances, Abdul-Jabbar worked with Olympian figure skater Tonya Harding, Olympian Luger Chris Mazdzer, NFL cornerback Josh Norman and their pro partners for a tennis-inspired routine that was awarded 33 points. Nagasu, Rippon, Daigle teamed up with college basketball player Arike Ogunbowale for a football-inspired number and received a score of 37.
The viewers’ votes from last week were combined with the judges’ score from Monday’s episode and ultimately Abdul-Jabbar and Ogunbowale were the two athletes sent home. They follow in the steps of baseball player Johnny Damon and snowboarder Jamie Anderson, who were eliminated week 1.
Former DWTS runner-up David Ross will guest judge next Monday when the competition continues — and THREE more athletes are sent packing.