The final four contestants will perform freestyle dances tonight on “Dancing With the Stars” before a winner is crowned on Tuesday, and the battle lines have been drawn by our readers. In our recent poll, more than 95% of voters are supporting one of the Olympians – ice dancing gold medalist Meryl Davis and Paralympic bronze medalist Amy Purdy. Will one of them win?
Davis has led our racetrack odds since the beginning of the season and still leads going into tonight’s finals. She has also been the favorite of judges based on her scores; she earned more 10s than any other star, and received a perfect 40 out of 40 for three dances, including two on “American Icons Night” that put her on top of the leaderboard going into finals.
Davis is partnered with Maksim Chmerkovskiy, who has never won the mirror ball trophy despite a few close calls: he finished second in season five (with Spice Girl Melanie B) and season 12 (with Kirstie Alley), and he finished third in season four (with Laila Ali) and season 10 (with Erin Andrews, now a “DWTS” co-host).
Meryl and Maks currently get 4/11 odds to win the season, and 52% of readers are rooting for them.
But Purdy may be a formidable threat. She finished on top of the leaderboard for the first time ever on “Dance Duels Night,” and she is this season’s biggest underdog story. Both of her legs were amputated below the knee after she contracted bacterial meningitis at age 19, and she has performed her dances impressively on prosthetic legs.
She has the added benefit of being partnered with Derek Hough, who has won more “DWTS” titles than any other pro dancer (five), including the last two seasons in a row. The popular Hough is a star in his own right and has a fan base that could give Purdy just the boost she needs.
Amy and Derek currently get 5/1 odds to win the season, and 44% of readers are rooting for them.
James Maslow trails with 16/1 odds, and 3% of readers are rooting for him. He and partner Peta Murgatroyd, who won the trophy once before (season 14 with Donald Driver), first proved their mettle in week two, when they showed skin during a provocative salsa. They later earned a perfect 40 on “Disney Night” when dancing to “Let It Go” from “Frozen.” They earned another perfect score during last week’s semifinals.
Candace Cameron Bure is the only remaining contestant who has never received a perfect 40, and she is the lowest overall scorer among the final four. But her perseverance and continued improvement have made her popular with fans, who have saved her from elimination every time she has been at the bottom of the leaderboard.
She and partner Mark Ballas, a two-time “DWTS” champ (season six with Kristi Yamaguchi and season eight with Shawn Johnson), get 22/1 odds of winning, and just 1% of readers are rooting for her.
Who will win the mirror ball trophy? More importantly, who should win? Vote in our poll below and make your predictions.