The prevailing trend this season on “Dancing with the Stars” continued on the night of semi-finals: there was another double elimination, and the ousters came right from the bottom of the leaderboard. NFL player Antonio Brown and Boyz II Men singer Wanya Morris were the lowest scorers last week, and as our readers predicted in our poll, voters at home didn’t save them. That means season 22’s three finalists are model Nyle DiMarco, UFC fighter Paige VanZant and meteorologist Ginger Zee.
Morris’s elimination was ironic because after nine weeks and 12 dances he was actually the highest scoring competitor of the season, tied with VanZant with an average of 26.5 points per dance (not counting guest judges’ scores). It may have been an even more bitter pill to swallow since Morris also happened to be the best dancer of the night, performing two perfect routines. He got three 10s for his trio dance, a paso doble with his regular partner Lindsay Arnold and past Mirror Ball Trophy champ Witney Carson, and then he and Arnold got more 10s for their Charleston. That was the only time this season that a contestant delivered two perfect dances in one night — not bad for the fourth-place finisher.
VanZant very nearly had a perfect night. She opened the night with a trio samba with her partner Mark Ballas and guest pro Alan Bersten, who had previously stepped in earlier this season when Ballas was injured. That dance scored 30 out of 30, but her second dance with Ballas, a provocative Argentine tango, was “a little too hot and spicy” for Len Goodman, who gave her a nine while Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli awarded her more 10s.
DiMarco struggled during his trio dance, a slightly unsteady jive with Peta Murgatroyd and guest Jenna Johnson. He got straight nines, but he made up for it with his second dance, an “Unsteady” Argentine tango for which he upped the difficulty: the deaf model added a blindfold to the mix, and the judges were so impressed by his sensory-deprived routine that he received 10s across the board.
Zee enters next week’s finals with the lowest points total. Balance and posture problems during her trio paso doble with Val Chmerkovskiy and Artem Chigvintsev cost her points from all three judges, scoring 27 total. She and Chmerkovskiy rebounded later with a quickstep that Goodman and Tonioli considered perfect, but Inaba noticed an error that left Zee just one point shy of DiMarco’s final total.
As for Brown, despite the admiration of the judges for his continued determination and improvement, he had the lowest scoring dance in both rounds before being sent home: 27 for his trio tango with Sharna Burgess and Hayley Herbert, and then 28 for his contemporary dance with Burgess.
The night’s complete leaderboard is below:
Wanya Morris – 30 + 30 = 60 (ELIMINATED)
Paige VanZant – 30 + 29 = 59
Nyle DiMarco – 27 + 30 = 57
Ginger Zee – 27 + 29 = 56
Antonio Brown – 27 + 28 = 55 (ELIMINATED)
What did you think of the “DWTS” semi-finals? Did the right two dancers go home? And who do you think will win? Comment below, and make sure to join the reality TV discussion going on in our message boards.