‘Dancing with the Stars’ finals recap: Meryl rises, Amy soars, women sweep final three

The final four “Dancing With the Stars” contestants delivered their last competitive performances Monday night, and the season’s frontrunners – Meryl Davis and Amy Purdy – made the most of it, nearly perfect after two dances each.

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For Davis it meant a pair of emotionally committed routines, the second of which, a freestyle dance, was described by Carrie Ann Inaba as “divinity in motion.” She and Maksim Chmerkovskiy, the only pro dancer among the final four who has never won the mirror ball trophy, finished the night with a perfect 60 out of 60.

Right behind them are Purdy and Derek Hough. After a perfect-scoring salsa on solid ground, they took to the sky for their freestyle performance, during which Purdy was lifted by a rope and spun in midair. Len Goodman wasn’t impressed by the extra acrobatic flourish and gave her a 9, leaving her one point shy of Davis’s total for the night.

The evening started well for James Maslow, who performed a nearly perfect tango before breaking out new martial arts moves for his freestyle routine with Peta Murgatroyd. Both dances scored 29 out of 30, placing him a very close third for the night, but he won’t get a chance to contend for the mirror ball trophy because he was eliminated at the end of the show, as our users predicted. He was the last male star left standing after Charlie White was voted off last week, which guarantees a female sweep of the top three for only the second time in the show’s history.

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Candace Cameron Bure struggled again this week. Her partner Mark Ballas injured his shoulder during rehearsals, prompting yet another “DWTS” trip to the hospital. However, doctors cleared him to perform, and he and his resilient star partner made it through both of their dances: first a quickstep that the judges thought was improved from Cameron Bure’s previous attempt at the style, and then a freestyle routine that was criticized for lacking connection to the music. She finished at the bottom of the leaderboard but is guaranteed a top-three finish. Could she even pull off a shocking upset victory?

The final three scored as follows:

Meryl Davis – 60
Amy Purdy – 59
Candace Cameron Bure – 51

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Davis and Purdy are neck-and-neck going into Tuesday night’s final results show, but Davis continues to enjoy a strong lead in our predictions with 8/11 odds. Purdy is expected to finish second, and Cameron Bure will finish third. Are our odds way off base? Predict who will win season 18 below, then click here to predict where the other two dancers will place.

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