Dancing With the Stars: Athletes premiered tonight, with 10 champions and Olympic stars competing for the coveted mirrorball trophy. This season is a special edition of the show and only runs for four weeks. So, what does this mean? It means that on tonight’s season 26 premiere, it was a double elimination. Generally, there aren’t eliminations on the first night, especially not a double one, but this is a condensed and more intense season, right?
So, who were the contestants that were sent home? The first couple revealed to be in jeopardy was Jamie Anderson and Artem Chigvintsev, followed by Johnny Damon and Emma Slater. Also in jeopardy were Tonya Harding and Sasha Farber.
Out of these three couples, the only couple who was safe was Tonya Harding and Sasha Farber. This meant that the other two couples have ended their time in the ballroom.
Tonight, figure skater Adam Rippon with pro Jenna Johnson tied for the top score of the night with NFL’er Josh Norman and pro Sharna Burgess. Meanwhile, Kareem Abdul-Jabaar received the lowest score, of 17. But, clearly, the fans’ love for Abdul-Jabaar means more than scores.
Snowboarder Anderson may have been a bit of a surprise in the double elimination as she did fairly well. Anderson and her partner Artem Chigvintsev danced a Viennese Waltz to “Feeling Good” by Avicii tonight. This earned the couple a 19 out of 30 for the routine.
Johnny Damon did pretty well also. Previously, Damon revealed on Good Morning America that he has 8 children and they were all excited for him to be a part of the show. He has twins from a previous marriage, and also six kids with his current wife, Michelle. For those unfamiliar with Damon, he is a retired professional baseball outfielder, who played in Major League Baseball from 1995 to 2012, according to Pop Sugar.
For his big premiere routine, Damon performed a foxtrot to “Centerfield” by John Fogerty. The performance earned him an 18 out of 30.
Unlike normal seasons of DWTS, there is real-time voting involved during broadcasts of the show. According to ABC, there will be live voting and eliminations during the east coast and central time zone airings. Unfortunately, west coasters may not be able to participate. Votes are combined with the judges’ scores during each episode of the show this season and the couples with the lowest combination of scores and votes are eliminated. Voting this way will be via a live online-only voting method during the show’s live broadcast. The remaining couples will then move on to the next episode. Live voting will end shortly after the last couple performs on the show.
Season 26 of DWTS airs on Monday nights at 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT and 8 p.m. PT. American Idol previously aired in this time slot and changed its schedule to only air live on Sunday nights on the ABC network, at 8 p.m. ET/PT and 7 p.m. CT.
The finales of both Dancing With the Stars and American Idol both air on May 21, 2018. The DWTS finale will air from 8 – 9 p.m. ET/PT and 7 – 8 p.m. CT, while the Idol finale will air from 9 – 11 p.m. ET/6 – 8 p.m. PT/8 – 10 p.m. CT.