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Dancing With the Stars Premiere Fantasy Recap: The Athletes Put on a Show

Well another season of Dancing With The Stars is underway! We learned a lot on the premiere: Chris Kattan and Charo have ZERO focus, Bonner Bolton and Nick Viall are soon to be in a battle of the shirtless bodies, Rashad Jennings is actually Bruno Mars, and Erika Jayne needs to check her attitude at security! Although there were no crazy thrills — besides Charo’s lunge at the judges table — the Dancing With the Stars Premiere was what one typically expects for the first week: just okay dancing!

As a ballroom instructor, I can tell you no one aces it in their first week and that it takes time to build skill. Are some more skilled than others? OH YES. Are some hopeless? Well, I’m a firm believer EVERYONE can learn to dance… but I think Chris Kattan may have changed my philosophy.

As far as your Fantasy Team goes… if you listened to my advice than you’re in good shape! Hopefully you took David in an early round — I DID! He’s this season’s surprise player and looks ready to rack up an unexpected amount of points. The heavy hitters are as I expected: Simone, Heather, Normani and Rashad all flashed the upside I projected, and I think they’ll continue to score you consistent points across the board. Nancy flashed her ability in the more classical ballroom dances, but whether or not she can channel her inner sexy is questionable. Her first attempt will give us more insight into whether those styles of dance will make or break her fantasy season. David is in the same boat, but did he just get lucky in Week 1? It’s possible, but I believe he’s the dark horse of this season. Although I dream of seeing Bonner and Nick around all season, I don’t think we will. Will we see occasionally high scores? Yes. Will they last to the second half? Probably.

Who goes home first? Unless he pulls off a miracle than Chris is heading back to SNL!

Onto the Scoreboard and Dance Breakdowns:


Dancing With the Stars Premiere Fantasy Scoreboard

Simone – 32

Rashad – 31

Heather – 28

Nancy – 28

David – 28

Normani – 27

Nick – 24

Erika – 24

Bonner – 22

Charo – 21

Mr. T – 20

Chris – 17

Dance Breakdowns:

Tier 1 – Not To Be Messed With

Simone Biles and Sasha Farber (Tango): 32 (8, 8, 8, 8)

My top pick to win it all and, thankfully, my number one pick in our RSJ draft produced “the dance of the night” according to Len Goodman! Simone delivered what we all expected – and more. Her precision, clean footwork and virtually flawless routine was a great conclusion to the premiere. I was quite impressed with how she held herself in frame and stretched herself outward. With this a style of dance that I’d expect her lowest scores in, Simone’s future numbers in rhythm-based dances should be astounding. Expect these two in the final!

Rashad Jennings and Emma Slater (Cha Cha): 31 (8, 7, 8, 8)

My favorite performance of the night and the man who stands in the way of all those wanting the Mirror Ball Trophy. Talk about potential – he made that look easy. Relaxed, clean, fun and energetic like a Cha Cha should be. If he handles smooth – he better watch his elbows – like rhythm, than he’ll surely be present in the final weeks of competition. Bonus points for choosing America’s favorite song right now. If he’s on your team you’re golden.

Heather Morris and Maks Chmerkovskiy (Viennese Waltz): 28 (7, 7, 7, 7)

Heather proved she’s got what it takes to go outside her comfort zone. I agree with the judges, she’s not the leader, and therefore she should follow and not just memorize. It’s called a partner dance, not a solo, and Maks the “bad boy” won’t hesitate to keep her in line next week. Still, Heather flashed impressive choreography and is one to watch as the weeks evolve.

Normani Kordei and Val Chmerkovskiy (Quickstep): 27 (7, 6, 7, 7)

One of my favorites – minus the obnoxious sass – and someone you hopefully have on your fantasy team, Normani can clearly perform. If she’s doing this in a Quickstep – a dance where you DO need more body contact (I agree with you Len Goodman) – than the things we’re to see in dances such as Cha Cha and Swing will be over the top. She’s going nowhere anytime soon.

Tier 2 – Potential Performers

David Ross and Lindsay Arnold (Quickstep): 28 (7, 7, 7, 7)

This was the absolute surprise of the night – and one I proudly predicted could happen. I KNEW that if David was selecting as complex of a dance as the Quickstep, then he clearly knew whats up. Truthfully, I would’ve given him a higher score because he floated across that floor like a feather. Very clean and moving with such ease, David hit a home run in my book. Although he had a great night, it’ll be his attempt at Latin dances that will give better insight into his season-long potential. If he can, he very well may swing his way into the World Series of Dance!

Nancy Kerrigan and Artem Chigvintsev (Viennese Waltz): 28 (7, 7, 7, 7)

Nicknamed “bumpy” by the judges for her not-so-smooth Viennese Waltz, Nancy needs to smoothen out her stride. It looked beautiful throughout, but her sloppiness was noticeable at times, and she won’t make it past these other contenders without some growth; the Latin dances could be her Tonya Harding of the ballroom. Fortunately she has Artem, and America has seen his body, which is definitely enough to keep her around for a while.

Nick Viall and Peta Murgatroyd (Cha Cha): 24 (6, 6, 6, 6)

I told you we wouldn’t see a shirtless Bachelor in Week 1 – but we got mighty close with a low Latin shirt. As for his Cha Cha, I expected a bit more. Carrie Ann Inaba noted he needed to “relax into his movement, and I totally agree; should he heed this advice – and perhaps show some more hip movement – Nick could work his way towards the end of the season. Still, I don’t think Foxtrot or Viennese Waltz are going to be his thing. He’s on my team (if only it were that one), and I believe he’ll get far enough to garner enough points for any Fantasy Team.

Bonner Bolton and Sharna Burgess (Cha Cha): 22 (6, 5, 5, 6)

“Bonner Bonner don’t be a goner” – Carrie Ann couldn’t have said it any better! HOLY SMOKES! Yes, he scored a not-so-high 22, but this season’s “showmance” has chemistry belonging only to him. And truthfully, I believe with more training – he needs to look up more – he could stroll right on into the final. If he continues to show us his body, we WILL continue to vote for him. Monitor how he does in the smooth dances – Tango should be SMOKIN and Foxtrot could be where he scores quite low.

P.S. On display below is what some have dubbed #handgate, #crotchgate or #gropegate. Although Bolton stated that it was unintentional, something tells me this season’s “showmance” has something going on under the sheets! Matter of weeks ’till “gropegate” hits the dance floor!

Tier 3 – Won’t Make It Past April

Erika Jayne and Gleb Savchenko (Salsa): 24 (6, 6, 6, 6)

I don’t think Erika deserved the score she got, nor the privilege to dance with someone as sexy as Gleb — it’s VERY CLEAR why she’s a housewife, and I nearly turned off the television every time she was talking. Horrible attitude. Her dance was okay, but I do agree with the judges that it needed more content. I don’t anticipate America voting for her too much longer – if she somehow makes it to the finals, look to Russia for answers.

Charo and Keo Motsepe (Salsa): 21 (6, 5, 5, 5)

OH MY cuchi cuchi! That was the most energetic, flamboyant and exuberant six minutes of television I may have ever seen. Besides the fact she tried to attack the judges, I couldn’t help but notice her maracas. Her dance was pretty good, and she probably could handle some more intricate choreography. Will she survive? No. Will she survive next week? Yes, but that may only last two weeks.

Mr. T and Kym Herjavec (Cha Cha): 20 (5, 5, 5, 5)

As was very evident with the mistakes he made, Mr. T doesn’t have the talent of the others to make it more than a week or two. Yes, I loved the song, yes I love why he’s doing this, but no, that was not a content filled or synchronized Cha Cha. I can see him doing well in Tango, but don’t expect much if he’s on your team.

Chris Kattan and Witney Carson (Cha Cha): 17 (5, 4, 4, 4)

Last but certainly not least. It was billed as a Cha Cha but “hot mess” would’ve been more accurate. I’m not sure I saw any recognizable steps in there. I think he’s danced his last dance. (Was he on something? It reminded me of this…)

We hope you enjoyed the Dancing With the Stars Premiere as much as we did, and check back early next week for our Episode 2 Preview! Also, if you are still interested, it’s never too late to create your own fantasy league with Fantasizr.

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