After a star-studded two and a half hour finale equipped with humorous season highlights, phenomenal musical performances and many shirtless men, Dancing with the Stars finally crowned their Season 24 champion.
Rashad Jennings proudly took home the Mirrorball Trophy alongside professional partner Emma Slater. The NFL free agent won over former Chicago Cubs catcher David Ross. Fifth Harmony member Normani Kordei shockingly came in third and left many in disbelief, especially Harmonizers themselves.
Lol I know damn well Harmonizers came through with them votes though ?? ???? .. ? was goin onnn
— ?DinahJane (@dinahjane97) May 24, 2017
Weeeeellllllllllllll we all know who REALLY won that right?! My bby girl is the queen for LYF @NormaniKordei I'll make u a mirror trophy
— Lauren Jauregui (@LaurenJauregui) May 24, 2017
— Chelsea Briggs (@Chelsea_Briggs) May 24, 2017
— kennedy? (@5_wishes) May 24, 2017
Although we certainly agree that the “Work From Home” songstress should have been one of the final two standing, it was a very close race to the finish line. Jennings topped the leaderboard during night one of the finale with two perfect scores. The heartthrob not only choreographed his own freestyle, but throughout the course of the season, spent an additional 100 hours in rehearsals among his fellow contestants, logging over 362 total.
The former Oakland Raiders and New York Giants running back previously insisted he has “always been close to everything, but never have won the big prize.”
“I would have never dreamed I would be a star on @DancingABC much less win the Mirror Ball!” he gushed on Instagram, sharing a photo of him and Slater celebrating their victory. “@TheEmmaSlater I am SO your biggest fan! Proud to witness you win and to be your partner in it all!!!”
This was Slater’s very first win out of seven seasons as a DWTS pro, only previously finishing as high as fourth place. She also spent three consecutive seasons as a troupe dancer.
Shortly before the results were announced, the three finalists competed in a fusion round, where they prepared a routine that fused two types of dance – one ballroom, and one Latin style. The judges were responsible for scoring their performances, which factor in with Monday night’s numbers and votes from viewers.
Ross and partner Lindsay Arnold took the ballroom floor with their energetic foxtrot and salsa to “Living” by Bakermat and Alex Clare. The pair received a 36 out of 40.
Kordei and Chemerovskiy impressed with an Argentine Tango and foxtrot fusion to Shawn Mendes’ “There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back,” scoring an expected 40 out of 40.
Last but not least, Jennings and Slater’s cha-cha and tango to “I Don’t Like It, I Love It” earned the first-place finishers a 39 out of 40. Leave it to Len to destroy what should have been 10s across the board.
Co-host Erin Andrew also revealed during the show that Jennings is slated to join the Dancing with the Stars: Hot Summer Nights Tour, which kicks off next month in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
“I am super excited to be heading on tour with Dancing with the Stars Live. While the NFL is my #1 priority, I can think of no better way to stay in shape, combined with my intensive football training, until that team calls,” the 32-year-old shared in a statement following Tuesday’s announcement.
He will hit the road with his pal Slater, in addition to runner-up pro Arnold, Sharna Burgess, Artem Chigvintsev, Sasha Farber, Keo Motsepe, Gleb Savchenko and troupe members Britt Stewart, Alan Bersten and Hayley Erbert.
Congratulations to Rashad and Emma, as well as all the contestants for a fun-filled season!
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