all-stars

Shawn Johnson: Nobody's safe with tonight's double elimination on 'Dancing With the Stars'

Oct. 9, 2012 at 7:25 AM ET

Adam Taylor / ABC /
Shawn Johnson (with "Dancing" partner Derek Hough) says emotions can run high during rehearsals.

Each week, Olympian and season eight "Dancing With the Stars" champ Shawn Johnson will be sharing her experiences on "All-Stars" with The Clicker! Look for Q&As, exclusive photos and more from the gold medalist throughout the season as she competes to win her second mirror ball trophy, this time alongside pro Derek Hough.

You can follow us on Twitter@TODAY_Clicker to get all the latest updates on Shawn's quest for ballroom glory. Shawn is also on Twitter @ShawnJohnson.

The Clicker: You took a higher plunge off the stairs at the end of your dance than you did in rehearsal.

Shawn: I did. It was the adrenaline. It wasn’t really more dangerous. Where we were originally was pretty high. I just went a little higher.

The Clicker: Is Derek open to your ideas when it comes to pushing the envelope?

Shawn: Yes, definitely. Derek is extremely respectful. He asks for different ideas and opinions. I’ll give them. He loved the different ideas that I brought this week.

The Clicker: When they saved you for the last dance of the night did you think the judges thought it would make for a great show stopper?

Shawn: It kind of is a known thing that they like to save a decent one for last.

The Clicker: “Decent?” You got 26.5, a solid third place. You’re being modest!

Shawn: (Beat) I’m a modest person. When I found out we were going last I became very excited. Even in competition being last is the best place to be in. You end with a bang. The crowd’s really into it. We didn’t care what they judges felt (about our breaking the rules.) We did it for the crowd. People loved it and they were on their feet. That meant the world to us.

The Clicker: Judges Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli were on their feet! But (host) Tom Bergeron joked that Len Goodman would have, too, but he gets tired if he does that.

Shawn: I love Tom. He’s almost been like the "dad" around here. I thought that when I was here the first time. He’s so quick-witted.

The Clicker: You’re going to pick dances for your competitors for next week’s dances. Will you choose ones to challenge them or so they won’t succeed?

Shawn: I don’t know exactly how it’s going to be done. We’re not out to (sabotage). People may look at me and think, "Oh, she’s the cute, bubbly one. So we’ll give her a serious dance because we know that she’ll struggle with that more." But I actually don’t think that’s being cutthroat. It’s just being strategic and a good competitor.

The Clicker: How did you do on, say, your Argentine Tango when you competed the first time?

Shawn: (Smiles) It was my first perfect “30!”

The Clicker: Bristol (Palin) said in her package that she thinks that Mark (Ballas, her pro partner) would prefer to have you or Sabrina Ryan instead of her. Do you have any thoughts on that?

Shawn: People get heated in practice. Emotions run high. Everybody has fights. I think Bristol is voicing an opinion and sticking up for herself. She was the creative director this week and she took over. I was proud of her for that.

The Clicker: You’re in third place. How do you feel about going into tonight’s double elimination?

Shawn: Nobody is safe with the double elimination. I’m going to be nervous. Anyone can go. If I do, then going out on a high note with (Monday’s) performance is the way to go!

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