Dancing With the Stars

Tennis star Martina Navratilova is the first one eliminated on 'Dancing With the Stars'

March 27, 2012 at 10:52 PM ET

Adam Taylor / ABC
The judges couldn't find much to praise about Martina's jive on Monday.

“Sorry, buddy.”

Those were “Dancing With the Stars” host Tom Bergeron’s words to pro Tony Dovolani as the hoofer and his celeb partner, tennis legend Martina Navratilova, became the first pair eliminated from season 14 of the ballroom bash.

Sorry indeed. For once again, the likable pro was paired with a star who couldn’t take him farther in the competition. (But hey, at least Martina was very pleasant, unlike past partners who left the pro angry and frustrated.)

For her premiere dance, Martina delivered a flawed, 20-point foxtrot head judge Len Goodman called “too careful.” Her week two performance, the jive, lacked attack and wasn’t much better. In fact, the judges gave her a paltry score of 17. Judge Bruno Tonioli even told her, “I think that serve went into the net. You couldn’t keep up with the dance.” And Carrie Ann Inaba couldn’t find much to praise about it. “That was sad,” the judge said before adding, “I loved your attitude!” Ouch.

And the tennis great knew she had screwed up. “I blew it like I haven’t blown it!” she said after her performance. “I can’t believe I did that.”

Not surprisingly, her subpar performances landed her at the bottom of the leaderboard both weeks, with a total score of 37 out of 60.

Though her dance moves lacked the grace and precision that she delivered on the tennis courts, Martina had poise to spare and didn’t play the blame game when she said her goodbyes. “It was an amazing experience,” she said of her short stint on “Dancing.” “I just wish it had lasted longer. I gave it everything I had, but I blew it yesterday.”

See the celebrities that have joined the ballroom bash for its 14th season and find out which pro partners are in charge of teaching the stars all of their best moves.

On the subject of “blowing it,” fans of the show might also note that the judges screwed up the first two weeks of this season by appearing to grade certain pairs by different standards. (Just check out the comments on our Facebook page!) Yes, we’re talking about Melissa Gilbert and pro partner Maks Chmerkovskiy, who were criticized for their ambitious and not-all-that-bad dances, while others who made more obvious goofs (including missed steps) scored higher and received encouragement from the panel.

But it was the actress and the ballroom bad boy who were triumphant for this first elimination round. The two were the first pair Tom announced as safe for the week. With that revelation, Maks broke into a huge grin and excitedly pumped his fist into the air. It was perhaps the happiest we’ve seen the pro since the judges started nitpicking his partner in week one.

He wasn’t the only one to be uber excited to advance to the third week. When “View” co-host Sherri Shepherd learned her fate, she busted out with a wild celebratory dance that left the others in awe of her energy.

And speaking of energy, expect the ballroom to sizzle next week! Cuban actor William Levy, who earned many new fans when he debuted on “Dancing” with one of the sexiest performances ever seen on the show, revealed he’ll be dancing the salsa for personal stories week. Muy caliente!

Are you surprised that Gavin DeGraw and Roshon Fegan joined Martina under the spotlights of shame? Whose dance are you most excited to see next week? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page! Also, don't forget to join me next Monday at 8 p.m. ET for a live chat with fellow fans during the performances!

 

 

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