Wednesday, August 17 2022

Iman Shumpert is once again a champion.

The former NBA player who won a championship in 2016 with the Cleveland Cavaliers came out on top in the 30th season of ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.” He is the first NBA player to ever win on the show.

Competing with dancer Daniella Karagach, Shumpert was impressive all season, but reached another level in the finale, when the pair posted two perfect 40 scores in two dances, a cha-cha-cha-foxtrot fusion and a freestyle dance.

Here they are:

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The pair had received only one 40 all season going into Monday, but it certainly drew notice, especially among Shumpert’s former teammates:

Shumpert and Karagach needed perfection for the finale, as fellow finalists JoJo Siwa and Jenna Johnson, the leading point-getters of the season, also posted doubled 40s.

Athletes continue to perform well on ‘Dancing with the Stars’

Depending on your definition of the word “athlete,” you could say it was a sports-heavy field this season. In addition to Shumpert, Olympic gold medal-winning gymnast Suni Lee was among the first contestants announced. There was also a number of sports-adjacent stars, like former “The Bachelor” star (and Wake Forest football player) Matt James and WWE wrestler Mike “The Miz” Mizanin.

“Dancing with Stars” has always been an athlete-friendly show, for obvious reasons. While Shumpert is the first NBA player to win, 11 other top athletes have taken home the prize:

  • Emmitt Smith (football), season 3

  • Apolo Anton Ohno (speed skating), season 4

  • Helio Castroneves (driving), season 5

  • Kristi Yamaguchi (figure skating), season 6

  • Shawn Johnson (gymnastics), season 8

  • Hines Ward (football), season 12

  • Donald Driver (football), season 14

  • Meryl Davis (ice dancing), season 18

  • Laurie Hernandez (gymnastics), season 23

  • Rashad Jennings (football), season 24

  • Adam Rippon (figure skating), season 26*

* athletes-only season

Shumpert played a total of 12 seasons in the NBA, seeing time with the New York Knicks, Cleveland Cavaliers, Sacramento Kings, Houston Rockets and Brooklyn Nets. He averaged 7.2 points and 3.3 rebounds per game, with a well-earned reputation as a defensive stopper.

Source: Yahoo Sports

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