Sugar Ray Leonard
"I can't believe I'm doing this, but I'm gonna throw down the glove right now," he declared dramatically. "Will you thumb-wrestle me?"
Leonard tried to get inside his head by reminding Colbert that he was a "real fighter," but it didn't work. "I had eight brothers," Colbert returned.
And then it was on. A brutal match, with both fighters trying to psych each other out, several false starts, but in the end there could be only one victor.
"I would prefer to get hit in the head by Tommy Hearns every day," said Leonard. "The paso doble was pretty tough." What held him back from punching Tonioli, said Leonard, was that his fists are lethal weapons.
Ripa also asked if Leonard had to register his hands as lethal weapons. He said no, then she added, "Because that is so sexy, so just tell me yes." Leonard quickly changed his answer to yes.
The couple had scored 21 points on Monday's performance show and earned high praise from taskmaster judge Len Goodman, who said he was "thoroughly entertained" by the duo's Viennese Waltz.
Producers kept everyone guessing by having host Tom Bergeron announce that top-scoring duo Chelsea Kane and Mark Ballas were in jeopardy and could be sent home. In the end, however, it was the revered fighter who went down for the count.
Leonard and Trebunskaya spoke to TV Squad on the post-show press line immediately after the live results show.
"An Olympic gold medalist, boxing champion over and over and over again," Kimmel said detailing some of Leonard's achievements. So, of 'DWTS': "Who cares, really? Right?"
"I care," Leonard responded. "I wanted to win."
The couple with the next-lowest score was Sugar Ray Leonard and Anna Trebunskaya, at 21 points. In other words, it was going to take the power of the people to save the former 'Girl Next Door.'
But so far this season, we haven't seen the popular vote make a difference in the final results. Was the writing on the wall for Kendra? Would Kirstie Alley's fans come through for her, despite her shoe fumble on the dance floor and her third-from-worst 22 points?
His pro partner, Lacey Schwimmer, who went all the way to the finals last season, now finds herself as the first dancer to exit the show. On the plus side, the dancer/singer got to meet Britney Spears last night since she was a guest on 'Jimmy Kimmel Live.' (Ejected stars and dancers are invited to appear on the late-night talk show the night that they're voted off the program.)
Before the couple headed to Hollywood to appear on Kimmel's show, they chatted with TV Squad on the post-show press line to talk about their 'DWTS' experience and plans for the future -- specifically, would Catherwood be the new 'Bachelor' on ABC?
It certainly wasn't going to be easy for them, but we've seen crazier things on this show. Wendy Williams has a very loyal following from her television show, while "Psycho Mike" has his loyal listeners.
It wouldn't take too much to elevate them above some of the other lower-scoring contestants like Sugar Ray Leonard, Petra Nemcova, Kendra Wilkinson and even Chelsea Kane. This is where the blend of public and judge's votes can make things interesting.
"I have the lowest fan base and lowest score," Catherwood told TV Squad on the post-show press line last night. "If anything keeps us on the show beyond this week we'll have to do things differently. It can't be just, 'Oh, I'll try harder.' We'll have to go back to the drawing board and break it down."
If Catherwood manages to avoid being sent home during tonight's elimination show he'll have Schwimmer to thank. She brings her own fan following, not just from 'DWTS,' but also from 'So You Think You Can Dance' on which she appeared from 2007–08.
The star of 'The Karate Kid' and his pro partner, Karina Smirnoff, performed a Foxtrot that judge Len Goodman called the best one of the night.
Macchio's an actor; did that play a role in how successfully he embraced his part on the dance floor?
"Yes. Dancing is like acting only you use your body," said Smirnoff. "It allows him tap into the character so much better."
"[Acting] is less painful," joked Macchio. "Less painful."
Several celebrities seemed to suffering from a case of nerves. Kendra Wilkinson, in particular, said she was battling stage fright. "I swear, if I make eye contact with one person in the audience, I will just freeze and just stop," she said.
"The first two days I was really frustrated and I was really discouraged because the things didn't happen. You know, I was thinking about moving this way, but my body did not operate the same time. But now, it's getting better and better," said Leonard, who's partnered with Anna Trebunskaya.
Forget about having to master the Argentine Tango and the Paso Doble. 'Dancing With the Stars' contestants have to also learn how to handle the media since doing press is a big part of the show.
The season 12 contestants (minus model Petra Nemcova, who wasn't at the cast announcement) got their feet wet immediately after they were announced during Monday night's 'The Bachelor' by doing a round of start-up interviews with members of the media. TV Squad was on the scene to quiz the stars with a variety of questions.
The rumors we reported earlier came true: 'Cheers' star Kirstie Alley and former Hugh Hefner girlfriend Kendra Wilkinson were both on the official roster. And while Tea Party candidate Christine O'Donnell didn't end up joining 'DWTS' (and neither did Joy Behar, despite our wish list), pro wrestler Chris Jericho and talk show host Wendy Williams will be among the celebrities shaking their hips.
Two of the bigger names on the cast are actors who broke out in the '80s -- Kirstie Alley and Ralph Macchio. Can the 'Cheers' star and the 'Karate Kid' have a shot at following in the foosteps of Jennifer Grey, who starred in the classic 'Dirty Dancing'?
When I think about the Olympics I don't think about the grandeur of the competitions, the feeling of global community, the individual stories of the athletes, or the mesmerizing synchronized swimming routines. The one thing that comes to mind when I think about the Olympics: anonymity. Out of the thousands of athletes that compete in these games many fade into the daily routine of their countries once the Closing Ceremony is completed.
Yet, there are a handful, particularly the up-and-coming stars of each Olympic games, that remain in the spotlight well after the torch has been extinguished. Some continue into the professional sports realm, others become "experts" in their field, and some jump into another profession altogether. Then there are those who enjoy the television spotlight so much that they remain in the medium in one capacity or another.
Sometimes it's as themselves on other television properties. Other times they dabble into the acting field with mixed results. Here are seven Olympic athletes who continued their careers on television in one form or another.
You probably thought that The Contender had disappeared from the television galaxy after its one and only season on NBC, didn't you? Well, you'd be utterly wrong. The fact of the matter is that the boxing reality show has been a quiet success on ESPN. So much so, that it has been renewed for a third season.
To refresh your memory The Contender, which is hosted by boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard, features 16 fighters that compete for the Contender championship and the share of a seven-figure purse. The season two finale of the show drew 2.3 million viewers and was ESPN's top-rated boxing telecast in nine years.
In the third season, which will premiere on September 4th at 10 pm, look for a new weight class, new trainers, and a bigger purse. In addition, viewers will be able to see unedited versions of each week's episode-ending bout on ESPN2.
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