Dancing with the Stars Season 18 – PRO WATCH!!

It’s that time of year once again, boys and girls – time for Pro Watch. :-)  It will be very interesting to see what happens this year, after they let go of the band. That was a huge cost savings to them. The question is: are they looking to save even more money (say goodbye to Derek and possibly Cheryl) or have they saved so much that they can afford the popular, long term pros that have kept people coming back to this show season after season? I personally think that they will do what they can to hold on to Derek – he’s an Emmy winner and that’s very helpful to the show’s cache. I think they will also do their best to hold on to Cheryl, Karina and Mark. I’m GUESSING that Val and Tristan are still locked into contracts that are beneficial to ABC so they aren’t in question as long as they find a partner for them.  As always, I could be wrong. :-)

First up – you may have missed it as I only tweeted it and inferred it on PureDerekHough, but Derek told the audience on the cruise ship he was that he was back for Season 18. He then amended that statement later saying that they were negotiating his contract.  So, I’m putting him down as a strong “possible”.  If Derek is out and, say, Henry is in then you’ll know that they didn’t give him what he wanted. Interestingly, this confirms (for me) what I’ve been thinking/guessing from how Derek talks – that he goes season to season and is not under a long term contract. The way he words everything, that he’s usually the first pro to know whether he’s dancing or not….it all sounds like someone who’s holding his own reins a good bit. Take, for example, that story from his season with Kellie, where the producers gave him a deadline to “decide” if he was dancing or not.  He’s also WAY more loyal to this show than they likely deserve. :::shrug::: Ah well. It’s a positive character trait most of the time. :-) Anyway, I suspect that this is also true for Cheryl, Mark and Karina. They’ve been around long enough and surely have representation good enough to get deals like Derek.

Next….the word of caution I hand out EVERY season: everyone who works on this web site is on twitter, we see what the pros tweet. I personally suck at facebook, so if it’s posted there I may miss it (Thanks, Karina). That said…give us a few minutes (20 or so) to post something before you come running to “scoop” us.  It’s terribly annoying when people do that. Believe it or not, it actually takes a few minutes to update this site. :-) If you find something out and it’s been half an hour and we haven’t posted it?? Scoop away. :-)  The larger word of caution is this: a pro saying they are “looking forward to” season 18 is NOT confirmation they have a celeb partner.  We need more than that. You’ll know it when you see it. :-)  What Cheryl said today on Ellen?? “It will be my 17th season on DWTS.”  While I’m almost certain she will be on, I’m going to put her is a similar position as Derek. They all say stuff like that….doesn’t mean they have a partner for sure. Might be the best we get though.

The starting positions below are based on the individual pro’s status last season. This doesn’t mean that we will see Sasha back as a pro, for example – as the shortest male his status will be VERY celeb dependent. And yes, I know that if a Pro hasn’t been on a for a few seasons they are free to do other things – this does not, IMO, mean they will never be a pro again. Only that they are not OBLIGATED to do what the DWTS producers tell them to do. Which is more than fair.

ETA: Latest updates are courtesy of Kristyn Burtt. Maks and Henry fans may get their wish, but this makes me think Derek might be out. Of course, knowing Maks and his publicist, this is an attention stunt (again).

ETA2: DWTSGossip says Maks, Val, Tony, Mark, Tristan, Henry, Cheryl, Karina, Lindsey, Peta, Emma, and Sharna. This conflicts with both Kristyn (who says Witney has been promoted) and the Maks fan who says no Maks as Pro, but Derek in. I’m going to watch Survivor. :-)

ETA3: So in a bit of deja vu from this time last year, suddenly DWTSGossip reports that Derek is back in…which means that somebody else is out.  No idea who.  My best guess? If our intel from the Maks fan is correct, Maks was heading to Cleveland to have his back injury looked at – maybe he couldn’t get medical clearance to dance.  If not Maks – did Henry maybe get the boot…again? Guess this will be an ongoing investigation as this latest deluge of pro news keeps pouring in…

ETA4: …aaaand the hits just keep on comin’, as Kristyn immediately reports that Tristan is now OUT.  I’d love to know what happened – did someone’s partner back out at the last minute? Did Tristan opt to take a season off to spend with his new wife? Dammit…I’m gonna miss our Wee Irishman.  And I need food…bad.  Please, rumors – give me a 15 minute break so I can go eat a sammich. :-P

ETA5: A bit of a no-brainer, but Tyne favorited Kristyn’s tweet about her not being back this season – so it’s probably safe to say she’s out for the season, both as a pro and as a trouper. 

ETA6: Artem Chigvintsev of SCD has been added to the troupe….and last-minute additioon….Sasha Farber!!!Thanks to Kristyn for the heads up! You rock!

Male Pros

Derek – OUT BACK IN?
Val – In
Tony - IN
Mark - IN
Henry – IN (see Kristyn Burtt)
Maks – Maybe in ( Kristyn Burtt) NOTE: Conflicting report from a Maks fan says “Not True” – possible judge spot. And now DWTSGossip weighs in with Maks as Pro

Female Pros

Cheryl - IN
Sharna – IN
Peta - IN
Karina - IN
Emma –  IN
Witney – IN (Kristyn Burtt)

Out For the Season

Tyne Steckline
Gleb Savchenko
Tristan MacManus

The Troupe
Lindsay Arnold – IN (per Kristyn)
Sasha Farber – IN
Artem Chigvintsev (from SCD)
Jenna Johnson (from SYTYCD)

Super Troupers, Past
Oksana Dmytrenko –
Kiki Nyemchek –
Nicole Volynets –
Ted Volynets –
Dasha Chesnokova –
Julian Tocker – OUT

*Gleb is working as a choreographer on SYTYCD in Australia. The show just started this week and I assume that it goes for 10 weeks or so, at least. Unless he’s doing only one show for SYTYCD, that would put him out as either pro or troupe on DWTS. Vogue is contacting him to find out. ETA: Gleb’s twitter response to Val seems to imply strongly that he is, indeed, out.

**According to one of our Pure Readers (not sure she wants to be identified), Val told a small group of people in Tulsa that he got the call and that they start rehearsals in a couple weeks.  Giving it a tentative note since I can’t verify it.    ETA: Val gave me enough via Twitter. Incidentally, he blocked me. Odd, since I’ve never tweeted him EVER, nor do I spend any time on twitter discussing him. :-) I never even followed him.  I’m thinking that means he reads this page. ;-) I wish Mark would block me. I wonder what I have to do…I suppose I could block HIM. :-) Would that keep him from butting into my conversations??  :-D

***Tony says it’s packing time with a wink. Normally that wouldn’t be enough, but this is Tony we’re talking about. He’s about as subtle as a sledge hammer. :-D Of course, Lizzie said she was heading to LA, as did Maks. It’s all very interesting. :::yawn::: :-)

****Bill tweeted the following to Emma yesterday, which she retweeted.  Could mean nothing, could be a subtle “Pssst…I’m gonna need your votes cause I’m a pro again, guys!”Kind of love that Bill’s still showing love to the Rioters :-)

billtweet

Sasha