Former Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis made his “Dancing with the Stars” debut Monday night and the two-time Super Bowl champion stuck to a few moves he’s familiar with.
Lewis, wearing a Ravens-themed purple suit, incorporated his famous “Squirrel Dance” into his salsa routine with partner Cheryl Burke on the first episode of DWTS.
His entrance to the stage mirrored the many pregame introductions he experienced at M&T Bank Stadium, as he played to the audience, tossing a miniature disco ball into the crowd before breaking out his pregame ritual.
Burke soon joined Lewis on stage and they broke into their routine, with Nelly’s “Hot in Herre” playing in the background.
Lewis showed the enthusiasm Ravens fans grew to love over his 17-year career and appeared to make it through the routine without any noticeable mistakes.
The show’s panel of three judges awarded Lewis a score of 15 out of 30 but were quick to point out missteps in the performance.
Bruno Tonioli said Lewis showcased a “charismatic performance" and Carrie Ann Inaba said the Hall-of-Famer “brought his A-game.” Despite the mistakes, Len Goodman — typically the show’s toughest judge — said Lewis flashed potential in his debut.
Scores from Monday’s episode will be combined with next week’s scores, and the first group will be eliminated.
My score: 6/10
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Feedback: The energy was present throughout the routine but, as I’m sure Lewis has heard from defensive coaches in his career, he needs to move his hips better and be more fluid.
Spicer narrowly avoids lowest score of night
Former White House press secretary Sean Spicer also performed a salsa routine in his “Dancing with the Stars” debut but it didn’t draw as positive of a review as Lewis.
Spicer attempted to show emotion in the opening, giving a resounding performance on bongos before his routine with Lindsay Arnold, but he produced an uneven showing, which the judges were quick to point out.
Tonioli said at times Spicer looked as if he had “cement in his hips” but his performance was “strangely entertaining." Inaba said Spicer was “off-beat most of the dance” but Goodman applauded Spicer’s energy.