‘DWTS’ Power Rankings Week 9 – The Semi-Finals

Nastia Liukin and Sasha Farber (Photo: ABC)

Robert Herjavec and Chris Soules fell one week short of the “Dancing with the Stars” season 20 semi-finals, setting the stage for one of the most competitive final four showdowns ever.

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Tonight, the contestants will perform two full routines, one of which will be coached by a “DWTS” judge, who has chosen the song, style and creative elements for their assigned duo. Carrie Ann Inaba will coach Noah Galloway and Sharna Burgess, Len Goodman will coach Nastia Liukin and Derek Hough/Sasha Farber, Julianne Hough will coach Riker Lynch and Allison Holker and Bruno Tonioli will coach Rumer Willis and Val Chmerkovskiy. Based on tonight’s judge’s scores and audience votes, one couple will be sent home during tomorrow night’s results show.

Below are the Week 9 predictions and rankings from XFINITY.com editors Chelsea Badeau and David Onda, who are teaming up with #DWTSAllAccess host and former “Strictly Come Dancing” contestant Gethin Jones for a weekly dissection of the competition.

How Does It Work? Each week before the live performances, Chelsea, David and Gethin will rank the “Dancing with the Stars” couples from best to worst based on how they think the duos will finish in judges’ points and audience votes.  This week, no. 1 will be the safest couple, and no. 4 will be the couple most likely to be eliminated. The ranking of the eliminated couple will determine how many points Chelsea, David and Gethin will earn.

Everyone correctly guessed the eliminated couples last week. Chelsea still leads the rankings with a total of 59 points, David sits in second place with a total of 57 points, and Gethin carries a third-place total of 51 points.

Here are the power rankings for Week 9:

Chelsea’s Score = 59

Any questions for Chelsea? Drop her a line on Twitter: @ladybugchels

David’s Score = 57

Any questions for David? Drop him a line on Twitter: @david_onda

Gethin’s Score = 51

Any questions for Gethin? Drop him a line on Twitter: @gethincjones

1. Rumer Willis & Valentin Chmerkovskiy: Rumer’s back! My girl got a perfect 80 last week with a fiery rumba and an amazing paso doble trio with Val and Artem. She was perfect. As long as she continues to let her inner fierceness shine through, she will fly into the finals without a hitch. I just hope Bruno doesn’t choose a song or dance that’s too out there, since she’s at her best with the more classic dance styles. 1. Rumer Willis & Valentin Chmerkovskiy: Has any duo ever scored back-to-back 80-point weeks? I have no idea, but I think it could very well happen tonight for Rumer and Val. Let’s face it, they are the apples of the judge’s eyes – the pre-season favorites to win it all – and would have to severely botch a dance to fall short of the no. 1 spot tonight. The wild card is, of course, Rumer and Val’s guest coach Bruno Tonioli. We all know Bruno loves a “hot, hot, hot” routine, but that didn’t bode well for the duo when they danced to “Bootylicious.” Will Bruno find the right mix of flash and technique to keep them on top? 1. Rumer Willis & Valentin Chmerkovskiy: After last week’s perfect scores, this has been the easiest week to choose a couple for the top! They were amazing. Just beautiful to watch the rumba and paso – had 10’s written all over it. The way she matched Val and Artem and the choreography – when it all comes together like that, dance fans (including me) experience a real treat! Rumer is known for not resting on her laurels, but Bruno has chosen such a difficult concept for her. “Swan Lake”! I don’t know what’s more frightening, the dance itself or the white tights Val is wearing!!!
2. Nastia Liukin & Sasha Farber: Who will Nastia dance with this week? Derek? Sasha? Both again? No matter who she dances with, I fully expect that she will deliver another A+ performance. She got flustered in practice last week, but delivered on the dance floor. Len Goodman will coach her this week. He is a stickler for tradition and doing things the “right way.” Derek likes things done a certain way, and so does Len. Who will prevail? 2. Nastia Liukin & Sasha Farber: Am I the only one who thinks Nastia is performing better with Sasha Farber? Yeah, she still has some chemistry issues (would it kill her to look Sasha in the eyes?), but I feel like she’s both connected and stood out better with Sasha. And that trio dance? Out of this world. One of the best “DWTS” routines I’ve ever seen. Tonight, Len Goodman is coaching Nastia through a Viennese waltz, and he could be the key to fixing the glitches in her traditional repertoire, particularly her hold and that bendy gymnast’s back. I’m expecting high judges’ marks for Nastia tonight, too. 2. Riker Lynch & Allison Holker: Been in jeopardy more than any other couple, but they just keep fighting back. Ahead of his years in terms of dealing with all the drama on the dance floor, and Allison is like a fireball of energy, constantly pushing him, but also playing to his strengths – you saw his jazz number last week right?! Popped in to see them at rehearsals this week, and after almost two months of competition, this is the last push where the most amount of energy is needed. Riker shovels down spoonfuls of peanut butter in between rehearsals. It will taste all the more sweet next week, as he’s preparing for the grand finale!
3. Riker Lynch & Allison Holker: Last week, Riker showed the audience his vulnerable side in his Viennese waltz. It was a “rewind and watch again” dance for sure. The raw emotion was powerful and intense and the live audience went bananas. His judge coach this week is Julianne, which is a bit of an odd pairing, since they are cousins. Will they work well together or start a family feud? 3. Noah Galloway & Sharna Burgess: It’s no secret that Carrie Ann Inaba is the biggest sap at the judges’ table, and you can bet she’s got something dramatic and heart-wrenching in store for Noah and Sharna. And he’ll need to tug at heartstrings to make it to the finale. My only concern is how Carrie Ann will gel with Sharna, who has choreographing Noah down to an absolute science – she knows just how far she can push him in any direction. Will Carrie Ann disrupt the harmony, or will she add something to the mix that makes Noah as much a technical favorite as he is an emotional favorite? 3. Noah Galloway & Sharna Burgess: The farting machine (just to clarify, that’s Noah I’m talking about!), has raced into the semi-finals with the love of America by his side (to find out what I’m talking about, don’t miss the #DWTSAllAccess show this week). Sharna’s “jungle gym” has said he targeted three weeks on the show. He’s exceeded his expectation, but not that of Sharna, who’s believed in him from the first time he donned those Cuban heels! He’s showcased his incredible determination, and now really does have an eye on that gold glitter ball trophy. Expect tears from his package again this week – how do you tell his remarkable story in just a few minutes?! Well, maybe he’ll just do that through dance. Carrie Ann has chosen a paso to tell his life story. Never have I seen Noah so excited about a performance. Hold on to your seats, get the tissues ready, this is gonna be great!
4. Noah Galloway & Sharna Burgess: The military vet looked surprised to have survived the double elimination, but he worked hard and deserves to be in the semi-finals just as much as the other three contestants. This week, they will be paired with Carrie Ann as their coach. Sharna has done an amazing job with the choreography all season, so it will be interesting to see what dynamic is at play with Carrie Ann choosing their song, dance style and creative. I hope it doesn’t throw them off. 4. Riker Lynch & Allison Holker: Let me make this clear – Riker and Allison are my favorite couple in this competition, and they are on par, at the very least, with Rumer and Val. I want to see them win, but I also want to win these power rankings, and I simply can’t ignore the fact that they’ve been in danger of elimination many weeks thanks to poor audience votes. I think Noah has captured America’s heart, while Riker’s fans aren’t coming to his rescue. Where will the Chris and Robert fans send their votes now that their faves have been booted? I think Noah is more likely to benefit. If anything will save Riker, it will be the combined powers of Julianne and Allison. J-Hough is the perfect match for this duo. 4. Nastia Liukin & Sasha Farber: Lizard Lips (this is the funniest footage of the season, exclusive to #DWTSAllAccess!), has done such a great job working with not one, but two pros this season! Derek’s toe/ankle is still mending, but like a true warrior, he has not let his princess out of his sight for this dramatic and exciting run-in! A quickstep and a Viennese waltz for the gold medalist this week – I mean, that’s such an irrelevant sentence, because she has no limits, sensational in any dance she takes on! Most people would feel the pressure at the semi-final point, but because of her background, she just seems excited! This show is, of course, down to your votes though. I don’t know why, but my gut says that it could be her last dance. I can’t believe I just said that. So hard to choose from one of these four…

Check out Gethin Jones live tonight on #DWTSAllAccess on abc.com starting at 8:00 p.m. ET. Gethin and his co-host will be interviewing the stars, couples and many more guests, as well as providing live commentary throughout the show.


The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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