Hoff down. Both of these guys are “stars.” One of them is no longer dancing with them. After just one episode of the show, David Hasselhoff was eliminated from Dancing with the Stars following a stiff, if not creepy performance. If he was Looking for Freedom, he found it pretty quickly. Maybe, if we are lucky, this country is ready to move on from “The Hoff.”
Former Super Bowl winning and now retired quarterback Kurt Warner on the other hand, can stick around at least another week and try continue a decent run of current and former NFL players that has included winner Emmitt Smith as well as Jerry Rice, Jason Taylor, Chad Ochocinco and Lawrence Taylor (though he was awful). Warner’s waltz to Bon Jovi earned him 19 points from the judges – four better than Hasselhoff, Margaret Cho and Michael Bolton (I celebrate his entire collection), but clearly behind favorites/professional dancers Jennifer Grey and Brandy.
Kurt Warner joined Bickley and MJ on KTAR in Phoenix to talk about the bravery (or stupidity) it takes to appear on Dancing with the Stars, his performance in the first week of the show, the difference between getting nervous for football as compared to dancing, cheering for his competitors, choosing his music and his film session.
On being brave and appearing on Dancing with the Stars:
“Brave or stupid. I’m not sure. It’s a fine line. It’s a fine line fellas… I’m having fun. I’m having fun with life. I’m enjoying these opportunities. I’m not afraid of embarrassing myself and laugh a little bit.”
On how he feels he did in the first round:
“I thought it went really well too. You have the contest first of all because you have different dances. You have one that’s a little stiff. Then you have people out there doing the Cha Cha throwing around and having a good time. So you got that going against you. But, like you said, you are 6’2″, 210 pounds, a little muscle bound like all of us athletes are, so we all are a little stiffer, especially early in the process. It is what it is. You can’t go out there after practicing something new for two and a half weeks and expect to be great at it. I think the thing is, when you are a big guy, it’s tough because everyone is a little bit smaller, a little bit smoother and they don’t have the big hands and the big body that people notice more. There’s things that go against you. It is what it is. We are all out there trying. I thought everyone did great. Everyone worked hard and gave it their best. It’s funny that people expect you to be great after two weeks of doing something for the first time. Criticism is what it is. You are going to hear it. I had it playing football for 30 years. To think that I wasn’t going to get it after dancing for two weeks is a little bit crazy, but I had a great time with it.”
On how if he was more nervous for the show or for a football game:
“I’ve been nervous a number of times. Your first start. Playing in the Super Bowl. Your first Super Bowl. Very nerve-racking. The one thing that you can always fall back on is that you know what you are doing. You know how to play the game. You are nervous you are not going to play well or that you are not going to have a great game. You know you are good and you are prepared for what you to do. That’s what was different last night is that you just don’t know what you are doing. Trying moving with the steps and the technique and remembering that in front of 20 million people, you’ll definitely be nervous. It’s funny, last night, I was nervous, but I was not as nervous like when we first got on the stage for the first dress rehearsal and it kind of hits you like, ‘Oh my gosh. You actually got to do this. There’s no getting out of it at this time.'”
On how much he pays attention to dances and scores for others:
“You don’t pay that much attention. Really right now, you kind of cheer for everybody because you are all in the same boat. You want to see everybody do well. You are excited for everybody when they get through their routines. You’re happy they didn’t forget anything. It’s a crapshoot with what you are going to get. It’s a TV show. You understand the judges. They kind of play off each other where one of them is going to be mean and the other is going to be nice. They’re going to give you scores that maybe you don’t deserve either way sometimes because it’s entertainment.”
On how they go about choosing songs and dances:
“They actually give you a chance to pick out songs that you like early in the process, but they really pick the songs for you. I couldn’t go through my IPod and say, ‘Here’s a waltz for you. Here’s a samba. Here’s a cha cha. I leave it up to my partner and the show.”
And on his film session these days:
“It was a little different now. I always watch the film after a game just to kind of see, look at your performance. Sometimes you beat yourself up so you want to look at it and say, ‘Was it as bad as I thought it was?’ It’s never as good as you think it is either. I wasn’t really going to watch my dance because it is what it is and there’s not much that I can do about it now. But my wife pulled it up online and I said, ‘What the heck, we’ll watch it.’ And actually, I was pleasantly surprised. One of the things when I watch it, I just see this big oaf as a dancer. And I think, ‘How can that ever look good?’ I see the little people and the way they move. I see these big arms and hands and I think, ‘There can never look graceful.’ I watched it and it wasn’t too bad. I didn’t turn out great, but it wasn’t bad. I was pleasantly surprised. I was expecting it to be a lot worse than it was. I was pretty happy with the effort.”