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DWTS‘ Val Chmerkovskiy defends Tamar Braxton’s controversial return (VIDEO)

With Tamar Braxton’s controversial return to Dancing With the Stars, her partner Val Chmerkovskiy is speaking out about why she deserves to be in the competition.

More: DWTS shocks fans with last-minute return and unexpected elimination

In an interview with E! News, Chmerkovskiy explained, “I don’t really care about things that aren’t important at the moment, and at the moment, for me, the priority was Tamar’s health and the situation. I’m not trying to hear critique on a dance that was done with her half conscious and caused her to be in the emergency room at the moment. For me, that’s not what is important. I’m just happy that she was all right, and she was able to come back and finish out the show. She’s a trooper.”

The pair had to use their rehearsal video footage as their performance for the evening because Braxton was rushed to the emergency room. She has been battling pneumonia and was almost disqualified because of her illness and inability to perform.

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Luckily, Braxton was able to return for her group dance with Nick Carter and Sharna Burgess, which earned them a 27 out of 30.

Still, some felt like Braxton should have been disqualified since she couldn’t perform live like the rest of the couples.

But Chmerkovskiy had nothing but praise for his partner.

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He added to E!, “It’s clear what drives people, right? And for her, what drives her to be on the show isn’t the check, she got that, isn’t anything but her camaraderie with me and the relationship she built with me and to see her reciprocate everything I’ve done for her and gather herself and risk a lot of things, including health, to be here, that speaks volumes to the type of person she is.”

Check out Chmerkovskiy’s full interview with E! News below.

Do you think Tamar Braxton should have been allowed to stay in the competition even though she wasn’t able to perform live?

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Image: ABC/Craig Sjodin

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