After receiving a standing ovation from the audience for their jive last week, Dancing with the Stars’ Karina Smirnoff and Jacoby Jones officially hit their stride. In this week’s blog, Karina comments on the tough competition — and clears the air about those relationship rumors… or does she?
SheKnows: I thought y’all totally held your own on stage with Maks and Anna during the jive — and so did the audience obviously, who gave you a standing ovation. Do you think the judges’ score of 26 was fair?
Karina Smirnoff: They gave us two nines and an eight, so it was better than the week before — and based on the history of the show, sometimes it’s the couple who shows progression week to week that gets to go all the way instead of the couple who gets the 10s in the midseason. We do know we have things to take care of — Jacoby’s still pigeon-toed. I am hoping that by the end of the season they’ll just go straight as much as they can, but I don’t think it’s physically possible to turn them out completely. That’s the way his body’s built, you know?
So we can’t be mad… 26 is a great score. Carrie Ann said Jacoby killed it, Bruno was super happy — the only person who wasn’t happy was Len because of Jacoby’s toes, but Lord knows we work on them every day! If the show was a couple of years long, I probably could promise to turn them out completely, but because it’s only 10 weeks long, we’ll do as much as we can!
SK: That ol’ Len — such a rascal! In the beginning of the competition, the judges critiqued Jacoby’s posture. Now they’re drilling him about his footwork. Do you think they expect more from Jacoby because he’s an athlete?
KS: I mean, sure, it could work like that. But this season we have a few celebrities who are very, very good — they have some previous training, so the posture, the footwork, the leg action is there. If he is being compared to some of those celebrities, then I can see how Len is forcing him to step up. He knows what Jacoby is capable of! To me, Jacoby’s talent just has no limits. And it is tough love from Len, but we’ll take it… we like it. It’s pushing us.
SK: We liked Jacoby’s response to Len…
KS: I know! When he leaned into the microphone, in my head I go, “Uh oh, he’s going to say something!” So then he says, “With these feet, I went 108 yards in 11 seconds!” Then he walked away to get his jacket and I was standing there going, “OK, awkward!”
SK: How did rehearsals go this week?
KS: Great! Definitely stamina build-up is going great, because we have the quick-step this week — and the quickstep is the fastest of the ballroom dances and it’s all in the frame. I think Jacoby’s nailing the dance, but he also has a knee injury. Of course, the injury was not dance-related, which is the funny part about it — he opened the door walking out of the restroom and jammed his pinky toe on it. He’s like, “Ow, I can’t wear shoes, they’re killing me!” So he said he was going to dance without shoes and I said, “OK, let’s do that then.”
So he danced one rehearsal without shoes — and when you’re not used to dancing without shoes, you can bruise the bottom of your foot really bad because your foot is not ready for that — and he bruised the bottom of his foot. So like the whole week, we had to be careful of his feet. But he did great in camera block yesterday, so I’m excited. I’m excited for the dance and I’m excited for the story. I think our story is super-cute in the dance — we did the story of online dating. We go through all these profiles and then he chooses me and I choose him.
SK: Funny you should say that, because you and Jacoby seem tighter than ever. You told ET a few weeks ago that you’re just friends, but is there any chance the killer chemistry you two have may blossom into something more?
KS: You know, I never say never! I mean, I love the guy… the guy is awesome. He is funny, he’s sweet and he’s kind — he doesn’t ever go out of his way to be mean. And if it happens that we do get into a confrontation, the way he makes up is so sweet. He’s so fast, he doesn’t dwell on “Oh, he said this, she said this.” Right when it comes up, he goes, “You know I love you, mama!” And I’m like, “I love you too, but I don’t like you right now!” (laughs)
SK: You two are so cute together… so here’s hoping, ha ha! You mentioned earlier that you have another fast dance tonight. How do you and Jacoby fight off fatigue at this point?
KS: Well, we do a lot of sections. We don’t do the whole thing from beginning to end — we always work in sections. And there’s always a reward at the end! Whether it’s if we work really, really hard right now we can probably leave a half hour earlier, or if we work hard we can go get Chic-fil-A, you know? It might seem like something silly or stupid, but it works for us!
And, not to mention, you have to take care of the body. We get massages once a week. Jacoby likes to get his on Sunday; I like to get mine on Friday or Saturday to let my body get back to normal before Monday. And just trying to go to bed at a decent hour and wake up on time — which didn’t happen today! (laughs)
SK: Do you think you have a chance of pulling all nines or maybe even 10s this week?
KS: You know, we definitely worked hard enough to go for it and we’re going to keep our fingers crossed. Even if it’s only one 10! You know when you watch a great movie? The kind that when you watch it, you are in the best mood ever… you get optimistic and you get hopeful, like that feeling of, “I can’t wait for tomorrow!” This is what this dance does to both of us! And I hope it gives people that feeling, because I love dancing — it makes me happy. Even if it’s really intense and you hyperventilate at the end, you’re hyperventilating while you’re happy. (laughs) So I hope we get 10s, but if we get three nines, it will still be higher than last week and we’re happy with that — as long as we’re moving in the right direction!