The final five celebrity contestants on ABC's "Splash" (Nicole Eggert, Drake Bell, Brandi Chastain, Rory Bushfield, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) dove into Week 6 of the competition on the April 23rd episode of the reality TV show.
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A special twist was added in this week's challenge, as 5 junior champion divers (who are training to become potential Olympic competitors) paired up with the five remaining stars to teach and perform synchronized dives for Tuesday night's "Splash."
Drake Bell & Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's dives proved to be a little "out-of-sync" this week, as the celebrities found themselves in the bottom two and went head-to-head in the dive-off. Bell ultimately prevailed. Here's how the night unfolded:
Brandi Chastain made the first big "splash" of the night, as she took to the 10-meter platform with her "mini mentor." The soccer star's nearly perfect synchronization with her trainer and the way she nailed her impressive dive, made it seem like Brandi has been diving for years. Chastain's skilled performance blew the judges away, as David Boudia gave her the first and only 10 of the night, followed by a 9.5 from Steve Foley. The 9.75 average earned Chastain the top-scoring dive of the night.
Kareem Abdual-Jabbar stepped up to the springboard next with his mentor Michelle (who was at least 50 years younger and nearly 3 feet shorter than the b-ball star). Jabbar's attempt at a back-turned-to-front dive was executed with bent knees and flailing legs, which earned him a 7 and a 7.5 from the judges. They noted that although Kareem had "spaghetti legs," he was still very in sync with his partner.
Rory Bushfield's turn came after Kareem's dive, as the skier approached the 10-m board alongside his precious junior trainer, Jake. While practicing a tricky dive with his partner before the competition, Rory painfully smacked his ear on the water when he awkwardly landed in the pool. Due to the injury, Bushfield decided to switch the dive, last minute, to one that allowed a feet-first landing (in order to avoid inflicting further ear trauma). Jake rose to the occasion, learned the new dive, and helped Rory pull out an 8 from each of the judges. Although the partners were not the most together in the air, the divers' flips off of the high board landed them a ranked spot in-between the two preceding contestants.
Former Nickelodeon star, Drake Bell, was up next on the springboard with his young mentor Luca. Bell was shaken up a bit after belly flopping in the water during warm-ups and gaining a brutal black eye. Nevertheless, Drake & Luca sprung off the side-by-side diving boards, showing amazing form and synchronization in their performance. Despite the impressive "spot on synchronization," as the judges noted, Drake's over-rotated landing as he came out of the one-and-a-half twist dive, earned him two sevens from David & Steve. The determined diver was clearly not happy with his performance and seemed as if he might give himself another black eye after receiving the lowest score of the night.
Nicole Eggert performed the last dive of the night. The former Baywatch beauty and her "tough coach" executed simultaneous reverse dives off of the springboard. Eggert was extremely nervous about landing in the water blindly, but she pulled it off with ease and came down into the water with her legs super straight. David gave her an 8, while Steve compared Nicole to "James Bond" and gave an 8.5. The 8.25 average was the second highest score of the night (behind frontrunner Brandi).
After factoring in the audience's opinions, the two lowest-scoring divers (Bell & Abdul-Jabbar) couldn't escape their fate and had to prepare for the dive-off. Leaving their partners behind this time, Abdul-Jabbar performed a simple, no-frills dive off of the 16-foot platform, while Drake showed off his skills in a handstand dive from the 10-meter board. Bell seemed like a professional as he executed straight legs and pointed toes, and the judge's called it the "dive of [his] life."
Without question from either judge, Kareem was eliminated from the "Splash" competition and Bell took his place in line with the other final 3 competitors.
"Splash" will return in two weeks, as Bell, Eggert, Chastain, & Bushfield continue on their quest to become the best celebrity diver.