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Brooke Burke crowned new "Dancing" champ

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In the end, it was beauty over braun as model/mom Brooke Burke took home the mirrorball trophy on the stunning finale of "Dancing with the Stars." Burke, with her partner Derek Hough, led pretty much the entire season, leaving the competition in her dust nearly every week. Only in the semi-finals did Burke drop to second place behind "sleeper" Lance Bass. But after the final competitive dances of the season Tuesday night, it was NFL star Warren Sapp who stood toe-to-toe with Burke for the coveted prize.

brooke and derek.jpg

Going into the finals Tuesday night, Bass and Sapp were five points behind Burke on the judges' leaderboard, an almost insurmountable spread to overcome. Burke smartly returned to her best dance of the season, a gorgeous Viennese waltz which she again beautifully delivered, and which left judge Carrie Ann Inaba in tears. Sapp and partner Kym Johnson gave their all to a crowd-pleasing hustle, while Bass and his partner Lacey Schwimmer stepped out with a jitterbug (not Bass' best dance of the season). That choice on Bass' part cost him the trophy, or even a second-place finish.

Keys and Miley Cyrus provided the guest entertainment for the 2-hour extravaganza, which proved to be quite enjoyable overall. All the ousted couples from season 7 returned for one last dance in the ballroom. It was nice to see Rocco, Ted, Toni, Jeffrey, and the rest (yes, even Kim and Cloris, who was one of the funniest running joke/storylines of the night!). Misty May-Treanor returned and made it very clear she wants to return to the ballroom to finish the season that never was. Her achilles tendon is healing well, she said, and she seemed more excited about dancing than, yikes, volleyball.

Highlights of the finale included:
Jeffrey Ross' HIGHlarious roast of the "Dancing" crew. Some of his best one-liners:
re: Cloris Leachman's long run on the show: "It was like 'Weekend at Bernie's---The Musical."
re: Lance Bass: "What can you say about Lance Bass that hasn't been said about Clay Aiken?"
re: Warren Sapp: "I thought you were on steroids but then I realized you were just fat."

Hope the show inspired you to get up, get out, and dance!
Here's to season 8, and a new lineup of stars and pros. I'm already contemplating my wish list.

You can win free tickets to "Dancing with the Stars: The Tour" coming to the Allstate Arena on Jan. 9. Here's how:

So you've been a faithful TV devotee of "Dancing with the Stars" for seven seasons. Here's your chance to see some of your favorite dancers up-close and personal via our "Dancing with the Stars: The Tour" ticket giveaway.

Two lucky bloggers to this site will each win one pair of tickets to the Jan. 9, 2009, 7:30 p.m. show at the Allstate Arena, 6920 N. Mannheim, Rosemont.

To enter, simply comment on my blog, in 50 words or less, why you think "Dancing with the Stars" is the best thing since sliced bread, and has
therefore had some profound impact on your life.

Entries will be judged by me on or about December 19, 2008 based on creativity, grammar, clarity, heart, soul and/or humor. You must be 18+over and a legal resident of of IL, WI, IN, or IA to enter/win. I will contact each winner at their subscriber email and must get a response within 24 hours or that winner will be disqualified and an alternate winner will be selected. Only one entry per email address/name & address will be

Tickets will be available for pickup at the Allstate Arena on the evening of the show. Winners must provide their own transportation to and from the
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To purchase tickets to the show, visit ticketmaster

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I think Lance sunk his own ship with that freestyle. C'mon, there are lots of fogeys like me watching, and a hip-hop freestyle isn't going to impress us. That style of dancing looks like people trying to shake off fleas to me. No lifts, no elegance, nothing showy -- he might as well have worn a tee shirt that said "kick me" instead of their names.

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This page contains a single entry by Miriam Di Nunzio published on November 25, 2008 10:02 PM.

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