Randy Couture & Karina Smirnoff should make an interesting team for season 19 of “Dancing with the Stars. The 51-year-old Couture is a retired mixed martial artist who was the UFC Heavyweight Champion three times, and the UFC Light Heavyweight Champion twice.
As a senior at Lynnwood High School, he won the state championship in wrestling. He was in the U.S. Army from 1982-1988. He was the Olympic team alternate three times–in 1988, 1992 and 1996. He worked for a while as a wrestling coach at Oregon State University.
Couture has played Toll Road in “The Expendables” movie series.
Karina Smirnoff was a five-time U.S. National Champion. She is also the first woman to make the British Professional Final with three different partners. She has been with “Dancing with the Stars” since season 3 when she was partnered with Mario Lopez for a second place finish.
Smirnoff finished fourth with Ralph Macchio during season 12, third with Jacoby Jones during season 16, second with Corbin Bleu during season 17 and first with J.R. Martinez during season 13.
Season 19 begins with a two-hour two-day season premiere tonight, Monday, Sept. 15 (8 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET) . Tuesday, “Dancing with the Stars: The Results” will reveal which couple will be eliminated and include a performance by Smokey Robinson.
Robinson will perform a duet of “My Girl” with Aloe Blacc from his album “Smokey and Friends.” A special dance number will be performed by the new pros: Allison Holker, Keo Motsepe and Artem Chigvintsev.
ABC.com will be offering five live streams from key positions at the show venue, allowing fans to choose views of the Red Room, judges, sky box, a wide angle of the dance floor and a hosted feed that will highlight relevant social media conversations. Throughout the season, fans will also have opportunities to participate in the outcome of the show, using social media to weigh in on everything from songs, dance styles, and even partners.
Two-time Mirrorball champion and actress Julianne Hough returns to DWTS as a judge, alongside head judge Len Goodman, the every emotive Bruno Tonioli and the lift-monitor Carrie Ann Inaba at the judges’ desk. Hosted by Emmy® Award-winning host Tom Bergeron (“America’s Funniest Home Videos”) and Erin Andrews (sports host & “Dancing with the Stars” Season 10 finalist).
For the first two weeks viewers may cast their votes for their favorite couples via phone on Monday nights during and up to 60 minutes after the end of the “Dancing with the Stars” broadcast in each time zone. Online voting at http://www.ABC.com and on Facebook at https://apps.facebook.com/votedwts/ is open for 15 hours, beginning from the start of the episode on the East Coast at 8:00 p.m., ET/5:00 p.m., PT and closing at 11:00 a.m., ET/8:00 a.m., PT the next day.
Jonathan Bennett & Allison Holker
Tommy Chong & Peta Murgatroyd
Randy Couture & Karina Smirnoff
Betsey Johnson & Tony Dovolani
Lolo Jones & Keo Motsepe
Bethany Mota & Derek Hough
Janel Parrish & Valentin Chmerkovskiy
Alfonso Ribeiro & Witney Carson
Sadie Robertson & Mark Ballas
Antonio Sabato JR. & Cheryl Burke
Tavis Smiley & Sharna Burgess
Lea Thompson & Artem Chigvintsev
Michael Waltrip & Emma Slater
From week three until the finale, viewers may cast their votes for their favorite couples via phone on Monday nights during and up to 60 minutes after the end of the “Dancing with the Stars” broadcast in each time zone. Online voting at http://www.ABC.com and on Facebook at https://apps.facebook.com/votedwts/ is open for 24 hours, beginning from the start of each episode on the East Coast at 8:00 p.m., ET/5:00 p.m., PT and closing at 8:00 p.m., ET/5:00 p.m., PT on Tuesday evenings.