Former Oak Park and River Forest High School basketball star Iman Shumpert has moves on the court and on the dance floor. With dance partner Daniella Karagach, the NBA star is heading to the finals of ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” this Monday. Shumpert is the first NBA player to become a finalist in the show’s history.
Shumpert was an OPRF standout during his high school basketball career. He has maintained ties to the school since with a summer basketball camp at the school.
For the past nine weeks, he and Karagach have wowed audiences of the reality dance competition with their impressive lifts and creative choreography. Without having any dance experience prior to becoming a contestant, Shumpert has managed to stay in the game over competitors with known histories of being able to cut a rug, including former Spice Girl Melanie “Mel C” Chisholm.
Voters apparently can’t get enough of Shumpert and Karagach’s stage charisma. The dancing duo survived a double elimination this past Monday – a feat that three-time Olympic gymnastics medalist Suni Lee did not accomplish. Lee and her partner Sasha Farber said goodbye to the competition, despite the pair having earned their best scores of the competition that night.
Stiff competition remains, however. Shumpert and Karagach are facing three other couples in the finals: Cody Rigsby and Cheryl Burke, Amanda Kloots and Alan Bersten and JoJo Siwa and Jenna Johnson. While Siwa is the star and Johnson the professional dancer in their pairing, Shumpert and Karagach should watch out for her. This season’s youngest finalist at 18, Siwa has years of competitive dance experience who became a phenomenon after appearing in two seasons of “Dance Moms.”
Shumpert won an NBA championship ring in 2016, but will he win the show’s Mirrorball trophy? Tune in this Monday to find out.