The Dancing with the Stars
season 18 finale may have been all about Meryl Davis and Maksim
Chmerkovskiy's victory, but another bombshell earlier in the episode put
the show's future in question. Following Meryl and Maks' final dance,
head judge Len Goodman shocked everyone by announcing that this may have
been his final season.
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Goodman, who has been with DWTS
since the start, turned 70 this year and splits his time between DWTS
and its British counterpart, Strictly Come Dancing
. In the past he has mentioned the grueling schedule of going back and forth, leading to occasional guest judges replacing him for a week or two.DWTS
has already been renewed for season 19, but will Len be back? There's no official word on his status, but if he does leave, here are five idea for his replacement.Kym Johnson
After competing as a pro partner for 13 seasons, and winning twice, Kym took the last year off to focus on other projects. Most notably, she served as a judge on the Australian version of Dancing with the Stars
in the fall. Since she had the practice, maybe she could come back to the U.S. version as a judge.Maksim Chmerkovskiy
Maks finally won his first Mirror Ball Trophy after 14 seasons on DWTS
. His partnership with Meryl Davis was epic, earning the highest scores in the history of the series. So what more is there for him to do as a pro? Why not go out on top and become a judge. He's done it before as a guest judge on season 17 and he's certainly not afraid to speak his mind.Julianne HoughDWTS
season 18 featured seven different guest judges, and two-time champion Julianne Hough was the only good one. She's charming, beloved and has proven herself more than once as a responsible and thoughtful judge.Derek Hough
I've been trying to get Derek out of his current role as a pro partner for a while. He's won five times, he finished in the Top 2 for the last four seasons in a row and, in 13 seasons, he's never finished worse than sixth. He also has an Emmy Award, more Twitter followers than any other pro partner and, at this point, he's so beloved that he's basically guaranteed to make the finale no matter who his partner is. I maintain that it's unfair to keep him around as a pro partner, but since he's become the face of the show, making him a judge would be a fantastic way to keep him involved.Craig Revel Horwood
The new judge doesn't necessarily have to be someone American audiences are familiar with. Along with Len and Bruno Tonioli, Craig has been a permanent judge on the British series Strictly Come Dancing
since the beginning. If we lose one Brit, why not replace him with another?
Do you think Len Goodman should leave DWTS
? And if so, who would you want to replace him on the judging panel for season 19?(Image courtesy of ABC)