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HOME > Dancing with the Stars > Dancing with the Stars 8

Maksim Chmerkovskiy not planning to leave ABC's 'Dancing' again

By Christopher Rocchio, 04/17/2009 

Maksim Chmerkovskiy feels that the unstable economy is reason enough to remain on Dancing with the Stars after he previously took last spring's edition off to focus on other endeavors.

"We are under contract, but honestly, why not?" Chmerkovskiy told Us Weekly at the A/X Watches party in Beverly Hills on Wednesday night.  "In this economy, to have a job like this?  Believe me, it's not a bad job!"

It's been almost a month since Chmerkovskiy and his partner Denise Richards became the second couple eliminated from Dancing with the Stars eighth season and now that the field has been narrowed, he feels a few front runners have emerged.

"It's between Melissa [Rycroft], Gilles [Marini] and Lil Kim," he told Us.  "I would be happy to see any one of them win."

The fact that Chmerkovskiy even thinks Rycroft and Lil Kim have a shot at claiming the mirror ball trophy is a bit surprising considering he had previously stated -- on more than one occasion -- that he felt a woman couldn't win the competition.

Since he was subsequently proven wrong last spring when Kristi Yamaguchi won the sixth-season title and again last fall when Brooke Burke took home the seventh-season crown, Chmerkovskiy has apparently decided to change his tune.

"I have to admit I would be happier to see a woman win because it proves me wrong.  A couple of seasons ago, I said a woman will not win because the majority of our fan base are women," he told Us.

"I'm a big fan of Lil' Kim. I think she's doing amazing.  I'm also a big fan of [Rycroft's professional partner Tony Dovolani]. We stand by each other every time.  Between Melissa and Kim, that's what I want. Gilles, I'm sorry, I love you and you are doing the Chmerkovskiy thing."

Since he's on the sidelines as Dancing with the Stars eighth season continues to wind down, Chmerkovskiy said he's already thinking about what type of ninth-season partner he'd prefer for the fall.

"Some athlete that has nerves of steel and flexibility of a gymnast and determination -- and obviously people like that don't exist," he told Us.

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