I'm dancing with Joey Fatone, who I danced with in season four. So I'm very excited to be reunited with him. We got second in our season, and we just had such a great time and remained really good friends. So it will be a very different dynamic because we know each other so well. I'm really excited about it.
Did you have any inkling at all you'd be paired up with the same person?
No! I mean, I was thinking that it would be someone different, so I was surprised when I got Joey. I was very happy, but I was surprised.
What are Joey's strengths?
Well, he's a performer. He's got such a great personality. Anyone who meets Joey just loves him. He's such a great guy, and he's a performer. He was great on season four, and I think he'll just bring a lot of fun to the dance floor.
Can you push him?
Oh, definitely. He pushes himself. We're a really good team. We definitely push each other.
Who's your biggest competition?
Oh, actually, I think everybody because they're all finalists. I mean everyone is going to be amazing. So, you can't just rule anybody out of the competition at all.
Karina Smirnoff mentioned that she thinks the people who didn't make it are probably going to be work, to push harder, than the ones who have a Mirror Ball. Do you feel like that's the case?
Possibly, or the ones that [have a] Mirror Ball, they’re going to want to defend their title. I don't know. But maybe the other people might have a little bit more of the drive to try and get that Mirror Ball trophy. They get a second chance at it, and there's not many times that you get a second chance.
Do you have a strategy?
I think that Joey and I just have to go out and be the entertaining, fun couple, and hopefully people will want to see what we do week after week and vote for us. We have to bring excitement big time to the dance floor.
You had that injury, and it scared the crap out of all of America.
It was horrible.
Does it worry you that you're in a position now where you have to push yourself harder, after what happened?
I mean, it was an accident, but I was trying a move that I'd never done before myself. It was a very difficult move. Actually Mark Ballas had tried it as well, and he thought it was too difficult. And I just thought it was time for me to do something different with this football player that's really strong, and we actually did it a couple of times. But then, one time it went terribly wrong. But I won't be that stupid and try things like that I haven't done before. It did freak me out a little bit I have to say, and I was a little bit concerned with trying lifts a little bit of time afterwards, but that didn't last long. I did get back on the horse, as they say.
Are you doing okay?
Yes, yeah. I'm good. I did a lot of rehab and physical therapy on it, so I'm definitely all good now.
Dancing With the Stars Season 15: All-Stars will premiere on Monday, September 24 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC. Check out the full All-Stars cast list here.
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