After another surprising Dancing With the Stars elimination for Maksim Chmerkovskiy, fans of the show are wondering if season 25 could have been his last.
Chmerkovskiy penned a heartfelt message to his celeb partner, Vanessa Lachey, after they were eliminated, saying he was a "proud partner, coach and a friend" — but in that emotional note, he may have left a hint that he won't be returning to the dance floor.
In the final sentence, he wrote that he wouldn't want his DWTS "journey" to "end any other way."
"This was one of the most eventful seasons I’ve ever had and, if it were my last, I wouldn’t want this journey to end any other way," he wrote.
did maks just hint that it was his last season of dwts or am i reading way too far into the last sentence ?. pic.twitter.com/WqBc6dnM6P— anna ♡ (@sharnasharmony) November 1, 2017
Fans commented on his post asking him not to leave.
"I hope it isn’t your last. I’ve always enjoyed watching you dance and the creative choreography you design!! Don’t leave Marks!!" one person wrote.
"You’ve won the prize before. As long as you still enjoy doing the show, please don’t stop. We love watching you dance and what you bring out in your partners," another said.
Another pleaded, "NO IT BETTER NOT BE YOUR LAST! You guys were robbed so badly. One of the biggest travesties in elimination history."
If Chmerkovskiy doesn't return next season, fans might not be altogether surprised. After a season riddled with drama between him and Lachey (Chmerkovskiy reportedly missed a live episode due to a feud between the dance partners), it might make sense that the 37-year-old dad would want to take a break from the show.
Fans were shocked when Chmerkovskiy and Lachey were sent home on Monday night, as many thought Lachey had the potential to make it to the finals. When host Tom Bergeron saw the results on his cheat sheet during the live show, he called it a "shock", and even the judges looked stunned as Lachey and Chmerkovskiy were sent packing alongside Nikki Bella and Artem Chigvintsev.
But eagle-eyed fans of the dancing competition will remember that this wasn't Chmerkovskiy's first "early" elimination. Fans and judges alike were also surprised last season when Chmerkovskiy and celeb partner Heather Morris were sent home during team week (after scoring a perfect score), the same week Chmerkovskiy and Lachey were eliminated in season 25. Fans might also remember that Chmkerkovskiy similarly missed a week of dancing during season 24 due to an injury, causing fellow pro Alan Bernsten to step in during the live episode with Morris, just as what happened when Chmerkovskiy missed an episode with Lachey.
Maks literally exposed dwts last season when Heather was eliminated.. even the show’s professionals know that it’s all rigged— Lana (@sashaysdimple) October 17, 2017
With some fans calling the show "rigged" because of surprising or seemingly early eliminations, it might not be a shock if the pro were not to return for season 26.
Chmerkovskiy has threatened to leave the show in the past, previously saying that season 18 would be his last. But perhaps now that he and fellow DWTS pro and wife Peta Murgatroyd have a baby at home, his decision will be easier.
Photo Credit: Instagram / @maksimc