Suni Lee made her Dancing with the Stars debut this week and didn't disappoint. The 18-year-old gymnast and her pro dancing partner Sasha Farber danced the Jive to "STAY" by The Kid LAROI & Justin Beiber on the season premiere of DWTS, and while some fans noticed that she seemed nervous, they were impressed with the performance.
After the routine, Lee talked about being nervous while on the dancefloor. "Competing at the Olympics is probably the most nerve-wracking thing I've ever gone through," Lee said, per AL.com. "But coming to Dancing with the Stars, I'm freaking out. ... I'm so nervous. I don't know how to dance. People always assume that I would be a really good dancer, because of gymnastics, but it's like completely different."
The judges gave Lee and Farber a score of 28 out of 40. That ties them with Amanda Kloots and Alan Bersten for the second-highest score of the night. "You are incredible," DWTS judge Carrie Ann Inaba said to Lee. "I mean, the skills you have. You are a perfect match for ballroom dancing and Latin dancing. But what I have to tell you is: You have to not prepare, like how you do for a tumbling pass. I see it. You go inward; you've got to stay outward."
It's been quite the year for Lee. Along with competing in DWTS, Lee had a memorable performance at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. She won three Olympic medals, including gold in the all-around competition. She is the first Hmong-American Olympian as her mother is from Laos. Lee also won three medals in the 2019 World Championships.
"This has been our dream forever," Lee said on the TODAY show in July adding that she wanted her father to be at the Olympics with her. "I wish he was here. He always told me if I win the gold medal he would come out on the ground and do a backflip. It's sad that he can't be here, but this is our dream and this our medal. We both worked for this. He sacrificed everything to put me in gymnastics. Both my parents really have. This is my family's medal, my medal. My coach's medal. He doesn't get a medal, so I'm dedicating it to all of them."