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Iman Shumpert describes going from NBA to Dancing with the Stars

Iman Shumpert winning Dancing with the Stars
Iman Shumpert winning Dancing with the Stars. Pic credit: ABC

Dancing with the Stars Season 30 made history in two different instances.

It was the first season that a same-sex couple competed in the competition. JoJo Siwa and Jenna Johnson made it to the finals. However, they ended up in second place.

The season was also the first time an NBA basketball star won the competition, as Iman Shumpert and Daniella Karagach.

Iman talked about his experience on Dancing with the Stars with The Athletic and spoke about the transition from the basketball court to the ballroom floor.

Iman Shumpert on his DWTS experience

Iman, 31, had played basketball his entire life. However, when the time came to compete on Dancing with the Stars arose, he was not playing for anyone at the time.

Iman said that he wasn’t interested in small contracts that would only last a few days. He wanted to spend time with his family, and if it meant saying no to teams who weren’t interested in giving him a more extended guarantee, he held out.

This meant he was available when Dancing with the Stars Season 30 rolled around.

Iman said that it was one of the greatest moments of his life because it let him be himself.

“The main joy that I have with being with Dancing with the Stars is not having to hide myself, not even a little bit,” Shumpert said in the interview.

“They’ve done an incredible job with telling my story in bits and pieces, of course, telling the story of what I’m into, my family, why I like certain songs. I think it’s helped people sort of break away from judging it like I’m an athlete and judging it for what it is.”

“I think that’s the coolest part. I’ve never really received energy from people that wasn’t from scoring the ball or getting a stop.”

Iman’s partner breaks her ankle on DWTS tour

Iman’s partner Daniella Karagach had a lot to do with his winning the competition. On top of his immense charisma, she led him into dances that allowed him to show who he was outside of basketball.

However, Daniella herself just suffered a major setback.

On the DWTS tour stop in Riverside, California, Daniella broke her ankle in the middle of a performance.

“Daniella, unfortunately, sustained an injury during last night’s show,” a DWTS rep revealed. “She was tended to by our on-tour physio and then treated at a local hospital. She is resting now and receiving excellent care. The entire cast and crew is wishing her a speedy recovery.”

Dancing with the Stars is on hiatus. The dancing reality competition series will return to ABC in later 2022.

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