CBC Battle of the Blades Week 5: Déjà Vu In The Bottom Two But No Tie This Time

Jerred Bapty
BarnBurner Sports Writer


Friday, October 18, 2019

OSHAWA, ON – After Week Four’s dramatic tie, someone had to be sacrificed this week. The voters failed to change the bottom two, so it was Bruno Gervais and Ekaterina Gordeeva versus PJ Stock and Violetta Afanasieva in the skate-off for the second week in a row. 


Gervais and Gordeeva led the skate-off with a deeply expressive and romantic skate to ‘Ain’t No Sunshine’ by Shawn James, captivating both the audience and the judges. Every lift and move was executed with pristine technique and had Head Judge Kurt Browning watching the couple together, rather than just the hockey player. 


Stock and Afanasieva skated their hearts out to ‘Ain’t No Mountain High Enough’ by Marvin Gaye Tammi Terrell. Smiles from both the whole time, while attempting a challenging lift that transitioned to one arm on Afanasieva’s back. Stock battled through it and he certainly wasn’t the only one that pushed themselves Thursday, but it wasn’t meant to be. 


Browning had a tough time sending someone home and it was evident that Colby Armstrong and guest judge Meghan Duhamel felt the same. Here are the scores.


Bruno Gervais & Ekaterina Gordeeva


Armstrong: 5.8

Duhamel: 5.8

Browning: 6.0


Total: 17.6


PJ Stock & Violetta Afanasieva


Armstrong: 5.7

Duhamel: 5.8

Browning: 5.7


Total: 17.2


Another statement by Head Judge Browning. He continues to send a direct message to the voters with his scores, that Bruno Gervais should not be in the bottom two. 


The pattern, unfortunately, may continue. 


R&B Night proved challenging for every pair as they all tried to up the difficulty on their routines. 


Natalie Spooner and Andrew Poje led the program Thursday night with their performance to ‘Powerful’ by Major Lazer featuring Ellie Goulding and Tarrus Riley, unfortunately, their weakest of the series. Weakest not in the way that the program was bad but, that they struggled with a few of the more challenging elements the added to push each other. A shaky lift and some evidence of thinking too much led them to their lowest score thus far and a drop in the standings. 


Colton Orr and Amanda Evora were next with a slow and passionate dance to ‘Rise Up’ by Andra Day. It was clear they had focused on bringing out Orr’s emotional side but, also struggled with a very difficult lift to close their program. It was a lift that Duhamel said pro figure skaters don’t even try. Despite that, they aren’t last in the standings for just the second time. 


Fan-favourites Sheldon Kennedy and Kaitlyn Weaver closed out the safe skaters with a high-energy performance to MC Hammer’s ‘Can’t Touch This’. It brought the crowd to its feet once again but, wasn’t a perfect score this week. Weaver’s face almost hit the ice during a pair spin but, Kennedy managed to keep Weaver above ground. 


Each pair really pushed the envelope this week, maybe a bit too much and at the expense of their programs. The panel was very impressed with each pair’s added elements but, understood they weren’t executed to the standard they had to meet. 


Just one more show before the special Halloween finale as it continues to get harder to eliminate a pair. Make sure you vote to save your favourite pair and maybe keep Gervais and Gordeeva from being in the bottom two for the fourth straight week. 


Complete Standings (Week 4 Finish)


1.     Bruno Gervais & Ekaterina Gordeeva: 17.6 (3rd)

2.     Sheldon Kennedy & Kaitlyn Weaver: 17.5 (1st)

3.     Colton Orr & Amanda Evora: 17.2 (4th)

4.     Natalie Spooner & Andrew Poje: 17 (2nd)


Eliminated: PJ Stock & Violetta Afanasieva: 17.2 (3rd)

                 Brian McGrattan & Vanessa James

                 Amanda Kessel & Eric Radford


Elimination interview with Stock and Afanasieva to come. 


Let me know what you think!

Twitter: @CaptainBapty

Email: jerred@barnburner.ca


Photo: @CBC