Paige VanZant may be a fierce fighter in the UFC ring, but the professional mixed martial artist wants fans to know she has a sweet side, too.
During the Season 22 premiere of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars,” Paige unveiled just how sensitive she can be when the 21-year-old contestant got misty-eyed during her Week 1 foxtrot. After Paige shook it out to Jess Glynne’s tune “Ain’t Got Far To Go” with her partner Mark Ballas, the Oregon native began to tear up.
“You were on the verge of crying?” the show’s longtime co-host Tom Bergeron asked Paige.
“It happens. I’m emotional,” she said. “I feel so good. I made it, I didn’t trip. Yeah, I’m just really happy.”
And Paige was even happier after her team learned its score. She and Mark earned a commendable score of 21 out of 30 for their first dance. Although Paige was excited about her score, the tough but tender athlete was even more ecstatic that she was able to show fans her vulnerable side.
“I just want to make a good impression of myself,” Paige told co-host Erin Andrews. “Everyone identifies me as a fighter. I want them to see I’m a girl, too. There’s a whole other side to fighters, and I want to be an inspiration, and I want to do a good job.”
Well, Paige, it looks like you’ve already knocked out those goals.
Fans can catch Paige and Mark during Season 22 of “Dancing With the Stars” on ABC Mondays at 8 p.m. EDT.