Monday night's "Dancing with the Stars" semifinal episode ended with a double elimination, as Boyz II Men singer Wanya Morris and NFL star Antonio Brown learned they weren't going to be competing for the mirror ball trophy.
That meant deaf "America's Next Top Model" star Nyle DiMarco, "Good Morning America" meteorologist Ginger Zee, and UFC fighter Paige VanZant will be dancing in next week's finals.
While Morris' unfortunate slip during his routine with pro Lindsay Arnold last week probably led to his ouster, many thought it was clear why Brown was stopped just short of the goal line. Judge Carrie Ann Inaba summed things up when she told the Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver on Monday, "You're not necessarily the best dancer left in this competition."
Brown told hostess Erin Andrews, "It's been an amazing journey" and after the show, his devoted partner Sharna Burgess insisted to reporters, "He probably grew the most out of anybody [here]."
Morris, whose perfect 60 for two routines on Monday wasn't enough to advance, didn't speak to reporters afterwards as he got ready to head to New York for a visit with "Good Morning America."
For the semifinals, all of the celebrities did one dance with their usual partner and a "trio" dance that included another pro.
VanZant scored a cumulative 59 for her two energetic routines with partner Mark Ballas. The fighter included Alan Bersten in her trio, and he and VanZant giggled to the cameras about being romantically linked in the media after he had previously danced with Paige while Ballas was injured.
VanZant and Bersten wouldn't confirm or deny they are dating away from the ballroom.
Later in the show, things turned serious as VanZant revealed how she was bullied as a youth. VanZant, whose mom was a dance teacher, was harassed and verbally abused in school after becoming a cheerleader.
She told the cameras she "almost gave up on life" before her family moved from Oregon to Reno and she learned martial arts.
"I feel it was an important moment for myself because I've never opened up about it," VanZant told reporters about her youthful torment. "I've never told anybody what happened to me [before] ... hopefully some people connect with my story."
The fighter added, "I did not expect to make it to the finals. I was very nervous. Everybody was amazing."
DiMarco and partner Peta Murgatroyd continued to wow fans with their routines, which included an Argentine tango that he performed partially blindfolded on Monday.
"It was definitely an adrenalin rush because I couldn't see, I can't hear, so that's just three senses that I have left and it's all about holding onto Peta for dear life," DiMarco told Fox411. "Her movement is telling me what my next move is so I move with her flow."
DiMarco, who scored 57 points, said of making the finals, "I'm feeling honored, inspired, and relieved. The very first week I questioned myself, would the deaf guy make it that far against hearing people who can hear the music? And I think we deserved it, we've worked hard, we've pushed ourselves every week."
Zee and partner Val Chmerkovskiy earned a total score of 56 and were rewarded for their consistency.
"I feel outstanding! It's so crazy!" she marveled backstage.
But the weathergal was disappointed that judges criticized her trio Paso Doble with Chmerkovskiy and Artem Chigvintsev.
Inaba said, "You did lose your balance" and she got straight nines.
"The Paso Doble, I was really surprised by the scores because ... I felt like we killed that dance," Zee told FOX411. "We watched it back and I really think that was the best I've ever done that dance. I don't know. I watched for anything wrong; there was nothing."