As the Duels continue on NBC World of Dance, celebrity judges Jennifer Lopez, Derek Hough, and Ne-Yo certainly have their jobs cut out for them. Contestants are bringing everything they have to the stage, and teams are being eliminated based on less than half a point.
Watch this week’s 2 hour episode to see Jenna Dewan mentoring the acts and the celebrity judges’ (Jennifer Lopez, Derek Hough, and Ne-Yo) take on the contestants. Catch up on last week’s episode here.
Jaxon Willard vs. Lucas Marinetto | Junior
Coming off making quite an impression during the Qualifiers, this contemporary soloist came to the Duels to tell a story. Pulling inspiration from his internal emotional struggle in regards to his birth and adopted mothers, Jaxon’s performance showcased his vulnerability, strength, athleticism, and ability to take the audience on an emotional journey.
Final score = 96
As the only tap soloist this season, Lucas Marinetto is here to represent his style and defend his spot in the competition. His performance showcased his stellar technique, mastery of his style, classical lines, and showmanship, bringing his entertainment level to new heights.
Final score = 88
Winner: Jaxon Willard
Poreotics vs. Marissa and the Heartbreakers | Upper Team
Marissa and the Heartbreakers
Taking in the feedback they received from the judges last round, Marissa and the Heartbreakers elevated their performance this round and were clean and together. Showcasing their female empowerment message through their costume choices, they meant business coming into the duels. The judges loved their performance, but Jennifer Lopez noted they could have executed their storytelling better.
Final score = 83.7
A fun beach-themed performance, the Poreotics came back to the stage showing everything they’re known for: fun, technique, musicality, and storytelling. They included intricate movements completely in sync and showed the judges complex and well executed formations. They did receive feedback to hook the audience early and not burry the exciting moments.
Final score = 87.7
Jonas & Ruby vs. Freshh | Junior
Jonas & Ruby
These young ballroom dancers came determined to elevate their performance and continue in the competition. Their clean and dynamic choreography was paired with an excellent music choice and costume changes, each of which was accompanied by a new style of tango. The judges appreciated their technique and performance quality, as well as the extra entertainment quality.
Final score = 91.3
Last round, the judges wanted more connection and personality to shine through with Freshh’s performance. While noting that nerves got to them, they were determined to deliver on the judges feedback. They brought a fun, high-energy performance with a new take on 90’s dance moves.
Final score = 88
Winner: Jonas & Ruby
Pursuit vs. The Ruggeds | Upper Team
As the only adult bboy crew in the competition, the Ruggeds received a lot of feedback from the judges last round, primarily to elevate their performance and include more dancing. This round they incorporated their signature breakdancing moves with formation changes and more dancing, but the judges still felt they could do more.
Final score = 84.7
As a group of professional dancers struggling to pursue their art, Pursuit brings a passion and desire to their contemporary performances. The music choice gave their performance a much different vibe, and while it included their beautiful lifts, it wasn’t their strongest performance, according to the judges.
Final score = 82.3
Winner: The Ruggeds
Cubcakes vs. Flip vs. Dem Raider Boyz | Junior Team
As the only waacking team in the competition with feedback from the judges to bring their performance to a new level, Flip came to the Duels ready to deliver everything they have to offer. They incorporated all of the judge’s feedback, not letting themselves be limited by their style with more formation changes, dancing, and more.
Final score = 90.3
Dem Raider Boyz
This classic step group took a big risk with their competition, letting the music drop out, and their intricate rhythms and counter rhythms take center stage. Their risk was rewarded with their flawless delivery, and the judges loved their ability to let their energy carry the rest of the performance.
Final score = 85.3
As the youngest team in the competition, the Cubcakes may be cute, but they are equally as fierce. Facing an injury the day of the competition, even with one dancer down, they showed their sass, choreography, and tricks with style.
Final score = 88
Connection vs. Funkywunks | Upper Team
Ready to amy up their performance when it comes to choreography, the Funkywunks married innovation with classic dance moves. Their performance was filled with impressive moments and tricks and they really connected with the competition on stage.
Final score = 85
Connection chose the Funkywunks because they wanted an “honorable battle” against a true competitor. The moment they hit the stage, they were ready. Their performance showed their personality with fun choreography, tons of energy, complex formation changes, and innovative lifts.
Final score = 85.3
Next week the last of the Duels continue on a new time: Wednesday 9/8 central on NBC. During the Duels, contestants go head-to-head, and the higher scoring performance moves to the next round. Don’t miss exclusive interviews, performances, and more from the definitive source for all things World of Dance.