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Karina Smirnoff Is Hanging Up Her Dancing Shoes For DWTS 10

If you're not a fan of ABC's Dancing With The Stars (DWTS) you probably don't know who Karina Smirnoff is.

If you do follow the reality celebrity dancing show, you know that the gorgeous Karina was one of the popular professional dancers paired up with a range of celebrities over the past few years including last season's Aaron Carter and fan favorite, Steve Wozcniak from Season 8.

(Image of LR Karina Smirnoff and her celebrity partner Aaron Carter - Season 9  - ABC.com - Dancing With The Stars - All Rights Reserved).

Karina recently hit a rough patch when her engagement to Maksim Chmerkovskiy ended on a sour note while the two professional dancers continued to perform on the ABC hit show.

Although rumors were rampant the two professional dancers were not getting along well after the end of their engagement, the official word from ABC was that they could still work and dance together without any problems because they were professionals.

Regardless of the rumors, the current word is that Karina will not dance in the upcoming season.  At least not for the cameras.  The current buzz is Karina will work on choreography "behind the scenes".  Whatever that means or whatever you wish to read into it.

The good news is that some of the favorite professional dancers are set to return including my own personal fav, two-time champion Cheryl Burke who recently tweeted "Got the big call! Can't wait till next week!!!!"

There will be less professional dancers for Season 10 because there are only 11 celebrities dancing instead of last season's record 16.

(Image of Steve Woz and Karina dancing together in Season 8 - ABC.com - All Rights Reserved)

Personally I felt 16 couples was pushing the envelop too far.  I think 11-12 is a better number to start with and make the competition more interesting earlier on.  Last season seemed to drag to me and in my own humble opinion it was because of the large number of dancing partners.  It seemed like it took forever to get down to the "real" dancing teams.

Sources told E! "it wasn't easy" and the producers struggled with which professional dancers to cut and which to keep.  The word from the inside is that "producers cut people based on the celebrities and who they'd be a good match with."  Which is understandable.  A good celebrity/professional dancer match-up makes all the different in the world on the show.

In my opinion, one of the reasons Donnie Osmond did so well on Season 9 was because he was paired with Kym Johnson and they danced so well together.

Derek Hough is also on, which is great to hear.  He tweeted "I'm Not not doing season 10" which is a little confusing, but he is on the list.  So is the spectacular Edyta Sliwinska who confirmed ""Yes. I'm on."

The professional dancers officially on board for the upcoming season include:

Louis Van Amstel, Chelsie Hightower, Cheryl Burke, Derek Hough, Mark Ballas, Tony Dovolani, Maksim Chmerkovskiy, Edyta Sliwinska, Kym Johnson and Anna Trebunskaya will be returning for Season 10, as well as newcomer Damian Whitewood from the Broadway dance revue "Burn The Floor."

(Image of Chelsie Hightower - ABC's Dancing With The Stars - All Rights Reserved).

Sadly the following pros will not be returning:

Lacey Schwimmer, Jonathan Roberts, Karina Smirnoff and Dmitry Chaplin confirmed via their Twitter accounts that they will not be returning for season, and Anna Demidova confirmed she will not be back as well.

The full DWTS 10 cast will be revealed Monday during "The Bachelor: On the Wings of Love" finale, with their pro partners revealed the following morning.

I don't know about you, but I can't wait.  I'm addicted to all the dancing love and can't wait to see who will soar for Season 10 on Dancing With The Stars.

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