Rick Fox leaves 'Dancing With the Stars'

LOS ANGELES Former Laker Rick Fox was benched by voters.

Professional dancer Cheryl Burke had the tall order of training the NBA champion in this new challenge.

Fox surprised many with his graceful moves despite his tall stature.

The couple hung in for seven weeks, and even after receiving their highest score yet from the judges Monday night, the viewer votes were just not enough to keep Fox and Burke in the game.

"It's been an amazing experience," Fox said. "We did a good job last night so, it happens.

"It's America's show. They get to tune in and they get to vote," Fox added. "The opportunities will hopefully continue to be there for me throughout my life but this has been an opportunity that I won't forget."

His partner agreed.

"At least we went out with a bang and, you know, we just didn't get the votes," Burke said. "And that's what this show is about and every vote does count. I'd rather leave on a high note like we did than leave with a dance that we didn't do very well in."

Five couples remain for season 11, and next week they will each perform two dances.

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