'Dancing With The Stars' finale: Meryl, Maks win the mirrorball trophy

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Wednesday, May 21, 2014
VIDEO: Reaction to new 'Dancing With The Stars' winner
The couple who came out victorious on 'Dancing With The Stars' season 18 has everyone smiling.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- One of the tightest contests in the 18 seasons of "Dancing With The Stars" has come to a close.

It has been a long time coming for pro dancer Maksim Chmerkovskiy, but after 14 tries, he has finally won the "Dancing With The Stars" championship with Olympian Meryl Davis.

"I think his fans have appreciated every bit of it, and I'm just so proud of him being at this point and proud of being at this point in time with him," Davis said.

Davis became the fourth Olympic athlete to win the mirror ball trophy. She follows in the dancing footsteps of Apolo Anton Ohno, Kristi Yamaguchi and Shawn Johnson to win the big prize.

Amy Purdy and Derek Hough came in second place, while Candace Cameron Bure and Mark Ballas finished third.

For the finale, the remaining contestants performed a new routine as part of a "24 Hour Fusion Challenge," where they fused two contrasting dance styles that they've performed during this season. They had less than 24 hours to prepare that routine for judges' points.

Read a dance-by-dance recap of the finale of "Dancing With The Stars"

Cameron Bure said she's happy that she made it to the finals.

"I was thrilled with tonight. I was beyond excited to make it to the final three. Coming in third place, that's a huge win for me," Cameron Bure said.

"Dancing With The Stars" returns in September for season 19.