Dancing with the Stars pro dancer Artem Chigvintsev received a sweet tribute from his fianceé, Nikki Bella, after it was announced that he will return as a competitor in the upcoming 29th season of the celebrity ballroom show.
In a slideshow shared to her Instagram page, the Total Bellas star honored the father of her child with a photographic timeline of his amazing abs, but he was the first to joke that he had a little work to do to get back into that shape.
In the first photo posted to her social media account, Nikki was pictured with Artem just after her water broke at the end of her recent pregnancy. In the pic, Artem was cradling his fianceé’s baby bump in what would be the couple’s last picture together before welcoming their son.
Nikki also paid homage to her man’s physique in photos of him both on and off the DWTS stage. Several photos showed the future lovebirds posing together when they were partners on the celebrity dance-off back in 2017, with Artem shirtless in all of them.
In the caption to the post, Nikki offered congratulations to “Daddy” on his return to the ballroom two years after he was rumored to have been cut from DWTS for good. The former WWE wrestler revealed that she can’t wait to watch her man dance each week on the ABC series, and that she is happy to see the big smile on his face now that he is back.
Nikki added that seeing Artem so happy “melts” her. She also promised that they would be popping open a bottle of champagne to celebrate, then shared that a timeline of Artem’s killer abs was in order.
“He’s gonna kill me lol but my man is a SNACK!” Nikki wrote.
In the comments section to the slideshow, several of Artem’s DWTS co-stars chimed in to welcome him back to the show.
“Ughhhhh I love this so much!! SO happy he is BACK!” wrote pro dancer Jenna Johnson.
“Love this!! We will take care of your baby daddy [Nikki Bella],” added Emma Slater.
“Haha love this! Abs for days!” added Peta Murgatroyd.
Artem also responded to the post with a joke about his current situation.
“From dads bod to this in two weeks that’s a challenge, love you and our little boy,” he wrote to Nikki.
Fans were thrilled when Artem was announced as a surprise 15th pro dancer for the new season of Dancing with the Stars weeks after he welcomed his first baby with Nikki. As for that “dad bod,” he said he has been working hard to get back into his best shape ever.
“I’ve been working out every single day trying to get back into my dancing shape,” he told Good Morning America, per People. “By the premiere, I’ll be top-notch.”