Dovolani and Zolciak-Biermann have been excused from DWTS due to her hospitalization last week

By Aurelie Corinthios and Christina Dugan
Updated September 29, 2015 11:30 AM
Credit: ABC; Getty

Dovolani came to his Dancing with the Stars partner’s defense after Wendy Williams questioned Zolciak-Biermann’s mini stroke, which left her hospitalized last week.

“I don’t really know what happened between them but I can tell you this: I was at the hospital,” Dovolani, 42, told reporters at the DWTS live show on Monday. “I know what happened. It was definitely not fake.”

Dovolani said his DWTS partner “was not herself” in the days leading up to the health scare.

“She had a headache. She was dizzy. You could see her veins on her left arm,” he said. “On Tuesday night, when were dancing, I was like, ‘Babe, you’re not yourself. Get your head in the game.’ By the time we got to Atlanta, we parted with each other, I went to the hotel and she went home – I could tell she wasn’t her chipper self.”

Zolciak-Biermann, 37, was hospitalized on Wednesday after suffering a transient ischemic attack. She was discharged on Friday evening.

On Monday, Williams discussed Zolciak-Biermann’s condition during the Hot Topics segment of her show.

“She allegedly suffered a mini stroke after returning home from Dancing With the Stars last week,” Williams said. “My thought is, um, I hope you’re not fibbing about the stroke.”

Williams, 51, added that she herself also “wanted to get off” the series while competing with Dovolani in 2011.

“Kim, at 37 years old, if you did have a mini stroke, I’m sorry to hear about that. If, however, you just wanted to get off Dancing with the Stars, all you had to do was just stub your toe,” Williams finished.

Zolciak-Biermann blasted Williams for her comments on Instagram Monday, writing that it was “disgusting” of Williams to insinuate she had faked the stroke and claiming that Williams was “mad” because Zolciak-Biermann did not appear on Williams’ show.

On Monday’s episode of the show, Dovolani performed with Jenna Johnson, and Zolciak-Biermann appeared via video chat to say that she could dance, but she couldn’t fly.

However, per the rules of the show a contestant must withdraw in the instance of a health issue or illness preventing a contestant from dancing.

Zolciak-Biermann and Dovolani are currently campaigning to be brought back onto the show.

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“This is such an unfortunate thing,” Dovolani told PEOPLE on Monday. “We were prepared to dance, just that they hadn’t cleared her to fly yet. That’s the reason why she’s not here.”