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‘The Bachelor Winter Games’ Premiere: Is Ben Higgins Over Ex Lauren Bushnell?

Ben Higgins on ‘Bachelor Winter Games‘
Ben Higgins on ‘Bachelor Winter Games‘Lorenzo Bevilaqua/ABC

Let the games begin! Couples began forming one day one of The Bachelor Winter Games! The cast, comprised of 14 players from various international versions of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette and a dozen American contestants, had no problem overcoming cultural barriers to do everything they could for a chance at love. The twist is they have to compete in Olympic sports against each other to win dates, and of course, it wouldn’t be a Bachelor spinoff without rose ceremonies. Here are the biggest moments from the newest ABC show.

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Ben Still Isn’t Over Lauren

Ben Higgins and Lauren Bushnell may have called off their engagement eight months ago, but it seems like Ben isn’t over it quite yet. “That was the happiest day of my life,” Ben said about when he proposed. “The breakup still hurts.” He claimed he’s ready to “turn the page” and was working hard to schmooze all of the ladies in the house. “I’m hoping for that spark,” he said. “I want to be in love again.”

Eric Bigger, Dean Unglert and Josiah Graham on ‘Bachelor Winter Games‘
Eric Bigger, Dean Unglert and Josiah Graham on ‘Bachelor Winter Games‘ Lorenzo Bevilaqua/ABC

Josiah Compliments Ally’s ‘Badonkadonk’

Josiah, who was featured on Rachel Lindsay’s season of The Bachelorette, knows he is “physically blessed” and is trying his hardest not to be arrogant during the Winter Games. However, he couldn’t help but compliment Ally, a previous contestant on the New Zealand Bachelor, about her figure when the two got to know each other a little better.

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“We like that badonkadonk,” he told her. “Black men, we like the curves.” His comments obviously worked, because they ended up sharing the first make out session of the games. Even though neither of them won the biathlon later to get to go on a date, it looks like these two didn’t need a fancy dinner to get some one-on-one time. “I could see myself being with Ally,” Josiah said.

Ashley I. Cries … Again

Ashley I. might have a strong personality, but at least she is self aware! “I have a big reputation for being dramatic,” The Bachelor alum said.  From day one, she thought the only possible reason Kevin, a Canadian who Bibiana was flirting with, didn’t like her was because the cold air was making her skin dry and ugly. When Kevin won the biathlon and took Bibi on the date, Ashley’s signature water works made an appearance.

“I just don’t know what I’m doing,” Ashley sobbed. “Why does this always happen?” It looks like some things never change.

Kevin Wendt and Ashley Iaconetti on ‘Bachelor Winter Games‘
Kevin Wendt and Ashley Iaconetti on ‘Bachelor Winter Games‘ Lorenzo Bevilaqua/ABC

Lesley Gets Candid About Her Boobs

After her Bachelor experience, Lesley discovered she was at a high risk of breast cancer and chose to have a double mastectomy. She got her boobs reconstructed and is proud of the way she looks, but is nervous because she hasn’t been with a man since her surgery. “I’m a bit apprehensive to really dive in with someone,” Lesley said. “It’s a little bit nerve wracking.”

However, she wasn’t afraid to talk about it when flirting with Dean. “You can be the judge,” she said. “I think they look great.” The two ended up making up on the couch, so her comments obviously worked.

Christian Feels Left Out

It didn’t take long for couples to form from night one. Kevin and Bibi, Lesley and Dean, Josiah and Ally, Courtney and Lily, Luke and Rebecca and Clare and Benoit all made out almost immediately. “People are already pairing off and we’ve only been here a couple hours,” Luke said. It made some people, like Christian, the competitor from Germany, nervous for the rose ceremony.

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“I’m really sad,” he said, even though multiple women have commented on his good looks.

The Rose Ceremony

Chris Harrison revealed that the rose ceremony would be going down very differently this time: the men had to write down the name of the woman they felt wasn’t there for the right reasons, and the women had to do the same for the man they felt wasn’t there for the right reasons. The three women and the two men with the most votes would be going home.

Laura Blair, Zoe Tang, Lauren G., Courtney Dober and Eric Bigger were sent home. It’s definitely an interesting spin on the traditional rose ceremony process that requires the contestants to get to know their fellow housemates.

The Bachelor Winter Games airs Tuesdays and Thursdays on ABC at 8 p.m. EST.

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