Football star Damar Hamlin gives health update on ‘The Masked Singer,’ as Ken Jeong fights back tears

Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin shocked the world on January 2, 2023 when he suffered cardiac arrest after making a tackle live on “Monday Night Football.” The game was postponed as he was rushed to the hospital, and he slowly recovered for a week until he was ultimately released on January 9. During the “Sesame Street”-themed March 15 episode of “The Masked Singer,” an energetic Hamlin appeared with his kid brother Damir to give everyone a health update (and reveal a clue for the Squirrel).

“The man that brought the whole world together and inspired us all,” declared “TMS” host Nick Cannon as he introduced the Buffalo Bills safety to the audience.

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Sports fanatic Ken Jeong could barely contain his composure as he laid eyes on the fully recovered football star. “I’m just so glad you’re here,” the panelist readily admitted while fighting back tears. “But more importantly, I’m just so glad you’re healthy. The whole world loves you.”

Hamlin said he wanted to appear on the show “mainly because of my brother.” The 24-year-old Pennsylvania native explained, “You know, that’s my world. I put family first. And he loves ‘Sesame Street’ more than most things, so we had to make it tonight.” During the segment, Damir was seated on the side of the stage next to Elmo.

Cannon said his goodbyes to the Hamlin brothers, calling it a “beautiful moment.” Everyone’s attention then turned to the clue that Hamlin brought with him, a football with a cutout of Jeong’s face. “Ken, this isn’t the first time we’ve worked together,” Squirrel teased. “But it is the first time you’ve had more lines. How could you not recognize my voice?” The blue rodent then added that they’ve worked together “maybe more than once.”

SEE ‘The Masked Singer’ reveals for all seasons: Celebrities and costumes through the years

Squirrel was one of three contestants to perform during the March 15 episode of Fox’s wild and wacky reality TV show, along with Fairy and Jackalope. Already in this ninth season, the following six celebrities have been unmasked: Dick Van Dyke (Gnome), Sara Evans (Mustang), Howie Mandel (Rock Lobster), Debbie Gibson (Night Owl), Grandmaster Flash (Polar Bear) and Michael Bolton (Wolf).

“The Masked Singer” has been quite friendly to sports personalities through the years, with all of the following competing in extravagant costumes: Antonio Brown (Hippo), Terry Bradshaw (Deer), Victor Oladipo (Thingamajig), Mark Sanchez (Baby Alien), Lonzo Ball (Whatchamacallit), Joe Buck (Ram), Jordan Mailata (Thingamabob) and Le’Veon Bell (Milkshake). Do you hope Damar Hamlin returns in the future as a full-fledged singing contestant?

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