The Voice 21 Playoff Preview: Team Power Rankings
The Voice 21 Playoffs start Monday for Season 21. I have broken down each team and ranked every member, including the wildcard. Many of my thoughts have shifted since the knockouts. I feel fairly confident about my number 1’s on each team, but beyond that, this season is a big question mark which makes it more exciting to tune in!
There’s always a lot of factors that go into coaches saves, like who are the contestants that have been voted through already, past rounds, and loyalty to original team members. I realize that some of my rankings could shift based on who does get voted through as some contestants are more likely to get a coaches save than others. Take Libianca into account. I don’t believe she will be voted through, but she is one of the most likely to receive Blake’s save.
Post your team rankings in comments. Remember, these rankings do not reflect my favorites but is rather a likelihood of who will advance.
Team Blake Shelton
1. Wendy Moten – She is the only artest who I feel clear about on this team. She is the veteran who will be ready to perform. She can and will make nearly any song choice that comes her way work. Her knockout generated more buzz than her previous performances, and she is Blake’s ringer this year. Plus, I wouldn’t be shocked if she pulls out her country card soon to show that she can sing more than just R&B and soul music.
2. Paris Winningham – I thought long and hard about where to place Paris, and I settled on here. Prior to his knockout, Peedy would probably have this slot, but Paris closing the knockouts with a great vocal may help him out, as the only thing he lacked was being memorable. Paris being a Navy Vet should help him resonate with the core audience too. Song choice will be key for him.
3. Lana Scott – This was a tough decision, but Blake will be saving Lana Scott. Lana is the only true country vocalist left. Peedy may have slight country elements as Girl Named Tom also does. But Lana’s whole vibe is country even if she sang a pop song in her knockout. Her knockout was a big moment for her as she beat Carson Peters, an experienced a 4-chair turn. Blake probably realized her potential.
4. Peedy Chavis – Peedy has some people who love him and others that don’t at all. He is a throwback, and at times seems like an Elvis tribute even when he’s not singing Elvis. My big question is are his vocals up to par? A flubbed vocal performance could very well make him slide all the way down to the wildcard performance. This may be an unpopular opinion as many seem to think that Peedy will be popular with the core audience. But after his knockout performance got lukewarm responses, I am not so sure.
5. Libianca– Sadly, The Voice may not be the proper show for this uber talented singer. She’s one of my favorites, but her performances may be “too” current and stylistic for the core audience. Many people on socials, especially Facebook, which has been the most accurate predictor in the past, were very upset that she made it over Hailey Green. Her best bet is Blake saving her, which I still see as a strong possibility, if Blake doesn’t save Lana or if Lana gets voted through. He clearly loves Libianca as he gave his best pitch in the blinds to her, and he chose her over Hailey, one of his frontrunners in the knockouts.
Team Kelly Clarkson
1. Girl Named Tom – This act as of now, has probably the best chance to win it all. Their song choices fit the core audience of the show, and they have been consistently a top 5 act in every single round. The only thing holding them back is being a group, as duos/groups tend to get backlash across social media platforms. Some fans believe it’s unfair for a group of vocalists to compete against a soloist when the show is called “The Voice” and not “The Voices.”
2. Hailey Mia – Some may ask why I have the youngest competitor as the second likeliest to advance on Team Kelly. But of all the contestants, she has something going for her, and that is a growth arc. Yes, she has yet to have a breakout moment, but Hailey is confident on stage and has consistently gotten better across her performances. There were moments of beauty in her performance of “Arcade.” and if she gets a good song choice, she is likely to be voted through.
3. Gymani – She had one of the best auditions of the season, and her instantly identifiable tone makes her memorable. Questionable song choices plus boring arrangements have led to her becoming a bit stagnant. She may be on thin ice in the playoffs if she doesn’t get the right song. I do think of the contestants, Kelly likes her the best out of everyone besides Girl Named Tom. After all, in the battles, she beat a fellow 4-chair, Aaron Hines. And in her knockout, she beat a contestant who everyone wanted their hands on in the battles, Kinsey Rose.
4. Jeremy Rosado – If Jeremy is in the wildcard, beware. He has singing show experience (American Idol season 11), which means he can take the pressure. He can deliver in the playoffs. I just wonder if he is interesting enough to stand out. I also question what voters think about him, as his past two rounds have been splits across social media with just as many people declaring Jershika and Xavier winners. But, he has his work cut out for him. I wouldn’t be shocked if Kelly saves him over Gymani if it comes down to it, as he has been one of her most consistent vocalists. And, if he is in the wildcard, he will for sure be a contender to advance.
5. Katie Rae – Katie has gotten a good edit, but sadly, she stands little to no chance to make it out of the playoffs. First, she is a knockout save, so Kelly may feel as if she doesn’t owe her anything. Katie also hasn’t had a lot of dynamic performances. She’s a consistent competitor, but I don’t know if she is capable of a “moment” type performance. Also, what genre is she? She called herself R&B in her audition, but she hasn’t sung an R&B song yet. She may suffer from some identity problems with the audience. Her consistency could make her tough to face if she is in the wildcard, though.
Team John Legend
1. Samuel Harness – Samuel is advancing with the audience vote no matter what. He has been consistently well received and has gotten a good edit. He took down a fierce competitor in BrittanyBree, in a fair and square manner, where the majority of people felt like he won. Also, his early 2000s pop-rock vibe mixed with current song selections like “Bruises” by Lewis Capaldi has a cross appeal with the young and old audiences of the show. John makes it tough to indicate who his favorites are, but I suspect that Samuel is his favorite.
2. Jershika Maple – I had my doubts with Jershika as her audition wasn’t very well received, and she lacked views. However, her battle was well received with many noting her relatable personality and crazy impressive vocals. But her knockout was a breakout moment. In just a short time, her knockout against Paris became one of the most reacted and viewed. Jershika went from something like 4th on this team’s list to a possible contender.
3. Shadale – She is another one that is a bit of a mystery. I have her placed here based on her ability to convey emotion. and her breakout knockout. Her audition was good, but some felt like the upbeat number was a bad song choice. Her battle wasn’t aired, but then “Impossible” got leaked, and people suddenly realized Shadale’s talent. John is a big fan of hers too, so I wouldn’t be shocked if she got the coaches save. My only concern with her is if John wants to diversify his team, he may choose to pick someone else if Jershika has already been voted through.
4. David Vogel – I have been up and down about David. His audition and knockout were good vocals, but they lacked dynamics. His battle was his best moment. On a team with great vocalists like Shadale and Jershika, he may be overshadowed. Also, I have a feeling that he will be vote-splitting some with Samuel as they both are in the pop/rock realm. And if that happens, Samuel will be the one who prevails. I’m not sure if John will be loyal to his steal or not.
5. Joshua Vacanti– Joshua is a solid vocalist, but I feel a lack of connection to him. His “Falling” knockout was his best yet, but combined with his playoff, it may not be enough. Typically, singers that are theatrical are ones that the audience feel lack authenticity, and I that’s why Joshua may have an uphill battle if he wants to make it past the playoffs.
Team Ariana Grande
1. Holly Forbes – Holly is the clear-cut front runner on Ariana’s team. Yes, it may seem weird for a clear-cut frontrunner to be a newcomer, but she was a 4-chair turn, and her audition lived up to the hype of the constant previewing. Also, typically one of the steals goes far. Some have even won it all (Season 13’s Chloe Kohanski, for instance). She only lost because Girl Named Tom were spectacular. Holly’s front runner status will remain strong in the playoffs.
2. Bella DeNapoli – I went back and forth between her and Ryleigh, but I believe Bella has built a bit more of a fan base on the show. Her knockout wasn’t a standout moment, but she has trained under pros, and will deliver better under higher stakes. I also think that her audition and battle were bigger moments than Ryleigh’s and fellow competitors I have listed below her.
3. Ryleigh Plank – Yes, many love Ryleigh and her knockout performance got a lot of praise on social media, but I’m not sure how her style will translate to the playoffs. Song choice will be make or break it. Will she try to perform in an intimate way like “Anyone” or will she lay it on the line, showcasing all kinds of vocal bells and whistles? I believe she’ll do the latter. She is what I would consider a powerhouse, and I fear that on a night with a lot of soulful powerhouses, she may get overshadowed. I do think that Ariana sees the most potential in her, and that she will save her if she’s not voted through.
4. Jim and Sasha Allen– They are likable, but I fear that they may be overshadowed by the other group, Girl Named Tom. They also weren’t shown for a long time–the duo’s audition aired early in the round, and the show montaged their battle. I need to see more to determine if they can deliver a dynamic performance, and to know how solid vocally they are.
5. Raquel Trinidad – Some viewers may think that she is “too much.” More specifically, Raquel has sung uptempo songs every performance, and she loves to add runs to nearly every note. She competed on American Idol, but she didn’t make it far enough (only to the Top 24) to experience the super high pressure live shows. Ariana does seem to love her, but she won’t get the coaches save over the others, especially Ryleigh.
1. Vaughn Mugol – He is on Team Ariana which in this case means he is the clear-cut favorite. He got over 10x the number of retweets on Ariana’s tweet in comparison to the other coaches’ tweets for their contestants. Keep in mind, this is a worldwide vote, so a good chunk could be from international Ariana fans or from the Philippines. I don’t think he’ll do as much or much damage at all if he competes in the wildcard round, as he’s coming from the battles, and his voice isn’t as powerful as some he’ll be competing against.
2. Hailey Green– She’s got power coming from Team Blake, and many felt as if she was robbed out of a spot. Her country/rock style is popular with the core fanbase, and if she were to make it, she would have potential to do some damage in the wildcard round. I doubt she will, thowever, as Vaughn seems to have this in the bag, as I noted above.
3. Samara Brown– She is very talented, but in saves, your coach often matters, and John’s teams have struggled recently. Her knockout that wasn’t her best may also stay in people’s minds, even if she gave great performances in the first two rounds. I’m not sure how many fans she has either, so I’m assuming she will also be out.
4. Aaron Hines– Aaron is another battles contestant. He is good, but is the least memorable of the group despite being a 4-chair turn. Being on a stacked Kelly team didn’t help him, and his song choice for the battles with Gymani did him no favors. Plus, the last I checked his social media metrics were really low for the save from what I could see.