[artist id="2427571"]Wiz Khalifa[/artist] is the first to tell you that his base of supporters, the Taylor Gang, is one of the most powerful entities in hip-hop. And over the past month, they showed out in force for him in the voting for MTV News' "Hottest Breakthrough MC of 2010." Wiz was crowned the winner in the poll-based contest on Sunday.
Nearly 70,000 votes were cast for the Pittsburgh MC, giving him a tally that was almost twice that of runner-up Nicki Minaj, who clocked a little less than 40,000 votes. Nicki's Team Minaj always makes an impact when it comes to the Queen Barbie and it was no different for this event. Meanwhile, Travis Porter, Diggy Simmons and J. Cole rounded out the top-five finalists. Each collected more than 30,000 votes, running neck and neck with one another.
Travis Porter have their own major following, the Differenter Gang, and those fans helped the Porter trio go from #5 to #3 within the last two weeks. Simmons, the son of Run-DMC's Reverend Run, made the most dramatic leap of any of the nominees in the initial lineup of 20 contenders. The 15 year-old held steady in the middle of the pack throughout most of the voting, but jumped into the top five in the last week of voting, knocking the talented Detroit swag savant Big Sean; Sean finished in the sixth slot. In the last two days of voting, the Simmons' tireless fans boosted him and bumped J. Cole down one spot from four to five.
"Hottest Breakthrough MCs of 2010" was a project started in late June, when members of the MTV News brain trust came up with 20 names. These MCs represented artists who we felt were not just on the rise, but had the potential to make a major impact as superstars in the industry. Once the original list was compiled, the 20 contenders were announced to the public and presented for voting.
Beginning last Monday, on July 19, the top-five "Hottest Breakthrough" finalists were rolled out (in no particular order — we didn't want to risk ruining the surprise). And on Sunday, during the "Sucker Free Summit," Wiz took a victory lap as the Breakthrough champ.
"Hottest Breakthrough MC of 2010" Poll Results:
1. Wiz Khalifa: 66,054 votes
2. Nicki Minaj: 37,519 votes
3. Travis Porter: 35,950 votes
4. Diggy Simmons: 34,218 votes
5. J. Cole: 32,759 votes
6. Big Sean: 27,193 votes
7. Curren$y: 21,657 votes
8. Tyga: 15,359 votes
9. Roscoe Dash: 11,517 votes
10. Donnis: 9,914 votes
11. Nipsey Hussle: 8,292 votes
12. Freddie Gibbs: 8,236 votes
13. Waka Flocka Flame: 5,034 votes
14. Trae Tha Truth: 4,441 votes
15. Jay Electronica: 4,256 votes
16. Yelawolf: 3,938 votes
17. Pac Div: 3,206 votes
18. Vado: 2,831 votes
19. Jay Rock: 1,311 votes
20. Pill: 865 votes
We'll have lots more from the "Hottest Breakthroughs" in the coming days — thanks to everyone who voted, tweeted and otherwise got involved! And keep an eye out for MTV News' "Hottest MCs in the Game" later this year!