Carrie Underwood knows exactly how Phillip Phillips and Jessica Sanchez are feeling right about now. The former "American Idol" champ is a long way from her nail-biting days of waiting for the finale of the show, but she can sympathize with how the season 11 finalists are sweating it as they await their last chance to win America over on Tuesday night's performance finale.
And, like every former "Idol" who walks a red carpet in the days and weeks leading up to the big reveal, MTV News just had to ask her who she's betting on and which singer she thinks has the best chance at a career. "Fifty-fifty," she said when MTV caught up with Underwood outside the Billboard Music Awards on Sunday night of the odds that a woman would come out on top after a four-year drought. "There's only two left, whatever will happen will be good. I think she and Phillip ... They're both so different musically that I think both of them have very bright futures ahead of them."
After 90 million viewers voted last week in a nationwide referendum that sent promising R&B belter Joshua Ledet home, Sanchez and Phillips will have three more chances to pad their voting totals in advance of Wednesday's two-hour season finale. On Tuesday night, they will each revisit their favorite performance of the year, as well as singing a tune chosen by show co-creator Simon Fuller and revealing the winner and runner-up's signature original songs.
Thanks to his good looks, easy-going personality and studied refusal to listen to anyone but himself, Phillips has cruised through the competition so far with nary a stumble. He's stuck to his plaid shirt and jeans, guitar-strumming, foot-shuffling jam band persona, which has led some "Idol" watchers to dub him the latest in a long line of "WGWG," or "white guys with guitars," who've taken the crown the past four years.
Sanchez, 16, however, has the chance to become the youngest and most improbable "Idol" champ ever. The dainty high school singer with the titanic diva voice is the only contestant in show history to rebound from a potential elimination and judge's save to the finale. Whereas Phillips is low-key and tends to stick to acoustic guitar jams, Sanchez favors the kind of big, showy R&B numbers that used to rule the day on "Idol."
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