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After America's Got Talent's Mayyas Dance Group Won Season 17, Host Terry Crews Shared How Close The Vote Actually Was

Mayyas in the America's Got Talent Season 17 finale
(Image credit: NBC)

Spoilers ahead for the Season 17 finale of America’s Got Talent

Season 17 of America’s Got Talent has come to an end, and the two-hour finale brought back AGT icons like ventriloquist Darci Lynne Farmer as well as familiar faces like comedian Lace Larrabee before host Terry Crews started eliminating acts. The competition was stiff, and it felt like anybody’s game when the top eleven were narrowed down to the top three of pole dancer Kristy Sellars, country music singer Drake Milligan (who brought back a fan-favorite song), and golden buzzer-winning dance group Mayyas. Following a suspenseful couple of minutes near the end, Crews broke the big news: after a close vote, Mayyas were the Season 17 champions!

The Mayyas Are The Season 17 Champions

Even though the final eleven was stacked with incredibly talented performers, the all-female Lebanese dance group taking the top prize wasn’t a huge shocker. Sofia Vergara gave them her golden buzzer after their audition (and they ranked as the most likely golden buzzer winner to take the top prize). Comprised of around 40 women of different ages from Lebanon, they rose above a lot of challenges to earn the $1 million and Las Vegas stage show prize. 

Simon Cowell dubbed Mayyas’ final performance “astonishing” and “global,” while Howie Mandel – who gave his golden buzzer to preteen singer Madison Taylor Baez – named them as his “favorite act ever” on America’s Got Talent. Heidi Klum had the foresight to say that it was “what a million-dollar act looks like.” As for Sofia Vergara? She said that “their act was spectacular and gave me goosebumps” from the first moment she saw them. 

This group winning wasn’t the biggest surprise ever to hit primetime, but how close was the vote? Terry Crews shared some insight with CinemaBlend and other outlets following the finale. 

How Close Was The Season 17 Finale Vote?

In an exciting development, the top three were three completely different kinds of performers. Singer Drake Milligan was one of the first contestants of the whole season to be advanced to the finals after the first week of qualifiers with his country song “Kiss Goodbye All Night,” while Kristy Sellars took pole dancing to an entirely unexpected new level with her acrobatics combined with projectors and storytelling. And then, of course, there were the Mayyas dancers. When Terry Crews joined Heidi Klum and Howie Mandel in speaking with press following the finale, the host shared that Mayyas didn’t win by a huge margin. He said: 

I gotta say one thing about tonight. The fact that Drake Milligan, who had two number one hits, was third place will show you how close the vote was. You know what I mean? Oh, it was really close, man. That's the thing – because any one of these acts could have won it all, which is crazy.

Terry Crews didn’t provide exact figures, but it sounds like it came down to the wire about whether Mayyas, Kristy Sellars, or Drake Milligan would be named champion by the end of the night. If ever there was proof that even the very best acts of a season need all of their fans to come out and vote, it’s the news that Milligan and Sellars came close! 

Of course, I don’t know that many people could argue that anybody deserved it more than Mayyas. They not only stood out from the pack this season, but are incredibly original even in the grand scheme of a show that has run for nearly twenty seasons already. Their dances are choreographed down to every detail and performed with so much talent and grace that I can imagine their stage show will be a big hit in Vegas. 

Take a look at their final performance that clinched their win:

While this was the end of the latest season of America’s Got Talent (and you can always revisit the highs and lows streaming with a Peacock subscription), there is plenty to look forward to in the not-too-distant future. The fall TV premiere season is approaching, so be sure to check out our 2022 TV premiere schedule to start planning ahead!

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.