Rihanna is often known for her successful collaborations with other artists, so it’s no surprise that she’s the most nominated singer at the MTV Video Music Awards for Best Collaboration. She has contended five times, tied with Beyonce. But Rihanna hasn’t won the award yet. That will change this year according to our predictions. She’s the frontrunner to win as a featured artist on DJ Khaled‘s “Wild Thoughts” along with Bryson Tiller. Watch their video above.
Rihanna previously contended in 2011 (“All of the Lights” with Kanye West and Kid Cudi), 2014 (“The Monster” with Eminem) and twice in 2016 (“This is What You Came For” with Calvin Harris and “Work” with Drake). Now she’s up for “Wild Thoughts,” which has the advantage of peaking at the right time: it has been the number-two song in the country for six weeks. It gets leading VMA odds of 3/2 based on support from 12 of our Top 24 Users who got the highest scores predicting last year’s VMAs, 12 of our All-Star Top 24 who got the highest scores when you combine the last two years’ predictions, and two out of our three Gold Derby Editors who cover awards year-round.
But support is divided in this category. Ranked second in our predictions with 12/5 odds is “Closer” by The Chainsmokers featuring Halsey. “Closer” is the biggest hit in this race having topped the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart for 12 weeks last year, but was that too long ago for fans to still support it now? Possibly, but four of our Top 24 Users and eight All-Stars think it will pull off an upset.
Next up with 3/1 odds is “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever” by Zayn and Taylor Swift. The combined fan bases of those two artists might be tough to beat. Zayn was a member of the boy band One Direction, which never lost at the VMAs, and Swift is a six-time winner including Video of the Year in 2015 for “Bad Blood.” So six of our Top 24 Users and four All-Stars predict they’ll win this race.
Farther behind in fourth place with 9/2 odds is “Feels” by Calvin Harris featuring Pharrell Williams, Katy Perry, and Big Sean. The combined fan support for those artists might be substantial. Perry previously won this award for “E.T.” featuring Kanye West, and Harris and Williams are both previous nominees. But only one of our Top 24 Users is predicting them to win.
Also with 9/2 odds is “We Don’t Talk Anymore” by Charlie Puth featuring Selena Gomez. This is the second nomination for Puth in this race following a 2015 bid for “See You Again” with Wiz Khalifa. It’s the first for Gomez, but she has previous nominations in other categories including a 2013 Best Pop Video win for “Come and Get It.” Gomez is quite popular with audiences in general, having recently won Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist at the 2016 American Music Awards. But “We Don’t Talk” only has support from one Editor and one of our Top 24.
Rounding out the category with 5/1 odds is “Broccoli” by D.R.A.M. featuring Lil Yachty. This year marks the first nominations for D.R.A.M. and Lil Yachty, who are also up for Best Hip-Hop Video for “Broccoli.” None of our Editors or top users are predicting them to win this race.
What do you think? There’s still time to make or edit your predictions before the winners are announced on Sunday, August 27.