Be warned, Emmy experts: Not predicting HBO for a Best Drama Series nomination is going against history

Of Gold Derby’s 15 Emmy experts that have piped in with their initial predictions, only 11 believe HBO will earn a nomination for Best Drama Series. The other four, it turns out, are going against Emmy history. Year after year the TV academy showers the premium network with the most nominations, and 2017 should be no exception. Since there will only be two HBO dramas on the Emmy ballot for voters to choose from — “Westworld” and “The Leftovers” — we must take both seriously.

Ever since HBO first made a splash in the Best Drama Series race with “The Sopranos” in 1999, the pay-cabler has had at least one drama nominated every single year expect for 2008. That list (see below) includes two back-to-back victories for TV’s reigning champ “Game of Thrones.” However, the door is open for a new drama to break through this year since “GoT” is ineligible and does not return to HBO until July 16.

Technical marvel “Westworld,” with its A-list cast including Anthony Hopkins, Evan Rachel Wood and Thandie Newton, has a great shot at Emmy gold since it was recognized at many precursor awards ceremonies like the Golden Globes, Critics’ Choice and SAG Awards. And don’t count out “The Leftovers” for its buzzy final season that’s airing to rave reviews at the perfect time, right at the end of Emmy’s eligibility period.

Kerr Lordygan (Rotten Tomatoes) stands alone as the only Emmy expert at Gold Derby who thinks that both HBO dramas will be nominated. The other 10 experts derived from major media outlets that are predicting a bid for “Westworld” are Joyce Eng (TV Guide), Matthew Jacobs (Huffington Post), Lynette Rice (Entertainment Weekly), Robert Rorke (New York Post), Matt Roush (TV Guide Magazine), Paul Sheehan (Gold Derby), Peter Travers (Rolling Stone), Ken Tucker (Yahoo), Adnan Virk (ESPN) and Jarett Wieselman (Buzzfeed).

Emmy shakeup: Will ‘Stranger Things’ & ‘Westworld’ benefit from ‘Game of Thrones’ ineligibility?

Here’s a look at how HBO has fared in the Best Drama Series category over the past two decades, where it’s won four trophies from 22 nominations:

1999 nominee: “The Sopranos” (Season 1)

2000 nominee: “The Sopranos” (Season 2)

2001 nominee: “The Sopranos” (Season 3)

2002 nominee: “Six Feet Under” (Seasons 1-2)

2003 nominees: “Six Feet Under” (Season 3) and “The Sopranos” (Season 4)

2004 winner: “The Sopranos” (Season 5)

2005 nominees: “Deadwood” (Season 1) and “Six Feet Under” (Season 4)

2006 nominee: “The Sopranos” (Season 6A)

2007 winner: “The Sopranos” (Season 6B)

2008 nominee: None

2009 nominee: “Big Love” (Season 3)

2010 nominee: “True Blood” (Season 2)

2011 nominees: “Boardwalk Empire” (Season 1) and “Game of Thrones” (Season 1)

2012 nominees: “Boardwalk Empire” (Season 2) and “Game of Thrones” (Season 2)

2013 nominee: “Game of Thrones” (Season 3)

2014 nominees: “Game of Thrones” (Season 4) and “True Detective” (Season 1)

2015 winner: “Game of Thrones” (Season 5)

2016 winner: “Game of Thrones” (Season 6)

Predict the Emmy nominees now; change them until July 13

Be sure to make your Emmy predictions. Weigh in now with your picks so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our Emmy odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before nominees are announced on July 13. And join in the fierce debate over the 2017 Emmys taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our TV forums.

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