This season, the coaches pit a trio of their singers against one another in the 3-Way Knockout, where they perform a song of their choosing in the hopes of making it through to the Playoff Rounds.
For Team Gwen, that meant Tanner Massey took the stage to perform Shawn Mendes’ “In My Blood,” Rudi gave a soulful rendition of “Smokin Out the Window” by Silk Sonic and Chechi Sarai covered Michael Jackson’s “Never Can Say Goodbye.”
The coaches were impressed by each of the performances, but the decision came down to Gwen.
“Chechi, I think for you as an artist, you’re unique,” she praised. “I thought you did a really great job.”
As for Rudi, she noted, “You have this crazy vocal ability. It’s ridiculous what you can do. You’re one of the strongest on Team Gwen, I love working with you.”
However, Gwen admitted that her team’s newest member, Tanner — who she stole from Team Niall during the Battle Rounds — had made her question things.
“You are able to channel emotion in lyrics, and you are 19 years old,” she told the young singer. “It’s crazy to think what you’re gonna do in the future.”
Gwen ultimately names Tanner the winner of the Knockout — but not before declaring that she “has a plan.” The plan turns out to be saving Rudi, but fellow coaches John Legend and Reba McEntire throw a wrench in things when they also hit their buttons to steal Rudi!
“I’m shaking!” Gwen exclaimed. “Just focus on me for a second, Rudi. Do not look at anywhere but straight towards your coach. I am your coach. I’m your favorite… I feel like if you go with anyone else, I will die!”
“I do love your vocal, and I’d love to have you on my team,” Reba said.
“You’re such a great performer and I would be very happy to coach you,” John chimed in, telling the singer he wants to put her in the best position.
Thankfully, Gwen lived to coach another day, as Rudi chose to follow her heart and continue the “connection” she has with her coach on Team Gwen!
ET spoke with Gwen ahead of this season’s Battles, where she opened up about how surreal it is to return to The Voice without hubby Blake Shelton by her side. The Cowboy departed the NBC singing competition earlier this year, after 23 seasons.
“It feels kind of like [my] first season, before I knew he existed,” she shared. “It’s kind of weird, but it’s also like, I’m having so much fun.”
“Like, I’m only here because it’s fun,” Gwen added. “The coaching and actually getting to know your team after the Blinds is my favorite thing, ’cause it’s like, the dream’s there.”
She admitted, however, that it is a little nerve-wracking to look to Blake’s chair and instead see The Voice‘s newest coach — the Queen of Country herself.
Of how Reba’s handled her first season so far, Gwen recalled the Blind Auditions with a laugh.
“She did great. She didn’t have to do anything,” she remembered. “She’d be like, ‘I think you were great. I’d love to have you on my team,’ and then they’d be like, ‘I pick you!'”
The Voice airs Mondays at 8 p.m. PT/ET and Tuesdays at 9 p.m. PT/ET on NBC.