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[SPOILER] Made a Coach Cry & Got 2 Steals After Singing "All of Me" During Knockout

The Knockouts are heating up and there's only one Steal left!

By Cassidy Ward

You can count on Kamalei Kawa’a to bring the emotion every time he hits the stage on The Voice Season 25. His performance of “Redemption Song” by Bob Marley and the Wailers earned him a Two-Chair Turn during the Blinds, and he won the Battle against Gabriel Goes with his performance of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” On Monday night's show, he went up against Maddi Jane in the Knockout round.

How to Watch

Watch The Voice Mondays and Tuesdays at 8/7c on NBC and next day on Peacock. 

RELATED: Why Kamalei Kawa’a’s “Spiritual” Cover of “Redemption Song” Blew Away the Coaches

In the Knockouts, two artists go head-to-head singing songs of their choosing. It’s an opportunity to select material that highlights their strengths, but it also means the Coaches might end up judging wildly different performances. Jane went with something high-energy, “New Rules” by Dua Lipa, while Kamalei settled on a subtler selection, “All of Me” by John Legend.

Kamalei Kawa’a Sings “All of Me” by John Legend on The Voice Knockouts

Kamalei Kawa'a performs onstage during The Voice Season 25 Episode 12

Singing a song by one of the Coaches is a risky move, but for Kawa’a, it just made sense. “This song means a lot to me because this is the first song that I sang for my wife,” Kawa’a said. “She changed the whole path of my life. If I didn’t meet her 10 years ago, I wouldn’t be here. This song is a good representation of who I want to be as an artist.”

Kawa’a honed the song during rehearsals with Jane, Coach Chance the Rapper, and Season 25 Mega Mentor Keith Urban. “To hear a John song not feel like John is such a huge feat,” Chance said, before leaving Kawa’a and Jane with a final piece of advice. “I would sing like ‘even if Chance doesn’t pick me, one of the other Coaches would be stupid not to steal me.” It’s advice they both took to heart.

Jane was first to the stage. She cranked the energy to 11 and kept it there, setting the tone. It was an undeniably good performance; Jane totally commanded the stage. You have to be pretty good to have made it this far. After a bombastic opening act, Hawa’a stepped under the spotlight and offered something decidedly different. Where Jane can almost compel you to dance, Kawa’a will bring you to tears.

There’s something alluring about Kawa’a’s voice that’s difficult to pin down because it’s subtle by design. It was apparent in the opening lines of “All of Me,” restrained when it would have been easy to go hard, even expected. It brought a disarming gentleness to his performance that reeled you in, like you we're expecting him to crush a sonic grand slam but he bunted instead, and it forced you to draw closer. The performance earned him a standing ovation from Coach Legend and Coach Shay Mooney.

Kawa’a Loses the Knockout but Earns a Double Steal

Kamalei Kawa'a appears in Season 25 Episode 7 of The Voice

“Thank you for singing my song,” Legend said. “I’m known for being a bit tough on people covering my songs, but I was just really into your version, it was beautiful. The whole demeanor with which you carry yourself, with gratitude in your spirit, we feel that and it comes through in your voice.”

Legend had plenty of positive comments for Jane as well, and he casually mentioned having a Steal ready for whomever Chance didn’t pick. Indeed, Chance looked almost sick to his stomach at the choice he had to make, and it didn’t shake out well for Kamalei. Despite a heart-wrenching performance, it wasn’t enough to overcome Jane’s star power.

RELATED: "Totally Opposite" Kamalei Kawa’a & Gabriel Goes' Hawaiian Sing-Off Lit Up the Battles

Fortunately, Legend made good on his offer and smashed his Steal button, followed quickly by Reba McEntire. By then, the combined emotion in the air from Kamalei’s performance and recent loss had pushed Reba to tears. “The greatest singers in the world sometimes don’t touch my heart, but you’ve got a big heart, and you share it with people,” Reba said, drying her eyes.

Legend, however, was sitting smugly by, confident in his ability to win Kamalei over, thanks to their shared love for Legend’s music. “This would be the most poetic outcome for this moment,” Legend said. In the end, Kamalei agreed and accepted a spot on Team Legend, avoiding elimination for at least another week.

Catch new episodes of The Voice Mondays at 8/7c on NBC and next day on Peacock.