2018 CMT Music Awards: 10 Best, Worst and WTF Moments

From the royal silliness of the pre-taped opening to Kelsea Ballerini's marvelous back-to-basics performance

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Worst: Backstreet Boys Steal a Performance Slot
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Worst: Backstreet Boys Steal a Performance Slot

Let's be clear: Backstreet Boys are not a country act. Like, not by any metric. No amount of signal boosts from Florida Georgia Line can change this. Not even a cowboy hat on the meticulously manscaped head of A.J. McLean. Maybe CMT giving the boy-turned-man band minutes of dedicated screen time on their own and not as collaborators with an established country act would make sense were they launching a country crossover record or something. But until that happens (and clearly it might), Backstreet Boys are gonna Backstreet Boys: which means sweet harmonies and graciously, uh, in-sync choreography to their new single "Don't Go Breaking My Heart." It's not that BSB didn't nail a perfectly formidable performance of an actually pretty decent pop banger, and you can't blame them for seizing the chance to promote themselves on national television. It's that when the reunited Sugarland or the always electric Keith Urban aren't performing on a country awards show, why is there time for this? A.G.

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