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Tom Cotter preps for 'America's Got Talent' finals
Rockland County's Tom Cotter will have one last opportunity to laugh all the way to the bank tonight -- the Stony Point stand-up comedian will make his final bid to win "America's Got Talent."
In the last round of the NBC reality-TV competition, Cotter will face off against the crafty canine act of Olate Dogs, the larger-than-life music theatrics of William Close and his Earth Harp, the child-sized dance pros of the Untouchables, the choreographed sand art of Joe Castillo and the splashy, art-dance fusion of David Garibaldi and his CMYK's.
"Dear Lord, Please don't let me suck tonight," Cotter tweeted Wednesday morning. "Amen."
On Tuesday, he took a more grateful tone on his "AGT" Facebook page: "No matter what happens tomorrow night, it has been a privilege and an honor to perform for America this season. Thanks."
Cotter advanced to the finals on Aug. 29 when the local broadcast of the results show was bumped because of preseason football. A day earlier, he delivered on a two-minute set on a topic that Howie Mandel selected from a list of eight — mere seconds before Cotter started his act.
Voters will decide who wins the competition after Wednesday night's one-hour NBC broadcast at 9 p.m. EST. The winner will be announced during Thursday's two-hour season finale, which begins at 8 p.m. and will feature performances by Justin Bieber, Blue Man Group, Ne-Yo and Green Day.
From the beginning, Cotter has considered himself an underdog, according to a July 3 blog post on his "AGT" page. "Comedians rarely make it out of the Vegas round, so I'm delighted to still be in play, but with each step forward comes more pressure, [intensity], and expectations," reads the post. "I work pretty well under pressure, and I've been at this for a long time, so I'll just do what I do, and hope for the best."
But "AGT" judges Howard Stern, Sharon Osbourne and Howie Mandel have considered him a favorite from the beginning. Stern, who kicked off his professional radio career in Briarcliff Manor, said on his radio show Monday that he could see Cotter, Close or Olate Dogs winning the whole thing.
That same day, the shock jock also used his radio platform to reject the notion of a conflict of interest because he and Cotter are represented by the same agency, Don Buchwald and Associates. Stern said "AGT" knew about that from the beginning, and that he doesn't stand to gain anything if Cotter wins the grand prize of $1 million and the chance to headline a show in Las Vegas.
Who deserves to win this season of "America's Got Talent"? Vote in the poll and explain your answer in the comments section!