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Les Moonves Best Super Bowl Matchup (For TV Ratings) Is ...

1/18/2017 8:42 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

Two cities are gonna be real upset ... 'cause TV super boss Les Moonves -- the guy who runs CBS -- is telling TMZ Sports which two teams are the best Super Bowl matchup for TV ratings.

We got Moonves in L.A. with wife Julie Chen when we asked him which two teams mean the biggest bucks for the network broadcasting the game this year (it's FOX).

It's tough ... GB has a red-hot Aaron Rodgers, ATL has the best offense in the league, New England has this pretty boy QB people like ... and the Steelers give you unprecedented locker room access.

Don't be mad ... Les is just keepin' it real.

Donald Trump Lawyers Say We'll Rep Jailed Protesters for Free

1/18/2017 8:03 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

0118-innauguration-art-tmz-getty-4Lawyers are ready to represent demonstrators who get arrested for protesting Donald Trump's inauguration ... TMZ has learned.

The Partnership for Civil Justice, the National Lawyers Guild, D.C. Law Students in Court and other orgs have a game plan to hit the streets Friday, monitor police conduct, and provide free representation for many demonstrators who may get cuffed and taken to jail.

An official from the Partnership for Civil Justice tells TMZ, they are worried police will cross the line and arrest protesters who are exercising their constitutional right of free speech.

We're told the laws in D.C. have changed recently because of police illegally taking demonstrators into custody. Now, protesters cannot be arrested for demonstrating without a permit. Cops can't encircle groups of protesters merely to prevent an uprising, and cops can't go after an entire group because a handful of demonstrators violate the law.

One of the lawyers organizing the group says she thinks the D.C. cops may show more restraint now that the laws have changed, but she's worried about the 5,000 National Guard troops and 3,000 cops from various jurisdictions that might overreact.

We're told dozens of D.C. area lawyers have committed to free services during inauguration day.

Donald Trump Cuts Rock Legends from Inauguration To Save Cash for Charity

1/18/2017 1:00 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

0117_donald_trump_donation_compositeDonald Trump shut down negotiations to get a huge rock band at one of his Inaugural balls ... in order to cut costs and potentially save tens of millions for charity.

Inauguration sources tell us the Committee was close to landing a legendary group -- one that's in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame -- but when the President-elect found out they wanted more than $1 million for the gig he pulled the plug. We're told Trump implored the rockers to reduce their appearance fee -- but when they refused he told the Inaugural Committee to move on to other artists.

Mind you, there's plenty of dough. The Committee's reportedly received more than $90 million in donations, but we're told Trump instructed all involved to keep expenses in the low millions because whatever is left over is going to charity.

As we reported ... the Liberty Ball and Freedom Ball will now feature soul legend Sam Moore, as well as Grammy nominee Travis Greene. While organizers are tight-lipped about naming all the acts, our sources say you can expect an eclectic lineup -- ranging from dance to country to gospel -- and everyone's doing it for free or a greatly reduced rate.

We're told planners had only 2 directives: make it diverse and do it on the cheap.

D.L. Hughley MLK III Betrayed John Lewis With Trump Meeting

1/18/2017 12:50 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

D.L. Hughley isn't trying to hide his anger at MLK Jr.'s son for betraying Civil Rights leader Rep. John Lewis during his beef with Donald Trump ... in D.L.'s eyes, anyway.

D.L. definitely got some stuff off his chest when we asked about Martin Luther King III's meeting with the Prez-elect. He flat-out rips him for not calling out Trump for his Twitter rant against Rep. Lewis ... who walked shoulder to shoulder with MLK Jr. in the '60s.

As for why MLK III really had the meeting -- D.L. offers a mercenary theory.

The outrage is real.

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Melania Trump DC to NYC Commute Shorter than Yours

1/18/2017 12:40 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

0117-melania-barron-trump-commute-tmz-gettyMelania Trump will get from the White House to Trump Tower faster than your average big city commuter takes to get home -- and she's doing it by plane, chopper and automobile.

TMZ broke the story ... Melania will stay at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave Friday and Saturday night and then return to Trump Tower Sunday with Barron so he can continue his school year in NYC. It's going to be quite the whirlwind trip home.

Our sources tell us Melania will drive in a motorcade from the White House to Andrews AFB in Maryland: 20 mins. Then she'll hop on a 737 or a 757 (similar to Trump's jumbo jet) to NYC's LaGuardia Airport: 45 mins.

From there, they'll dodge bridge and tunnel traffic by taking a helicopter to Manhattan's Chelsea district: 15 mins. Their journey ends with another motorcade for the 2.5 mile ride to Trump Tower: 10 mins.

All told, Melania's looking at a 90 minute ride. No carpool necessary.

It's good to be the First Lady.

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Blake Griffin To Appear In 'White Men Can't Jump' Reboot ... Producer Hints

1/18/2017 12:30 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

Blake Griffin isn't just producing the "White Men Can't Jump" reboot, there's also a "high" chance he'll appear in it ... so says the guy writing the flick, Kenya Barris.

Kenya is a BIG DEAL in Hollywood -- he didn't just create "Black-ish" but also co-created "America's Next Top Model."

Kenya tells TMZ Sports he's got a great working relationship with Blake -- who's been dabbling in Hollywood when he's not killing it on the court. In fact, he credits Griffin for getting the project off the ground in the first place.

Kenya says he'd love to have the ORIGINAL guys -- Wesley Snipes and Woody Harrelson -- appear in the flick, but wants to make sure the movie feels different from the 1992 classic.

And the biggest difference? Kenya says white guys CAN jump now ... and are crushing dunk contests ... and that'll be a factor in the movie.

Mac Miller Move Over, Ariana ... I Got A New Puppy Love

1/18/2017 12:20 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

0117-mac-miller-tmz-01Mac Miller's gf, Ariana Grande, better hide her Louboutins ... the rapper has a new addition with sharp, destructive little teeth.

Sources close to Mac tell us he picked up a new pooch -- a 3-month-old pit mix he's named Myron. We're told Mac got him Sunday after seeing the pup in the window of Wylder's Holistic Pet Center & Rescue in Studio City.

Easy to see why Mac scooped him up -- the dog's really flippin' cute, and he'll be living it up. We're told Mac threw down about $1,200 for toys, food and treats.

Looks like Mac's finally recovering from having his last dog, Ralph, stolen 2 years ago. He offered a reward, but never got him back.

Keep Myron close, Mac ... he's too adorable.

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Philip Rivers Admits Move to L.A. 'Has Been Tough'

1/17/2017 5:19 PM PST
EXCLUSIVE

Real talk from Chargers QB Philip Rivers who didn't try and sugarcoat how the move from San Diego to L.A. has affected him ... telling TMZ Sports, "It's been tough for all of us."

Rivers was on his way into "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" (welcome to Hollywood!) when he told us why he'll miss San Diego ... his home for the past 13 years.

He also hopes his fans down in S.D. will make the trip up to continue to support the team. 

As for a possible acting career now that he's in Tinseltown ... Philip says don't bet on it.

Donald Trump It's Fish Or Beef ... At Fancy Donors' Dinner

1/17/2017 2:52 PM PST
EXCLUSIVE

0117-donald-trump-dinner-tmz-07The folks who donated big to Donald Trump's presidential campaign will have one simple question to answer come dinnertime -- fish or beef?

Trump's hosting the Chairman's Global Dinner in D.C. Tuesday night ... where donors who spent top dollar for his campaign will get treated to an exclusive black-tie dinner, and 2 entree options: mustard glazed black cod or filet mignon.

TMZ has obtained a copy of the menu, and it includes side dishes like carrot ribbon salad and champignons -- fancy for mushrooms. For dessert, they're serving Baked Alaska cakes with "fresh" raspberries.

Winos have 2 reds and 2 whites from which to choose. Cheers!

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Chael Sonnen To Ronda Rousey: Let Mayweather Train You!

1/17/2017 2:21 PM PST
EXCLUSIVE

MMA legend Chael Sonnen says Ronda Rousey should DEFINITELY take Floyd Mayweather's offer and work with the boxing legend on her striking ... cause hey, she might actually learn something! 

As we previously reported, Mayweather says he's down to help Ronda out if she'd give him a chance ... despite the fact they've publicly feuded for years.

Sonnen joined the guys on the "TMZ Sports" TV show (airs Tuesday night on FS1) and explained why Ronda should forget the war and get in the ring with Floyd.

He does issue this warning ... just because Floyd's a great boxer doesn't mean he'll be a great coach.

But hell, at this point it couldn't hurt.

Donald Trump Featured Entertainers Booked But Under Wraps

1/17/2017 10:33 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

0117-donald-trump-walter-washington-convention-center-03Donald Trump's inauguration committee has booked multiple performers to sing at 2 inaugural balls, but the committee is not releasing their names for fear they will get intense blowback and back out.

Sources connected to the inauguration tell us the 2 events are the Freedom Ball and the Liberty Ball, both of which will take place at the D.C. Walter E. Washington Convention Center.

The committee, we're told, now knows the drill. Performers like Jennifer Holliday accept the invite but then get cold feet after fans and others go on the attack. So the committee is doing everything possible to keep the names under wraps.

We're told Trump will attend and speak at both balls and do a "first dance" with Melania.

As we reported, Paul Anka was going to sing a modified, stylized version of "My Way" for the first dance, but had to back out because of an ongoing child custody trial.

Tickets, we're told, will go on sale for $50 a pop.

Plies Busted, Baby Arrested for DUI

1/17/2017 11:10 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

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Plies ran off on da plug twice, but couldn't outrun cops ... 'cause he just got busted for DUI.

The Florida rapper was arrested early Tuesday morning and booked into the Hillsborough County Jail for allegedly being messed up behind the wheel.

Law enforcement sources tell TMZ they slapped on the cuffs after Plies was pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence.

He was released on a $500 bond the same day. Sounds like he wanted to get back to vibin' at the Ritz-Carlton.

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Betty White 95 Years Young Today ... Working on Her Birthday!

1/17/2017 9:47 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

0117_betty_white_birthday_composite-2Betty White hit 95 today and she's still going strong, doing what she's best known for ... working her butt off in Hollywood.

Sources close to Betty tell TMZ ... she's preparing for a guest spot on the sitcom "Young & Hungry" on Freeform TV. So, instead of relaxing on her bday, we're told she's doing a table read and running around on set. Impressive.

As for Tuesday night, our sources say Betty has very low-key plans ... just a small get-together with friends. We're jealous of those friends.

Happy birthday, golden girl!

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