Kobe Bryant Childhood Hoop Set To Hit Auction ... After Penn. Home Sells

The hoop Kobe Bryant molded his jump shot on as a child is set to hit the auction block ... and it can be all yours -- if you've got a small fortune lying around.

TMZ Sports has learned that just before Bryant's childhood home in Pennsylvania sold for $810K this month ... the seller decided to pull the backboard and the rim from the listing after the buyer wasn't interested in paying more for its inclusion.

Instead, we're told the seller gave it to an acquaintance who handed it over to John Romani at Sales By Helen to have it sold at auction.

While it's unclear how much the hoop might fetch from bidders ... Romani tells us it wouldn't surprise him at all if the piece soared into six figures.

As we've been reporting, Kobe memorabilia has been in ultra-high demand since his tragic death ... with fans paying astronomical prices for signed basketballs, jerseys of anything else Kobe touched.

In fact, a signed piece of the hardwood from Staples Center that Kobe played on in his final NBA game recently sold at auction for more than $600,000!

As for the hoop from Kobe's Pennsylvania home, Romani says the plan is for it to enter Heritage's Platinum Night Auction on Feb. 20.

And, Romani says there will be a bunch more Bryant memorabilia collected from the house that will join the hoop there.

Romani tells us a Michael Jordan Sports Illustrated magazine addressed to Kobe will be sold. Other items, like Duke basketballs Kobe had when he was being recruited by the Blue Devils, will be included as well.

Romani says there's even some Italian magazines Kobe owned ... and one book that Kobe appeared to have written on as a kid.

Bidding begins in just a few weeks ... hope ya got enough cash if you want it all!

Kate Gosselin It's Kate Plus $1.3 Million Now!!! Sells Reality Show Home

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Kate Gosselin is saying goodbye to the house where her 8 children grew up ... often in front of reality TV cameras.

Kate's found a buyer for her 23-acre estate in Pennsylvania, which became the setting of the TLC show "Jon & Kate Plus 8" after the couple bought the 6-bed, 7-bath pad in 2008 for $1.1 million.

The show later became just "Kate Plus 8" after she and Jon divorced, but she continued to live on the gorgeous property with her twins and sextuplets -- who, BTW, are now 20 and 16 years old respectively! Feeling old?

As you can see ... the 7,591-square-foot home -- about 70 miles outside Philly -- comes with a swimming pool and picturesque scenery. The pool also has a waterslide, and there's a nice patio and outdoor spa and kitchen.

The inside of the house features a chef's kitchen, fireplace, game room and a separate "man cave."

And, shout out to Jon ... the 3-car garage has its own private living quarters -- the perfect spot for an ex-spouse to crash, if needed.

The sale is pending, so not officially sold yet ... but it's just a matter of days before the $1.3 mil deal is finalized. Joey Frey of RE/MAX handled the listing.

Steelers Eric Ebron Cops Custom Diamond Chains ... to Honor His 2 Sons!

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Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Eric Ebron is representin' his sons in an iced out kinda way ... with 2 brand new diamond chains with their names on it!

The 27-year-old is a proud father of 2 boys -- 3-year-old Oliver and 1-year-old Aiden -- and decided to have some pieces made up in their honor.

So, Ebron hit up Ari the Jeweler in Manhattan to get two personalized Cuban links -- and Ari delivered!

NICE ICE!
Ari The Jeweler

We're told each chain features 40 carats worth of VVS diamonds and 300 grams of gold!

Unsure on how much E plunked down for the duo, but we're told they're valued around $65k each!

Ebron can definitely afford to splurge -- he's reportedly made over $31 mil in his 7 seasons in the NFL.

Foo Fighters Set to Play Virtual Ticketed Show ... Helps Out Hurting Music Biz

The Foo Fighters are the latest big-name act to help out the crumbling live music industry -- the guys are about to put on a virtual show ... and the price of a ticket is worth its weight in gold for many folks hurting behind-the-scenes.

Dave Grohl and his bandmates are performing live Saturday from the Roxy in Hollywood -- and while you won't be able to join them in person ... you can watch them from your TV set at home for a low price of just $15, which gives you exclusive access to the intimate set.

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If you're looking for a reason to tune in besides catching a sick band rock out -- here's one ... part of the proceeds collected here are going to an org called the Sweet Relief Musicians Fund, which collects cash for musicians, stagehands, venues, and other music industry workers who've taken a hard hit during this pandemic, with many being out of work.

Fact is, a lot of these guys and gals are in dire straits these days ... and they can use any help they can get, especially as these new stimulus checks continue to stall out in D.C.

Enter the Foo Fighters, not to mention a TON of other artists and bands who've stepped up and lent their talents to this cause. You might've recently heard about a multi-day virtual festival called Save Our Stages, which saw performances from Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Dave Matthews, Dillon Francis, The Roots, YG, Reba McEntire and even ... yes, the Foo Fighters (again).

The fact the boys are back for a second dose just shows how much they care about this -- as much as we talk about restaurants, movies and other industries being affected in this crisis ... music is often forgotten.

Sweet Relief is one of many looking to lend a hand ... and they're also taking donations outside of Saturday's show -- which starts at 5 PM PT, and can be accessed here.

Donald Trump No Presidency, No Prob ... $1 Million Just To Open His Trap!!!

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Donald Trump's got a new way to pay off his massive debt after leaving the Oval Office ... there are huge sums to be made for speaking engagements.

The 45th President of the United States would easily command upwards of $1 million to speak in front of crowds in America and overseas ... according to folks who help celebs get such deals. Trump could make even more abroad, where his booking fee could reach as high as $2 million.

Lots of famous folks get paid huge sums to speak, and Trump will soon be in high demand ... as will Melania and Ivanka, once the whole lot is out of the White House.

Heavy hitters in the biz tell us Melania will fetch between $75k and $125k to speak in the U.S. and between $125k and $175k abroad. Those estimates assume she stays married to DT, and we're told they would increase if she ever divorces him or writes a tell-all book. How's that for added incentive?!?

Ivanka, we're told, will command the most among Trump's kids ... in part because she was already a published author with her own product lines before entering the White House. Ivanka should rake in between $75k to $100k to speak in the States, compared to $100k to $125k internationally.

Sorry, Don Jr., Eric and Tiffany ... we're told they're only gonna rake in about $75k to speak in the U.S. and there's unlikely to be an international market for them. It's peanuts compared to papa.

Trump will be an easy sell in America, where over 72 million people just voted for him ... and industry insiders expect him to mostly appear at Republican or right-wing events. Internationally, we're told Trump will likely have his first few speaking engagements in places where he's got lots of friends, like Israel and Russia.

The speaking engagements for Trump and his family will likely be very thick on NDA's, we're told, and the agreements would allow Trump to prevent speeches from being recorded.

The money's there for speaking engagements, but we're told PR firms and talent agencies aren't lining up to sign the Trumps as clients ... they fear it would piss off existing clients and spark a mass exodus.

Trump loves the bottom line, and he's also gonna like this ... we're told he will get first-class accommodations and golf trips wherever he gets paid to speak.

Life after the presidency doesn't sound so bad after all.

Costco Come for the Toilet Paper ... Stay to Buy a Private Jet!!!

Next time you're at Costco, after you buy the obligatory 50 rolls of paper towels, you might want to plunk down a small fortune at checkout for a private jet membership.

Yep, it's a sign of the terrible times. Costco is hawking access to the world of private jets for the very reasonable cost of $17,500.

It's another acknowledgment during COVID times ... lots of people are afraid to hop on a commercial jet with hundreds of passengers.

Here's how it works. Costco hooked up with Wheels Up, a charter jet company offering 1- year memberships. The company touts its service as being as easy as ride-sharing.

So here's what you get for $17.5k -- in addition to the 1-year membership, you get a $3,500 Costco Shop Card and $4,000 in-flight credits. The package includes a 1-year membership to Inspirato, which offers luxury vacation rentals.

Wheels Up has more than 300 planes in its fleet and 1,250 more with partner companies, so there's access to an aircraft pretty much year-round.

All they need to do now is serve COSTCO dogs on the plane, and we're good to go.

Vinny from 'Jersey Shore' Drops $3.5 Million for New L.A. Crib!!!

Vinny Guadagnino's got a reason to fist pump -- a new place to get all of his GTL done after dropping a few mil on a new L.A. pad.

The "Jersey Shore" star dropped a cool $3,510,000 for a slick crib above Sunset Plaza in the Hollywood Hills. The 3 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom crib features breathtaking panoramic views overlooking West Hollywood, Century City and all the way out to the Pacific Ocean.

Vinny's new 2,685 sq. ft. home is pretty private too ... sitting on a cul-de-sac street.

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Each room includes incredible views ... especially the soaking tub in the master suite. There's an awesome picture window showcasing a pool, quaint courtyard and city views.

Seriously ... the place is definitely land mine proof. True GTLers know what's up.

Tomik Der of Ramsey Shilling & Associates held the listing and Feroz Taj of The Agency repped Vinny.

Bubba Watson COVID's Made Golf More Popular Than Ever ... 'All-Time High'

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SAFETY FIRST
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PGA superstar Bubba Watson says golf is BOOMING in popularity right now all because of COVID -- and it's so huge, equipment companies can barely keep up with the demand!

"Golf is at an all-time high because of the virus," Watson tells TMZ Sports ... "There's more people playing the game, there's more equipment being sold."

Watson isn't trying to be insensitive -- he's just pointing out the facts ... people are looking for safe activities to do during the pandemic and golf checks a lot of those boxes since it's outdoors and you can easily social distance while playing.

Watson -- who's promoting the "Golf Clash" mobile game -- says even interest in golf VIDEO GAMES is through the roof right now.

In fact, Watson says golf equipment companies are "a little behind"  the demand -- and they're struggling to churn out enough product to keep everyone happy!

"They're trying to push through and it's hard to get components to make golf clubs. It's hard to get different golf equipment to be made because of some of the slow down."

Watson -- who's currently competing at The Masters -- even joked that for once Tiger Woods can't take all the credit for the massive spike in interest ... though the way Tiger is playing right now, golf might get another boom by the end of the weekend!

Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl 54 Ring Sells For OVER $70k ... In Online Auction

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Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs received their Super Bowl 54 rings a little over 2 months ago, and now one of the iced out rings just sold for BIG BUCKS at auction!!

The ring was originally given to Mike Weber -- a 23-year-old running back who was on the Chiefs practice squad last season -- before the blinged-out jewelry made its way to the block at Goldin Auctions.

The auction house would not disclose the final sale price ... but one big-time collector placed a bid for $70k.

The opening bid was $35,000.

Sure, it's a lot of cash ... but the ring is absolutely awesome. It features a bunch of super cool aspects to commemorate the Chiefs' championship.

It's made with 10 karat gold and contains 2 Lombardi Trophies made with marquee-cut diamonds ... and a Chiefs logo designed out of 60 diamonds.

But, it's not JUST gold and diamonds ... the ring also includes 16 rubies representing the teams 10 AFC West division titles and 6 playoff appearances under Andy Reid.

The perimeter of the ring top has 122 diamonds which represents 100 NFL seasons and the 22 playoff appearances in Chiefs’ franchise history.

The blinged-out jewelry also contains the name, number (#45) and signature -- inside the ring band -- of Weber ... who just signed on with the Packers' practice squad.

Unclear who dropped stacks of cash on the piece ... but if you're a football fan, it doesn't get much cooler than this ring.

President Trump No COVID Vaccine for You, NY!!! Cuomo: 'New Yorkers Are Not Gonna Get Bullied'

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BLAME IT ON CUOMO

4:27 PM PT -- Well, that was fast. Cuomo responded by essentially saying it's not up to POTUS which states get the vaccine ... adding, "I don't think the FDA is going to play games at this point. So I don't anticipate any real issue." Cuomo also seems to know the source of Trump's wrath ... but makes it crystal clear New Yorkers will NOT be bullied.

BIG BULLY
CNN

President Trump has surfaced with great news -- the whole country will be getting the COVID-19 vaccine next spring, unless you live in NY ... where all you're getting is screwed by the Trump v. Cuomo war.

The President made his first public remarks since the election, Friday at the White House ... and proudly announced Operation Warp Speed is ready to distribute Pfizer's vaccine as soon as it gets FDA approval. He's projecting delivery will begin in April.

Great news, right? Well, POTUS also served up a side dish of petty with the vaccine. He said NY state will NOT be getting the vaccine because Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he doesn't want it.

Trump was referring to comments the Gov. has made about not trusting a vaccine if the Trump administration rushes its approval. Well, The Prez is taking him at his word, and went on to rip Cuomo for his COVID-19 response in the Empire State.

The good news for NYers is there's still time for both men to squash the beef, and Trump did say everything could change if Cuomo calls and asks for the vaccine. Translation: Kiss the ring, then you'll get the meds.

However, the Governor's Office tells TMZ, "Trump has failed with his pandemic response, lied to the Americans about how bad it was when he knew otherwise & was fired by voters for his incompetence. Governor Cuomo is fighting to ensure the communities hit hardest by COVID get the vaccine."

Doesn't sound like an attempt to make peace.

The wild card, of course, is President-elect Joe Biden, who it appears WILL be in the Oval Office come April -- so, maybe Cuomo doesn't see a need to bow to Trump.

NO LOCKDOWN ON MY WATCH

While Trump did not take any questions from reporters, he did make one reference to the election, saying, "This administration will not be going to a lockdown. Who knows which administration it will be ... I guess time will tell."

It's the closest he's come to acknowledging defeat, but still ... NOT a concession speech.

Originally Published -- 1:56 PM PT

LaMelo Ball I'm A Fashion Designer Now ... Selling $120 Hoodies

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LaMelo Ball may be a Puma guy now, but he's still selling clothes at Big Baller prices -- launching his very own designer lifestyle clothing brand ... and it ain't cheap.

The youngest Ball Bro is one week from becoming a likely top 5 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft ... and he's already making serious business moves.

Dubbed "LaFrancé" -- Ball's middle name -- Melo is expanding his brand with black and white t-shirts, hoodies and socks featuring his name and logo ... and they're expensive as hell.

For instance -- the shirts come with a $70 price tag ... and the hoodies will setcha back $120.

And, if you've ever wanted to rep Melo on the balls of your feet, the socks are currently being sold for $20 a pair.

19-year-old Ball says the "Melo 2020" launch is only available for a limited time ... which might explain the price.

If you think those prices are steep, Melo says he actually LOWERED the cost after some more consideration.

"Outta the kindness of my heart and talkin wit my team I'm gone lower the price on some stuff to show love," Melo said Friday.

"cuz some people been a lil upset and i wanna see MOST of yaw happy ...  i'm playin all of yaw."

FWIW -- the site says each piece is "100% Hand-made with love in Los Angeles, CA, USA" ... and can you really put a price on love?!

Make your money, Melo!!

Kobe Bryant On Forbes List of 'Highest-Paid Dead Celebs' ... Earned $20 Mil

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Kobe Bryant is still a titan of industry -- even in death -- so says Forbes which just ranked him #6 on its "Highest-Paid Dead Celebrities of 2020" list.

The NBA legend passed away on Jan. 26 in a helicopter crash -- but in the months that followed, his estate pulled in an estimated $20 million in earnings, Forbes says.

The main source of income is from shoes and apparel -- with Nike reportedly raking in around $250 mil annually from Mamba items.

In addition to sneakers, Kobe's 2018 autobiography, "The Mamba Mentality: How I Play" sold more than 300,000 copies this year --TEN TIMES the number of copies it did in 2019, Forbes says.

There's more ... after the Lakers won the NBA championship in October, Bryant's jersey was the #2 seller for the organization, behind Finals MVP LeBron James.

As for the rest of the Forbes list ... Michael Jackson is still #1 with $48 mil in earnings in 2020. Dr. Seuss is #2 with $33 mil. Peanuts creator Charles Schulz is #3 with $32.5. Arnold Palmer is #4 with $25 million. And #5 is Elvis with $23 mil.

Elvis' estate has lost a ton of money this year because of the COVID pandemic -- tourism at his legendary home Graceland is a big moneymaker, but it's been hit hard by the shutdowns.

Unfortunately, there's another newcomer to the "Dead Celebs" list -- rapper Juice WRLD, who died back in Dec. 2019 at only 21. Forbes says his music sales spiked after his death, helping the estate bring in $15 mil.

Terence Crawford Dead Serious About Conor McGregor Fight ... 'Money Talks!'

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MAKE YOUR MOVE
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"They put that money up, hell yeah I'll go over there and fight him!"

That's boxing superstar Terence Crawford -- arguably the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world -- telling TMZ Sports he would seriously consider an MMA match with Conor McGregor.

So, why would the undefeated welterweight champ cross over into Conor's sport? Easy ...

Turns out, Crawford comes from a family of wrestlers and has some legit wrestling experience himself. He's very confident in his skills.

Plus, he doesn't think Conor's that big of a threat on the ground anyway!

"To keep it real, Conor's not a real good wrestler. He may kick the sh*t out of you. You gotta worry about them kicks to the head and them elbows more than him grabbing you."

"It'd be other things that you'd be having to worry about other than wrestling you."

Of course, if Conor wanted to stand up and turn it into a fistfight, the undefeated Crawford believes it would be a slaughter.

There's been talk about a possible Crawford vs. McGregor match for a while -- but Terence says he's seriously open to it.

"Conor is a big talent in the octagon and I'm a big talent in the boxing ring. Money talks. They put that money up, hell yeah I'll go over there and fight him!"

In the meantime, Crawford has a big fight coming up on Saturday -- taking on former champ Kell Brook in a WBO welterweight title bout.

ONE ROUND AT A TIME
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Crawford is a huge favorite -- but we spoke with Kell, and he ain't about to roll over.

34-year-old Brook is 39 and 2 as a pro -- with a win over Shawn Porter in 2014.

In fact, his only 2 losses were to some pretty great fighters -- Gennady Golovkin and Errol Spence.

Phil Collins I Do Not Stink!!! My Ex's Hygiene Claim is Just Extortion

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Phil Collins says his ex's accusation about him reeking like hell is a blatant lie, and a cheap attempt to smear his name to get millions out of him.

The famed hitmaker filed legal docs calling Orianne Cevey a liar after she claimed Phil became a hermit and completely secluded himself from the world. In docs, obtained by TMZ, Phil calls it "a litany of demonstrably false, immaterial, impertinent, scandalous and scurrilous allegations which have nothing to do with the legal claims in this case."

In short ... Phil says Orianne's allegations have a clear malicious motive ... trying to extort him. He claims she lied about his depression to cast doubt about his mental capacity all to "deliberately make sensationalized and/or false allegations in an effort to extort money" from him.

Phil says it's all either lies or gross exaggerations, pointing out that much of it is contradicted by the fact that he says he's currently preparing to tour with Genesis again after the pandemic passes.

TMZ broke the story ... Orianne's beefing with Phil claiming he's going back on his word to give her 50-50 ownership of the home he's now trying to evict her from. To that end ... Phil argues Orianne's lies have nothing to do with the issue of whether her claim that he ever made such a promise is true. Remember ... she also claimed he stopped brushing his teeth and was not capable of performing sexually.

Phil, in docs, asked, "What does this have to do with the case? Is the court going to hear evidence about the parties’ sex life or examine Phil Collins’ dental records, or get photographs of his wardrobe to decide if he verbally promised Mrs. Bates 50% of his Miami Beach mansion? Of course not.”

Tyga Responds to Landlord Suit Where's The Damage?!?

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2:05 PM PT -- Tyga's attorney, Mike Trauben, tells TMZ ... the landlord's claims are categorically frivolous and nothing more than a charade to get the rapper to give up on getting his security deposit back. Trauben also attached a letter purportedly from the property manager that says Tyga paid his rent on time, left the compound in great condition and that the rapper "would be more than welcome to rent from us again."

The "Rack City" rapper made his argument on Instagram with a series of stories asking, "Where's the damage?" The rapper's calling BS on a landlord's claims he trashed the place ... posting videos that show portions of a house in pristine condition. It's unclear when the videos were taken or if it's the house in question.

SPICK-AND-SPAN

Tyga's no stranger to lawsuits -- particularly over unpaid bills -- but he added a new wrinkle this time, according to his landlord who says he failed to pay rent AND trashed the pad.

The landlord is suing the rapper, claiming he stiffed them on $32K in rent when he left the place back in April, after renting it for about a year. But, that's not even the worst part.

In docs, obtained by TMZ, the landlord claims Tyga left gouges in the kitchen's white oak flooring ($27,650), damaged marble flooring and counters ($15,575) and damaged walls with murals and wallpaper ($103,160.25).

What's more ... the landlord claims Tyga installed a basketball hoop that damaged the driveway, and new locks that destroyed the entry door. The landlord says Tyga never had permission to install any of that stuff.

The landlord says he tried to settle this mess through mediation in May, but claims Tyga refused to play ball. He's now suing for breach of contract and wants more than $200K in damages.

Remember, Tyga was also sued in 2018 for failure to pay rent at a Bev Hills pad. So, ya gotta wonder, who keeps renting to this guy?

We've reached out to Tyga for comment, so far no word back.

Originally Published -- 12:30 AM PT

Noah Syndergaard Throwing Shirtless Missiles ... 8 Months After Tommy John Surgery

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BRINGING THE HEAT

Things are REALLY looking up for Mets fans ... just 2 days after their new owner promised to build a winner -- Noah Syndergaard showed his right arm can still throw missiles!!

... oh, and he did it all sweaty and shirtless!!

Syndergaard -- who had to undergo Tommy John surgery back in March -- posted video of him rocketing fastballs Thursday ... and it's gotta have people in NY ecstatic.

There was obviously concern the 28-year-old might not have the same firepower after the elbow operation ... but it's clear in the footage, Thor should be throwing close to 100 MPH again in no time.

The video comes on the heels of new Mets owner Steve Cohen saying Tuesday he wouldn't cut corners in the process of building the team into a premier MLB franchise.

"This is a major-market team," Cohen told reporters. "It should have a budget commensurate with that."

Syndergaard -- who didn't have the world's greatest relationship with the Wilpons (the previous owners) -- seems fired up to play for the guy ... he even changed his Twitter bio recently to reflect that.

"Dear Steve Cohen," Syndergaard wrote. "Hi, I’m Noah. Some ppl call me Thor. I’m a Met, working out in Florida, and I just want to win for Mets fans just like you."

Opening Day is just a few months away ... pretty sure somewhere Pete Alonso is giddy about this all!

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