'Jeopardy!' Star Austin Rogers G.O.A.T. Tournament Is Freaking Fun!!! These Guys Are Like LeBron

Exclusive
WE'RE WITNESSING HISTORY
TMZ.com

Austin Rogers is freaking out over the stunning abilities of Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter and James Holzhauer ... the "Jeopardy!" sensation says these G.O.A.T.s are the LeBron's of trivia.

We got Austin -- who captivated America back in 2017 with an impressive 12-game winning streak on Alex Trebek's show -- in Harlem, and he couldn't stop gushing over the trio duking it out for a million-dollar prize.

Austin took home a whopping $411,000 during his run at the top, but he says he's been blown away watching Ken, Brad and James make some extremely difficult questions look like child's play ... and he's putting them on par with the greatest athletes on Earth.

'Jeopardy!' G.O.A.T. Contestants Big Winners, Very Different Spenders ... $1 Mil Prize on the Line

Exclusive
TMZ/Getty Composite

The "Jeopardy!" boys facing off for G.O.A.T. status already have tons of cash to their names -- and with even more up for grabs ... we noticed they have very different spending habits.

TMZ did some digging, and it turns out Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter and James Holzhauer have chosen to splurge (or not splurge) on unique causes -- and you'd be surprised at who's done what with their dough. BTW, this new 3-day tourney's got a million-dollar cash prize.

That said ... let's get into the numbers a bit.

Starting with Ken, the guy's racked up a grand total of about $3.5 million in "Jeopardy!" winnings over the years between his regular 74-game streak in '04 and other tournaments he's competed in since. Looks like KJ's an investor type -- he's got quite the portfolio.

Ken's got a crib with an estimated value of $2.1 million in Seattle. He's also pledged 10% of his OG $2.52 mil haul to the Mormon church and has announced a couple other donations. Other monies are tied up in stocks and bonds.

James seems a bit more charitable, at least publicly. He's pulled in around $2.7 mil from "Jeopardy!" and a good amount has gone to charities like Project 150, Communities in Schools of Nevada, Vegas-Clark County Library District Foundation and the Lustgarten Foundation.

NFL's Jay Ajayi I'm A Pro Gamer Now!!! ... FIFA 20

Breaking News
IMAGN

Super Bowl champ Jay Ajayi is taking his talents to video games ... 'cause the NFL running back is becoming a professional FIFA 20 player!!

The 26-year-old Pro Bowler and current free agent is staying competitive in a different sport by officially signing with the Philadelphia Union for the 2020 eMLS Cup campaign.

Ajayi addressed the move in a statement, saying, "Philadelphia will always hold a special place in my heart. I am blessed to be able to represent the city through e-sports and to be one of the first pro athletes to become a professional gamer."

"Representing the Philadelphia Union for eMLS combines two of my greatest passions outside of football, soccer and gaming. I’m a competitor, so you’re going to see me give my all for the Union at every eMLS event this year."

Tons of traditional mainstream athletes are becoming serious gamers -- with NBA stars like Gordon Hayward, Karl-Anthony Towns and De'Aaron Fox showing off REAL skills on the sticks.

And, with legends like Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Shaquille O'Neal, Alex Rodriguez and other guys INVESTING in Esports, you might see other pro stars making the jump, too!

As for Ajayi, he's not giving up his NFL career just yet -- he briefly played with the Philadelphia Eagles at the beginning of the 2019 season before getting cut.

Of course, he spent several seasons in the NFL before that -- playing with the Dolphins from 2015 to 2017 and later winning the Super Bowl with the Eagles in 2018.

FaZe Apex Esports Injuries Are A Real Thing ... Proof We're Athletes!!!

Exclusive
INJURIES AREN'T A GAME
TMZSports.com

Just 'cause pro gamers compete from comfy chairs doesn't mean they can't get hurt ... so says the FaZe Clan co-owner, Apex, who tells TMZ Sports video game injuries are a real thing!!

"I've heard of career-ending hand surgeries, for sure," Apex told us out in Hollywood on Monday.

"People get carpal tunnel. I don't get that into it, thankfully. But, some people legit stretch their hands, they do a whole thing of warm-ups to make sure they don't."

Apex even says one of his gamers had to sit out several months due to injury and couldn't play!!

And, just like other pro sports leagues, Apex says teams are hiring psychologists to help with the pressure of competing ... and FaZe Clan may follow suit.

Apex also weighs in on the "Bad Boys of Esports" adding its first female gamer (FaZe Ewok) to the lineup ... and he says she's "an inspiration to all of us."

FaZe Clan President Gamers Make Bank ... Eventually Could Be As Much As NFLers

Exclusive
It Could HAppen
TMZSports.com

FaZe Selkoe -- aka the president of the famous FaZe Clan -- says Esports stars ain't making NFL player money yet ... but he tells TMZ Sports it could eventually happen.

And, why? The 44-year-old says their business model is just perfect for today's society.

Selkoe tells us because fans can watch and interact with players during tournaments AND in practice sessions, he says the potential for the growth of gamers' wallets is HUGE.

"They'll have hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people watching them play and interact," Selkoe says ... "It's really this amalgamation of pop culture, actual sports and classic entertainment."

Of course, some gamers are already pulling in the hefty checks ... Esports star FaZe Banks is reportedly worth around $3 MILLION, while gaming legend Ninja has said he makes roughly $500,000 A MONTH.

As for Esports eventually overtaking the NFL, NBA, NHL or MLB in popularity ... ya gotta hear why Selkoe thinks that might be possible as well!

FaZe Jarvis Moving On After 'Fortnite' Ban ... 'Call Of Duty' Sniper!!!

Exclusive
ON TO THE NEXT ONE
TMZSports.com

"I'm pretty good at sniping, so we're going to send it."

FaZe Jarvis is finally moving on after his permanent Fortnite ban ... telling TMZ Sports he's gunning to be the next big thing in "Call of Duty" now!!!

"That game's pretty fun," Jarvis says. "I'm gonna snipe in that game. We're gonna get cracked, and yeah, we're going to send it!"

Of course, Jarvis has to find a new game now after he was exiled from the "Fortnite" world for cheating earlier this year.

The British teenager used aimbots -- an in-game hack that helps players shoot better -- during a recreational match, and when Fortnite officials found out about it, they banned him.

Jarvis was pretty sad over it all ... but when we got him out in L.A. this weekend -- he told us he's doing much better!!!

As for if he'll take FaZe Banks up on his offer to still be involved in Fortnite content .. Jarvis told us of course, saying, "I'll keep on making videos. I'm not stopping."

Offset Fortnite Should End FaZe Jarvis Ban ... It's Just Wrong!!!

Exclusive
LIGHTER SENTENCE
TMZSports.com

Offset is calling for Fortnite to lift the ban on his teammate FaZe Jarvis -- telling TMZ Sports a lifetime punishment sends the WRONG message to the kids.

As we previously reported, 16-year-old Jarvis -- one of the top Fortnite players in the world -- was banned for life from all Fortnite events after admitting to using illegal software to get an advantage during non-tournament play.

Jarvis claims he was just using the software to goof around while streaming -- and would never do anything to break the rules during competitive play.

Epic Games -- the company behind Fortnite -- has refused to budge ... but now Offset, who recently joined the FaZe Clan is speaking out in hopes of getting Jarvis back in the game.

"Fortnite says the game is for the youth. The youth makes mistakes a lot of times. Let the kids play, that what they love to do," the Migos rapper told us.

"Give him a ban. Like, ban him for 30 days. Give him probation terms or something like that and then if he keeps doing the same violations then you do that [suspend him for life]."

"But, a couple times messing up?! They kids ... know what I mean?"

By the way, Offset's not just involved in the gaming side of FaZe Clan -- he just dropped a new fashion collab and debuted the merch Monday night at the FaZe Arcade on Melrose.

FAZE UP!
TMZSports.com

You gotta check out the crowd ... people were lined up around the corner for the 2 new hoodies and a new t-shirt. The fan base is STRONG with these guys!!!

Rick Fox 'League of Legends' Will Overtake NFL ... It's Coming

Exclusive
IT'S WORLDWIDE
TMZSports.com

99.6 MILLION people watched the 2018 "League of Legends" championships ... just a few million shy of the 2018 Super Bowl numbers.

And, Rick Fox says it's only a matter of time before "LoL" eclipses the NFL.

Fox is an Esports pioneer who famously founded Team Echo Fox -- which competes in everything from "Fortnite" to "CS:GO" and even "Mortal Kombat."

Fox says he's been watching the sport explode ... so he wasn't shocked when fellow gaming titan FaZe Banks told TMZ Sports recently there will be an Esports event that will pull in a bigger audience than the Super Bowl.

faze banks says esports is exploding
TMZSports.com

"As much as we love football in North America, it's not international to the level of gaming," Fox says.

"'League of Legends' is a huge global event. It's already got numbers right below the Super Bowl so it's coming ... it grows every year."

"Everything is so online now, technology has unlocked the ability for those people in foreign countries, or regardless of where you are in the world, to connect."

Fox also says the sport is finally growing massive stars with global appeal -- like Faker, who Fox considers the Michael Jordan of gaming.

FYI, Faker is a 23-year-old "LoL" legend from South Korea who's already racked up more than $1.2 MILLION in prize money.

In fact, Fox says he recently had a chance to play with Faker to raise money for the Bahamas Relief Foundation ... so shout out to Faker for that!

Ninja Cuts Avocado Like a Serial Killer ... Nearly Ruins Sandwich

Breaking News
Bon Appétit

How does someone with such talented thumbs BUTCHER a sandwich so badly?!?

That's the question we've got for Ninja whose attempt to make a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich was as pathetic as a 40-year-old trying to play "Fortnite" for the first time.

Ninja -- real name Tyler Blevins -- teamed up with Bon Appetit food director Carla Lalli Music for a YouTube segment about cooking without visual aids.

He tried hard ... but Tyler couldn't figure out how to properly slice the bread and then cut the avocado STRAIGHT DOWN THE MIDDLE THROUGH THE PIT LIKE A PSYCHOPATH!!!

Bon Appétit

The craziest part, Ninja actually has real restaurant experience ... he worked at Noodles & Company where he prepped noodles for 3 years!

In the end, Ninja managed to put together an edible sandwich ... and despite the avo mishap, it actually looked sorta delicious.

The good news for Ninja ... he's made so much damn money playing video games, he can hire a private chef to cook up his breakfasts from now until the end of time.

FaZe Banks Jarvis' Fortnite Ban Is Permanent ... But He's In Good Spirits!!!

Exclusive
FAZE FOREVER
TMZSports.com

FaZe Banks tells TMZ Sports that Jarvis' Fortnite ban is real -- saying there's NO CHANCE the kid plays the game again ... but he says the 17-year-old is still in good spirits regardless!!

"Jarvis is doing really good, man," Banks says. "He's holding in there."

As we previously reported, Jarvis was hit with a perma-suspension after he was caught using Aimbots during a recreational game that he streamed on his ultra-popular YouTube channel.

Essentially, Jarvis was cheating by illegally hacking the game so his guns could auto-focus on his opponents.

Turns out, Fortnite officials were SUPER pissed over the incident ... and gave him the boot from the game FOR LIFE!!!

Banks -- the founder of the clan Jarvis is a part of -- had previously told us there was at least some hope Jarvis could eventually be "freed" from the punishment.

WE WORKED IT OUT
TMZ.com

But, Banks changed his tune when we got him out in L.A. last week ... saying, "The chances of him playing Fortnite are zero."

Good news, though ... Banks says the door is open for Jarvis to at least make SOME kind of Fortnite content in the future -- despite not being able to play it anymore.

Small consolation prize ... but hey -- beats working a 9-5, right???

FaZe Banks Video Games Will Get Bigger Than Super Bowl 'Gonna Get Crazy'

Exclusive
THE TIME IS NOW
TMZSports.com

The Super Bowl is the most-watched TV event of the year ... but could Esports actually dethrone the NFL?!?

HELL YEAH -- so says one of the biggest names in the industry, FaZe Banks, who tells TMZ Sports it's just a matter of time before video games wreck all of entertainment!!!

"It's gonna get crazy," the FaZe Clan cofounder tells us. "I think its gonna get more crazy online than it is in the actual real world. But, it's gonna take everything over. It's gonna get big."

Banks points out the industry is already well on its way ... with the 2019 Fortnite World Cup Finals reportedly drawing in 2 million viewers.

Of course, it's gonna be a while before Esports can dethrone the Super Bowl -- which averages nearly 100 MILLION each year -- but Banks is up for the challenge.

"Super Bowl? Bigger. It's gonna be bigger."

Demetrious Johnson Mercy for Jarvis Lifetime Fortnite Ban Is Too Harsh!!!

Exclusive
CHEATERS NEVER PROSPER
TMZSports.com

Another huge gamer is AGAINST the lifetime Fortnite ban on FaZe Jarvis -- this time it's MMA star Demetrious Johnson who says the punishment simply doesn't fit the crime.

As we previously reported, Epic Games permanently 86'd the 17-year-old gamer from all Fortnite-related activities after he admitted to using illegal software to gain an advantage.

Jarvis said he used the Aimbots -- which makes it easier to kill opponents -- for entertainment purposes while goofing around on YouTube and NOT in actual competition.

Enter DJ ... who's not only one of the best MMA fighters EVER, but he's also huge in the gaming world -- and he told us why the lifetime ban feels way too harsh.

The good news for Jarvis, Demetrious -- who's big into PUBG -- says the gamer is more than welcome to switch over and compete in his world as long as he doesn't cheat again!!

Jarvis might wanna take DJ up on the offer since there's a massive $3 MILLION prize up for grabs at the PUBG Global Championship later this month.

FaZe Banks I Took Care of the Vegas Room Thing ... 'It's All Love'

Exclusive
WE WORKED IT OUT
TMZ.com

FaZe Banks is a guy who knows how to clean up after his own mess, even if it takes a bit of time -- at least that's what we gathered when we asked him about his Vegas debacle.

We talked to the gaming guru -- who founded the FaZe Esports collective -- at the Logan Paul/KSI fight this weekend and he cleared the air with us on what exactly happened last month at the Encore at Wynn Hotel in Sin City, where his room was torn to shreds.

Banks comes clean with us here, saying he f***ed  the room -- which caused over $30k in damage, BTW -- and even apologizes for it too. A weekend in Vegas, as he puts it.

CALL THE BANK
TMZSports.com

You'll recall ... the hotel was pissed about the mess, and got cops involved ... who were investigating for felony malicious destruction of property -- a charge the carries a max sentence of 5 years in prison. Luckily, it didn't get there for FB -- he handled it.

The dude says he and the hotel are all good now, and that it's all love -- the implication being that he paid for the damage and is back in their good graces. Quite a guy, huh?!

We get around to talking about his fellow member FaZe Jarvis' lifetime ban from 'Fortnite' after being caught cheating ... and he gives us his thoughts on that too.

#FreeJarvis seems to be his takeaway.

TMZ Challenge Win a Trip to Hollywood ... Appear on 'TMZ On TV'!!!

WHAT A DAWG

We have great confidence in TMZ users and viewers because we think there's someone out there who could give our photogs a run for their money.

So, here's the contest ... shoot a video on your cell phone where you have a TMZ-style convo with a friend, a child, a pet, a rando, etc. WE'RE NOT LOOKING FOR YOU TO SHOOT A CELEBRITY. Just find someone you know and have a fun, interesting, engaging conversation. You can talk about anything you want ... something funny, serious, snarky or anything in between.

BIG SHRIMPIN'

Something under 2 minutes would be ideal, but there's no magic time -- it's more about quality. Translation: size doesn't matter.

Submit your entry to Twitter, Instagram or TikTok with the hashtags #TMZchallenge and #contest -- check out the full rules here. We'll watch all the videos back in our offices and pick a winner, who will get 2 plane tickets to Hollywood. They'll also be on "TMZ on TV" and take the TMZ Celebrity Tour.

'Fortnite' Jarvis' Lifetime Ban Is Way Too Harsh!!! ... Says KSI

Exclusive
TOO HARSH ON THE KID
TMZSports.com

One of the biggest stars in gaming is calling for the company behind "Fortnite" to reconsider its LIFETIME ban on FaZe Jarvis ... telling TMZ Sports it's just unfair.

As we previously reported, 17-year-old Jarvis -- one of the top players in the world -- admitted to using aimbots (illegal software) to cheat at the game.

Epic Games immediately issued a lifetime ban against Jarvis -- and told TMZ Sports they have a "no tolerance" policy when it comes to cheaters.

So, when we saw KSI leaving the Belasco Theater in L.A. on Monday night, we asked if he thought Jarvis was getting a raw deal.

"He shouldn't have cheated, but yeah it's pretty harsh," KSI said ... "Hopefully it's not a lifetime ban."

"I'd love to see him come back."

KSI isn't the only gamer who feels that way -- there's been a backlash over the punishment from people who think a 1-strike rule for aimbots is just too severe ... especially since Jarvis isn't even a legal adult yet.

As for Jarvis, he made a video fessing up to cheating -- and begged for Epic Games to reconsider ... but the gaming company isn't budging.

Meantime, KSI is gearing up for his big boxing match with Logan Paul on Saturday -- and briefly explained to TMZ Sports why there's NO respect for his opponent.

'Fortnite' Superstar Jarvis Lifetime Ban for Cheating ... Epic Games Doubles Down

Exclusive Details

10:11 AM PT -- We just heard back from Epic Games, the company behind "Fortnite," and it's clear Jarvis will NOT be cut any slack when it comes to his punishment.

"We have a zero tolerance policy for the usage of cheat software," an Epic Games spokesperson tells TMZ Sports.

"When people use aimbots or other cheat technologies to gain an unfair advantage, they ruin games for people who are playing fairly."

A 17-year-old "Fortnite" superstar gamer has been BANNED for life for cheating -- but the gaming community is PISSED OFF at the punishment and demanding mercy.

The gamer at the center of the controversy is FaZe Jarvis -- younger brother of gaming star FaZe Kay -- who's built up a MASSIVE following, including 2 million subscribers on YouTube.

But, the British teenager got himself in hot water using Aimbots during a recreational game that he streamed on his YouTube channel.

FYI, Aimbots is an illegal hack that essentially auto-focuses your weapons on opponents, making it MUCH easier to hit your target and get kills. It's the gaming version of steroids.

Jarvis admitted to using the bots in an emotional video -- in which he chokes back tears to reveal the punishment he received from Epic Games, the company behind "Fortnite."

"I've been permanently banned from 'Fortnite' for life," Jarvis said ... "This was a huge mistake was completely wrong on my end."

Jarvis says he didn't know the consequences for his actions would be met with such a severe punishment -- since he didn't cheat during competitive play -- and had he known, he wouldn't have done it.

Jarvis says he's completely emotionally crushed -- since he's not only banned from playing, but he's blocked from attending "Fortnite" events or creating any type of content around the game.

Well, his fans -- and even competitors -- are pissed, claiming the punishment does NOT fit the crime.

Many people are voicing their anger on social media and demanding Epic Games scale back the punishment.

One point people are upset about ... a duo that had been caught cheating earlier this year was only suspended for 14 days (and allowed to compete in the $30 million World Cup tourney). They were NOT banned for life.

So, what will happen with Jarvis? We're reaching out to Epic Games for comment. Stay tuned.

By the way, Jarvis has options ... he's also a stud in other games including "Call of Duty" and "CS:GO."

Originally published -- 7:55 AM PT