Kanye West SUSPECT IN BATTERY INVESTIGATION ... After He Grabs, Tosses Photog’s Phone

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Kanye West is the named suspect in a battery investigation after a heated exchange with a photographer escalated to the point of Ye grabbing and throwing the woman’s phone.

Check out the video, Ye’s clearly upset — accusing the woman of following him — all the while she continues to record.

The woman exclaims, “You’re a celebrity!” but that’s enough for Ye, who grabs and throws the woman’s phone into the street.

He then hops into his SUV where his wife, Bianca Censori, is patiently waiting.

A law enforcement source tells us Kanye’s the named suspect in a battery investigation, deputies from the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department were called to the scene around 4:30 PM and were provided video evidence of the incident.

It’s currently unclear if the woman is a professional photographer or was just taking videos of Ye as a citizen.

We should note … the whole thing happened near a sports complex where North West had a scheduled basketball game.

As we reported, Ye and Bianca were spotted shopping at a Balenciaga store earlier this week, the same brand that cut ties with Kanye after his antisemitic remarks.

49ers Vs. Eagles Police 'Greasing Poles' In Philly ... Deterring Wild Celebrations

Bad news for Eagles fans looking to get wild on Sunday after the NFC Championship Game ... cops say they're "greasing poles" in Philly streets in an effort to deter crazy postgame celebrations.

In addition, according to a Philadelphia Police Dept. spokesperson, officers' hours will be extended in anticipation of large crowd sizes following the big game.

Police also say they've been in contact with local businesses to prep them about what could be coming their way Sunday evening.

Of course, the practice of climbing poles and getting rowdy in streets after big wins has become popular amongst Philly fans ... back in November, some took to the poles after the Phillies advanced to the World Series to get their party on.

Eagles fans have been seen doing similar after dubs in the past -- and it's clear, cops ain't ready to have it again on Sunday.

But, hey, we're sure they'll find another way to get their rocks off ... that is, if the Eagles can get through Brock Purdy and the 49ers first!

NFL's Chris Baker Walks Through Hospital ... 1 Week After Stroke

TAKIN' STEPS

Fantastic update from Chris "Swaggy" Baker -- the ex-NFL player is up and walking around the hospital ... one week after suffering a "serious" stroke.

The former Washington defensive lineman posted video of his status just minutes ago ... showing him taking steps as he makes his way through the facility's hallway.

As we previously reported, the former Washington defensive lineman said he was lucky to be alive after experiencing a medical emergency last Friday ... with his mother revealing he was responding as if the stroke was minor, and was expected to make a full recovery -- calling his improvement a "miracle."

A number of fellow former NFL players were thrilled by Baker's update ... with Robert Griffin III, Carlos Dunlap, Glenn Dorsey and Bashaud Breeland showing love in the comment section.

Olympic medalist Kellie Wells Brinkley added ... "Yessir!!!!!!!!! Keep going bro! We are behind you!"

Earlier this week, Baker sent a message to his fans ... saying, "Tell Your love ones you love em" ... claiming "my life almost ended 2days ago."

"I can't believe I had a stroke but God not done with me yet."

Keep it up, Swaggy!!

Matt Barnes Fiancee's Ex Sues ... Over Spitting Incident

SPIT TAKE
TMZSports.com

The man who Matt Barnes spit on during the 49ers game last weekend is now suing the former NBA champ ... alleging the ex-hooper caused him injury, emotional distress and more during the incident.

David Patterson Jr. -- the ex of Barnes' current fiancee -- filed the lawsuit, obtained by TMZ Sports, in L.A. County Superior Court on Friday.

In the suit, Patterson Jr. claims he had no idea Barnes would be at the much-anticipated Niners vs. Cowboys playoff game in Santa Clara on Sunday ... but said when the two happened to run into each other in a concourse at Levi's Stadium, they began yelling at each other from about 20 feet away.

Patterson Jr. says Barnes then came up to him unprovoked and spat directly in his face. The 37-year-old alleged multiple cell phone cameras captured the incident.

He's suing for battery, assault, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. He's asking for unspecified damages.

Patterson Jr. added in the docs that this was nowhere near the first run-in he's had with his ex-wife's new fiance ... claiming Barnes had harassed him and threatened him repeatedly in the past.

Patterson Jr. says he's got text messages that show the former Golden State Warriors forward called him a "bitch," "clown," "fat f***" and more. He also says at one point in 2022, Barnes told him, "Pull up & get your ass whooped in front of your kids. I'm done talking."

For his part, Barnes said in an application for a temporary restraining order against Patterson Jr. earlier this week that his fiancee's ex was the one who had been harassing him and making threats against him over the past few months.

Barnes also said Patterson Jr. was the aggressor in the altercation at Levi's Stadium.

Barnes was granted the TRO earlier this week. The parties are now expected to meet in court over it all at a hearing on Feb. 16.

T.J. Holmes & Amy Robach Out at ABC ... Officially Sign Exit Agreements

UPDATE

2:55 PM PT -- Sources with direct knowledge tell us both T.J. Holmes and Amy Robach have officially signed their exit agreements -- which include compensation packages -- though we don't yet know the amount.

T.J. Holmes and Amy Robach are both out at ABC ... TMZ has learned.

Sources connected to the network tell us, after a marathon mediation session Thursday, ABC and the 2 'GMA3' anchors have severed ties, and both will receive payouts per their contracts.

We're told the mediation was "extremely contentious," with ABC reps accusing both Amy and T.J. of various forms of misconduct, which one source characterized as "a witch hunt."

We're told one of the accusations is that Amy had liquor in her dressing room, which the ABC folks said was a violation of policy. One source called the accusation "ridiculous," noting some of the bottles were sent from top ABC News execs. The source said those execs sent other on-air talent liquor as well, so this just looked like a way to justify getting rid of her.

We're told another accusation was that Amy went to the College Football National Championship game a year ago, and came to work the next day drunk. One source called that "insane," adding she was simply tired.

As for Amy and T.J., we're told it became clear in mediation they did not handle their romance appropriately ... waiting too long to disclose it to ABC execs. ABC also made it clear ... their "behavior on set" was "uncomfortable" for some ABC staff.

Our sources say the mediation will continue as both sides negotiate the fine points of Amy and T.J.'s exit.

It's a stunning change from what the network initially said when the relationship was made public -- stating the two had not broken any rules -- as they were essentially considered equals at the show in position.

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It was December 2 when both T.J. and Amy were last together on "GMA3" desk. ABC honchos pulled them as they investigated whether the couple's relationship had violated company rules -- or if company resources had been used in keeping it a secret.

We don't yet know what the two will do career-wise moving forward ... but they certainly haven't slowed anything down in the relationship department, our sources say they've remained a united front throughout the entire ordeal.

Originally Published -- 8:05 AM PT

Cincinnati Mayor Aftab Pureval Throws Shade At Patrick Mahomes Is Joe Burrow Your Dad?!?

MAYORAL PROCLAMATION

The mayor of Cincinnati just trolled Patrick Mahomes ahead of the Chiefs' playoff game against the Bengals ... insisting Joe Burrow has the K.C. star quarterback's number completely.

Mayor Aftab Pureval threw the shade in a video posted to his social media page Friday ... just two days before the Bengals-Chiefs AFC championship game -- poking fun at the Kansas City signal-caller.

In the clip, the mayor jokingly says officials asked Burrow to take a paternity test to determine if he's Mahomes' dad ... since the Cincy QB is 3-0 in his career against Patrick.

Pureval then reminisced about the Bengals' 27-24 AFC title game victory last season ... and proclaimed Jan 29, 2023 as "They Gotta Play Us Day" in Cincinnati.

Of course, the mayor has all the reasons to gloat ... the Bengals have found both regular-season and postseason success against Mahomes and the Chiefs -- and are considered by many to be the favorite on Sunday.

Will Mahomes make Mayor Pureval eat his words? We'll find out soon enough -- kickoff is only about 52 hours away now!!

LeBron James 2013 Finals Jersey Sells For $3.7 Mil ... New Record!!!

LeBron James is the king on the court and now on the auction block too -- the NBA superstar's used jersey from Game 7 of the 2013 NBA Finals just sold for $3.7 million ... a new record!!

Sotheby's announced the final price tag for the incredible piece of memorabilia Friday morning -- making it the highest-selling game-worn James jersey to date.

This specific #6 jersey is the exact threads James wore when the Miami Heat beat the San Antonio Spurs, 98-88 ... securing LeBron's second championship.

It was a historical night for James ... as it was the first Game 7 of his NBA career, and he secured his second NBA Finals MVP award in the process.

The jersey sold for $3,680,000 at the auction ... which makes it the third most valuable game-worn jersey ever sold at Sotheby's, and among "the highest prices achieved for any game-worn jersey on the open market."

Sotheby's tells TMZ Sports it was purchased by a private collector.

"Today's tremendous result comes at a pivotal time in LeBron James' career, where he is in arm's reach of clenching the all-time points record -- one of the NBA's most revered accolades," Sotheby's officials said on Friday.

Now that LeBron is inching closer to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, expect all his memorabilia to skyrocket.

Tom Brady Spends Quality Time W/ Daughter Vivian ... Off-Season Daddy Duty!!

HORSIN' AROUND
Mega/Backgrid

Tom Brady has a lot more free time this off-season, and the 7x Super Bowl winner is putting it to good use ... spending an afternoon with his 10-year-old daughter, Vivian, while she took horse riding lessons!

It's the first off-season since Brady and Gisele Bündchen divorced, and with his ex-wife spending a lot of time in Costa Rica with jiu-jitsu instructor Joaquim Valente ... Tom took Vivian to a stable in Miami on Wednesday.

Brady, clearly, is a very proud dad, and was seen photographing Vivian as she rode her horse.

At one point, a brunette woman approached Tom, and seemingly asked for a photograph ... and Brady obliged. The two also had a friendly chat.

While Tom is in relaxation mode, there's a ton of speculation about his future and whether he'll play football next year ... but Brady's made it clear he hasn't made up his mind, and for the time being, just wants to spend time with his kids.

Of course, Brady's Tampa Bay Bucs squad lost to the Cowboys in the playoffs a couple of weeks back, ending Tom's 23rd NFL season.

What's interesting ... there's lots of speculation Gisele and Valente are dating. In fact, two were also spotted riding horses in Costa Rica on January 18. Though, they've continued to claim JV is nothing more than their martial arts instructor.

Tom and Gisele, who officially divorced in October, have two kids, Vivian and Ben.

Conor McGregor Struck By Car While Biking ... 'I Could Have Been Dead'

Terrifying moment for Conor McGregor -- the UFC superstar was just hit by a car that was traveling at full speed while he was riding his bike on Friday ... but luckily, he appears to be okay.

34-year-old McGregor shared footage from the scene on social media ... showing his expensive Orbea cycle lying in the middle of the road.

"Got a bang of a car just now from behind," Conor said in his Instagram post. "A sun trap, the driver couldn’t see me. Full spreed straight thru me. Thank you God, it wasn’t my time."

NEAR-FATAL CRASH

In video following the accident, a flustered McGregor shows the aftermath of the accident ... and you can hear the driver profusely apologizing.

"All good, all good," McGregor said. "Don't worry about it."

Conor clearly understands the seriousness of the situation ... saying, "I could have been dead there, mate, look!!" and "Jesus Christ ... I think I got away with my life, there."

McGregor's pants ripped as he fell to the ground ... but as for any body damage, he seems to have no injuries.

"Thank you wrestling and judo also," Conor said. "Having an awareness on the landing saved my life. 🙏"

Eventually, Conor caught a ride from the driver who hit him ... after he explained his bike was "f***ed."

"God bless ... I'm still here. Thank God. That's all that matters."

Clemson Star Brevin Galloway 'My Balls & Nut Sack Were Exploded!!!' ... Undergoes Emergency Surgery

BALL BUSTER

Well, this is new ... Clemson men's basketball star Brevin Galloway revealed he experienced a different type of groin injury this week -- saying he was rushed to the doctor on Thursday after "my balls and my nut sack were exploded."

For real.

The Tigers' senior guard said the horrifying swelling of his testes occurred after he had finished a morning gym session followed by an afternoon siesta.

"This morning, I went to lift, I came back, I took a nap, I woke up from my nap -- my balls and my nut sack were exploded!" Galloway said in an Instagram video.

BG said he underwent immediate surgery ... and, thankfully, after about three hours under the knife, everything down under is now back to "normal" size.

"I don't know what happened to my balls," he said. "I guess they were trying to be like basketballs, but we made it."

Even though Galloway was all smiles when describing the episode, he later said the testicular torsion he experienced was bad ... and he "couldn't breathe without pain." He called it a 10/10 bad on the pain scale.

Galloway -- who averages 10.6 points and 2.6 assists per game -- is now expected to miss a couple games while recovering ... but he's eyeing Feb. 4 as a potential date for his return.

Ben Askren Busts Eyelid Open ... Gross!!!

THE GRUESOME INJURY

Ben Askren had an eye-opening experience on the mats this week ... 'cause the former UFC star suffered a nasty injury during a wrestling session -- and it'll make your skin crawl.

Funky showed off the battle wound on Thursday ... saying, "still shooting so fast these young boys can’t sprawl quick enough."

The incident seemingly happened as he was wrestling with college athlete Mitchell Mesenbrink ... who jokingly denied Askren's claim that he got the business during the workout.

GOOD AS NEW
Instagram/@lakecountry.brian

As for the injury, Ben was able to get stitched up on the spot ... with a crowd of people watching as he lay on the floor to close the gash on his eyelid.

The cut is gruesome, but apparently not enough to where the folks in attendance wanted to look away.

The patchwork seemed to work out just fine ... as Ben shared a snapshot smiling after his skin was sewn back together.

Askren's been getting beaten up lately -- earlier this week, he showed off a shiner on his eye.

Ice up, Ben ... and sorry to anyone who watched the vid while eating their breakfast.

Brad Pitt My Super Bowl Pick??? 'Chiefs, Baby!!!'

FEELIN' CHIEFY
MEGA

Sorry, Joe Burrow ... Brad Pitt is definitely NOT in the Bengals' corner this weekend -- saying Thursday night he's still ridin' or dyin' with his hometown team!!!

The "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" star made the not-so-shocking football pick after finishing up filming some scenes for his new flick with George Clooney out in NYC ... saying, as expected, it's Kansas City or bust for him this year.

CHIEF CHOICE
TMZ.com

"Chiefs, baby!" he said of his Super Bowl selection as he got into his ride.

Of course, Brad's been a longtime supporter of the Chiefs ... while he was born in Oklahoma, he moved to Missouri at an early age and was raised just a few hours from Arrowhead Stadium.

In fact, he's been seen sporting K.C. gear multiple times over the years, even rockin' a Chiefs cap at an awards show back in 2020.

In order for Pitt's championship dream to come true, the Chiefs have got to get through Burrow and the Bengals this weekend -- before they'll take on the winner of the Eagles vs. 49ers in Super Bowl LVII.

AFC Championship Game kickoff is slated for 3:30 p.m. PT -- no word if Pitt will be there in person ... but it's abundantly clear he'll be cheerin' for Patrick Mahomes no matter what.

Jake Paul, Tommy Fury Feb. Fight Set For Saudi Arabia ... 'Money Is Massive'

Jake Paul and Tommy Fury's fight location has been confirmed -- the highly-anticipated bout will go down in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia ... and the YouTube superstar says it's gonna be a huge payday.

Paul's Most Valuable Promotions announced the news Friday ... confirming Jake, 26, will step in the ring against Tyson Fury's younger brother on February 26.

"Tommy has no excuses now," Jake said. "Baby’s born. Money’s massive. Immigration is not an issue."

"Tyson Fury has promised he and Papa John will make Tommy retire from boxing and change his last name forever if he can’t beat the YouTuber," Jake added. "Saturday (tomorrow) I’m coming to London to look at all three Fury’s in the eye and shake on that promise."

As we previously reported, Jake and Tommy were supposed to fight on two different occasions ... but injuries and travel issues on Fury's side halted both matches.

Paul is 6-0 in his professional boxing career, scoring victories over former UFC champions Tyron Woodley and Anderson Silva. Meanwhile, Tommy, 23, has an 8-0 record with 4 KOs.

"The moment of truth has finally arrived," Paul added in a press release. "On February 26th, I will get in the ring with a ‘real boxer,’ an 8-0 fighter from a storied fighting family and show the world the truth about who Jake Paul, the boxer really is."

Also on the card ... Ashton "H2O" Sylve, an undefeated fighter signed to Jake's MVP, will fight former title challenger Maxwell Awuku in an 8 round contest.

Let's go!!!

Billy Packer Legendary Hoops Analyst Dead At 82

Legendary college basketball analyst Billy Packer -- who helped broadcast key NCAA Tournament games for decades -- has died.

His family announced the sad news on social media ... revealing the longtime broadcaster passed away on Thursday night.

Packer's son, Mark, told the Associated Press his father had been dealing with multiple medical issues in the hospital the past few weeks ... and ultimately died due to kidney failure.

"Our amazing father, Billy, has passed," Mark said in a tweet while sharing a photo of Billy and his family. "We take peace knowing that he’s in heaven with [his wife] Barb. RIP, Billy."

Packer initially began broadcasting major college basketball games in the 1970s -- joining NBC in 1974 and calling his first Final Four in 1975, when UCLA beat Kentucky.

The former college basketball player -- who eventually moved over to CBS -- went on to provide commentary for every Final Four until 2008, when he stepped away from the game.

"Billy Packer was synonymous with college basketball for more than three decades," CBS Sports exec Sean McManus said after Packer's passing.

"He had a tremendous impact on the growth and popularity of the sport ... He will be deeply missed by all."

Packer called some of the sport's greatest all-time games -- and his "Simon Says Championship" line after Miles Simon and Arizona won the 1997 championship remains one of the most iconic calls in the history of the game.

He was 82 years old.

RIP.

Ex-Eagles TE Trey Burton Jalen Hurts Is Great ... But Jason Kelce Is Philly's MVP!!!

FLY, EAGLES, FLY
TMZSports.com

No, the Eagles' MVP ain't their star quarterback ... it's actually their best offensive lineman -- so says ex-Philadelphia tight end Trey Burton, who tells TMZ Sports Jason Kelce is more deserving of the honor than Jalen Hurts.

Don't get it twisted ... Burton wasn't shading Jalen at all -- he called the guy "spectacular" this year -- he just thinks that highly of Philly's center.

"I've played on a couple teams," said the 31-year-old, who was a teammate of Kelce's for years in Philadelphia. "There hasn't been one guy that is comparable to Jason Kelce."

Burton said the 35-year-old future Hall of Famer does it all for the offense in Philly -- explaining to us Kelce calls out protection schemes in both the running game and the passing game.

"When you go to your battle you hope you have him standing next to you," Burton said. "And, you can look at him and everything's going to be all right. Just this calming presence that he has."

Hurts likely wouldn't disagree -- Kelce has been a big reason he's had a breakout year ... helping give the QB enough time to throw 22 touchdowns while rushing for 13 more.

Of course, Hurts -- not Kelce -- is up for the league's real MVP award this year ... alongside Joe Burrow, Patrick Mahomes, Justin Jefferson and Josh Allen.

Voting for the honor has already closed -- but if Sunday's game against the 49ers did factor in, Burton believes it'd only help the signal-caller's cause ... telling us he thinks there's a chance Jalen and the Birds blow out S.F. in the NFC Championship Game.

PGA Tour Star Max Homa Get Off My Ball, Bee!!! ... Fights Off Insect Mid-Round

PGA Tour star, Max Homa's mind was off of birdies and onto bees during his round on Thursday -- at least momentarily -- 'cause one of the winged insects landed right on his ball ... and didn't want to move!!!

The funny scene all happened on the ninth green at Torrey Pines at the Farmers Insurance Open ... when Homa went to line up his birdie putt.

Broadcast video shows as the 32-year-old golfer reached down to examine his ball, a bee was parked on it ... and seemed rather cozy.

Homa tried -- carefully, we might add -- to get the little guy to move, but he wasn't budging.

"He's tyring to get rid of a frequent flyer there," one of the event's broadcaster's joked.

Eventually, Homa got it to fly away -- avoiding the stinger in the process.

Homa didn't let the interaction bother him -- he drained his ensuing 22-foot putt for a birdie ... and is currently putting together a buzzworthy run (...sorry) in the tourney, sitting at No. 4 on the leaderboard.

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