Billy Brownless and Garry Lyon have done it again, spending Christmas together for the third time following a very public falling out.
The AFL legends turned Footy Show co-hosts were great mates until 2016 when Lyon began dating Brownless’ ex-wife of 18 years, Nicky.
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But the bitter falling out now appears a long way in the rearview as the former friends for the third straight year celebrated the day surrounded by family.
In photos uploaded to social media, Brownless was surrounded by his children Lucy, Ruby, Oscar and Max with Lyon and Nicky sitting alongside one another. Ruby’ fiance Josh Wallis and Lucy’s partner Paddy McCartin were among the festivities.
It marks the third straight year the former best mates have spent the day together, with the friendship rekindling back in 2020.
Brownless, a 198-game Geelong star, and ex-Demons skipper Lyon spent part of the 2021 festive season together alongside their families at Lyon’s Red Hill property on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria.
Brownless’ daughter Lucy wrote on social media that the Christmas gathering was “a special day with very special people”.
The first Christmas together came five years after Brownless’ world was turned on its head when Lyon started dating Nicky and later moved in with his kids.
Brownless spoke on Sam Newman’s You Cannot be Serious podcast in September 2020 and said that “there’s no Christmas cards yet but we have spoken a couple of times”.
The podcast illuminated Brownless and Lyon’s relationship and how far it had come from the depths of their fallout.
“At the time you go through all different emotions of course,” Brownless told Newman at the time. “‘Why me?’ and a bit of hatred of course.
“But now mate, it’s been four or five years, I’ve come around and everyone is in a good spot to be honest. Garry and Nicky are — that’s fine — and the kids are (too).
“That was the other big problem (at the time). Young Maxy was about 10, Oscar was about 14, the girls (Lucy and Ruby) were 16, 17.
“It was so public that was the biggest problem. It was so public. On TV, in the papers, front page of the Geelong Addy.
“It was hard at the time because it was so public. I’d walk into a coffee shop and I’d swear everyone was looking at me and talking about it and they weren’t.”
Brownless in late 2022 confirmed he has a new lady in his life and said the pair were “taking it slowly”.
“It’s really new and a nice little friendship. We’re going all right and taking it slowly,” he said.
It comes after Brownless’ Triple M colleagues had joked about the former All-Australian being spotted on dates with a mystery woman.
Speaking to the Herald Sun in July, the 55-year-old said he was looking to fall in love again.
“We are keeping our options open and we are just out there,” Brownless mused.
“It is a big ocean so we are fishing.
“I am not a very good fisherman, by the way, but I am a fisherman.”