Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling has been banned for life by the NBA in response to racist comments the league says he made in a recorded conversation.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver announced the discipline Tuesday, saying that Sterling has been fined $2.5 million and that the league will attempt to force a sale of the Clippers.
As part of his lifetime ban, Donald Sterling can’t attend NBA games or practices, be present at any Clippers facility, or participate in any business or player personnel decisions involving the team.
Silver also stated that Sterling cannot attend any NBA games or practices, be present at any Clippers office or facility, or participate in business or player personnel decisions.
“We stand together in condemning Mr. Sterling’s views,” Silver said. “They simply have no place in the NBA.
“This league is far bigger than any one owner, any one coach and any one player.”
It bears noting that one of Sterlings quirks is that he lives for litigation. His last two coaches were contractually owed money and he made them go through long, arduous court proceedings to get it — despite the fact that there was no question he owed the money, and that he knew in advance it would cost him a lot more to drag out paying them. He’s just that kind of guy. So even though the NBA is done with Sterling, it’s a good bet he isn’t done with them. Expect years of lawsuits from him, many for the purposes of filing lawsuits.
Still, when I wrote my post on Saturday I was worried the owner-friendly NBA would either drag it out, float the idea of a slap on the wrist, or both. Kudos to them for stepping up to the plate immediately. Doing so was good for the Clippers, it was good for the NBA, it was good for basketball, and — dare I say — it was good for the country.
Now with rumors floating that Magic Johnson might be interesting in buying the team — and with long-time Lakers owner Jerry Busse having turned his over to his incompetent and vainglorious son Jim — I’m forced with a very surreally real nightmare:
Is it possible I’m about to become a Clippers fan?
Oh my good Lord.