News

Sterling says NBA ban, forced Clippers sale is illegal

Sterling says NBA ban, forced Clippers sale is illegal

CLIPPERS CONTROVERSY:Donald Sterling, seen here with estranged wife Shelly Sterling, was banned from the league last month. Photo: Associated Press

(Reuters) – Donald Sterling, banned from owning a pro basketball team for inflammatory remarks he made about African Americans, called the National Basketball Association’s action illegal because it was based on a “lover’s quarrel” that was “illegally recorded.”

“This was an argument between a jealous man and the woman he loved that should never have left the privacy of the living room,” Sterling said in a letter to the NBA obtained by the Los Angeles Times.

Reuters was unable to confirm the authenticity of the letter.

PHOTOS: Banned from sports

Sterling, controlling owner of the Los Angeles Clippers for 33 years, came under fire after TMZ.com posted an audio recording of him criticizing a female friend for publicly associating with black people, including NBA great “Magic” Johnson.

The NBA said in a statement on Tuesday night that it had received a response from Donald and Shelly Sterling regarding his termination, and added that the league’s Board of Governors will hold a vote on eliminating Sterling’s stake at a hearing set for June 3, when he can address the charges before his fellow owners.

If at least 23 of the other 29 owners vote to terminate Sterling’s ownership of the franchise, the Clippers would have to be sold, the NBA said.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said last week he would prefer to let Donald Sterling and his wife Shelley Sterling sell the team “on a reasonable timetable” rather than proceed with trying to forcibly terminate their ownership.

Sterling handed controlling interest in his team to his wife, the co-owner, and she began negotiating with the league to sell the club, Reuters reported on Friday, citing sources.

Sterling said in the letter that he has received offers “in excess of $2.5 billion” for the team, but did not name potential buyers.

(Reporting By Ronald Grover; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment

Today in entertainment history: Aug. 28

shaniatwain

A look at Hollywood's most memorable headlines.

in Music

WATCH: Miley Cyrus undercover

14-overlay12

Disguised as an Australian reporter, the "Wrecking Ball" hitmaker hits the street to ask people what they think of her.

in Music

Paul McCartney drawings among Beatles auction

mccartney

The sketches, which are expected to fetch more than $16,000, feature line portraits of three figures who look like members of the band, and were found in an attic by the seller.

in Entertainment

WATCH: 60 years of ‘Guinness World Records’

12-overlay14

That's a lot of years of documenting unique records.

in Music

MTV VMAs: Tears, chaos, and music history

23-overlay17

The Executive Producer of the MTV Video Music Awards looks back at the craziest and the most unpredictable moments in the ceremony's history.