NBA Hits Clippers Owner Sterling With Lifetime Ban, $2.5 Million Fine
The NBA is banning Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, league Commissioner Adam Silver announced Tuesday, saying that its investigation has verified Sterling made racist comments in an audio recording that was made public Friday.
Saying that the NBA's investigation included a discussion with Sterling, Silver stated that the views he expressed "are deeply offensive and harmful."
Silver said he was outraged by the remarks; he also apologized to former players and anyone else offended by the sentiments in the recording.
Sterling's punishment also includes a $2.5 million fine, Silver said. The fine is the maximum amount allowed under the NBA's charter, as ESPN reports.
Silver said that he is urging the NBA's board of governors to force a sale of the team, and that his actions announced today have the support of other NBA owners.
Under the ban, Sterling "may not attend any NBA games or practices, be present at any Clippers office or facility, or participate in any business or player personnel decisions involving the team," the NBA says. "He will also be barred from attending NBA Board of Governors meetings and participating in any other league activity."
The league has called the remarks "disturbing and offensive."
Anger and outrage over the recording have built since it was posted online Friday by TMZ, overwhelming the attention the postseason has received. At least two games were marked by player protests: The Clippers wore their warm-up shirts inside-out on Sunday, an act repeated by the Miami Heat at last night's [Monday night] game.
Sterling is accused of criticizing V. Stiviano, his former girlfriend, for "associating with black people" and saying of NBA legend Magic Johnson, "don't bring him to my games," in a recording that goes on for nearly 10 minutes. — NPR.ORG