It’s going to be complicated and difficult actually taking the franchise away from Donald Sterling, but his punishment delivered by Adam Silver means he has lost the Los Angeles Clippers. It might take some time, but eventually, it seems that everyone’s goal of taking the franchise away from him by forcing him to sell it will become a reality.
There wasn’t anything else Silver was going to do. Sterling admitted to him via conversation that it was his voice on those tapes released by Stiviano. Maybe it does call for a discussion on what a person is allowed to think and say in the privacy of his own home, but once that becomes public, there’s no turning back the wheel. It might save him from any judicial implications, but in terms of breaching the ethics and morals the NBA believes it stands for, there’s nothing Sterling can do or say to turn back time.
The league will now hold a vote among the owners, needing 22 votes out of the 29 who’ll participate to force Sterling to sell the franchise. Mark Cuban warned that it might be a slippery slope to venture – stripping away an ownership from someone, but there seems to be demand from blood and a swift, painful verdict. Bomani Jones spoke about how Sterling has done things that are much worse (like not allowing minorities to rent in buildings he owned), and there’s nothing surprising about what he said; that people are focusing on the wrong issue.
An interesting thing to add in this whole thing is Magic Johsnon involvement. Conspiracy theory anyone?! Magic Johnson going to a game with Stiviano is what got Donald Sterling, or at least the people he hangs out with, started all of this. Sterling criticized her for that. Now Sterling is losing his franchise, and Magic Johnson stands first in line to become the new owner of the Los Angeles Clippers. Something doesn’t feel completely right about all of this.
The team itself? Mark Jackson’s stupid remarks about the Clippers fans not needing to show up backfired. The game 5 performance, a 113-103 win for the Clippers, was probably the best one we’ve seen from the home fans over the last three seasons. Maybe they were happy an owner no one really liked was finally shown for who he really was and speeding up things for his dismissal from his position; maybe Jackson had something to do with it as well.