Is the saga over? A judge ruled that Donald Sterling attempting to block the sale of the Los Angeles Clippers to Steve Ballmer isn’t going to work, but there are always appeals to be made if you have the money and right lawyers to delay an inevitability from happening.
Right now, the Clippers will be sold to Ballmer for $2 billion, a record deal for an NBA franchise. Sterling, recorded by his girlfriend while making racist remarks, was banned for life by the NBA and fined $2.5 million. When the league threatened to take away the team and auction it, Sterling allowed his estranged wife Shelly Sterling to negotiate the sale, but refused to sign the papers when it came down to it.
Things got ugly. Shelly Sterling got two doctors to examine her husband and declare that he suffers from Alzheimer, making him unfit to be at the head of the family trust that handled the sale of the Clippers. Donald Sterling dissolved the trust, trying to make it impossible for his wife to complete the sale of the franchise but for now his attempts have been in vain, as Superior Court Judge Michael Levanas ruled in Shelly Sterling and the NBA’s favor.
So are now the threats of Chris Paul to boycott team events and the preseason over? Is Doc Rivers finally relaxed, knowing that he doesn’t have to go and look for a new job? Shelly Sterling believe that her husband will pull out of any pending lawsuits and attempted sanctions, but according to his lawyer, nothing is over.
Sterling is suing the NBA for $9 billion and has claimed he could have gotten more from the deal. He has also shown some weird behavior when taking the stand during the proceedings (he wasn’t in court for the ruling), one day kissing and acting kindly with his wife and the next day shouting at her to get away from him.
This isn’t the league stealing a team from someone. Whatever the percentage cut is inside the family according to the trust, now headed by Shelly Sterling according to her, there are plenty of ways to split $2 billion. For Donald Sterling, this isn’t about the money. It’s about the principle but mostly his own name and selfish reasons, although at this point, there’s no way of redeeming himself in the eyes of anyone that has something to do with the NBA.