The National Basketball Association acted quickly to address the racism controversy surrounding Los Angeles Clippers owner Don Sterling and Commissioner Adam Silver today made a striking announcement: “banned for life.”
Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling was banned from the NBA for life Tuesday, and Commissioner Adam Silver announced at a news conference in New York that he would urge owners to force a sale of the team.During an internal investigation, the NBA confirmed that Sterling was, in fact, the voice on the audio recording made public over the weekend, in which the owner was heard making racist remarks.The league fined Sterling $2.5 million, the maximum penalty under NBA rules. Sterling is worth $1.9 billion, and the team is valued at more than $500 million.
Silver went on to say that he will urge the NBA Board of Governors to force a sale of the team.
In the meantime, Sterling will be prohibited from attending NBA games or NBA practices, appearing at NBA facilities, or participating in any business or player-personnel decisions involving the team.
The league penalty takes effect immediately.
It’s worth noting that it’s not a given that Sterling will lose the Clippers – Silver will need three-quarters of team owners to force Sterling to sell and whether that support will be there is unclear.
“I will urge the board of governors to force a sale of the team and do everything in my power to ensure that happens,” he said.
Last night’s show added some useful context, if you missed it: