Earlier today, we learned that despite a plan that all parties has supposedly agreed to, Donald Sterling never dropped his lawsuit against the NBA and Commissioner Adam Silver. In order for the Los Angeles Clippers to be sold to billionaire Steve Ballmer, the Clips owner needs to drop this suit. Now, Donald Sterling has issued a statement entitled "The Team is not for Sale," indicating the lawsuit that seeks $1 billion in damages from the NBA will go forward. The burden of that lawsuit now falls upon Shelley Sterling.
In her sales agreement, Shelley Sterling agreed to an indemnify the NBA in the event Donald Sterling went through with his lawsuit. Now this gets even more complicated because they are still, technically, married and she has complete access to the Sterling Family Trust, which holds the assets of the couple. That means he will essentially be suing himself. Donald Sterling was ruled mentally incapacitated (that's how his wife took complete ownership of the team), so it's unclear how a judge will act in this situation.
Here’s the full statement:
I would like to clarify some issues regarding the Los Angeles Clippers and affiliated matters. From the onset, I did not want to sell the Los Angeles Clippers. I have worked for 33 years to build the Team.
To be clear, I am extremely sorry for the hurtful statements I made privately. I made those statements in anger and out of jealousy all in the context of a private conversation. While this is not an excuse for the statements, like every other American, I never imagined that my private conversation would be made public.
Many things have been said about me in the media which are not true. I believe that Adam Silver acted in haste by illegally ordering the forced sale of the Clippers, banning me for life from the NBA and imposing the fine. Adam Silver’s conduct in doing so without conducting any real investigation was wrong.
The action taken by Adam Silver and the NBA constitutes a violation of my rights and fly in the face of the freedoms that are afforded to all Americans.
I have decided that I must fight to protect my rights. While my position may not be popular, I believe that my rights to privacy and the preservation of my rights to due process should not be trampled.
I love the team and have dedicated 33 years of my life to the organization. I intend to fight to keep the Team.
This just went from bad to worse.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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