Shelly Sterling, the estranged wife of banned-for-life Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, told Barbara Walters that she believes her husband may have from dementia.
Sterling told Walters her husband said, "I don't remember saying that. I don't remember ever saying those things," after hearing the audiotape of him telling V. Stiviano not to promote her relationship with black people and not to bring them to Los Angeles Clippers games.
"I said, 'Well, this is the tape.' And he says, 'Hmm. I don't remember it,'" she added. "That's when I thought he had dementia."
While she didn't specifically blame the incident on dementia, she did offer tepid support for Sterling's character. According to Shelly Sterling, he's a pretty bad guy, but not a racist.
If Donald Sterling has dementia, maybe he forgot he's racist— Justin Miller (@justinjm1) May 11, 2014
Shelly Sterling also reiterated that she wants to keep her half of the Los Angeles Clippers despite opposition from prominent basketball figures like LeBron James and Magic Johnson. In the interview with Walters, Sterling declared that she is ready to fight.
In related news, Donald Sterling's big interview with Anderson Cooper will air tomorrow night. In the teaser for the big interview—reportedly to be Sterling's "one and only" interview—the 80-year-old Sterling asked for forgiveness.
I'm a good member who made a mistake and I'm apologizing and I'm asking for forgiveness. Am I entitled to one mistake, am I after 35 years? I mean, I love my league, I love my partners. Am I entitled to one mistake? It's a terrible mistake, and I'll never do it again."
We'll see how that goes.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.