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Shelly Sterling’s lawyers promise fight to keep her share of team

May 8, 2014, 4:21 PM EDT

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, his wife Shelly, and actor George Segal attend the NBA basketball game between the Toronto Raptors and the Los Angeles Clippers at the Staples Center in Los Angeles Reuters

Shelly Sterling has been a fixture at Clippers games. She sits courtside, she and her friends turn the media dining room into “club Sterling” at Clippers games. Like her estranged husband, she basks in the celebrity (sycophantic though it is) of owning the Los Angeles Clippers.

She owns half the team and is not going to give it up willingly.

She said as much already and Thursday her attorney promised a fight to keep her share of the team, as he told the Associated Press.

“She will not agree to a forced or involuntary seizure of her interest,” said Shelly Sterling’s attorney, Pierce O’Donnell. “As her lawyers we will fight vigorously to defend her property rights….”

O’Donnell said Mrs. Sterling “abhors” the comments and that Silver had “exonerated” Mrs. Sterling in his statement last week by saying there was no decision made about other members of the family….

O’Donnell said Mrs. Sterling is an ardent Clippers fan and plans to attend Friday’s playoff game against Oklahoma City.

“We abhor guilt by association in America,” O’Donnell said. “The sins of the husband cannot be imputed to the wife or children.”

Well, except for Shelly Sterling shows up all over some of the housing discrimination lawsuits filed against Sterling. She is no innocent bystander here. She allegedly posed as a government inspector to both find out what race the tenants of their buildings were and to harass some of them. Just a week ago she said her husband was not a racist to the cameras. She is far, far from clean in all this.

But she could be tougher to remove.

Here is what NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said at his press conference regarding Shelly (it’s far from the exoneration her attorney claims):

“No, there have been no decisions about other members of the Sterling family, and I should say that this ruling applies specifically to Donald Sterling and Donald Sterling’s conduct only.”

As far as the players association has said — and very likely the sponsors and some of the fans feel the same way — there is no difference between her ownership and his.

That said, the Sterlings fight and bully in court. Silver had to know this was coming. When he stepped to the podium he had to be prepared for a fight in the courts. He seemed to be.

  1. spursareold - May 8, 2014 at 4:35 PM

    She actually doesn’t own half of the team, community property notwithstanding. She would only get that if she divorced him. She’s not on any paperwork as part of the ownership group.

    • bougin89 - May 8, 2014 at 4:51 PM

      Reportedly the Clippers are owned by a Sterling family trust that includes both Donald and Shelly. Where in the world did you get the information that she’s not on any paperwork as part of the ownership group?

  2. seattlesuperchronic - May 8, 2014 at 4:38 PM

    Ugh, everyone involved with this on the Clippers side is delusional. The mistress is just about the most stupid 30+ year old you’ll ever hear, the wife is insane for trying to keep the team when the entire world hates her, and you know, that Donald guy.

    • anotheryx - May 8, 2014 at 4:46 PM

      The mistress is a lot of things… stupid is not one of them.

      • 00millerfortune - May 8, 2014 at 8:05 PM

        Have you listened to the Barbara Walters interview? She’s as dumb as the day is long.

  3. bigsuede - May 8, 2014 at 4:55 PM

    This whole thing is ugly- the clippers are still owned by these racists. The players should boycott- make it ugly. It isnt like the players make great money from the playoffs… the majority of the playoff money goes to the owners pockets.

    You can’t have it both ways- play hard in the playoffs to help the clippers succeed and be against the sterlings. Morally, I wouldnt play for this woman.

  4. seattlesuperchronic - May 8, 2014 at 5:08 PM


    Are you kidding??? Have you heard the Barbara Walters interview?

  5. mrmcl - May 8, 2014 at 5:19 PM

    Isn’t that George Segal sitting court side next to Sterling? How dare he! Somebody needs to cancel “The Goldbergs” and foreclose on George’s home.

  6. luz56 - May 8, 2014 at 6:02 PM

    Allow unrestricted FA to the Clippers but still enforce the salary cap…sponsors scatter until this is settled…

    • asimonetti88 - May 8, 2014 at 6:48 PM

      As long as they’re doing things that won’t stand in court, they should just forcibly remove the team from Donald Sterling’s ownership. And make him have a press conference where he wears a silly hat.

  7. redbaronx - May 8, 2014 at 6:50 PM

    I feel like she’s playing everyone for dummies and she’s just as racist as her husband. Every game she attends is making my skin crawl.

  8. jvw1982 - May 8, 2014 at 7:09 PM

    I think she has a better case than he does of keeping the team….this will be ugly but I think the NBA will prevail in the long run…..

  9. mudhead123 - May 8, 2014 at 7:27 PM

    The beat part will be when the NBA can’t take the team. I am waiting for the joyous moment

  10. mudhead123 - May 8, 2014 at 7:29 PM

    The same people who scream for rights say he should lose the team. He is allowed to dislike black people. Most normal people do

    • musician0785 - May 8, 2014 at 7:54 PM

      Typical internet douchiness

  11. musician0785 - May 8, 2014 at 7:53 PM

    Somebody actually liked this comment?………. He is allowed to dislike black people, what he is not allowed to do is discriminate on basis of race when he runs a company that has an antitrust exemption…..

  12. 00millerfortune - May 8, 2014 at 8:09 PM

    IDK why, but Shelly gets on my nerves more then Donald for some reason.

  13. harshedmellow - May 9, 2014 at 4:23 AM

    People in general are a glorious pile of PITA. A hot mess. That seems fairly independent of skin color, to my Euro-mutt azz anyway.

    Yay people! Boo bigotry.

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