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NBC News: Donald Sterling agrees to sell Clippers, drop lawsuit against NBA

Jun 4, 2014, 6:41 PM EDT

Donald Sterling, V. Stiviano Donald Sterling, V. Stiviano

Donald Sterling sounded oddly at peace in a recent interview.

I say oddly because he filed a $1 billion lawsuit against the NBA after essentially declaring war on anyone who believed had wronged him. That’s not a calm life situation.

But he probably knew something we didn’t.

Sterling — along with his wife, Shelly — will and approve the sale of the Clippers, NBC News has learned.

“Donald Sterling officially announces today the NBA and Donald Sterling and Shelly Sterling have agreed to sell the Los Angeles Clippers to Steve Ballmer for $2billion and various additional benefits. All disputes and outstanding issues have been resolved,” Bobby Samini, one of Sterling’s attorneys, told NBC.

Ramona Shelburne of ESPN added details:

If Sterling wants to repair his image, it won’t be an easy process – nor should it be. There’s no guarantee a lifetime would be long enough to atone for his misdeeds.

But this was absolutely the best step he could have taken. Sterling needs to get out of the spotlight, let the hatred toward him dissipate.

Then, he can either remain in the shadows and live out the rest of his life or re-emerge and prove he’s changed.

That option would not have existed as long as the Clippers sale and lawsuit hung in the balance.

Finally, we can all move on. Sterling most of all.

  1. RavenzGunnerz - Jun 4, 2014 at 6:56 PM

    Gonna be awkward when Adam Silver is getting cheered at the NBA Draft… He must find something to screw up quick. Like, fix the 3peat?

    • 00maltliquor - Jun 4, 2014 at 10:14 PM

      If the 3peat is what you want, he won’t have to fix anything. Just watch the Spurs shoot themselves in the foot yet again and watch Miami capitalize.

  2. antistratfordian - Jun 4, 2014 at 6:58 PM

    It’s the right thing to do, and it saves the sport a lot of unnecessary heartache and handwringing. And it also wraps up that distraction quite nicely so we can all focus on the finals.

  3. ranfan12 - Jun 4, 2014 at 7:06 PM

    Don’t know why people thought I was crazy when i mentioned that he was going to do this from the beginning.

    • antistratfordian - Jun 4, 2014 at 7:54 PM

      Same here. PBT was adamant that he was going to fight it to the end, even though that seemed like a worse decision than him going on the rant in the first place.

      • elcaminobilly - Jun 4, 2014 at 10:41 PM

        Doing the smart thing has never been a Donald Sterling tradition…personally I expected him to fight it out of spite if nothing else.

  4. adoombray - Jun 4, 2014 at 7:09 PM

    The whole time PBT was like “he’s gonna sue its a foregone conclusion we all know this”.

    I really feel like THIS was the most obvious outcome. who walks away from a billion dollars? most people can’t even comprehend how much money that is. Somebody must have sat him down and been like “you are crazy just buy an MLS team or something you really want to, this is gonna take care of your great great grandchildren.” Senile, Alzheimers, Demention, whatever, a billion dollars is something you sign off on as fast as possible, whatever the taxes end up being.

  5. jerdogthompson - Jun 4, 2014 at 7:11 PM

    It’s amazing that since April when news of this first broke the trolls were tripping over themselves;

    *The NBA can never force the sale
    *This is gonna be dragged out for years
    *All the Clippers players should become free agents
    *Doc Rivers is gone
    *Shelly and Donald will divorce to block the sale
    *Even if DTS is removed Shelly will keep her half because she has done nothing wrong
    *Balmer bought the team just to move them to Seattle

    The last one is my favorite because after numerous failed wishes and failed misgivings the last hope was Balmer would move the team.

    Guess what trolls, you were wrong every step of the way and this concludes the saga. Where are you, therealhtj, qball, et al with all your nonsense? It’s funny how vocal you were all along the way and as this process had gone on and the news has gotten progressively better the most vocal trolls are seemingly no where to be found.

    Come back and wear your stupidity like a cheap $10 suit. What am I saying? That would require being an adult clearly which none of the trolls are or will ever be. Eat it.


    • therealhtj - Jun 4, 2014 at 11:07 PM

      Congrats jerkdog! I always said I’d wish you the best if things swung your way. Can’t say I thought it’d be this easy, but $2billion goes a long way.

      I’d say it was well deserved, but let’s face facts, you and your lot all knowingly supported a racist slumlord for years, and yes, your boy Doc knew it as well as anyone.

      Just hope Ballmer has a better run as an NBA owner than he did as CEO of Microsoft. At least you can look forward to stuff like this:

    • duhwighthoward - Jun 5, 2014 at 10:39 AM

      Wait a minute, Jerdog. You were wrong about several things along the way too. I get the sense you’re a paralegal wannabe lawyer. You imagine PBT is a courtroom and that you’re making a dramatic speech to move the jury. Keep fantasizing.

  6. fotydaze - Jun 4, 2014 at 7:28 PM

    Donald set this all up. He’s selling his franchise for 2 billion, three months ago it was worth 600 million. I’m just saying

    • ranfan12 - Jun 4, 2014 at 8:26 PM

      Exactly. Who wastes what few years they have left on court when there’s 2 billion on the table.

  7. irvness21 - Jun 4, 2014 at 7:47 PM

    He was ready and willing to fight tooth and nail until he heard the winning bid was $2 billion. Then he was like oh, well OK, I agree to the sale.

  8. thekingdave - Jun 4, 2014 at 7:55 PM

    Lol @jerdogthompson making up half of the things he attacks “trolls” for pushing and getting bent out of shape over the word of 12 year olds in the accurate cases. The funniest is Ballmer would move the Clippers to Seattle. You’d have to be an absolute moron to not completely dismiss that at the halfway point of reading that sentence. Zero chance Ballmer would drop 2 Bil only to move them to Seattle, probably losing 1 Bil immediately in value.

  9. mrlaloosh - Jun 4, 2014 at 8:07 PM

    $2,000,000,000 can ease a lot of hurt feelings. Sterling will laugh all the way to the bank. The other NBA owners will see a windfall from the sale. Everybody wins, especially, the lawyers.

    • adoombray - Jun 5, 2014 at 7:54 AM

      He is estimated to have to pay 33% capitol gains tax. That’s like 500 million dollars between him and his wife to pay down the Federal budget. AMERICA wins here

  10. txmade06 - Jun 4, 2014 at 8:35 PM

    Sterling is brilliant! The clippers were the laughing stock of all professional sports for as long as anyone can remember and all it took was a couple of pretty good seasons and a few racist remarks and BAM! 2 billion in the bank!!

  11. jerdogthompson - Jun 4, 2014 at 8:39 PM


    Apparently you haven’t been paying very close attention, every statement preceded with an asterisk was in FACT nonsense posted by those same aforementioned trolls. Including the last one which represented their only hope of being right which of course their allegations Balmer would move the team.

    As for being hurt by words of 12 year olds (your words). Nothing could be farther from the truth, my point being is from day 1 I posted the eventual outcome that today’s headlines indicate period.

    During the 5-6 weeks after this thing broke and me sticking to my original prediction included have to read that same nonsense posted by those trolls and being told how wrong I was. I’m simply coming back to claim the ultimate prize of being 100% correct. Where are those trolls now? That’s what I thought.


    • therealhtj - Jun 4, 2014 at 11:10 PM

      Jerkdog – you’ve been a 100% right about as often as a broken clock. Congrats – you’re still a loser Clipper fan who knowingly helped that prick get 2billion.

  12. florida727 - Jun 4, 2014 at 8:57 PM

    All outstanding issues have been resolved? So, Donald, they did get the number of zeroes right in the sale price for you, huh? What a disgrace. If you didn’t know better, you’d swear this idiot orchestrated the entire thing.

  13. rdrfan - Jun 4, 2014 at 9:12 PM

    Tip my hat to Donald. Great business move on his part. He planned this out years ago.

  14. rrhoe - Jun 4, 2014 at 9:21 PM

    If the Clips r worth 2bil,OMG,what r the Knicks,Lakers or Celtics worth!!!!

    • ranfan12 - Jun 4, 2014 at 10:17 PM

      I don’t think this necessarily raises everyone’s value like that, it’s just what the price went up to once everyone got interested in owning it. I honestly just think actual value and selling value are two closely related, but different areas

    • eugenesaxe1 - Jun 4, 2014 at 11:20 PM

      1-The Clippers aren’t “worth” 2bil to anyone but Ballmer.
      2- Their valuation @ 575mil sounds about right, but there’s new TV contracts coming up, so that immediately jacks up that number.
      3-The Knicks are worth way more than any other team, because a sale would most likely include MSG and the MSG Network.

    • chicago240 - Jun 5, 2014 at 3:53 PM

      Prediction – Whatever the Lakers were worth will be significantly impacted because 1) They’re a mess and 2) There is another team in town that will slowly start eroding the Laker fanbase. The longer they stink, the worse it will get. And I’m guessing they’re gonna stink for a good long time. Check back in the standings five years hence.

  15. shanelsweet - Jun 4, 2014 at 9:41 PM

    You folks that are posting about how much the Knicks, Lakers, Celtics etc. worth now are missing the point. From the beginning, I’ve said this sale will be quick because the other owners see what’s at stake. Folks are willing to pay more than FMV to get rid of Sterling because he’s a racist for which no self respecting black person would agree to play or work. Pay whatever it takes to get rid of him, but do it quickly so the NBA can move on from this mess.

    • eugenesaxe1 - Jun 4, 2014 at 11:24 PM

      No, the team sold quickly because old-$chool Micro$oft money wanted to own a team. Even if Ballmer hadn’t stepped in, there are plenty of billionaires willing to overspend just to have a new toy, and teams in the LA market don’t go on sale every day. Sterling had nothing to do with it.

  16. rdrfan - Jun 4, 2014 at 10:17 PM

    Can’t even have a private conversation. What a screwed up country we live in these days .

    • ranfan12 - Jun 5, 2014 at 12:12 AM

      You must be new to TMZ,

  17. elcaminobilly - Jun 4, 2014 at 10:47 PM

    I find it interesting that the wording states he would “not be sued by the NBA”. He’s already been banned for life, and the process to take his team away had begun. Not sure what they would sue him for, unless it became a series of counter-suits.

  18. thetooloftools - Jun 5, 2014 at 12:06 AM

    I wish Donald well. He can still leave this game with respect. I still think if he had fought it out he would have won.
    I have a real problem with taping private conversations and having it released to the world. What he said was sickening, but it’s not like he was standing at a podium.
    What happens if an NBA player is recorded dropping he “N-BOMB”?
    If this is the standard, he should now be tossed out of the NBA for life.
    Like Cuban said…”a slippery Slope”.

    • duhwighthoward - Jun 5, 2014 at 1:30 PM

      If you’ve ever been around LeBron James, that’s all you’d hear.

  19. jerdogthompson - Jun 5, 2014 at 12:55 AM


    I wondered where you would surface. Yeah, 100% right bizatch. Let it sink in, much like the fact your Fakers will be basement dwellers for the next 2-4 years. Come back again when their relevant, until then…run along.


    • therealhtj - Jun 5, 2014 at 10:02 AM

      Says the moron with the 2nd round ceiling.


  20. chichi78 - Jun 5, 2014 at 1:07 PM

    The Sterlings may just be diabolical in their thinking all along. If they were forced out of their business, they have the right to reinvest all money from the sale of the team in a like business without worrying about the capital gains tax hit from the sale of the Clippers. I believe it is tax form 1033, that gives him that right. US tax court can’t deny him because he really never committed a crime to be forced out. As an American, he has the right to free speech.

    Long story, he probably just made $1.95+ billion profit tax free, so long as he reinvests in a like business. I hear Manchester United is for sale. All remaining money/profit with taxed. Being a racist made him a couple billion tax free. Diabolical indeed.

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