NBA bans Clippers’ Sterling for life


VIDEO: NBA commissioner Adam Silver announces his decision

NBA.com staff

BREAKING: Commissioner Adam Silver, after a swift investigation, has banned Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life for racist comments that came to light last weekend.

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban almost immediately hailed the decision.

https://twitter.com/mcuban/status/461208183965351937

Jason Collins, who last year became the first openly gay player in North American sports, also joined those applauding Silver’s decision.

Others chimed in:

And this, from perhaps the biggest name in the league, Miami Heat superstar LeBron James:

Silver, along with the lifetime ban and the fine, also said he will push owners to force Sterling to sell the team. League bylaws stipulate that an owner can be forcefully divested of his team if three-quarters of the other owners vote to do so:

Silver made it clear that he has the votes needed to take the team from Sterling. This, from SI.com’s Michael McCann:

Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert evidently is one of those owners who stands behind Silver:

Still unknown: How Sterling will react to the ban and the desire by Silver and many in the league for him to sell his team. The franchise released a statement shortly after the decision, though it was unclear if Sterling had anything to do with it. From CBS Sports’ Ken Berger:

Silver’s first major decision as commissioner was, at first blush, considered strong and decisive.

After the news conference, the league released a letter from Silver to the league’s fans. “I am extremely proud of this great league’s diverse, respectful and inclusive culture, and we will not allow one individual’s intolerant views to define us. Let me be clear: Mr. Sterling’s views have no place in the NBA,” he wrote.

He finished by writing: “And now I am eager to turn the spotlight back where it belongs: on the game we all love and on these thrilling playoffs, which have been some of the most exciting basketball I’ve seen in my 22 years with the league. I hope you enjoy the rest of the playoffs and The Finals.”

The entire letter can be read here.

Update 2:  NBA.com’s Lang Whitaker:

Update 1: Commissioner Adam Silver entered a packed news conference at approximately 2:05 p.m. He was accompanied by several members of the NBA’s front office, according to Howard Beck of Bleacher Report.

After this news conference, former All-Star Kevin Johnson and Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson will hold a news conference in Los Angeles, as a representative of the request of the National Basketball Players Association, to address the Sterling situation. Many players thoughout the league are awaiting Silver’s decision.

And now …

April 29, 2014: NBA commissioner Adam Silver will hold a press conference at 2 p.m. Tuesday in New York to announce the findings of an investigation into racist comments by Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling on a recording that was made public last weekend by TMZ.com. If the league finds that the voice on the recording was Sterling, Silver — who has been commissioner less than three months — is expected to hand down one of the most severe penalties against an owner in NBA history.

Here are a collection of reactions from throughout the league. We’ll update throughout the day.

Before the press conference, the scene was set by CBS Sports’ Ken Berger, among others:

ESPN’s sports business columnist Darren Rovell spotted a familiar New York face in the crowd at the news conference.

Speculation on what the NBA would do with Sterling started soon after the recordings were made public. This from Grantland’s Bill Simmons:

And this from Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski:

Here’s another shot of the gathering, from CNN’s Rachel Nichols:

Our own David Aldridge laid out what he was hearing, pre-decision, in this piece for us.

172 Comments

  1. foggy2468 says:

    So the players where thinking of boycotting the games and screwing over the fans but I bet they was still going to take that paycheck by the same man they are boycotting the games for. If you want to make a statement then dont take the mans money and play the game for free for the fans.

  2. Robert L. Martin says:

    You can’t punish a man for being stupid. The things he said are how we used to talk 70 years ago. We have grown and become less bigoted since then. But just because someone chooses to live in those dark days, he shouldn’t be punished for doing so.

    • mrcool says:

      I agree…He is 80 years old and he still lives in those times…you can’t teach a dog new tricks but he has a right to his opininon. He said this in private no public television…so I hope the NBA is ready for a big lawsuit because he is protected under the 1st amendment…FREEDOM OF SPEECH!!! It’s in the Constitution look it up! Plus a girl wrote about how her teacher was the worst teacher in the world and the court ruled in her favor because she has freedom of speech. it’s her opinion just like it was Sterling’s opninion. And this was talked be tween him and his girlfriend. he didn’t even post it on FaceBook…But if he did he would have that right because of the Constitution!!! We have freedom of speech! And sorry…Your feelings are not protected under the constitution or the Bill of Rights!! Get over it!

  3. Jerry says:

    And we all forget the right of free speech. What he said was harmful, and might not be right, but to give up our freedom of free speech is going a little too far. Free speech is for all, not just rich black basketball players. I am surprise that a federal judge is not defending our rights and throwing this whole thing out the door. If you don’t like what he said, stop supporting him. The players have the right to find another team and the fans have the right not to go to the games. But to take away everyone’s right to free speech is the worse thing of all. Not too long ago blacks could not speak their minds, now they want to stop freedom for others. I think we need to think this over.

  4. Markon says:

    C’mon NBA, are racists of color acceptable?

    Extend the ban to Farrakhan!

  5. Wes says:

    ImJusSayin

    I’m just saying I think you’re 100% wrong. In these nation wide sports, punishments are handed down all the time for things that don’t happen in a locker room or arena or a Sport/Team oriented facility. This, to me, and I believe to a judge is no different.

    These were distasteful, dispicable actions and the punishment was deserved!

    (Btw in my original post that was suposed to say I detest not distate)

  6. View Point says:

    There should be a new Basketball League created, let the blacks have their NBA, this new Basketball League will have an even number of ALL races, Asians, Blacks, Hispanics, Whites, ALL evenly, none of the victim, shaming, black agenda, game that they play with the country. IT IS TIME TO START A NEW BASKETBALL LEAGUE!!!!

    By the way America, there should be law suits for other races that are not hired by the teams for RACIAL DISCRIMINATION!

  7. ho lee phuck says:

    good job. even tho he has the right to say what he wants. its not right for an owner in a diverse organzation to say what he thinks and feels about.

  8. BasketballLover says:

    Black? White? How about Sterling Silver?

  9. ImJusSayin says:

    UHH What NBA Rule was violated? Silver can say what he wants any court in the land will overturn this. There was no public action it was an illegal recording in the privacy of his own home. No matter how disgusting a persons views are there is no room to violate his expected privacy. The players should refuse to play or whatever means they find to punish him and make him sell, but the league or any workplace for that matter has no right punish any individual for his/her opinions expressed within the confines of their home. There is no place for racism but there is no excuse to violate expected freedoms of any individual. Imagine if you got fired because someone recorded you talking about work while you were at home most bosses would find a way to make you quit because they know firing you would be wrongful termination.

    • TheOneWhoKnocks says:

      Yeah we all have the right to speak freely and we can’t be punished thanks to the first amendment, freedom of speech. HOWEVER, Sterling along with every other owner in the NBA, signed a contract knowing full well how they are expected to behave as owners of a professional basketball team. The league itself isn’t the government, it’s a club. And as Sterling signed a contract with the club, the club can sanction Sterling to it’s full extent. Sterling isn’t facing criminal charges is he? No, because freedom of speech. He is banned from the NBA and fined, simply because his views and comments are not of those expected and demanded of an NBA owner.

  10. Wes says:

    I’m not really an NBA Fan, I loosely pay attention to what’s going on during the playoffs but ultimately don’t follow the Sport. I don’t dislike it, I just prefer Baseball and Football to Basketball.

    However, what I do follow is good stories and good people. Adam Silver, you sir are good individual who has set a great example for Commissioners and Owners in all other sports. More so, the players and fans in L.A. have set a great example for players and fans of other sports and teams. This kind of behavior cannot be tolerated and I absolutely applaud Adam Silver for not hesitating to do what needed to be done in the best interest of, not just his sport, but the people who are “employees” of that sport, the people who play, the people who own teams, and the fans who enjoy the sport.

    Without a doubt, the NBA has chosen the right guy for the job!

    I say this because, it’s not surprising to see those directly touched by racism at any point in their life, to comment and react to such situations. I am a 33 year old, white male who has, not a day in his life, had to deal with racism targetted towards himself. I distaste the actions of racism and applaud those willing to stand up for not just themselves, but others against it. Adam Silver, you actions were in a way, heroic. Keep up the great work! United should be the NBA in this time of Triumph!

  11. steve says:

    Stirling is an idiot. but jay z is also a racist. he wears the medallion around his neck at the games to prove it. come on commish lets be fair

  12. Number 13 says:

    Kareem wrote a good piece for Time magazine about this whole debacle. People who think the NBA’s actions today were a major victory for equality are sorely misinformed.

  13. sam says:

    The decision to ban for life is way too much. Just a ban for a season or hefty fines and not attend future games should be sufficient. Personally I think he has the right to say whatever he want and how cares what he said. It is a FREE COUNTRY.

    • James Earl Jones says:

      Name one point in American history that made you believe this was a “free country”.

  14. JAMES E ROSS says:

    WHAT HAPPENED TO THE FIRST ADMENTMENT ????????????????????????????????????????????/

  15. Rick J Jaymes says:

    Wonderful job Mr. Silver I’m proud of the job you are doing.

  16. Bill says:

    ITT: People who don’t seem to comprehend the First Amendment guarantees freedom of speech, that is, not to be penalized for what you say BY THE GOVERNMENT.

    The NBA is not the government.

    And it certainly doesn’t mean freedom from consequences.

  17. Ben says:

    Some people here need a bit of a legal education.

    This is NOT a question of free speech. Donald Sterling is not a member of the public privately holding an opinion. Donald Sterling is a stakeholder in a public commercial organisation. He has, by being a part of that organisation, bound himself to following certain rules.

    You can fetter your right to free speech. For instance, if you accept an offer of employment, your contract is likely to say that you can’t say degrading things about your employer. It doesn’t matter if you say them publicly or privately – if you say them, and there is evidence of that, you will be in breach of your contract and subject to whatever kind of remedies are set out in that contract.

    What is being alleged here is that Donald Sterling has breached his obligations as an owner and he is being held to account to that by having sanctions applied against him, sanctions that he has agreed to be subject to.

    There is nothing worse than people holding up their right to freedom of speech as some kind of free ride to say whatever they want and not be held to account. There is no such right! Donald Sterling won’t be sent to jail or put to death for it. He won’t be oppressed by the Government. These are the things that freedom of speech is designed to prevent! It’s not designed to prevent commercial organisations from taking action against those whose actions undermine the entire organisation.

    As for the idea that it was a ‘private’ conversation. If you murder someone in private, does it make it ok? The idea that private/public matters is ridiculous. There is no distinction between the two. If you do something which is in breach of a legal obligation, it doesn’t matter when or where you do it.

    Adam Silver has done exactly what he should do – the absolute maximum that he is able to.

    And please, for those of you trying to suggest Donald Sterling is not a racist man, that he has a long history of nto being racist, that his only objection to Magic Johnson is that he was a Laker? Learn your history. Donald Sterling is KNOWN to be a racist, sexist individual by pretty much everyone who knows him.

    • ANDone says:

      What legal obligation did he breach?

    • mrcool says:

      What legal obligations did he breach? And what right does Charles Barkley have to say this is a BLACK MANS SPORT??? I AM AFFENDED By this comment…I will Sue him for this statement!!!!

  18. SAS says:

    Is racist Jay-Z next?

  19. Ryan says:

    Looks like they have to change the name also of Sterling Silver jewellery to just SILVER great job comish much respect

  20. Ali Chapel says:

    I find it appalling that the NAACP does not do more. This is 2014, not 1954, therefore the outcry should be a lot more. I know for the NBA at the end of the day its about the all mighty dollar, but when will human rights and racial discrimination become more important. Many people have fought, bled, and even died for such a cause. Why is it that people are just saying “shame on you”!? Yes, the NBA did all it could, now its time for the people, the fans, the communities to step up and say enough is enough. We will ultimately hit him where it hurts…The Wallet. The NBA players who are mostly black, where is their loyalty?? Is it do the dollar or to human and civil rights? Sometimes you have to sacrifice for the greater good, even if your checkbook takes a hit.

  21. R. Reed says:

    His comments were not the intelligent, but this is America and last time I checked we still enjoy the FREEDOM OF SPEECH. Not popular but still true

  22. Onoz says:

    So, it took more or less 3 days to obtain original recording from TMZ, check if the voice belongs to Sterling, send it to the lab to check if it wasn’t altered in any way, meet with Sterling to listen to his side of story, consult with the owners and reach the verdict? They sure can work fast if the want to… if only courts would act with such speed.

  23. Eloy says:

    NBA must fight all forms of discrimination:

    “Two Oklahoma City Thunder owners gave $1.5 million to fight gay marriage”

    http://www.outsports.com/2012/6/12/4053230/two-oklahoma-city-thunder-owners-gave-1-5-million-to-fight-gay

  24. Dieter says:

    Great that they banned him from the league for his remarks and thoughts, he doesn’t belong in the league… but I really don’t understand how people can get a fine of 2,5m dollars for having a private conversation… I think the NBA and also the world is making a big step backwards. Fining someone for speaking his mind in a private conversation is against the whole principle of freedom of speech. And therefore I’m even more disgusted by the actions of Silver and the NBA. I hope action will be taken against the NBA to set an example for how serious most people are about freedom.

  25. why says:

    I dare all of you to hear the intire ”interwiew”. He is not racist! through the intire phone call he tried to shove it off. He said it about Magic bcause he is a Laker and she was posting pics with him. This is pathetic. He was having a private conversation!!!!! It’s not like it was plubic!!!!

    • cp10 says:

      It actually went on for a full hour from what I read, I don’t know Sterling (who of us does), all I know is someone recorded him (or was instructed to record him) while Staviano, who seem to have full knowledge he was being recorded, was trying to get him to say something incriminating. I don’t think he’s racist like he’s in the KKK, he has character flaws and got himself framed.

    • asdf says:

      Magic also hopes he can buy Clippers off Sterling, so no wonder he wants him far away from his girlfriend. I wouldn’t be surprised if the whole messed was caused by Magic…

  26. Aflativoi says:

    Here is an idea. Have the NSA turn on all the smartphone microphones in America and listen in to people’s private conversation and identify all racists. Then, fine all of them 2.5 million dollars. For those not fortunate enough to have the money to pay this “racism ticket” there’s always forced credit. This way you can enjoy 3 of America’s favorite pastimes – slave labor, invasion of privacy and bad credit.

  27. theholyspectator says:

    ban for life…hmmm but hell still be getting paid lol, its like having an over seas account constantly paying you and you dont ever have to step foot in that country…doesnt seem like sterling cares…but ya i guess thats the most the nba can do…

  28. harold says:

    I can’t believe a few words spoken out on ones mouth is worth 2.5 million and the freedom to do what others are can do freely such as join sports clubs. Those words he spoke might be racist but he was talking to someone on confidentiality and not on public. It’s his own convection. I thought America is free but now I just realize that someone or anybody could just take away your freedom such as banning you to do something that others are free to do.

    This racist thing has just been blown out of proportion by people who doesn’t even know what racism is and that they are using all the power they have to put down a man just to make a point and precedent that if someone is again caught saying same lines, he/she has to watch out because the whole world will be against you. These people just want to make sure that all the words that come out from everybody’s mouth is now censored from now on, So watch out everybody and don’t make a mistake, because somebody will surely make a mistake someday, and when that happens, you will be skinned…

    There are billions of people around the world that needs food, shelter and peace, and the least they care and worry are the words spoken by Sterling, yet this extra rich players paid by the millions just to shoot ball, are all on Sterlings throat just because he dislikes their color, so what! I’m colored but I don’t care what other race thinks about our race. We all just try to be honest and fair to everybody.

    Actually, we just don’t know that we all are racists in one way or another, and we are just hypocrites not to accept it because we think we are perfect, but actually not. It is a shame that Sterling has to pay for all of us racists.

  29. I8A4RE says:

    Double standard, a fair amount of players have done far worse than voiced an ignorant opinion, I expect them to get banned for life also, Kobe Bryant, Jason Kidd, Glenn Davis, Ron Artest, Dennis Rodman to name a few, keep in mind Sterlings mishap is still an illegal and alleged offense,

  30. jwt7000 says:

    This is the day and moment that the NBA shall remember for years and generations to come. Well done to Mr. Silver for finally getting rid of Sterling once and for all. The Clippers shall change by next season once the sale of the team does come accordingly.

  31. MrHegemony says:

    To all you Sterling supporters talking about “black on white racism” and other such nonsense, here’s some knowledge for you: Racism is a system of control in which one race systematically keeps all other races out of power through a variety of structures and mechanisms both public and private.

    What you’ve been talking about (“black on white racism”) is prejudice, which – while still terrible, and against what our society has chosen to strive for – is not the same thing as racism, plain and simple.

    Until you show us specific examples within the United States in which the federal government, state governments, banks, or other major private or public entities have systematically kept white people out of power in favor of blacks or other people of color, your point is moot.

  32. NBAIQ says:

    The Clippers are a franchise and if other team owners vote for Donald Sterling’s removal, then he gets nothing. You can’t sell what you don’t own! The NBA has a rich culture of diversity and will continue to promote its healthy environment for players, employees and fans. Adam Silver did what any great business leader would do…protect the business and it’s culture. I hope people with small views really pay attention to this situation because its a learning experience. This type of behavior has no place here in America.

    • Dieter says:

      Protect your business and culture is absolutely very important, and he did really great by banning Sterling from the league, because he surely doesn’t belong in it.

      But he could’ve done it easily without a fine, this opens alot of new discussions:
      - Should the NBA be fined for fining someone who just had a private conversation?
      - Should the NBA be fined for fining Pop for giving some players some well deserved rest?
      - Should the NBA be fined for interfering in the Pau Gasol trade?
      - Should the NBA be fined for letting Seattle’s team move to Oklahoma?
      - Should the NBA be fined for having a shortened season last year?
      - Should the NBA be fined for not allowing new teams in the league like Anaheim, Seattle, Las Vegas, Kansas, …?
      - Should tanking teams be fined?
      - Is there a place in the NBA for players who bring guns to practices/games?

      The NBA is a bully + it makes unsteady decisions… guess they should be punished too.

  33. Kasie K. says:

    Maybe I’m repeating someone else opinion, but I didn’t read all 80+ comments :)

    But, first of all, I’m sorry that players and coach had to go through this, especially in this time of playoff, they really doesn’t deserve it :( And us the spectators also, who really enjoy the Clips performance :(

    And my opinion about the matter is that I believe that Sterling is some primitive and unscrupulous guy, but he didn’t get where he is by being nice, like probably 99% of other NBA team owners, including Silver, so I believe that there would be counter lawsuit from Sterling side and at the end he will get slap on the hand full of cash :P

  34. Kman says:

    Great decision by Mr. Silver.

  35. BOYCOTT the NBA says:

    Can’t believe I have to Boycott my favorite sport. The NBA is full of cry babies. And yes they need the white mans money so don’t fool yourselves. Hope all current Clipper players never ever get a Championship Ring in life. Since they have no back bone and can’t admit they knew the truth about Sterling for years.

  36. Manny says:

    Bravo Mr. Silver!

  37. Kane says:

    So with Jay Z being a part owner of the Nets, I suppose that the NBA is going to listen to his ‘Music” and ban him for life also. He actually uses the N word in his “Music”

    • Quantas says:

      umm, Jay had to give up his ownership once he became a licensed sports agent. he isn’t part owner of any team.

  38. dave says:

    The NBA should realize that thier actions just go to prove that they promote black on white racism while only punishing those who speak in a fashion that is anti-black or anti-Latino. So called “hate” speech and actions against whites, Jews, Christians and so called “homophobes” is not only tolerated in the NBA it is promoted. Of course this is our society today. Where professional athletes get paid super-sized salaries for playing a game and get slapped on the wrist for crimes that would have any other person in jail. A “racist” remark gets a [white] man banned for life and the NBA trying to illegally force him to sell his franchise. Whereas a colored player busted for beating his wife and using drugs can get installed in to the hall of fame…. Go figure.

    Personally I feel that ALL persons, white or otherwise, who believe in the First Amendment (freedom of speech) should boycott the NBA.

    • justsayin says:

      Homophobe! (so-called)
      And “colored”, you really went there?!

      Pray tell, enlighten us more about the systematic persecution of rich white bigots.

    • Ben says:

      Oh yeah, I’m sure two consecutive Jewish commissioners are really trying to promote anti-Jew sentiments.

  39. david schwartz says:

    N.B.A. Bars Clippers Owner Donald Sterling for Life http://nyti.ms/1iDjSDv
    I underestimated Adam Silver. Great leadership. I apologize

  40. danielnconceicao says:

    Before anyone comes here claiming that his right to free speech has been infringed upon, please understand this: Yes, free speech is a necessary right in a functioning democracy. It means that one will have the same opportunities as everyone else in spite of his or her opinions. You will not be arrested, or kept from telling people about your views, however stupid and vile they may be. However, you are not granted privileges just because your views are unpopular (or popular for that matter). No one is required to listen to you, or give you a TV show, or include you as a speaker in a conference, for example. And just as you are free to tell others about your views, others are free to tell you and others that your views are stupid. Owning an NBA franchise is a privilege, not a right, and the NBA is within its rights to protect itself against being linked to such a despicable creature.

  41. Nay says:

    For some more background on the roots of Sterling’s insensitivity to racial discrimination: http://thenaykedtruth.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-donald-sterling-saga-harsh-reality.html

  42. Kevin MD says:

    Thank you NBA (# No Bigotry Allowed) !!!

  43. Shane says:

    I am torn on this. While I agree hateful speech is not right, he obviously was saying these things in private. The woman was clearly trying to goat him into saying something incriminating. If he had said this in public I would not question the ruling for a second. Drop the hammer on him. Being that these were his thoughts in private that were systematically brought into the open with malicious intent, I do not believe it should have got this far. You nor I should have to worry about every single thing we say in the comfort and privacy of our homes or places we OWN. Are his views wrong in my opinion… Yes. Should he have his rights stripped because he is a closet racist? No.

  44. Johnny says:

    At first glance, Silver’s decision looks morally correct. Looking deeper, it appears his actions may also be an effort to right the moral ineptitude of his predecessor. When former NBA commissioner, David Stern, decided to unilaterally nix a Chris Paul trade to the LA Lakers, it was evident that he and Sterling had a friendly relationship. A clear conflict of interest by the Commish. Stern stated his decision was based on the fact he wanted to create an equal playing field for small market teams. The Clippers being in Los Angeles, are NOT a small market team. At the time, of the Chris Paul trade, Sterling’s notoriety as a racist landlord was well known. It was obviously okay to be a racist then. Now that the decision banning him for life has come down, it begs the reasoning as to why it has taken so long ?

  45. Double Standards says:

    I agree that Sterling is an ignorant, but why don’t we talk about NBA players hanging out with rappers like Drake, who uses the N word on his videos?

  46. josey says:

    Other than the Clippers! Anything sterling owns should b band and boycotted! I know that we all need to look up everything this DEVIL OWNS AND PUT HIM OUT OF BUSINESS! 4 REAL! IT AINT OVER YET STERLING! ALL THESE YEARS PEOPLE HAVE SUED YOU FOR BEING A RACIST! OH! AND ALL YOU THAT FEEL THE WAY STERLING FEELS! YOUR NEXT DEVILS!

    • justsayin says:

      Calm those caps – but it is a valid point I was hoping would be raised.

      We need disclosure of what other businesses he owns.

  47. Hannes says:

    This happens only in america. The only way to deal with racism is to ignore it. This is not the way to go. The nba makes an issue out of nothing. If an old bitter man wants to sit in a corner and think his thoughts, let him do it. Somehow it is okay for black people(I do not know the politically correct term, sorry) to make fun or call white people white but not vice versa.

  48. Rust says:

    well, i guess this is how democracy works.
    smart move by magic to cut the price of the well wanted nba team

  49. Rob Douglas says:

    Phenomenal decision Commissioner Silver to let the world know that ignorance, lack of integrity, and moral character will not be tolerated.

  50. justsayin says:

    And now he is forced into the unenviable position of selling one of the most entertaining and lucrative teams in basketball – becoming even more obscenely rich.

    Glad he is banned but I cant quite fist pump “for great justice” with everyone.

    • Dirty gun says:

      He originally invested 12 million to buy them now they’re worth 455million. His views are wrong but he makes genius business decisions. Except for this fiasco

  51. Lyle Crews says:

    Wow, this is the way to lead. Great job Mr. Silver, This is how you stamp out ignorance and make a statement of Zero tolerance. Having money never gives you the right to think you are better or superior than the rest of the world!

  52. Jason says:

    The webmaster is picking and choosing which comments to allow. Where’s the fairness in that?

  53. Chris Kennisoin says:

    Does this mean that Spike Lee will be banned for all the racist things he’s said over the years? This has set a dangerous precedent and also opens the NBA for a lawsuit. It”s called free speech people. Spike Lee enjoys it when he spouts his racism about white people. It goes both ways and Sterling will get what he deserves from the backlash. Idiocy.

    • justsayin says:

      Which team does Spike Lee own again?

    • Mel says:

      Difference between spike lee and DS, is that Spike doesnt own a NBA team. And the NBA doesnt have ownership of a movie he makes. So tho i see your point, you cant compare the two.

    • Greg says:

      Totally agree Chris. While I don’t agree with what Sterling said, he made those comments in a private conversation which was made public by a vindictive person. So he is being punished for making a personal comment? Every person has made a comment which could be thought of as racist. Including every basketball player who is crying racism in this matter. Racism works both ways people, whether you are black, white, Hispanic, Asian, or whatever ethnicity you refer to yourself.

    • D.B. says:

      Chris, what’s Spike Lee have to do with Sterling? It’s Sterling’s behavior you should be speaking out against if you’re against racist comments as whole, not just select people. It’s interesting that while you’re bringing up Spike Lee, you haven’t said whether Sterling’s actions were wrong or not. Does that mean you endorse Sterling’s comments while condemning Lee’s actions you’re alleging? If so, that would be a double standard. In THIS case, Sterling’s the person being held accountable for HIS actions, not for Spike Lee’s actions. Secondly, I haven’t read ANYONE who is speaking out against Sterling’s behavior running around endorsing Spike Lee in this forum.

      From the looks of things, your approach to this comes across as a racially based bait and switch rather than individual accountability based on the fact that what Sterling said was wrong. Free speech frees no one from accountability for their actions or the things they say. Sterling was the one who got caught so he’s being held accountable for it. When Spike Lee comes up with the same scenario, why don’t you make your case against him then?

  54. Hoopsforlife says:

    To anyone that lives in America:

    The real issue of this story is not what Mr. Sterling said.
    Wake up..
    It’s not ok to record audio on someone in the privacy of there home and then use it against them. Especially in California.
    Have you ever looked something up on the internet you didn’t want anyone else to see or know about or said something that you didn’t want others to hear?
    Ever said something to your wife,husband, girlfriend in confidence.
    Have you ever said anything racist, ever in your whole life?..I bet you have at least once….
    How would you feel if your words were turned around against you for profit or revenge?.

    What would it be like if everyone was afraid to speak out loud for fear of the consequences that could occur especially it was taken out of context.
    North Korea mIght be a good example..
    What happens when the government starts doing what Adam Silver just did for something you said in the privacy of your own home.
    Mr Sterling paid his bills and has made many athletes very rich including black athletes…

    Americans have the right for freedom of speech especially in the privacy of there home.

    • Rollster30 says:

      Your right Freedom of speach, good for Sterling to talk what he feels. But now lets get to reality my friend, your freedom of speach is limited when you are part of a bussiness format that does not promote racism. So now that he will be forced to sell because of his ignorance, he can go prerach his hatered to all those close minded fools that think the same way he does.

  55. Isabella says:

    To everyone who is saying this is unfair and that they will never watch or support the NBA again, what should Adam Silverman have done?

    • Dirty gun says:

      Those people aren’t really true fans of any team and probably dont watch much basketball already, because if they are, they just spent 6 months watching a basketball season supporting their teams hoping they’d make the playoffs; to now not watch the playoffs because of one mans racist coment and the punishment. doesn’t make much sense.

  56. fred says:

    I don’t understand why the commissioner feels the need to apologize to former black players of the NBA?

    How and why is he responsible? I believe this action and presser to be pure hyperbole, grandstanding and more propaganda than social reflection.

    I didn’t really watch or have any interest in the NBA or its athletes. I still don’t. This action by the NBA makes me feel less inclined to consider a change in my opinion.

  57. eesa1980 says:

    Although I agree with the decision to ban Sterling from the NBA we should ask ourselves, if Micheal Jordan (for example) made similar comments about white people would he have received the same treatment and punishment?

  58. JV says:

    To all of you talking about your “freedom of speech”. Let me tell you something: freedom of speech doesn’t warrant freedom of consequence. Yes he can say whatever he wants, that doesn’t make it any less wrong or racist.

  59. Jason Clark says:

    With the sell of the Clippers being so close at hand, can the team be purchased and move? Seattle would love to have a team again. Great opportunity for the Great Northwest. #Let_another_state_have_a_team

    • justsayin says:

      I have to agree. It’s beyond selfish having two teams in LA. (and NYC)

      Love the Clips but they would make a great Sonics team – they already have stand-ins for Payton and Kemp.

  60. bibot says:

    This is why I keep teaching my kids that it is better to be a hypocrite than a racist openly to the public.

  61. Masner says:

    So does this mean that he can only attend the WNBA???? I think it should be for both organization.

    • Dieter says:

      Yeah, and what about him drinking Sprite, having conversations with people who have a subscription with T-Mobile, and playing tennis with people who wear Reebok shoes ! Are you serious dude?

  62. M1978 says:

    Both sides of the story. From on side the NBA is a role model to everyone in the world, so it can not allow to be brought in connenction with racism. I have some distance as a european to judge that. The US is still one of the best working examples to observe mixed races living together. The NBA is one of the biggest cultural and business US exports. In this view, this is a very good decision.
    From the other side, the whole thing is a show. I would be really suprised if there were no other racist team owners. This whole thing caused a big outcry, so this is cheap popularity to the new comissioner. This side of the story tells about a new commissioner who is eager to fulfill expectations and does the popular thing….

  63. Plato Troy says:

    Inthink what this man said was completely ignorant and hateful however what about his first amendment right to say what he wants??? I thought that as Americans we had freedom of speech even as stupid and hateful that would be

  64. Aidan Ward says:

    In our modern time evolution has been an segment of those who didn’t dream of the impossible but dwelled on “Change”…its sad to see how one of the league’s elite organization owner show such ignorance after being the Worst team for years to being a playoff bound team….

  65. Said says:

    Thank you Mr. Silver

  66. Carl Smith says:

    You go Donald Sterling

  67. Said says:

    Seattle are ready for LA Clippers

  68. Sylvia Cooke Martin says:

    I don’t know much about Basketball. I never heard of Adam Silver. But I am going to watch basketball games, especially the Clippers. As a genealogist and historian, studying and researching American history, the action of Mr. Silver made me euphoric with being an African American. Words cannot express my hope and excitement about civil rights and human rights in this country. May the God of the universe bless Mr. Silver, the coach, and the Clippers for contributing to the American Dream.

  69. bodjee says:

    Good! Now Mr Commish should add a team of off-court officials to the game to help with the miscalls and the human errors. I am tired of loosing bets on ref’s egos.

  70. Dave says:

    Time to desegregate the NBA. There is to high of a percentage of blacks to white people in the league. Lets make the league have representation on each team that reflects the composition of America. Oh I forgot this isn’t America. You can’t speak your mind

    • Dan says:

      you would need to be a better athelete – dont forget it started off 100 white like all sports -

  71. Noitidart says:

    I’m apart of minority races and I think Adam Silver’s decision AND the cry baby sensitive society of today is ridiculous.

    We’ve all been in relationships so just take a second to think about it. I think Donald Sterling was just saying that stuff to his girlfriend, in relationships we all say crazy things to each other for a multitude of reasons. I think Sterling was trying to control his girlfriend but he was a wimp about it and had to use the excuse of racism to control. This happened in private between the two. I don’t think he acts upon his statements against other races. Therefore I think this whole situation is absurd and uncalled for.

    I have no doubt that Sterling will sue for exactly the above. Plus how on earth was he taped? I don’t get it, who taped it and who delivered it to TMZ? That was private conversation. That’s my biggest concern especially because Donal Sterling isn’t acting on racism, it doesn’t look like.

    • Noitidart says:

      By “excuse of racism” I really mean that Sterling was trying to control his gf by controlling who she hangs out with, they just happened to be black/magic johnson, so it got skewed into racism then he started talking about broadcasting etc. It’s a relationship people are emotional and say crazy things. We all do. Peple are holding Stern to a different standard then they hold themselves. Ridiculous.

      Focus on the bigger issue: who on earth, and how on earth, are private conversations being recorded. And why on earth is private stuff being held against people when it doesnt affect anyone else.

    • common sense says:

      what an unbelievable ignorant and foolish comment. Research the allegations and lawsuits against Sterling in the past and how he DOES act upon his statements.

      just because you’re trying to control someone by using inappropriate methods, doesn’t make it okay.

      It’s obvious to anyone with a brain that it was taped by his “girl friend” or her party to catch him saying things he probably has said before.

  72. mt robinson says:

    JUSTICE- Sterling is the worst owner in professional sports, BRAVO mr commisioner!! now it would be even more awesome for you to undo the second WORST decision he ever made- STEALING OUR TEAM- signed SAN DIEGO- a HOTBED of basketball lovers, WE WANT OUR TEAM BACK!!!!

  73. 3PEAT says:

    listen to the full conversation ( 9 minutes ), that girl was trying very hard to make Sterling fall into her trap. Plus, what law did Sterling break? I’ve heard comments that are more racist. Silver and the entire NBA was fooled by that girl.

  74. Doug says:

    This was very wrong and Im not sure about banned for life, NBA is huge and should allow such. The guy is losing his ownership and fined, Why do Rappers black or white not get a record deal took away from them for all the racist comments record after record, I think this entire thing is one sided , something don’t make sense.

  75. TO Russ says:

    @Russ, wtf? What he said is just stupid? If that’s what you think you clearly are out of touch as well! What do you think the appropriate response should be then? Him exercising his 1st amendment right does not mean what he says is not subjected to others exercising theirs as well – just as much as what you’re doing now as a result of the NBA’s action – and as much as how I have the right to express my opinion about you!

  76. Don Mowak says:

    This whole situation was a set up on a man who is mentally sick and a degenerate. However I just wonder how much outcry there would of been if his statement was directed toward anybody but a black person. Sure the words were somewhat uncalled for but if he really was as hateful as people say why didn’t he use the “N” word. Telling his so called girl frien not to come to the games with a black man is not what I call a racist remark. What would they have dine if he told her Don’t come to the games with a white man. Nothing at all would have happened. This country is and has been bending over backwards to accomadate people like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson. Two of the biggest people that discrimate against whites. Jackson with his comment on Jews in NY City as hiemme town and Sharpton racing to the aid of the Duke La Cross non victum.

  77. buddy says:

    Standing up to racism everytme it rears its ugly head, provides an opportunity to make a positive shift for the common good of all.

  78. 3PEAT says:

    This is stupid. The whole thing was set up by his racist girlfriend. He getting banned and fined just for falling into a trap is NOT FAIR. I am not saying that Sterling’s comments are right, but he has the right to say it. Silver you wanna fine him? Fine his girlfriend first.

  79. Dan says:

    I have no interest watching any NBA games in the future..Thank you Comrades

  80. Snickers says:

    An overly hyped penalty to a leaked private conversation. Okay Warriors win.

  81. Lorna says:

    All I can say in response to you Russ is WOW! A solid decision by Mr. Silver well done.

  82. The best thing could have is the right thing. There’s no place in any company or organization for this foolish or behaviour. The children of today reads and look at people as a role model.

  83. happy tree says:

    I hide my name just in case the brown shirts come after me.

    I just deleted the nba app from my iPhone.

    The nba has been my favorite sport to watch. I am sad to say I will no longer be watching it even if this decision is rescinded.

    There is no place in the USA , the home of the free, for more McCarthyism.

    • justsayin says:

      That comparison is ignorant and insulting.

      You probably compare politicians you don’t like to Hitler.

  84. michelle says:

    I agree with the commissioner’s decision but you must realize that for a BILLIONAIRE 2.5 million is what he spends on his mistress, you have to hit him where it hurts WE must stop going to the GAMES he only understands PROFITS and this is where
    it will MATTER put a dent in HIS PROFITS when we will understand this is not our country we just live in it

  85. meeeee says:

    I clicked to see an article to read not opinions on twitter

  86. Russ says:

    This is a joke. We live in America and even though what he said is stupid it is his right to say it. He needs to sue the NBA for violation of his 1st amendment rights rights to speak as ignorantly as he wants.

    • Guido says:

      Have you checked the constitution lately? The first ammendment guarantees you not to be prosecuted by the goverment for what you say. Whatever you do in a private organization (like the NBA) is just the same as what your neighbors can do, when you annoy them – they will show you the door… A little bit more colorful explained here: http://xkcd.com/1357/

    • Malcom alvarez says:

      You r really stupid smh

    • Chris says:

      Obviously the NBA has the right. Just like a store has the right to refuse service to anybody they wish. In this case it’s racist lmao

    • Jo says:

      I could not agree more. He is an absolute disgusting human being, but he has the right to be that person. This is a GROSS OVERREACH of power and injustice. He made these comments in PRIVATE. (These comments were blasted all over the world by a company that leeches off society and makes large amounts of money by obtaining “private” moments of celebrities and other wealthy people, the bigger the scandal the bigger the payday). This country is really heading down a slippery slope, politically and otherwise. The simple fact here is this, WE ARE SACRIFICING FREEDOM IF THIS IS LEFT ALONE. It is up to us as a society to punish this hateful idiot. THE PLAYERS AND FANS can organize a walk-out, black-out or something similar. I FOR ONE REFUSE TO WATCH A SINGLE NBA GAME UNTIL SOMETHING IS DONE BY US, THE VIEWING PUBLIC. STOP GIVING AWAY OUR POWER. IT IS UP TO US TO PUNISH THIS MAN, NOT THE NBA’S COMMISIONER. WE HAVE THIS HUGE AMOUNT OF POWER, AND WE MUST USE IT!!! People, wake UP!!! Adam Silver is a wealthy white male, who have always held most the power in the country. I will not applaud this decision. He is just doing the same thing any other person with too much power would do, WE ARE LOSING THIS COUNTRY!!!

    • Eddy says:

      You are right, but never to insult about other races. It is right Correct to speak his mind, but when it comes to United states Laws, codes, ethics, and so on. But not about one racial profile. Just saying

    • justsayin says:

      Dont be simple. They fine players coaches and owners when they criticize officiating or say something that damages the league and what he has said has materially damaged the league on an unprecedented scale. If they let it go unpunished it would become a sport wide scandal on par with PEDs and baseball.

      I bet MLB only wishes it could wash its hands of that in the rosy and righteous manner Silver and the NBA are in position to do.

    • Lawyer says:

      You obviously don’t understand the 1st amendment. What Sterling did violates multiple amendments…

    • bong says:

      its too much. What he says is not against black people, its against black guy from where his gf posted. c’mon guys the conversation is between the couple, its private. If he is really against black people, why he offered Paul, Rivers and the rest of the black players and staff to join Clippers? Why he did not form all-white Americans to his team?. there are so many Racist in this word and in the NBA. its over-reacting on the part of NBA.

      • Renae says:

        Are you really asking that question? You form a team of all whites and see how far you get in this league today. Probably would have the worst record in NBA history 0-82! So why pay Paul and Rivers and any other black to join the staff….TO WIN! DUH!

    • Anthony says:

      Looks like someone didn’t learn anything in Law and Ethics. 1st Amendment Rights… Russ – The US Constitution was established to protect people from government, preventing an absolute power scenario (similar to what we had just come from in England). So any citizen can say what it wants about a government official and be protected. It does not, however, relate to citizens protecting citizens. It’s called slander. Stop watching sports and get your head in a book.

    • Egres says:

      You are absolutely right . He can say that ; Sure he can!Just not while he is affiliated with the NBA .
      Remember :The NBA also has it’s right to say that we’re not flowing with that kind of presentation to represent our brand .
      And they did exactly that .You want to be this way ? Fine , just do it eslewhere , not with the NBA .

  87. I think a good choice for owners of the L. A. Clippers should be Doc Rivers and Pamela Mcgee. Making two statements in one. Both of them are more than qualified to do so.

  88. Swift and decisive! I am so proud that the NBA took a stand against ignorance. Bravo!

  89. Chicagomom14 says:

    I would say people that lost their homes in recent tornadoes takes precedence over this garbage

  90. cp10 says:

    Adam Silver is one smart articulate man, no wonder he’s the commish. And, he even emphasized that it was an audio _recording_ not a “tape,” which is an outdated term.

    • Hypocrrisy Police says:

      Of Course, Im sure the NBA will take similar action against any minority basketball player, if in their private conversations, they say anything negative about another race. Make sure your I phones have the voice recorder at ready if you happen to be in the company of an minority NBA player. Im sure the MSM will gladly hype the recording as an example of how racism crosses race lines.

  91. barefootviolinist says:

    Great news. Now if they can only have that kind of backbone when people talk disparagingly about LGBT people too.

  92. KC says:

    Commissioner Silver Excellent job! Great press conference! Tough questions but great answers without hesitation. Way to keep your cool!! After this job, consider running for higher office…President maybe?

  93. GL says:

    This will drag thru the courts for a long long time.

  94. Steven says:

    The staples center should set the court up with the lakers floor or just have it with no logos just the Los Angeles name.

  95. Mark Snell says:

    We are in the year 2014 and we still have ignorant people that think we are back in the early 1900′s, but the big problem is that we really have this silent racism that still is going on in the United States. Hoping that the younger generations will have a support of the true melting pot in the United States with all different diversities being represented. Mr Sterling needs to really take a big look in the mirror and ask God what is my purpose on this earth.

  96. Rick says:

    That is it the NBA will never again be permitted in my home. I will never again attend a game or knowingly buy a product of any sponsor. What the man said was terrible but this is the USA and we have freedom of speech. When are you throwing Sir Charles “I hate white people out of a job. You are the most racist group anywhere.

  97. Caleb says:

    Terrific that Sterling is going to be banned for life but Mr Sterling will still be paid regardless so not sure how much he will be hurt or understand what he has created with his views..

  98. James Bradford says:

    Awesome, a league that is made up of whites and blacks should be outstanding. The best of the best competing against one another. The best in the world on one stage

  99. MAC says:

    So what exactly does this mean for the clippers name?? Does this mean the team will disband and cease to exist? Will they remain the same team and get a new name? What does this mean?

  100. Nick says:

    String him up! No mercy! Beautiful human picture of intolerance being met with even greater vengeful intolerance…

  101. Reloader says:

    To remove a pimple it must be removed with the root! I’m agree with the decision of the lifetime ban!

  102. Brandy Combs says:

    Why are you being racist to the white league owner? I will admit very poor choice of words, however all he was saying was her over compensation for promoting African Americans was reaching intolerable levels for their Private relationship. As well as by hiring the players he secured them paychecks(which covers food, mortgages, ect.) and Air time to get sponsers. To say he is racist over an emotional conversation he had in privacy, rather than his actions of a lifetime of supporting his fellow man and woman despite race or background just makes YOUR League look racist and seems like the NBA just wants to cop out on an easy scapegoat excuse exercising the inherent guilt most white people feel over what SOME of our ancestors did during the years of slavery.

    • Chris says:

      Lmao we know where you stand

      • ruthie says:

        That last sentence is a joke. It was not SOME but MOST of your ancestors during the 300 plus years of slavery. Taking that in account, Sterling has a right to say anything he likes becasue of our 1st Amendement rights. I am not sure I think it is right to punish him for what he said. There has to be more to the story than what he said.

    • B.Trilla says:

      You’re crazy if you think racism ended with the abolishing of slavery. Also this is about racism not prejudice, and someone who holds those types of views towards minorities, while holding that much economic power over their lives is an incredibly toxic situation that needed to be dealt with. His “private” conversation was so much of a concern that the person he was having it with decided the world should know how he feels about, not just blacks, but MINORITIES as a whole, even dark skinned jews apparently… He is stuck in a so-called culture that has been a stain on humanity for years. He has the right to feel that way, yes… but not while he holds peoples lives in his hands.

  103. Johnson Rios says:

    let all the players become free agents n the lakers have there pick n give ownership of the clippers to set-town…. sounds like a winner to me…..

  104. Bird33 says:

    A+, Adam, A+

    Congratulations on making a great decision early in your (hopefully) long tenure.

    A Lifetime NBA Fan

  105. mike says:

    ADAM SILVER FOR PRESIDENT?… straight guy..

    • Dan says:

      well its a black presedint in office now so you will have to wait – hold your vote hahahaha

  106. mike says:

    i am an Asian (from Philippines) migrated here in USA last 2007. a legal alien from the other country and from the 1st year that ive been here and up to now, i can pretty much FEEL and SEE the racism from other individuals towards me. the feeling is really bad and unpleasant, but i have tried to be humble and to understand them (b’coz im an alien) and somehow i can pretty much get over it.. because i am blessed to be here in USA and for those people that i have worked for and the patients that i have taken care off, they have showed LOVE to me. americans are nice, lovely, sweet and respectable. i have church families and also i have friends from the park which i love hooping with them :)..

    about sterling? that is really unpleasant.. how can he do that to his fellow Americans? hhhmmm maybe he has a reasons? that we dont know? like groups of black americans hit him first? or did something bad to him? we dont know… but he did something distasteful that will make people disrespect him.

    i am trying to be a good citizen and hope that all of us in this country, each one of us will respect each other and will not do stuff that can make other disrespect us…

    GOD BLESS AMERICA

    • Jack sprat says:

      While I respect your views being that you immigrated. I respect the hard work that you put in to become naturalized but please, have a seat over there. Look back at the history of the Phillipines and the US occupation there. Then Ill say to you maybe the phillipino’s did something to its occupiers.