The press conference from NBA commission Adam Silver began late on April 29, and the punishment may not have been severe enough, according to some, while others assume it is right on the money. Donald Sterling will have to pay a $2.5 million fine and suffer a lifetime ban from all association with the Los Angeles Clippers.
“The man whose voice is heard on the recording that was released on Sunday is Mr. Sterling. The hateful opinions voiced by that man are Mr. Sterling. The views are deeply offensive and harmful,” said Silver.
Silver didn’t poll all of the owners, but he spoke to several owners about the decision, and he says they have his full support. The owners must now vote on whether or not they will remove Sterling as an owner. Silver also spoke with several NBA players prior to his decision.
Based on whether or not the views Sterling expressed were knowingly recorded, the fact remains that they were made public, Silver said, and he ultimately decided on Tuesday morning that this would be the appropriate action for the man.
The process to force the sale of the Clippers will begin immediately.
Silver’s message to the Clippers’ fans is that this melee won’t end the franchise. The board will take into account the entire lifetime of Sterling’s accused racist behavior, although Silver didn’t focus on a lifetime of behavior in this incident, instead he focused on the recorded conversations that Sterling admitted belonged to him – but didn’t express any other sentiments to Silver when the two spoke.
The NBA commissioner stated that they are open to all owners of all ethnic backgrounds, and went on to recount the primary owners who are people of color across the league, and says that Magic Johnson is always welcome as an owner.