Microsoft's Ballmer Buys Sterling's Clippers For $2 Billion: Update

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Microsoft's Ballmer Buys Sterling's Clippers For $2 Billion: Update

Update: Donald Sterling balks at the thought of selling the L.A. Clippers and will continue with his lawsuit against the NBA, his attorney confirms.

At one point it appeared as though Sterling reconciled himself to the sale, but that was when he believed the NBA would rescind his lifetime ban if he agreed to sell the Clippers. The NBA isn't about to revoke the ban no matter what happens, and still intends to fine him $2.5 million, so Sterling will carry on the fight.

Whether or not this will actually prevent the sale remains to be seen. Even if Sterling wins his suit there's no point in asking for damages - though he still might - since wife Shelley has indemnified the NBA against all losses. Assuming a victory, Sterling would effectively be paying himself. If Sterling is to be believed, he's fighting this one - and all but suing himself - on principle alone.

Source: Hollywood Reporter

But will Donald Sterling sign off on the deal? Is his agreement even necessary?

When Donald Sterling got himself banned for life from the NBA after airing some pretty toxic points of view, everyone wondered what would happen to his team, the Los Angeles Clippers. According to early reports, the Clippers have been snapped up by former Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer. Price tag? $2 billion, the most anyone's ever paid for an NBA team, and the second highest price anyone's ever paid for a sports team in North America.

The deal has yet to complete because, according to Sterling's attorney, Sterling's unwilling to sign off. "There's been no sale," says attorney Bobby Samini. "There can be no sale without Donald's signature."

However Sterling's wife Shelly has agreed to the deal, and there have been reports that Sterling's agreement isn't necessary as he's 'mentally incapacitated.' The sale was rushed to completion in order to beat the NBA hearing to oust the Sterling family from ownership, and while Shelly's always been in favor of a sale husband Donald has dithered and fumed.

Completion also requires the agreement of a three-fourths majority of the other 30 NBA owners. However it's likely they'll agree, so long as Ballmer agrees to keep the Clippers in Los Angeles. Ballmer's on record as saying he believes the Clippers should stay in LA, the biggest media market in the country.

"L.A. is one of the world's great cities," says Ballmer, "A city that embraces inclusiveness, in exactly the same way that the NBA and I embrace inclusiveness. I am confident that the Clippers will in the coming years become an even bigger part of the community."

Ballmer is the only one of the bidders who could afford to buy the team with his own money; all the others sought partners to get the deal done.

"I am delighted that we are selling the team to Steve, who will be a terrific owner," says Shelley. "We have worked for 33 years to build the Clippers into a premiere NBA franchise. I am confident that Steve will take the team to new levels of success."

Source: LA Times

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I'm disappointed and a little surprised that there's still no photoshops of a basketball with Ballmer's head on it, and that #Basketballmer isn't a trend on Twitter and the likes.

I do still love the idea of him yelling

BASKETBALLMER! YEAH!

and jumping around like a nutjob however.

Andy Shandy:
I'm disappointed and a little surprised that there's still no photoshops of a basketball with Ballmer's head on it, and that #Basketballmer isn't a trend on Twitter and the likes.

I do still love the idea of him yelling

BASKETBALLMER! YEAH!

and jumping around like a nutjob however.

Give me time to get home and I'll make you one. And if I can't, I'll ask my friend, seeing as he was able to make Attack on Doodlebob (tis just as it sounds).

OT: I demand that in the contract for buying this Ballmer must do a speech like the developers one before every game so that moral will be raised. XD

Yuh-huh. I don't think this is a good move. Sterling might be a backwards-ass racist dickhead. But at least he's not Steve Ballmer.

aww i was hoping to see his lawyers fight this, yes he has some old fashioned ideals when it comes to race, but it would be nice to see just how far the courts will go to protect individual free speech from social justice.

FogHornG36:
aww i was hoping to see his lawyers fight this, yes he has some old fashioned ideals when it comes to race, but it would be nice to see just how far the courts will go to protect individual free speech from social justice.

They are going to fight it. Sterling refused to pay the $2.5 million fine and is resisting his termination of ownership.

Also, the title is misleading (because Escapist). Ballmer wins the bidding war at 2 billion; he didn't buy the team yet.

Under_your_bed:
Yuh-huh. I don't think this is a good move. Sterling might be a backwards-ass racist dickhead. But at least he's not Steve Ballmer.

Rather Ballmer than Floyd Mayweather jr.

I hope he renames them to the L.A. Clippys.

"I see you're trying to make a shot. Would you like an assist?"

If I had Bill Gates money, I'd buy every major sports team and force them to wear tutus over their uniforms. Take that high school sports bullies! :P

ZZoMBiE13:
If I had Bill Gates money, I'd buy every major sports team and force them to wear tutus over their uniforms. Take that high school sports bullies! :P

If I could buy every sports team, I'd go with your tutu idea but also cut their salaries by 30-50% and donate the massive differences to starving kids across the world. The players couldn't do jack because there is still no teams paying more than mine(I'd make sure to pay more than minor league team), and I'm sure they would hate just quitting, e.i. loosing that still ridiculous contract money.

More OT: So Ballmer is already buying retirement toys, huh?

Mumorpuger:
I hope he renames them to the L.A. Clippys.

"I see you're trying to make a shot. Would you like an assist?"

Hah, well played.

Good to see that this is making some headway. Personally, I sort of wish they WOULD move the team. I find it odd that two teams could share the same home court. I'm sure the LA fans love having two chances at the playoffs, but I still feel that a team should have it's own stadium.

Would also like to see the Clippers go to Seattle, just to have a team there again. Not even a West-coaster, but it's sad that Shawn Kemp and Gary Payton's jerseys aren't hanging from the rafters up there.

Assuming it goes through, I can see why Stirling's wife is game. Stirling "only" paid 12.5million for the team & $2billion is four times the value Forbes gives them. I'm sure all that money will teach Stirling a lesson he won't forget.

Mumorpuger:
I hope he renames them to the L.A. Clippys.

"I see you're trying to make a shot. Would you like an assist?"

I'm stealing this from you. I will give credit probably.

Admittedly, when reading the article I assumed LA Clippers must have been some kind of expensive electric razor; oh sports XD

mysecondlife:

FogHornG36:
aww i was hoping to see his lawyers fight this, yes he has some old fashioned ideals when it comes to race, but it would be nice to see just how far the courts will go to protect individual free speech from social justice.

They are going to fight it. Sterling refused to pay the $2.5 million fine and is resisting his termination of ownership.

Also, the title is misleading (because Escapist). Ballmer wins the bidding war at 2 billion; he didn't buy the team yet.

Under_your_bed:
Yuh-huh. I don't think this is a good move. Sterling might be a backwards-ass racist dickhead. But at least he's not Steve Ballmer.

Rather Ballmer than Floyd Mayweather jr.

Just to add, he is suing the NBA for $1 billion.

OT: Like others have stated, it still needs 3/4 majority to approve of this deal.

Will he give the team a motivational speech like "developers developers developers developers" or make them all shout "Bing" enthusiastically?

I still don't buy the story. Trophy wife sets up husband for racist remarks and uses something he said privately in the sanctity of his own home against him to affect the course of a sport team's ownership? Smells fishy and like bullshit to me. Regardless of what you think of Donald and his opinions I just don't think it's right that he's being crucified for something he felt he was saying privately and in confidence. What sort of precedence does that set? How far is being politically correct going to go until it becomes a counter intuitive ideal?

Is Donald Sterling wrong? Yes. Did he say bad things? Yes. Is he a racist/bigot? Yes. But does he deserve to have his property, a team that he owns, taken away from him just because he expressed a bad/unpopular opinion in his own home? Having your property taken away from you because you said something bad in private - is this really a precedent that should be set up?

No.

And don't try and argue that, "Oh, he's getting a lot of money for it so it's okay." It doesn't matter if they're giving him money for it, if he doesn't want to take the money and sell the team he doesn't have to. Unless he wants to sell the team, of his own volition, he should not be forced to, no matter what they do to try and make it seem alright.

TKretts3:
Is Donald Sterling wrong? Yes. Did he say bad things? Yes. Is he a racist/bigot? Yes. But does he deserve to have his property, a team that he owns, taken away from him just because he expressed a bad/unpopular opinion in his own home? Having your property taken away from you because you said something bad in private - is this really a precedent that should be set up?

No.

And don't try and argue that, "Oh, he's getting a lot of money for it so it's okay." It doesn't matter if they're giving him money for it, if he doesn't want to take the money and sell the team he doesn't have to. Unless he wants to sell the team, of his own volition, he should not be forced to, no matter what they do to try and make it seem alright.

Sorry but he does deserve it taken away. His own team hates him. He's making these remarks AS a team owner for the NBA. NBA is also a private organization. They have a 0 tolerance for such behavior. Be kinda like if you work for some big name company, and you say some racist stuff, and your boss finds out about your racism, the boss can say "I don't want a racist working here, or having anything to do with my business" and fire him. And they are perfectly justified in doing so.

Sterling was banned for life from NBA games, and amongst that ruling, it was also declared he was to have no more privileges in regards to the workings of any NBA team, or anything to do with NBA politics for the rest of his life. The team itself, hates him, and if they aren't taken out from under him, then the team will split up and find another team to play for, leaving LA without an NBA team. THAT is bad for business. So in this regard, owning a team isn't a right. It's a privileged. And he's lost that privilege, the moment his boss, the NBA itself, basically fired him and banned him for life.

Instead, like some spoiled kid, he's refusing to pay the fine, he's refusing to sell the team as ordered, and so the NBA is doing what it has every right to do. If an employee refuses to return property, then the business can take legal means to retrieve said property. In this case, since he was refusing to sell a team that is part of the NBA organization, they strip him of his ability to sell the team. Hell they were being fair, giving him a chance to make money off the team. But now, he's blown that chance so they turn to his wife who wants to sell it, grant her all rights, and now all that's left is for the majority vote to approve the sale. Now he's throwing another fit because he isn't getting his way, suing for $1 billion. A lawsuit I feel will be laughed right out of the courtroom.

Right now sterling wants attention. And rather than just fade himself out of the public eye, he is doing everything he can to keep himself in the spotlight. He is deserving everything he is getting. NBA has fired him, banned him, and declared they will not have him make any decisions with regards to NBA politics. And who does he have to blame? Himself. I feel no pity for him. And it would be better for him to just follow Paula Deen's example, and just quit while the going is good.

It's not about what he "deserves", cause seriously, I don't intend to get into another moralistic debate, but the NBA rules and terms are quite clear. So right now, he's just being a complete and utter idiot in addition to being an unsavory person I wouldn't invite to my parties.

I mean, a 10-digit number and he's kicking up a fuss over it. Clearly he is mentally incapacitated.

Nilanius:
Sorry but he does deserve it taken away. His own team hates him. He's making these remarks AS a team owner for the NBA. NBA is also a private organization. They have a 0 tolerance for such behavior. Be kinda like if you work for some big name company, and you say some racist stuff, and your boss finds out about your racism, the boss can say "I don't want a racist working here, or having anything to do with my business" and fire him. And they are perfectly justified in doing so.

Sterling was banned for life from NBA games, and amongst that ruling, it was also declared he was to have no more privileges in regards to the workings of any NBA team, or anything to do with NBA politics for the rest of his life. The team itself, hates him, and if they aren't taken out from under him, then the team will split up and find another team to play for, leaving LA without an NBA team. THAT is bad for business. So in this regard, owning a team isn't a right. It's a privileged. And he's lost that privilege, the moment his boss, the NBA itself, basically fired him and banned him for life.

Instead, like some spoiled kid, he's refusing to pay the fine, he's refusing to sell the team as ordered, and so the NBA is doing what it has every right to do. If an employee refuses to return property, then the business can take legal means to retrieve said property. In this case, since he was refusing to sell a team that is part of the NBA organization, they strip him of his ability to sell the team. Hell they were being fair, giving him a chance to make money off the team. But now, he's blown that chance so they turn to his wife who wants to sell it, grant her all rights, and now all that's left is for the majority vote to approve the sale. Now he's throwing another fit because he isn't getting his way, suing for $1 billion. A lawsuit I feel will be laughed right out of the courtroom.

Right now sterling wants attention. And rather than just fade himself out of the public eye, he is doing everything he can to keep himself in the spotlight. He is deserving everything he is getting. NBA has fired him, banned him, and declared they will not have him make any decisions with regards to NBA politics. And who does he have to blame? Himself. I feel no pity for him. And it would be better for him to just follow Paula Deen's example, and just quit while the going is good.

No, he doesn't deserve it, and don't you dare be sorry about your opinion.
He didn't make these remarks 'as a team owner'. He didn't go to an NBA press conference, stand behind an NBA podium and say what he said. He said these things in the 'privacy' of his own home. Does the NBA have every right to ban him from their organization? Yes. But the team is not theirs to sell. Owning property - whether it be a bed, a car, or a sports team - is not a privilege, it is a right. It is not something to be taken away on a whim if someone doesn't like what you say or what your opinions are, no matter how bad your opinions are.

The NBA doesn't own the teams, as far as I'm aware. The team participate in the NBA, but they are owned by private individuals. The Clippers are currently owned by Donald Sterling, and is therefore not the NBA's to sell, and not his wife's to sell. He doesn't want to sell the team. He doesn't want the money they're offering him. He wants to keep the team, and it's his right to do so. If they players of the team don't want to play under his ownership then they can do what everyone else does when they hate their boss a lot - they have every right to leave the team. Would LA be left without an NBA team? No, they would still have the Lakers. But even if LA wouldn't have an NBA team, that is no justification. They don't have the right to take his team - his property - without his consent, regardless of how bad of his opinions are.

So, as somebody who doesn't understand the situation even slightly, the way I see it his wife is trying to get him to sell the team so that she doesn't lose the money if the NBA strips him of the ownership? I read in another article that Donald Sterling has Alzheimer's, so it really does sound like his wife is trying to get as much money as she can and run.

TKretts3:

Nilanius:
Sorry but he does deserve it taken away. His own team hates him. He's making these remarks AS a team owner for the NBA. NBA is also a private organization. They have a 0 tolerance for such behavior. Be kinda like if you work for some big name company, and you say some racist stuff, and your boss finds out about your racism, the boss can say "I don't want a racist working here, or having anything to do with my business" and fire him. And they are perfectly justified in doing so.

Sterling was banned for life from NBA games, and amongst that ruling, it was also declared he was to have no more privileges in regards to the workings of any NBA team, or anything to do with NBA politics for the rest of his life. The team itself, hates him, and if they aren't taken out from under him, then the team will split up and find another team to play for, leaving LA without an NBA team. THAT is bad for business. So in this regard, owning a team isn't a right. It's a privileged. And he's lost that privilege, the moment his boss, the NBA itself, basically fired him and banned him for life.

Instead, like some spoiled kid, he's refusing to pay the fine, he's refusing to sell the team as ordered, and so the NBA is doing what it has every right to do. If an employee refuses to return property, then the business can take legal means to retrieve said property. In this case, since he was refusing to sell a team that is part of the NBA organization, they strip him of his ability to sell the team. Hell they were being fair, giving him a chance to make money off the team. But now, he's blown that chance so they turn to his wife who wants to sell it, grant her all rights, and now all that's left is for the majority vote to approve the sale. Now he's throwing another fit because he isn't getting his way, suing for $1 billion. A lawsuit I feel will be laughed right out of the courtroom.

Right now sterling wants attention. And rather than just fade himself out of the public eye, he is doing everything he can to keep himself in the spotlight. He is deserving everything he is getting. NBA has fired him, banned him, and declared they will not have him make any decisions with regards to NBA politics. And who does he have to blame? Himself. I feel no pity for him. And it would be better for him to just follow Paula Deen's example, and just quit while the going is good.

No, he doesn't deserve it, and don't you dare be sorry about your opinion.
He didn't make these remarks 'as a team owner'. He didn't go to an NBA press conference, stand behind an NBA podium and say what he said. He said these things in the 'privacy' of his own home. Does the NBA have every right to ban him from their organization? Yes. But the team is not theirs to sell. Owning property - whether it be a bed, a car, or a sports team - is not a privilege, it is a right. It is not something to be taken away on a whim if someone doesn't like what you say or what your opinions are, no matter how bad your opinions are.

The NBA doesn't own the teams, as far as I'm aware. The team participate in the NBA, but they are owned by private individuals. The Clippers are currently owned by Donald Sterling, and is therefore not the NBA's to sell, and not his wife's to sell. He doesn't want to sell the team. He doesn't want the money they're offering him. He wants to keep the team, and it's his right to do so. If they players of the team don't want to play under his ownership then they can do what everyone else does when they hate their boss a lot - they have every right to leave the team. Would LA be left without an NBA team? No, they would still have the Lakers. But even if LA wouldn't have an NBA team, that is no justification. They don't have the right to take his team - his property - without his consent, regardless of how bad of his opinions are.

Again though, case of business not wanting a known racist to have influence over their business. As my example went, if you worked for a business, and you are racist, and you are caught saying and/or doing racist things even when not on the clock, the boss can say "Alright, we have a 0 racism policy here. You were caught doing racist or saying racist things. You are out. You will have no further interaction with our company and you are banned from our facilities for life" guess what, they'd be perfectly justified in doing that. Same with the NBA. He was caught saying racist remarks. The bosses of the NBA said "Nope, not allowed, banned for life from everything associated with the NBA, your council privileges are revoked, and you are not allowed to own one of our teams and for this you also must pay a fine".

He's not allowed to make decisions for the team no more. He's not allowed on NBA grounds ever. The team is an NBA team, the team wants a new owner. Owning the team was not a right, but a privilege. The moment he was fired and kicked out of all NBA related things, his right to own the team was revoked. But they were being nice enough to require him to sell the team and keep the money for himself to do as he wished. He chose to take a selfish path and thus the next step is being taken. Even if they couldn't force a sale, the team itself would disband itself and reform under a new name. He'd be left with nothing regardless. The team hates him.

Bottom line: NBA calls the shots in regards to ownership of their brand. The guy was like a stockholder. If they deem a stockholder goes against the business model, they can force a sale and reclaim of their stock from the holder. That's what is happening. NBA is executing their rights. His lawsuit doesn't even dispute that. His lawsuite is all "They breached the contract" but I suspect there's clauses in the contract that says he wasn't supposed to be a racist or do something that negatively effects the NBA's image, be it on official time or personal time. In which case, he breached the contract himself. Either way, NBA is in the right. And it is the other stockholders who will vote to remove the team ownership from him with a majority vote.

Karloff:
"I am delighted that we are selling the team to Steve, who will be a terrific owner,"

I agree. I'm terrified of Steve Ballmer too.

Donald Sterling is probably just waiting for Steve Ballmer to release a fully family tree including individual racial descriptions all the way back to Jesus just to make sure he isn't selling his team to someone that's not like him...

I confess what puzzles me about this situation is that, as I understand it, Sterling isn't the de facto owner of the Clippers. The Sterling Family Trust owns the Clippers, and his wife is sole trustee. Presumably that makes Donald a 'mere' beneficiary of the Trust, not an owner, and I've never yet heard of a trust beneficiary having the authority to tell a trust what it can and cannot do.

I don't know why the team is owned by the Trust rather than Sterling direct; I suspect it's probably for tax reasons. If so, it'd be hilarious if this ended up something along the lines of: 'yes, Donald, you own the Clippers and have the right to sell or not sell as you see fit. By the way, here's your amended tax bill ...'

Wait a minute, so Sterling "owns" the Clippers but he can't do what he wants with it and is now having it forcibly taken away from him because the NBA doesn't like what he said? Sports teams have DRM; confirmed.

Knowing nothing about sports, I wondered at first whether Jim Sterling had been selling off his personal grooming equipment for charity.

So this old guy made out like a bandit with this racism thing. Even if they do force him to sell and pay the fine, he still made a shitload of dough. Reminds me of the BP oil spill.

The ridiculous thing about this, from my understanding, is that there was going to be a go-ahead with the sale, but Sterling's lawyers talked him out of it and to proceed with the lawsuit. It's obvious that a sale is not going to give a lawyer nearly as much in legal fees as an extended lawsuit.

Call me crazy but no sports team on earth is worth 2 billion dollars. Nor 1 billion. Nor half a billion. It's absurd the money we thrown around sports.

Flatfrog:
Knowing nothing about sports, I wondered at first whether Jim Sterling had been selling off his personal grooming equipment for charity.

thats fine. when the Sterlings scandal hit the fan Jim was bombarded via twitter with people telling him hes racist and whatnot mixing the two up. that was quite awful.

Eri:
Call me crazy but no sports team on earth is worth 2 billion dollars. Nor 1 billion. Nor half a billion. It's absurd the money we thrown around sports.

says a person playing videogames that is the most expensive entertainment industry ever.

Strazdas:

Flatfrog:
Knowing nothing about sports, I wondered at first whether Jim Sterling had been selling off his personal grooming equipment for charity.

thats fine. when the Sterlings scandal hit the fan Jim was bombarded via twitter with people telling him hes racist and whatnot mixing the two up. that was quite awful.

Eri:
Call me crazy but no sports team on earth is worth 2 billion dollars. Nor 1 billion. Nor half a billion. It's absurd the money we thrown around sports.

says a person playing videogames that is the most expensive entertainment industry ever.

Games are infinitely more useful than watching people play sports. I'd challenge you to explain otherwise.

Eri:
Games are infinitely more useful than watching people play sports. I'd challenge you to explain otherwise.

no they are not. Both cases are entertainment that you pay for. both have social aspects as well as strategic ones. both are fun (sometimes for different people, sometimes for same person). you are the one making the claim here, so you have to explain how games are "infinitely more useful".

Strazdas:

Eri:
Games are infinitely more useful than watching people play sports. I'd challenge you to explain otherwise.

no they are not. Both cases are entertainment that you pay for. both have social aspects as well as strategic ones. both are fun (sometimes for different people, sometimes for same person). you are the one making the claim here, so you have to explain how games are "infinitely more useful".

Just naming one already puts gaming ahead of watching sports. Hand eye coordination is greatly improved. Surgeons who grew up as gamers learn much faster and cut more precisely than those who do not. What does watching sports do? Nothing.

Eri:

Strazdas:

Eri:
Games are infinitely more useful than watching people play sports. I'd challenge you to explain otherwise.

no they are not. Both cases are entertainment that you pay for. both have social aspects as well as strategic ones. both are fun (sometimes for different people, sometimes for same person). you are the one making the claim here, so you have to explain how games are "infinitely more useful".

Just naming one already puts gaming ahead of watching sports. Hand eye coordination is greatly improved. Surgeons who grew up as gamers learn much faster and cut more precisely than those who do not. What does watching sports do? Nothing.

care to share your evidence of any significant improvement? because the only one i heard about was in senile people.
watching sports do nothing for you. There are plenty benefits from watching sports for other people. such as entertainment, socializing (sports are usually watched with friends), strategic developement (noticing tean strategies, as well as overarching strategy of the whole scoreboard is important in sports), as well as incentive to try the sport yourself which is usually healthy exercise, often the only one these people get.

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