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Clippers change website to say ‘we are one’ after Donald Sterling ban

Clippers-We-Are-One

The Los Angeles Clippers are still owned by Donald Sterling. The 81-year-old racist was banned from the NBA for life on Tuesday and is likely going to be forced to sell the team, but he is still cutting the checks for the foreseeable future. That didn’t stop the Clippers’ official website from making a statement after Tuesday’s ruling.

The team basically shut down its website for a period of time to display a simple message.

“WE ARE ONE.”

The overwhelming majority of people applauded Silver for acting swiftly and punishing Sterling as much as he possibly could. That group clearly includes those who work for the Clippers.

Report: Donald Sterling to be suspended indefinitely, not forced to sell team

Donald SterlingNBA commissioner Adam Silver is set to announce the league’s findings pertaining to Donald Sterling’s alleged racist rant on Tuesday afternoon, and the penalty may be lighter than some hoped for. One report has indicated that the Los Angeles Clippers owner will be suspended indefinitely but will not be forced out of the league.

According to TMZ, the NBA has decided to impose a multimillion fine on Sterling and remove him from day-to-day operations for an indefinite period. There has been speculation that the fine could be in the $5 million range and the suspension could be up to five years.

The important takeaway from all this is that Sterling will reportedly be allowed to remain the owner of the Clippers. Assuming that is the case, there are going to be plenty of people who aren’t satisfied with the punishment. Earlier reports indicated that Silver was studying a “nuclear option” that would allow him to summon votes from league owners to force Sterling out.

Obviously, there will still be tremendous pressure from within the organization and around the NBA to get Sterling to sell. Sponsors have already begun ending their relationship with the Clippers, and it’s unclear if they will opt to partner with the team again with Sterling suspended.

What does suspending an owner even mean? It’s not like Sterling was attending practices and teaching guys how to run the pick-and-roll more effectively. Basically, a suspension would mean he has to watch the games from his palace instead of going to the arena, which probably wouldn’t be a safe place for him anyway. I don’t see what this will accomplish.

Clippers players may make ‘bigger statement’ against Donald Sterling for Game 5

donald-sterlingThe Los Angeles Clippers chose not to make excuses after they were overpowered by the Golden State Warriors on Sunday, but they certainly looked like a distracted team. With the series now tied 2-2, you have to wonder if Doc Rivers’ team will be more or less focused for Game 5 at home on Tuesday night.

Game 4 was obviously about more than just basketball. The Clippers showed that when they ceremoniously piled their warmup jackets at center court and turned their warmup shirts inside out before the game. The players also wore black armbands and socks to send an obvious message. According to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports, the message could be even louder during Game 5.

The Clippers players are contemplating making a bigger statement during Game 5 of the series against the Warriors on Tuesday in Los Angeles, a source told Yahoo Sports. The source said the players needed more time to decide what they wanted to do and would prefer a stronger statement on their home floor at Staples Center.

Matt Barnes and Jamal Crawford are said to have organized the protest before Game 4. By the time Tuesday night rolls around, each player in the Clippers locker room will have had more time to think about how much of a bigot their owner is. Winning a basketball game may not be their top priority, and you can certainly understand why.

H/T Pro Basketball Talk

CarMax will no longer sponsor Clippers, Donald Sterling

CarmMax

The Los Angeles Clippers have officially lost their first sponsor as a direct result of owner Donald Sterling’s alleged racist rant, as used car retailer CarMax has announced it will end it’s nine-year relationship with the team.

“CarMax finds the statements attributed to the Clippers’ owner completely unacceptable,” a representative for the company reportedly told TMZ on Monday. “These views directly conflict with CarMax’s culture of respect for all individuals. While we have been a proud Clippers sponsor for nine years and support the team, fans and community, these statements necessitate that CarMax end its sponsorship.”

Virgin America has decided to do the same:

There have also been rumors that State Farm will end its relationship with the Clippers, though Darren Rovell tweeted that the insurance juggernaut is still in the process of evaluating the situation. Other sponsors are surely doing the same.

We see this all the time in sports when an individual or organization makes a major mistake. In this case, Sterling is an individual who happens to own the organization. Therefore, supporting the Clippers is supporting Sterling and fattening his wallet. Expect sponsors to continue dropping like flies unless Sterling agrees to sell the team or is somehow forced to do so.

Magic Johnson reportedly interested in buying Clippers

Magic JohnsonThe pressure on Donald Sterling to sell the Los Angeles Clippers is only going to increase by the day. The NBA wants him out, and league commissioner Adam Silver is expected to make a decision on possible disciplinary action against Sterling by Tuesday. If the most stubborn owner in the NBA does decide to sell the team, Magic Johnson reportedly wants in.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, Johnson is “absolutely interested” in purchasing the Clippers with the help of his billionaire backers the Guggenheim Partners. Sterling would never go down without a fight, but it is within the realm of possibility that Silver and the NBA could force him to turn over the team.

As Wojnarowski noted, Johnson and his people are looking to build a sports empire in Southern California. After cleansing the Los Angeles Dodgers of what had become a miserable ownership group in recent years, Johnson and Guggenheim inquired about purchasing the Los Angeles Lakers. The Buss family made it clear that the team is not for sale, but you get the point.

“This is 100 percent Magic’s plan,” a league source familiar with buying and selling franchises told Yahoo! Sports.

Sterling is always going to be viewed as a racist, and deservedly so. If you didn’t already know he was a bigot, the recent audio recordings that were released should remove all doubt. Unfortunately, Johnson was specifically targeted during Sterling’s rant. If there is a “best thing” Sterling can do in this situation, it would be to move aside and allow one of the people he disrespected to take over the franchise.

Lead singer of Village People does not want ‘YMCA’ played at Clippers games

Donald SterlingSince TMZ released audio with racist comments made by Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, there has no shortage of people who have weighed in with their thoughts and comments.

Some of the biggest names associated with the NBA, LeBron James, Michael Jordan, and Magic Johnson, have made it clear there’s no place for those kinds of feelings in the league.

President Obama chimed in as well. So did Snoop Dogg, with a profanity-laced rant.

The original lead singer of the Village People, Victor Willis, is also among the countless individuals who are upset with Donald Sterling’s comments. As a result, he no longer wants any of the group’s music to be played at Clippers games.

Magic Johnson has already said he and his wife won’t attend another Clippers game while Donald Sterling is owner. Now, Willis has followed suit with not wanting to their music played during the team’s games.

At this point, it’s probably more a matter of when, not if, we hear of someone else who wants to be dissociated with the Clippers franchise.

H/T Billboard

Clippers wear black wristbands, armbands, socks to protest Donald Sterling

Clippers-black-socks

The Los Angeles Clippers used their gear on Sunday to make a number of statements that were obviously directed toward owner Donald Sterling in the wake of his alleged racist remarks. The players wore inside out shirts during warmups to hide their team logo and also piled their jackets at center court before beginning their shootaround. They also wore black socks, wristbands and armbands.

Chris Paul wore a black undershirt with a long black sleeve. DeAndre Jordan and Matt Barnes wore large black armbands:

Clippers-black-armbands

All of the Clippers players wore some sort of black clothing. The entire team wore black socks and most players wore a black wrist band on their left wrist.