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NBA announces sale of Clippers to Steve Ballmer has been finalized

Steve BallmerThe NBA announced on Tuesday that the sale of the Los Angeles Clippers to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has been finalized. The $2 billion transaction had previously been approved by the NBA Board of Governors, and Tuesday’s closing officially makes Ballmer the team’s new governor.

The finalization of the sale was made possible by a California court confirming that Shelly Sterling had the power to sell the Clippers on behalf of the Sterling Family Trust. Sterling was previously deemed mentally incapacitated by two doctors and was removed as co-trustee. The 80-year-old fought the ruling in court but was unsuccessful.

While it would not be surprising if Sterling continued to explore avenues to sue the NBA, it sounds like he does not have much legal ground to stand on.

The Clippers are planning to hold a fan festival at the Staples Center on Monday to introduce Ballmer as the team’s new owner. Doc Rivers and the Clippers players will be in attendance.

“This is an amazing new day in Clippers history,” Rivers said Tuesday. “I couldn’t be more excited to work together with Steve as we continue to build a first-class, championship organization. I am already inspired by Steve’s passion for the game, his love of competition and desire to win the right way and I know our players and fans are going to be inspired as well.”

Ballmer said in a statement that he will be “hardcore” in trying to put the Clippers in a position to win.

“I am humbled and honored to be the new owner of the Los Angeles Clippers,” he said. “Clipper fans are so amazing. I will be hardcore in giving the team, our great coach, staff and players the support they need to do their best work on the court. We will do whatever necessary to provide our fans and their families with the best game-night experience in the NBA.”

Adam Silver was confident the NBA would force Sterling out from the second his racist audio rant went viral. The new NBA commissioner made good on his promise.

Shelly Sterling going to court, concerned Steve Ballmer could back out of deal

Shelly-Sterling-Donald-SterlingNow that Donald Sterling seems to have made up his mind that he is going to fight to keep the Los Angeles Clippers, his wife Shelly Sterling has decided she will take Donald to court in an attempt to finalize her control over the Sterling Family Trust.

According to Tami Abdollah of the Associated Press, Shelly is seeking an emergency order for a hearing to try to convince a judge to grant her full authority to sell the Clippers. Shelly has previously stated that she is the sole trustee of the Sterling Family Trust and does not need Donald to sign off on the sale of the team after neurologists determined last month that he suffers from dementia and is “mentally incapacitated.”

Sterling’s lawyer Max Belcher claims Donald is fully capable of handling his own affairs.

“There isn’t the slightest evidence he’s incapable of managing his affairs,” Belcher said.

A separate report from TMZ claims Shelly is growing concerned that former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer could back out of his $2 billion agreement to purchase the Clippers. The tentative deal between Shelly and Ballmer reportedly contains an escape clause for Ballmer if it is determined that she does not have clear control over the team.

Should Donald win his case against Shelly and prove he is mentally fit to remain owner of the Clippers, the NBA will revert to its original plan of forcing Sterling out through a vote. David Aldridge of NBA.com reports that the league “initiated termination protocol” against Sterling last month but halted the process when it appeared Sterling was going to agree to give up the team.

The only thing we are certain of as the saga rolls on is that there are a ton of moving parts. That means the entire ordeal is going to take some time to sort out. Whether the legal proceedings are enough to scare Ballmer away remains to be seen.

Steve Ballmer deal to buy Clippers reportedly signed by Sterling Trust

Donald Sterling Anderson Cooper

Even though former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer reportedly won the bidding to purchase the Los Angeles Clippers, Donald Sterling’s attorney was making a lot of noise saying that the current team owner would not sign off on a sale. But it looks like that might not matter.

According to ESPN LA’s Ramona Shelburne, the Sterling Trust signed off on the sale (aka Shelly Sterling), which means a second signature of approval from Donald would not be needed.

It’s been said all along that Sterling would do anything possible to block a sale of the team, so we fully anticipate seeing him exercise all legal avenues to fight this. But it’s pretty clear the NBA is dead-set on moving forward in the process. They’ve essentially forced Sterling out whether he liked it or not, and they did so quickly.

If the team actually is sold and a deal is approved by the Sterling Trust, I don’t imagine it will be reversed by a court. If anything, maybe the league or new ownership group will have to pay some extra fees to Sterling, but I think this baby is moving forward.

The deal just now needs NBA approval. Ballmer already has been approved by the league for a potential purchase in the past, so you have to imagine he’ll be approved once again.

Steve Ballmer reportedly to buy Clippers after $2 billion winning bid

Steve BallmerFormer longtime Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has won the purchase of the Los Angeles Clippers with a $2 billion bid, according to a report.

The news was first reported by the LA Times’ James Rainey.

CBS News’ Norah O’Donnell reported that at least three bids ranging from $1.2-$1.8 billion came in before Ballmer won the bidding with his $2 billion bid.

The lawyer for Donald Sterling’s wife said that they had been offered $2.5 billion for the team. Looks like that figure was high, but not by too much. $2 billion is a lot of cheddar for the franchise, but like I said before, the demand for such a desirable team filled with legitimate stars and located in such a desirable city was sure to drive bidding higher than expected.

The Times says Ballmer beat out groups led by David Geffen and also the Guggenheim Group, which is the same crew that recently purchased the Dodgers. The $2 billion figure is just below the $2.1 billion the Guggenheim Group paid for the Dodgers.