TMZ released an audio recording of L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling making racist remarks towards his girlfriend V. Stiviano regarding bringing black people to his games, more specifically Magic Johnson. A more notable discovery within the audio recording is the fact that Sterling claims there are people who report to him that his girlfriend is socializing with minorities, meaning there could be more individuals who share the same racist beliefs as Sterling. Since his comments were made public by TMZ, there has been a serious backlash among current NBA stars, coaches, NBA Hall of Fame players, and even the President of the United States.
According to former NBA player Baron Davis, Donald Sterling heckled his own players, including him when he was a member of the Clippers. Baron Davis stated Sterling called him a “bastard”, “the devil”, and even “crazy”. Davis also recalls issues of having anxiety anytime Sterling was in attendance at the Staples Center.
On a personal note, I think the comments made by Donald Sterling are offensive and the NBA could do without Sterling and his negative beliefs towards minorities. Basketball among other sports are celebrated by millions of players and fans from all cultures and races from around the world. Sports as a whole bridges the cultural gap, transcends race and color, and unites fans as they cheer for their favorite teams. Donald Sterling’s comments shed a negative light on the sports community as a whole and the ownership within the NBA.
The NBA has began investigating this situation, below is a timeline of events from around the NBA surrounding his remarks.
4/25/2014 – TMZ Releases Donald Sterling’s Racist Remarks
4/26/2014 – Baron Davis on Donald Sterling: He Called Me a “Bastard”
4/26/2014 – Magic Johnson “Sterling Needs to be Forced Out of the NBA”
4/27/2014 – President Barack Obama Addresses Donald Sterling’s Racist Comments
4/27/2014 – NBA Commissioner Adam Silver Launches Investigation of Donald Sterling
4/30/2014 – NBA Commissioner Adam Silver issues lifetime ban and 2.5 Million Dollar fine to Donald Sterling