MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling has agreed to allow his estranged wife, Shelly, to move forward with a forced sale of the team. After weeks of discussion, the Sterling’s decided to allow Shelly to move forward with the negotiations. The NBA had already begun working with Shelly on completing the sale of the Clippers.
Though the league has yet to accept this arrangement, it could end up making the whole situation much more manageable for all parties involved. That would be contingent on Sterling and the NBA agreeing to terms that would be satisfactory to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver.
It is unknown whether Shelly Sterling would be willing to sell her entire stake in the Clippers, but the only way the NBA would accept any arrangement between the two parties is if she would be willing to sell the team in its entirety.
The NBA filed charges earlier this week to terminate Donald Sterling’s ownership of the team and a hearing has been set for June 3rd in New York where Sterling will have an opportunity to appear before other league owners. He has five business days (until Tuesday May 27th) to respond to the charges.
Following the hearing, there will be a vote by the NBA’s board of governors on whether to terminate Sterling’s ownership of the Clippers. If three-quarters of the league’s 29 owners vote to sustain the charge, Sterling will be forced to sell the team.
According to the NBA’s constitution, if Sterling does not respond to the charge by Tuesday the 27th or does not appear at the court hearing on June 3rd, the league will have deemed the charges against Sterling valid based on his lack of response to either the charge or the hearing.
Donald Sterling’s attorney, Max Belcher, requested a three-month delay following the announcement of the charges but that request was quickly turned down by the NBA.
Should the owners vote to remove Donald’s ownership following the June 3rd hearing, Shelly Sterling would lose her ownership as well. This means that if Shelly wants to ensure she can have a part in selling the team, she needs to get it done before the vote takes place.
Even with the Sterling’s making an effort to sell the team on their own, the NBA is still very active in continuing its process to remove Sterling from ownership of the Clippers.
The NBA banned Donald Sterling for life and fined the controversial owner $2.5 million following his racist comments that became public in late April thanks to an audio recording that was given to TMZ from Sterling’s then girlfriend, V. Stiviano. Sterling can be heard reprimanding Stiviano for bringing African-Americans to Clippers games and for posting photos of herself and African-Americans on her Instagram account.