MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Miami Heat superstar LeBron James reportedly plans to lead a basketball boycott if embattled Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling is not removed from the league by next season.

In an interview with Showtime’s Jim Rome, former Heat guard and current Vice President of the players union Roger Mason Jr., said “I was just in the locker room three, four days ago, LeBron and I talked about it, He ain’t playing if Sterling is still an owner.”

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CBS4 reached out to the Miami Heat for comment but has not heard back.

Many athletes including James have remained adamant that they want Sterling out ever since a racist recording surfaced—prompted by an Instagram photo showing Magic Johnson and Sterling’s girlfriend V. Stiviano.

Sterling added insult to injury during a CNN interview where he said he is not a racist and blasted Johnson for contracting HIV and dismissing Johnson’s charitable and business work the former basketball star has performed for years.

“What has he done, can you tell me?” Sterling asked CNN’s Anderson Cooper. “What kind of guy goes to every city and has sex with every girl. Then he catches HIV. Is that someone we want to respect and tell our kids about? I think he should be ashamed of himself. I think he should go into the background.”

Magic Johnson reacted Tuesday night on CNN.

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“I was in disbelief that he would say these things,” Johnson told CNN’s Anderson Cooper. “To throw me into this situation, I don’t know the lady [V. Stiviano] and I barley know Donald so now I’m caught in the middle of a love affair.”

Johnson went on to say he will pray for Sterling.

“I’m not a guy who holds grudges and all that. Yes, am I upset? Of course. But at the same time I’m God fearing man I’m going to pray for him and hope that things work out for him.”

Johnson is an NBA Hall of Famer and successful businessman who among other ventures owns the Los Angeles Dodgers. His Magic Johnson Foundation helps fight AIDS and HIV in poor communities, including in South Florida.
In 2006 when he promoted a low income housing project in Little Havana. The project was never built, falling victim to the housing collapse. In 2004, Johnson was in Liberty City for the ribbon cutting of a training center aimed at helping inner city residents get jobs.

“My whole life is devoted to urban America,” Johnson said. “I wish he [Sterling] knew the facts. He’s a man who is upset and reaching. He’s reaching to find a way to grab onto something to save his team, and it’s not going to happen.”


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Eliott Rodriguez