NBA Officially Files Charges to Strip Donald Sterling of LA Clippers

NBA Officially Files Charges to Strip Donald Sterling of LA Clippers

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Embattled owner has until May 27 to respond to the charges

The National Basketball Association officially initiated proceedings Monday to strip Donald Sterling of his ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers.

Also read: Donald Sterling Refuses to Pay $2.5 Million Fine, Threatens to Sue NBA (Report)

“The charge asserts that Mr. Sterling engaged in conduct that has damaged and continues to damage the NBA and its teams,” the league wrote in a statement. “Among other things, Mr. Sterling disparaged African-Americans and ‘minorities'; directed a female acquaintance not to associate publicly with African-Americans or to bring African-Americans to Clippers games; and criticized African-Americans for not supporting their communities.”

The NBA said that these actions “significantly undermine” the league's efforts to promote diversity and inclusion and damage its relationship with fans, owners, players, and marketing partners. These are all grounds for expulsion from the NBA, the league argues.

See video: Magic Johnson on Donald Sterling's Outrageous Comments: ‘He's Living in the Stone Ages' 

“Mr. Sterling engaged in other misconduct as well, including issuing a false and misleading press statement about this matter,” the statement reads.

Sterling has until May 27 to respond to the charge, per the league's Constitution, and has the right to make a presentation at a special meeting of the NBA Board of Governors scheduled for June 3.

Also read: Donald Sterling's Apology a Slam Dunk for Comedians

Read the NBA announcement below:

The NBA initiated a charge Monday seeking to terminate the ownership of Donald Sterling in the Los Angeles Clippers. If the NBA Board of Governors sustains the charge by a 3/4 vote, all ownership interests in the Clippers will be terminated and the team will be sold to new owners.

The NBA Constitution provides Mr. Sterling with the opportunity to respond to the charge by May 27, as well as the right to appear and make a presentation at a special meeting of the Board of Governors. This hearing, which is planned for June 3, will be presided over by NBA Board of Governors Chairman Glen Taylor, the controlling Governor of the Minnesota Timberwolves.

The charge asserts that Mr. Sterling engaged in conduct that has damaged and continues to damage the NBA and its teams. Among other things, Mr. Sterling disparaged African-Americans and “minorities”; directed a female acquaintance not to associate publicly with African-Americans or to bring African-Americans to Clippers games; and criticized African-Americans for not supporting their communities.

Mr. Sterling's actions and positions significantly undermine the NBA's efforts to promote diversity and inclusion; damage the NBA's relationship with its fans; harm NBA owners, players and Clippers team personnel; and impair the NBA's relationship with marketing and merchandising partners, as well as with government and community leaders. Mr. Sterling engaged in other misconduct as well, including issuing a false and misleading press statement about this matter.

All of these acts provide grounds for termination under several provisions of the NBA Constitution and related agreements.