Shelly Sterling, the wife of embattled Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, is hoping she can become the owner of the Clippers.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Shelly Sterling believes the NBA’s lifetime ban on Donald Sterling does not apply to “me or my family.”
Longtime Clippers broadcaster Ralph “Oh Me Oh My” Lawler, who is also the the Clippers’ longest-serving employee, told the Times that though it was understandable that Shelly Sterling wanted to keep the time many in the organization want to move on:
“I think in the eyes of the players and the coaching staff and the basketball staff, the page has been turned, and I think it would be difficult to turn it back,” Lawler said.
That may apply to much of the NBA as well:
Players, fans and other owners have signaled that they would like to see a fresh start for the Los Angeles franchise, which is in the midst of a playoff run in what could be its most successful season after decades of mediocrity. Ownership by any of the Sterlings could mean a continued flight of sponsors and a potential boycott from players and fans.
The NBA had no immediate response to Shelly Sterling’s desire to keep the team. On Wednesday, in the comments provided to The Times by her representatives, she said she had retained a law firm to guide her in her ownership quest.
Should ownership be transferred to Shelley Sterling, she still may need to be approved by the other owners, which is no guarantee in light accusations of racism against her in the past. Sterling allegedly impersonated an inspector to harass minority tenants.
There have been indications that a potential sale of the Clippers could be delayed if the Sterlings formally file for divorce.