Bruce Levenson is the majority owner of the Atlanta Hawks and he is selling the team after racially charged e-mails came to light. He was writing about why the team was not attracting more affluent white season ticket holders. In one e-mail he wrote:
"My theory is that the black crowd scared away the whites and there are simply not enough affluent black fans to build a signficant season ticket base." He added, "I never felt uncomfortable, but I think southern whites simply were not comfortable being in an arena or at a bar where they were in the minority."
Levenson had been one of the most vocal critics of Donald Sterling earlier this year. Unlike Sterling, Levenson is selling his team without a fight. But NBA Legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar told Anderson that he does not believe that Levenson was expressing hatred.
New York Times Op-Ed Columnist Charles Blow says he does not believe Levenson should get "a business waiver for bias." He spoke to Anderson in a conversation with Senior Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin.
First came word that former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer agreed to buy the Clippers for $2-billion. Then we learned that two doctors declared Donald Sterling mentally incapacitated, giving his wife Shelly sole power to sell the team. While that would be an opportunity for the Clippers owner to quietly walk away from the NBA, Donald Sterling's lawyer filed a lawsuit, suing the league for $1-billion. Anderson discussed these latest twists with sports agent Drew Rosenhaus and criminal defense attorney Mark Geragos.
Roger Mason Jr is the Vice President of the National Basketball Players Association, he told Anderson that he was stunned by the amount of money Steve Ballmer is willing to pay for the Clippers.
In a news conference Tuesday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said the league is "doing the right thing" by forcing out LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling. This came only one day after the NBA outlined their charges against Sterling and on the same day Sterling's lawyer demanded three months to respond. "The proceedings and the processes set out in our constitution is something they signed on for when they became owners in the league," said Silver. The commissioner expressed confidence in the NBA's ability to force Sterling into selling the franchise, which he has owned since 1981.
The NBA made it official today, and started the process to remove Donald Sterling as an owner of the L.A. Clippers. It could be the start of a long and ugly legal battle. The league needs the support of 75% of the other team owners. Already, Sterling is fighting the NBA's lifetime ban and $2.5-million fine. Today's move is no surprise, and Sterling discussed his future with the team when he spoke exclusively with AC360. Anderson got the latest on the developing situation from Rachel Nichols, host of CNN's "Unguarded," along with Senior Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin.
Donald Sterling plans to fight the National Basketball Association's $2.5 million fine and lifetime ban. The scandal started when audio recordings of his racist rants were leaked on the TMZ Sports and Deadspin websites last month.
A source close to the situation told CNN that Sterling threatened the NBA with a lawsuit if the punishment that was handed down by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver just days after the recordings were released is not rescinded. Sterling contends that the league's punishment was enacted too quickly. The source told CNN the rejection was via a letter sent to the National Basketball Association.
According to Sports Illustrated, the letter says that Sterling has not violated the NBA constitution and the NBA has violated Sterling's right to due process. Sports Illustrated and USA Today reported that Sterling hired antitrust lawyer Maxwell Blecher to represent him. CNN reached out to Blecher and the NBA but did not hear back from either.
NBA Analyst for the Bleacher Report Ric Bucher debated the latest legal developments with CNN analysts Jeffrey Toobin and Sunny Hostin.
Earlier this week Anderson Cooper sat down for an exclusive interview with Donald Sterling and asked him whether he planned to fight to retain ownership of the LA Clippers. Watch what he tells Anderson.
Donald Sterling is on the verge of losing his basketball team and his marriage. But is he ready to fight to hold onto either of them? In his exclusive interview with Anderson Cooper, Sterling discusses his impending divorce. When it comes to the NBA, he says "I want to show all of the people that are associated with basketball and the world I'm not a racist."
Throughout his interview with Anderson Cooper, Donald Sterling denies being a racist. When asked whether he believes racism is still a problem in America, Sterling said "I think America handles everything well."
Donald Sterling's racist comments came as no surprise to NBA Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor. He sued the Clippers after more than two decades as the team's general manager. In the lawsuit, he described Sterling as having a "plantation-type" mentality. Sterling responded to that, along with allegations that he would bring women into the team locker room while telling them to look at players' "beautiful black bodies."
During the interview, Donald Sterling referred to his wife Shelly as his "ex-wife." He explained to Anderson what went wrong in their relationship.
The Oklahoma City Thunder's Kevin Durant is now the NBA's Most Valuable Player. He also just delivered a speech that is raising the bar for sons across the country this Mother's Day. He accepted the MVP title by thanking his teammates and coaches, but when it came to thanking his mother he really poured his heart out. Anderson spoke to Kevin's mother, Wanda Pratt, who described that moment as "overwhelming."