In response to Donald Sterling’s comments released by TMZ that created an array of backlash in regards to language that painted the Los Angeles Clippers owner as a blatant racist, the NBA and commissioner Adam Silver has banned Sterling from the NBA for life.
This is the response we all wanted as fans and people. While it doesn’t morally change that Sterling is a racist, it shows that the NBA won’t stand for a violation of ethics that puts the image of the NBA in a bad light similar to how David Stern swept the past allegations under the wrong. Most importantly, the NBA has set the precedent for any punishment to come in regards to the code of ethics, meaning specific behaviors and actions won’t be tolerated. It hasn’t created a loophole within the system that has made NBA owners an easy out, but it’s clear that there’s a limit to what they can do or say on the matter.
Here is the official press release released by the NBA on the situation.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has banned Donald Sterling for life from any association with the Clippers or the NBA, it was announced today at a press conference in Manhattan.
Commissioner Silver has also fined Mr. Sterling $2.5 million, the maximum amount allowed under the NBA Constitution. The fine money will be donated to organizations dedicated to anti-discrimination and tolerance efforts that will be jointly selected by the NBA and the Players Association.
As part of the lifetime ban, Mr. Sterling may not attend any NBA games or practices, be present at any Clippers office or facility, or participate in any business or player personnel decisions involving the team. He will also be barred from attending NBA Board of Governors meetings and participating in any other league activity.
Commissioner Silver also announced that he will urge the Board of Governors to exercise its authority to force a sale of the team.
The discipline issued today is based on the Commissioner’s conclusion that Mr. Sterling violated league rules through his expressions of offensive and hurtful views, the impact of which has been widely felt throughout the league.
For a look at the ticketing side of this story, check out this article on The Daily Beast.