LeBron James said he and other NBA players are prepared for a long fight between the league and Donald Sterling over ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers. James answered questions about the Clippers on Saturday after the Heat’s practice at Baruch College in Manhattan.
“At the end of the day, it’s going to be a long litigation when it comes to that,” James said. “A guy who owned the team since the ’80s is not going to just give the team up in a day.”
James also indicated that NBA players do not want Sterling’s wife, Shelly, to own any shares of the team if the NBA forces Donald Sterling out. Shelly Sterling has said she might file for a divorce from her estranged husband to gain partial ownership of the franchise. The NBA has banned Donald Sterling for life from all NBA-related events after audio recordings of Sterling making racially offensive remarks were released to TMZ.com.
“We understand it’s going to be long, but we want what’s right,” James said. “As players, we want what’s right and we don’t feel like no one in his family should be able to own the team.”
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Meanwhile, Donald Sterling broke his silence Sunday in an interview with CNN during which he apologized for making racist remarks.
“I’m a good member who made a mistake, and I’m apologizing and I’m asking for forgiveness,” Sterling said during the interview, which was scheduled to air Monday night. “Am I entitled to one mistake — am I, after 35 years? I mean, I love my league, I love my partners. Am I entitled to one mistake? It’s a terrible mistake, and I'll never do it again.”
Miami Herald Wire Services contributed to this report.