Tag:Donald Sterling
Posted on: October 6, 2011 6:56 pm
Edited on: October 6, 2011 7:06 pm

Blake Griffin strips to thong for magazine shoot

Posted by Ben Golliverblake-griffin-naked

Somewhere, Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling is sprinting to his mailbox.

Why? Because Sterling, the man whose players alleged that he brought female acquaintances into his team's locker room and then commented on their bodies, can now enjoy his biggest star nearly nude from the privacy of his own home.

The Associated Press reports that Clippers forward Blake Griffin, the NBA's reigning rookie of the year, stripped down to a thong for a recent ESPN: The Magazine photo shoot.  
He didn't blink when given his choice of a white, black or leopard thong to don for the photo shoot... For the record, Griffin chose the white thong, not that it's visible in the photos. He described the experience as "uncomfortable at first."

"But then after a while I didn't really care. They were bringing the robe over after every take and after a while, I was like, 'Whatever, it's OK.' I guess I'm more comfortable now with less clothes," he said, smiling.

"I've already gotten a lot of good feedback," he said, citing Dwight Howard's previous appearance in the magazine as a reason for doing it himself. "Most athletes don't really pose like that. I thought it was cool. It's always tastefully done."
Via the Los Angeles Times, here's a behind the scenes video of Blake Griffin's naked magazine shoot uploaded by YouTube user ESPN.

Top image via @BlakeGriffin
Posted on: September 22, 2011 4:58 pm
Edited on: September 22, 2011 5:01 pm

NBA owners make Forbes 400 richest Americans list

Posted by Ben Gollivernba-lockout

When the ongoing NBA lockout is framed as a battle between billionaire owners and millionaire players, it's often not an exaggeration.

Forbes.com released its annual list of the 400 wealthiest Americans this week, and more than a dozen NBA owners and minority owners appeared on the list, among the new school technology geniuses and old money investment titans.

The NBA's richest individual owner, according to Forbes, is Portland Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen, who co-founded Microsoft with Bill Gates, the overall richest No. 1 ranked person on the list. Allen's net worth is reported as $13.2 billion and he ranks No. 23 overall on the list. He recently decided to sell one of his private islands.

Somewhat incredibly, Allen is more than twice as rich as the next individual NBA team majority owner. In second place is Amway co-founder Richard DeVos, owner of the Orlando Magic, who is ranked No. 60 with a net worth pegged at $5 billion. 

Rounding out the top five richest individual NBA owners are Miami Heat owner Micky Arison (No. 75, $4.2 billion, Carnival Cruises), Denver Nuggets owner Stan Kroenke (No. 107, $3.2 billion, Walmart) and new Detroit Pistons owner Tom Gores (No. 159, $2.5 billion private equity). The Nuggets are operated by Kroenke's son, Josh.

The other seven NBA majority owners on the list are: Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban (No. 171, $2.3 billion), Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor (No. 242, $1.8 billion), Indiana Pacers owner Herb Simon (No. 273, $1.6 billion), Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert (No. 293, $1.5 billion), Memphis Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley (No. 293, $1.5 billion) Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling (No. 293, $1.5 billion) and new Philadelphia 76ers owner Joshua Harris (No. 309, $1.45 billion).

Los Angeles Lakers minority owner Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, who recently purchased the ownership stake previously held by Lakers legend Magic Johnson, ranked No. 39 with a net worth of $7 billion. 

Hat tip: IAmAGM.com.
Posted on: June 10, 2011 9:27 pm
Edited on: June 10, 2011 9:47 pm

Dunleavy wins $13 million from Clippers' Sterling

Mike Dunleavy won $13 million in arbitration after Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling stopped paying him after he was fired. Posted by Bendonald-sterling Golliver.

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling is notorious for a lot of reasons. This season alone, he heckled his own players and brought women into the team's locker room to watch his players shower.

Above all else, though, Sterling is known for refusing to pay past employees, daring them to sue him to recover their unpaid earnings. Given the expense involved in launching such a suit, some lower-level employees have reportedly given up trying to recoup what is rightfully owed to them.

Former Clippers GM and coach Mike Dunleavy did not give up, however. After he was fired in March 2010, Dunleavy took the Clippers to arbitration to recover the rest of his compensation.

On Friday, the Los Angeles Times reports that the legal maneuver was successful and that he's about to get paid in full.
An arbitrator has awarded former Clippers general manager and coach Mike Dunleavy slightly more than $13 million in compensation. 

The Clippers had quit paying Dunleavy immediately after firing him last year, on March 8, and he was forced to take the organization to binding arbitration. He had been owed $6.75 million on the contract, $1.35 million for the remainder of the 2009-10 season and $5.4 million for the season just completed.

The award was for everything Dunleavy was owed under his contract, past compensation with interest and future compensation, according to those familiar with the ruling but not authorized to comment.
In typical fashion, Sterling's lawyers reportedly said they would "explore the team's various options" to challenge the arbitrator's decision.

Sterling was also sued by former executive Elgin Baylor for unlawful termination due to age descrimination this year,  but a Los Angeles jury unanimously rejected the case back in March.

So, I guess, you win some, you lose some.

Posted on: March 30, 2011 2:26 pm
Edited on: March 30, 2011 5:54 pm

Court rejects Elgin Baylor's Clippers lawsuit

sterling-baylorA California court has rejected former Los Angeles Clippers GM Elgin Baylor's lawsuit against his former team. Posted by Ben Golliver. 

Update 5:53 p.m.: The Clippers released the following statement, which is just about as smug as you're going to get. 
Following is a statement from Los Angeles Clippers’ General Counsel Robert H. Platt, concerning today’s legal decision:
Today's verdict was inevitable and it represents a complete vindication of all of the baseless claims asserted by Mr. Baylor.
For more than two years, Mr. Baylor’s counsel has gone to extraordinary lengths in a fruitless effort to fabricate a case.  This was a case of FIRE!, ready, aim. The jury saw through their baseless rhetoric and quickly realized that there were no facts to support any of Mr. Baylor’s allegations.
Mr. Baylor initially sued the NBA, only to dismiss the League on the eve of trial in exchange for the League agreeing not to pursue a malicious prosecution case against Mr. Baylor.   
In addition, Mr. Baylor and his lawyers held a loud press conference claiming race discrimination. However, the Court threw out Mr. Baylor’s meritless race claims just one day before the trial was set to begin.
Solely on principle, my clients refused to settle this lawsuit despite having the opportunity to do so. Even when faced with endless, public, malicious attacks, they were resolute in their demand that they be fully exonerated by a jury. That moment has now come.

My clients are to be credited for their willingness to see this through.  Personally I am gratified to know that this was a day on which justice was well-served.

The Los Angeles Times reports that a California jury has unanimously rejected a lawsuit brought by former Los Angeles Clippers GM Elgin Baylor against his former team. Baylor had been suing for millions in damages steeming from "age discrimination" and "harassment."
A Los Angeles County jury Wednesday declined to award damages to NBA great Elgin Baylor, rejecting his lawsuit against the Clippers for unlawful termination based on age discrimination.
By a 12-0 vote, the seven-man, five-woman jury informed Judge Kenneth R. Freeman that neither the team nor owner Donald T. Sterling or president Andy Roeser presided over a hostile workplace in which alleged harassment occurred.
Baylor, 76, the Clippers' 22-year head of player personnel as general manager and executive vice president, was asking for nearly $2 million in economic and mental distress damages over his 2008 departure from the team.
Here's an outline of some of Baylor's allegations against Clippers owner Donald Sterling.

During the lawsuit's court proceedings, Sterling said that he didn't know who Baylor, a basketball Hall of Famer, was when he originally hired him to run the team.

Complaints against Sterling as an employer and business owner have accumulated over the years and he made national headlines this year when he heckled his team's point guard, Baron Davis, from his courtside seats. Nevertheless, Sterling is a bit of a Teflon Don, finding ways to skate out of legal predicaments over and over again.
Posted on: March 18, 2011 11:31 pm
Edited on: March 18, 2011 11:37 pm

Blake Griffin keeping his eye on Donald Sterling?

Would Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin look to play elsewhere in the future because of disgraced owner Donald Sterling? Posted by Benblake-griffin Golliver.

We need not run down the list of Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, but no matter where you're from or how politically correct you are, he has offended your sensibilities. He answers to no one besides, maybe, himself.

Friday, CBSSports.com's Ken Berger reports that Sterling's behavior, which has become unavoidably grotesque this season, has caught the eye of his franchise forward, Blake Griffin.

In between jumping over compact cars and dunking on your favorite team, Griffin is sizing up his owner in consideration of his future.
But if Sterling's reign of incompetence and downright meanness continues, there is perhaps one outcome that finally could build enough momentum to overturn, or at least rein in, his dictatorship. Sources say rookie sensation Blake Griffin is closely monitoring Sterling's struggles and is concerned, to say the least, about the owner's unfortunate string of public embarrassments. Under current NBA rules, players on rookie contracts have little power to influence where they play. And from the standpoint of talent and assets, the Clippers are on excellent footing going forward. But Griffin will not be tied to the Clippers forever, and there are indications he will consider not only the Clippers' ability to compete for a championship, but also the kind of owner he wants to play for when he becomes eligible (under current rules, anyway) for an extension on July 1, 2012. Would alienating the most promising player in franchise history be grounds for Sterling to finally be held accountable? The Clippers, still 42 months away from Griffin's extension eligibility, are said to be losing no sleep over the matter for now. But at some point soon, they should.
The only problem that I can see with Griffin being able to influence Sterling's behavior is that we can't be certain that Sterling actually knows who Griffin is. Sure, Griffin is the most YouTube'd player in the world, arguably the most athletic player in the NBA, was the toast of the town in Los Angeles over All-Star Weekend after winning the Slam Dunk Contest, is set to be named Rookie of the Year in a few months and is bordering on being a top 10 overall player in his first trip through the league.

But we can't forget one simple fact: Sterling said in court this week that he didn't know who Elgin Baylor was when he hired him to be his GM. Elgin Baylor: NBA legend, Hall of Famer, one of the 50 greatest players of all time. If you don't know who Baylor is, we can't assume you know who Griffin is. Sad, but true.

The best case scenario here is that Sterling finally sells the Clippers to a thoughtful, modern owner who keeps Griffin in the City of Angeles for his entire career, smartly building a championship contender and rival for the Lakers around the league's most dynamic frontcourt talent in years. 

The second best case scenario is for Griffin to flee Sterling as quickly as possible. Sadly, that scenario is much more realistic. It's way easier to change cities than it is to change a clueless owner's conduct.
Posted on: March 16, 2011 3:15 am

Donald Sterling didn't know who Elgin Baylor was

Clippers owner Donald Sterling testifies he did not know of Baylor's career when he hired him. Seriously.
Posted by Matt Moore

Donald Sterling is such a lovable, popular guy these days. In the same day that it was revealed his organization refused to help cover an assisant coach's prostate surgery following th revelation of cancer, Sterling testified in Elgin Baylor's wrongful termination suit against him that he had no knowledge of the NBA legend's career when he hired him.


From the Los Angeles Times
You didn't know about his basketball career?" Baylor attorney Carl Douglas asked Sterling in his first day on the stand as Baylor's wrongful termination civil lawsuit against the team continued at a Los Angeles courthouse. "His accomplishments? The Hall of Fame?"

"No," Sterling answered. "... I didn't know that. I hired him for $3,000 a month. I didn't really know what his role was.... He was working in a mail-order company back then."
via Clippers owner Donald Sterling testifies he knew little of Elgin Baylor's career when he hired him - latimes.com.

Los Angeles Lakers' owner Jerry Buss is known to have introduced Sterling to the prospect of buying the Clippers and moving them from San Diego to L.A.. Based on that fact, it's reaching the point where a tax may need to be put in place on Buss for him to pay back the amount of blown potential revenue for the league had anyone else owned the Clippers. 

How can you possibly own an NBA team and not know who Elgin Baylor is? What kind of gap in common knowledge has to stand between you and everyone else in your field to be ignorant of a legend in the endeavor you've taken on? 

Sterling continues to embarrass the NBA at every turn, and David Stern continues to stand idly by and watch.
Posted on: March 15, 2011 12:07 pm

Former Clipper players stepped up in crunch time

Posted by Royce Young

The story of former Clipper assistant and one time interim coach Kim Hughes was highlighted in the Journal Times today, and in that is the fact that after Hughes was diagnosed with prostrate cancer, the organization wouldn't pay for his treatment.

"I contacted the Clippers about medical coverage and they said the surgery wouldn't be covered," Hughes said in the story. "I said, ‘Are you kidding me?' And they said if they did it for one person, they'd have to do for everybody else."

Of course this spawned a good amount of "Oh the Clippers" type of comments, even though they might not be entirely fair. (I mean, the Clippers do have a point.) But it made me think: Shouldn't the Clippers be the kind of organization that does the exact opposite of what happened here and go above an beyond? With the type of reputation the franchise has for screwing things up and doing things the wrong way, wouldn't they see this as an opportunity to make a statement the other direction?

But then of course, here's where you remember that Donald Sterling owns the franchise and he cares not for going above and beyond or the "right way".

The story doesn't end there though. Good thing, because I was depressed. In fact, it ends with some inspiration.
When Dunleavy learned the Clippers wouldn't cover the cost of Hughes' surgery, he mentioned it to his players.

Several of them, including now Milwaukee Bucks forward Corey Maggette, Chris Kaman, Elton Brand and Marko Jaric, were taken aback by the news and decided to offer their assistance.

"Kim was one of our coaches and he's a really good friend of mine, too," Maggette said. "He was in a situation where the Clippers' medical coverage wouldn't cover his surgery. I thought it was a great opportunity to help someone in need, to do something that Christ would do.

"It shows your humanity, that you care for other people and not just yourself. Kim was in a life-and-death situation."

It was indeed a dicey time for Hughes. After a biopsy was taken, he learned his prostate cancer was much worse than he believed.

The cancer had quickly spread and was on the brink of moving to other areas of his body.
Players stepped up, in a big way. The organization wouldn't cover the treatment so a couple players raised their hand. So while you can point at the Clippers and make a joke or two, the moral of the story is, you can still step up when someone else doesn't. That's what Maggette, Kaman, Brand and Jaric did for Hughes.

And by all accounts, Hughes is recovering well. Which in the end, is really all that matters.
Posted on: January 7, 2011 11:47 am
Edited on: January 7, 2011 11:48 am

More allegations of Sterling misconduct surface

Further allegations revealed that Donald Sterling has engaged in unacceptable behavior as owner of the Los Angeles Clippers.
Posted by Matt Moore

For those who pay attention, allegations that Donald Sterling has displayed racist, unconscionable, penny-pinching behavior and a sole pursuit of profit in the face of opportunities to win should be the polar opposite of shocking. But learning the depths of just how hollow his moral mine shaft is reported to be always makes for a nice story, and today is no exception. ESPN has obtained more court documents in Elgin Baylor's case against Sterling. Take us to the highlights, J.A. Adande:

"Because of the Clippers unwillingness to fairly compensate African-American players we lost a lot of good talent, including Danny Manning, Charles Smith, Michael Cage, Ron Harper, Dominique Wilkins, [Corey] Maggette and others," Baylor said.

Okay, well there are always reasons to pass on players, and while Sterling's character history doesn't necessarily support the idea that these decisions weren't racially motivated, it's difficult to argue without providing context for where the team was at in its manifest and where those players were at in their careers. So hey, this one's probably duck-able. What else?

Dunleavy said that during a team trip to Russia in 2006, Clippers officials were dining at a restaurant called Rasputin when Platt, the Clippers' attorney, told him that the Clippers thought Baylor was too old and they were going to fire him. While the Clippers told Dunleavy that Baylor only wanted to work for two more years, Dunleavy said he never heard that from Baylor, and Baylor said in his statement that he never told anyone that he wanted to retire.

Okay, well, that's not stellar behavior, and Baylor's probably going to have a case, but really, that just sounds more like an employer having difficulty in managing employees. That's not good, but it's not outright horrible. It looks like there's nothing in this round of revelations which would really make Sterling look terrib ... oh. Yeah.  There's this. 

"While ignoring my suggestions and isolating me from decisions customarily reserved for general managers, the Clippers attempted to place the blame for the team’s failures on me," Baylor said in the declaration. "During this same period, players Sam Cassell, Elton Brand and Corey Maggette complained to me that DONALD STERLING would bring women into the locker room after games, while the players were showering, and make comments such as, 'Look at those beautiful black bodies.' I brought this to Sterling’s attention, but he continued to bring women into the locker room."

Look, most situations between people are more complicated than they seem. and they often involve a great degree of dissonance between one party and the other.  It's a more difficult world than most people make it out to be. But if these, and all the other accusations are true, Donald Sterling is an abomination to a not-at-all exceedingly honorable league of NBA owners. He is a blemish on the NBA, and a detriment to the league. And the fact that he's allowed to continue pursuing his agenda in such a profitable market as Los Angeles represents a failure by his fellow owners, the league, and David Stern to set a standard of conduct and hold its representatives to it. The NBA wouldn't tolerate such behavior in its offices, yet here is an owner, a voice among the group that is determining the future of this sport in the next year, who lacks not only a drive to win, not only an objective of running an operation well, but who flaunts racism in a predominantly African-American sport.  I seem to ask this every six months, but I will ask again. 

What's it going to take for the NBA to purge itself of the disease that is Donald Sterling?
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com