Clippers' owner Donald Sterling's racist rant; Doc Rivers, Magic Johnson, Pres. Obama react
(WOIO/CBS NEWSPATH) - A racist rant by Donald Sterling, owner of the Clippers, has overshadowed NBA's end season games for the championship.
Sterling's comments have been referred to as despicable and unacceptable.
TMZ released the audio of Donald Sterling's argument with his girlfriend V. Stiviano after she posted a picture on Instagram posing with Magic Johnson.
"Don't bring Black people to my games" is ringing in the heads of many basketball professionals and fans alike.
Here's a peak at what was said in the audio between Sterling and Stiviano:
Stiviano: "People call you and tell you that I have black people on my Instagram. And it bothers you. "
Donald: "Yeah it bothers me a lot that you want to promo... broadcast that you're associating with black people. Do you have to?...I'm just saying, in your lousy *** Instagrams, you don't have to have yourself with, walking with black people. You don't have to. "
Stiviano: "If it's Larry Bird it's ok?"
Clippers coach Doc Rivers made a comment about Sterling's rant before the team's practice at the USF gym.
"A lotta guys voiced their opinions. None of them were happy about it. This is a situation we're trying to go after something very important for us. Something we dreamed about all our childhood. And you know, Donald, or anybody else has nothing to do with that dream, and we're not going to let anything get in the way of those dreams."
Magic Johnson tweeted that he will never go to a Clippers game again as long as Sterling is the owner.
"If you're going to be like this, why are you owning a team in the NBA, when it's what, over 70% African American Basketball players. So I think he should step down," says Johnson.
"I'm very disappointed, angry and upset," said Johnson. "Let's go back when I first got here in 1979. Dr. Buss took me to my first real party at Donald Sterling's house in Malibu for his annual BBQ. Ever since then, since Dr. Buss introduced me to him at the time he bought the Clippers, we've been out, we've had lunch and even shared meals to talk about his team, so I thought we had a sort of a friendship, even though it may be a distant one."
Johnson added, "I respect him, I thought he respected me, but when these comments came out, it hurt. It didn't hurt me as much personally as it hurt me for all African Americans.
President Obama also commented on Sterling's rant, "I have confidence that the NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, a good man, will address this. Obviously the NBA is a league that is beloved by fans all across the country. It's got an awful lot of African American players, it's steeped in African American culture, and I suspect that the NBA is going to be deeply concerned in resolving this."
This disturbing incident comes just as the Clippers take on the Warriors in the first round of playoffs for the NBA championship. Coach Rivers says this is upsetting to all the members of the team.
"We have a white guy, two white guys, out here. It's about being human. So, we're not going to get to what race we are because we represent each other and this is our team. And that's the way we're going to keep it. And no one was happy about it. JJ Reddick was just as pissed, as Chris Paul," says Rivers.
While most of the of the players wouldn't comment, Blake Griffin gave a few words on the topic, "Man, every day I deal with things but when I step on the court, it's easy, man, I play basketball. That's what I'm here to do."
In response to the recording, Clippers President Andy Roeser, in a released statement, said, "We do not know if it is legitimate or if it has been altered. We do know that the woman on the tape -- we believe released it to TMZ -- is the defendant in a lawsuit brought by the Sterling family, alleging that she embezzled more than $1.8 million."
The statement also says Sterling is upset and apologizes.
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