(AllHipHop News) The Sterling family may make the NBA’s attempted forced sale of the Los Angeles Clippers difficult, with or without Donald Sterling as the owner. This past Wednesday, Donald Sterling’s estranged wife Shelly Sterling announced she plans to maintain ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers and the Clippers’ head coach Doc Rivers responded.
The Los Angeles Clippers are owned by a family trust and Shelly Sterling has been a co-owner of the team since Donald Sterling purchased the team in 1981. In a statement sent to ESPN, Mrs. Sterling states that she will attempt to retain ownership of the team if the NBA decides to force the sale:
Commissioner Silver made it clear, that when he announced sanctions against Donald, that the NBA was taking no action against me or my family
Mrs. Sterling announced her intentions of maintaing team ownership a day after Clippers President Andy Roeser took an indefinite leave of absence. Roeser and Mrs. Sterling are the only two alternate governors of the Los Angeles Clippers. Last saturday, the NBA stated they plan to appoint a CEO for the Clippers to oversee day-to-day operations.
A day after Mrs. Sterling’s statements to ESPN, Clippers head coach Doc Rivers stated that it would be a “very hard situation” if Sheryl Sterling retained ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers:
I don’t even want to comment on it because I don’t know yet. I think it would be a very hard situation, I’ll say that much. I think it would be very difficult. I guarantee you every person wouldn’t be on board with it. Whether I would or not, I’m not going to say, I just know that would be a very difficult situation for everybody.
Mrs. Sterling’s lawyer Pierce O’Donnell informed ESPN that not only does Mrs. Sterling intend to fight any forced sale of the Clippers by the NBA but also has legal ground to do so:
Despite all of the furor during the past week, Mrs. Sterling still has property rights. She has worked tirelessly over the years to build up a franchise that was once a cellar dweller into a sports powerhouse. She has the same right as anyone else in America to enjoy and control the fruits of those labors, and that includes deciding whether to keep or sell her 50 percent interest in the team.