Latest News, NBA / Apr 28, 2014 / 12:25 pm

Report: Magic Johnson Wants To Buy The Clippers From Donald Sterling

Magic Johnson

Magic Johnson (Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports)

The man directly involved in the purported audio recordings of Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, is now hoping to buy the team from the repellent owner. Magic Johnson and his billionaire-backing Guggenheim Partners are interested in purchasing the team from Sterling in the wake of his alleged recordings.

In the initial recordings allegedly involving Clippers owner Donald Sterling, an argument with his then-girlfriend was instigated after a picture showing V. Stiviano and Magic showed up on her Instagram. That’s why the recent report by Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski seems like such a perfect fit. Magic and his Guggenheim Partners already own the Los Angeles Dodgers and the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks, and they’re now interested in buying the Clippers from Sterling:

Magic Johnson and his billionaire backers, the Guggenheim Partners, want a chance to purchase the Los Angeles Clippers, league sources told Yahoo Sports. “Magic’s absolutely interested,” one source closely connected to Johnson’s business interests told Yahoo Sports on Sunday night.

To bail themselves out of the NBA’s worst crisis of credibility since the Tim Donaghy officiating scandal, the easy part for the NBA will be enlisting the eagerness and financial muscle of Magic Johnson and Mark Walter of the Guggenheim Partners – owners of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Magic went on ABC’s NBA Countdown show on Sunday to talk about the alleged Sterling recording and his inclusion in the initial release. He also said Sterling, “Shouldn’t own a team anymore,” mirroring the thoughts of pretty much everyone who loves the NBA.

Magic and his backers have already tried to purchase the Los Angeles Lakers, only to have the Buss family tell them they’re not for sale. But the Clippers, who are losing sponsors left and right after Sterling’s alleged comments, would seem to be the perfect team for Johnson and his backers to procure in light of the disgraceful way Sterling referred to Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Dodgers player Matt Kemp and other African-Americans.

The problem now is getting Sterling to let go of the team. The NBA’s owners can’t force Sterling to sell, but they can fine and suspend him under the NBA’s constitutional bylaws. That’s not going to be enough for what Sterling is reported to have said — though the league is still investigating.

“This is 100 percent Magic’s plan,” a league official intimately involved in the buying and selling of franchises told Yahoo Sports.


“If the owners can’t force [Sterling] to sell, they need to be held accountable to change the bylaws so they can,” one member of the NBA’s Board of Governors told Yahoo Sports on Sunday. “A fine and suspension is meaningless, and that’ll be seen as a lack of acceptance that the league and owners are responsible for this ass——.”

As Woj writes in his piece, the owners are on the clock to remove Sterling, especially when it’s been a long time coming, with years of evidence revealing Sterling’s prejudiced world view.

Adam Silver has a truly monumental decision to make after being on the job as NBA commissioner for less than three months. If Sterling is allowed to attend even one more Clippers game, there’s no telling how it’ll affect not just the Clippers, but every NBA team. That’s the argument Silver and the owners will make to change the bylaws and finally force Sterling to sell.

It would bring some small measure of justice to the whole horrific affair to have Magic Johnson as the buyer.


Would Magic Johnson purchasing the team from Sterling offer some measure of salivation after this horrific audio recording surfaced?

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  • 2cents

    Mmmmm, what I am about to say might cause some controversy, but does anyone else see the issue with removing/silencing someone, simply because they hold a particular point of view?

    In this case, Sterling is proving to be a repugnant, racist owner and would do the whole NBA (maybe even the world) by being removed from his position. However, what happens when someone else holds a view that differs from the majority? Does this mean they need to be silenced/removed? I’d say that this would set a very dangerous precedent (if he is removed), merely for voicing a politically incorrect view. Isn’t America the land of the free, where people are allowed to voice their opinion?

    I’d think a better way to handle this would be to simply boycott the Clippers and EVERY single thing he owns. Hurting him financially might ruin him to the point he has to sell the team and hopefully teach him a lesson in the process. Forcibly removing him, won’t change his views and if anything just make him more stubborn…

  • Walter Egy Herrmann

    freedom of speech means sterling can say whatever crap he thinks. He’s allowed to. And then the sponsors will leave him like statefarm and virgin. Next the larger sponsors will leave, too, and the players, staff as well. And the fans, too. That is how it should work. Not by forcing that old prick to be removed from the league or something. If Cuban can be fined for any basketball related criticism sterling could also be fined. Players get fined for racial stuff. But anything more than that is ridiculous. How could you force one not to own an nba club?
    Btw I think magic would be a bad owner, bad GM or any kind of executive, with bad decisions, deals and trades, etc. He’ s mediocre analyst when on TV, and he wasn’t a good coach either. Hey, he even mocked Kareem for medical marijuana use.

  • Stradio

    The 1st amendment prevents someone from being imprisoned for what they say/believe, but it does not preclude any other form of punishment within legal rights. The fact is that when someone is rich and powerful in America, they need to watch what they say and do if they care at all about public opinion. Racism along with sexuality are very hot button issues and probably always will be, so the NBA is simply covering it’s own ass by disassociating itself from Sterling and giving him the maximum punishment allowed by the NBA bylaws.