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Latest News / Jul 25, 2014 / 10:15 am

Chris Paul Likely To Boycott If Donald Sterling Remains In Charge

Chris Paul, Doc Rivers

Chris Paul, Doc Rivers (Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports)

Despite the NBA’s lifetime ban for Clippers owner Donald Sterling, the sale of the team by wife, Shelly Sterling, has been put on hold while a probate trial commences to determine whether Shelly acted properly in selling the team without his consent. Much like Clippers coach Doc Rivers threatening to leave if the team still remains run by Sterling when the season starts, star point guard Chris Paul has issued his own ultimatum to the league, where he mentioned to ESPN he — and some of his big-name teammates — will be sitting out if the issue hasn’t been cleared up by the start of training camp in October.

By way of ESPN’s Jeff Goodman comes the very real possibility of a boycott by the coach and star players — yes, Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan have also been involved in discussions to sit if Sterling remains at the helm:

Los Angeles Clippers point guard Chris Paul told ESPN.com that it’s “unacceptable” if Donald Sterling is still the owner of the team when the season begins.

Paul also said he has spoken to coach Doc Rivers about the possibility of sitting out if Sterling remains in control when the seasons starts in a little more than two months.

“That’s something me and Doc are both talking about,” Paul said Thursday after coaching his AAU program, CP3. “Something has to happen, and something needs to happen soon — sooner rather than later.”

[…]

“We’re all going to talk about it,” Paul said. “We’re all definitely going to talk about it. Doc, Blake [Griffin], DJ [DeAndre Jordan]. It’s unacceptable.”

Shelly accepted the $2 billion bid to buy the team by former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer at the end of May with the original purchase agreement expected to be completed by June 15 and an extension to August 15. The NBA has said it will resume termination proceedings of the sale if it’s not completed by September 15. Training camps open in early October, so all the deadlines are jammed right against each other this fall, which could cause the NBA further strife if the judge doesn’t rule in Shelly’s favor.

Closing arguments in the probate case are set for Monday at which point the judge will either rule to authorize the sale or augment confusion further by ruling against Shelly, and tossing the franchise in limbo yet again.

Despite whatever happens in the probate trial, Donald has said he’ll fight to keep the franchise “as long as he lives,” which could mean we’ve got another ugly situation — with star players and coaches refusing to play — if the owner is still in place by the opening of camp.

Will CP3, Blake, Doc and DJ sit out this fall?

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  • 2cents

    This is an interesting twist. As the players feel so strongly about this issue, are they willing to go without pay, or potentially have their contracts terminated?

    Again, I understand why people want Sterling gone, but until someone can point to the law he broke, I don’t think a player has legal grounds to sit this season out. It would set a bad presedent if players can just turn around and say they don’t want to play for a team, simply because they don’t agree with the owner/GM/franchise…

  • KeeleyG

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  • Pastor Burt Wilkins

    Wednesday, July 23rd, finally today Donald Sterling did something right in probate court. His attorney’s actually brought in a respected Alzheimer’s and dementia doctor, Dr. Jeffrey Cummings who testified as an expert that the evaluations done by the Plaintiff’s two doctors were improperly done because Shelly Sterling was in the examining room during those examinations.

    The question thus arises after a week of failure is this right move by the Defense to little and to late? The Doctor speculated in his opinion that having the wife in the room would have been a distraction, precluding concentration. To the contrary, doctors as a common practice invite spouses in while the other spouse is being examined to otherwise reassure and calm the patient, so that the doctor can better gain the patient’s confidence to enable the doctor to then proceed with the examination.

    The Defense doctor claimed that he was aware that there was tension between the two spouses is simply speculation and not a fact known by the doctor. Prior testimony does not support that Defense doctor’s speculation. At the time of examinations, Shelly Sterling was working for Donald, seeking and being positively encouraged by Donald to sell the Clippers as he had instructed. At that time, he only had words of praise for his wife.

    Is speculation of tension or distraction sufficient to cause the presiding judge to deny the propriety of the Plaintiffs examinations of the Defendant? No supporting evidence or testimony was offered by the Defense. Till now Donald’s stated opinion of his wife has been to date that at one moment she has been for him an angel and then in anger next describes her as a “pig”. Which opinion or neither should the judge accept from Donald Sterling? The scriptures offer this sound advice: (James 1:8 KJV) “A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.” And further, the scriptures states to such double minded individuals, (James 1:7 KJV) “Let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.” As a priest, I am in total agree with these scriptures. Expert witnesses are decisive when testifying as to facts known by them gathered by their own professional observations rather than opinion based on speculation.

    Interestingly, the Defense’s doctor (1) never offered an opinion as to whether Donald Sterling had Alzheimer’s disease. Rather his opinion was that if Donald Sterling had Alzheimer’s, it is not in an advanced state that would preclude his ability to make decisions. (2) The Doctor did he offer the results of any clinical tests he may or should have given Donald Sterling as to whether Donald Sterling had Alzheimer’s, nor (3) did he state that his expert observations of Donald Sterling behavior while in his presence was consistent or inconsistent with that of a patient that has or has not Alzheimer’s disease. Here you must realize that the Plaintiff’s doctors did testify on all three of these points. After the Doctor Cummings testified, the judge replied, “I don’t see how this witnesses testimony is going to help me in coming to a judgment.” Thus it appears certain that the Defense made a critical if not absolutely fatal error by offering such limited expert testimony. The Defense doctor only questioned the propriety of having the spouse in the room for the examinations, and not the findings of the Plaintiff’s doctors that Donald Sterling has in fact Alzheimer’s. Despite the Defense’s objections, the judge has already ruled that the testimony by the Plantiff’s doctors are admissible. Therefore, the judge will find that based upon the uncontested testimony of all the expert witnesses from both sides presented to the court that Donald Sterling has Alzheimer’s as an uncontested fact, thus justifying Shelly Sterling’s removal of Donald Sterling as trustee.

    The case is now in recess till Monday, when closing arguments by either side will be made. No further testimony or evidence will be accepted by the court from either side. It’s over.

  • Anonymous

    The Judge specifically and repeatedly stated that Donald’s mental state of being (whether or not he is mentally incapacitated) is an issue he will rule on. BTW, having Alzheimer’s does not make someone mentally incapacitated.