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Why the NBA Owners May NOT Vote to Oust Donald Sterling

Donald Sterling
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

In order to force Donald Sterling to sell the L.A. Clippers, three-fourths of the other owners would have to vote for that to happen. That’s 23 of the 29 non-Sterling owners.

From an outsider’s perspective, that sure seems like a SLAM-DUNK, especially since many of the owners have publicly voiced their outrage.  But there’s a chance that they WON’T DO IT.

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban hasn’t explicitly said how he’d vote…but it sounds like he’s NOT onboard. He said it’s, quote, “damn scary to consider removing somebody from the NBA because of their private thoughts.”

Bloomberg via Getty Images

He went on, quote, “What Donald said was wrong.  It was abhorrent.  There’s no place for racism in the NBA…and I don’t want to be associated with people who have that position…but there’s a very, very, very slippery slope…

“If it’s about racism, and we’re ready to kick people out of the league, OK?  Then what about homophobia?  What about somebody who doesn’t like a particular religion?  What about somebody who’s anti-Semitic?  What about a xenophobe?

“You’ve got to be very, very careful when you start making blanket statements about what people say and think [privately], as opposed to what they do [publicly]…

“If we’re taking something somebody said in their home and we’re trying to turn it into something that leads to you being forced to divest property in any way, shape or form, that’s not the United States of America. I don’t want to be part of that…

“In this country, people are allowed to be morons.”

(There’s more from Cuban, here and here.  Despite what he said on Monday, Cuban DID Tweet during Silver’s press conference, quote, “I agree 100%.” You can find comments from other owners, who DO sound like they’d vote to rid themselves of Sterling at this link.)

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