Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling was fined $2.5 million and suspended for life from the NBA on Tuesday, and reaction online was swift, especially on Twitter.
A purported voice recording of Sterling, 80, was released several days ago where he could be heard telling his former mistress he didn’t want her to bring African-Americans to Clippers home games and didn’t want her to take photographs with African-Americans and post them on social media.
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Current and former NBA stars weight on on Twitter soon after Commissioner Adam Silver announced the ban.
Stephen A. Smith, an outspoken ESPN analyst and an African-American, said he is satisfied with Silver’s decision as well.
Spike Lee, the legendary filmmaker and regular spectator at New York Knicks games, applauded Silver’s decision against Sterling and said other NBA owners should follow suit.
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, who earlier this week said it would constitute a “slippery slope” if NBA owners were held accountable for everything they say in the privacy of their own homes, tweeted his support for Silver’s ban on Sterling.
After Tuesday’s announcement, the L.A. Clippers’ official website simply sported the team logo on a black background with the words, “We Are One.”
The Clippers organization released a statement after Silver’s announcement: "We wholeheartedly support and embrace the decision by the NBA and Commissioner Adam Silver today. Now the healing process begins."
Some humor was also seen on Twitter after the ban. In about an hour, a tweet from the handle @TheTweetofGod received more than 4,000 retweets and more than 2,000 favorites.
As part of his lifetime ban, Sterling won’t be able to attend Tuesday night’s game the Clippers are set to play with the Golden State Warriors in the fifth game of the opening round of the NBA Western Conference finals. The series is tied 2-2.
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