Magic Johnson is “absolutely interested” in buying the Los Angeles Clippers, a source told Yahoo Sports,
and that may offer a way out of the contentious situation that occurred when Clippers owner Donald Sterling was allegedly caught on tape making racist comments.
Some of those comments, which have caused an uproar around the country, centered around Johnson.
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“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,” wrote Adrian Wojnarowski for Yahoo.
But Johnson apparently isn’t the only one with an eye toward buying the Clippers should Sterling’s crisis force a sale. TMZ reported that billionaire developer Rick Caruso
said he’s ready and waiting to make an offer.
As Sterling's alleged audio dominates the news, sponsors of the LA Clippers have begun to bail on the team, or at least “pull back,” as one told TMZ.
Carmax was the first to end its relationship with the team after the racist comments were made public, TMZ said.
Hours later, Kia and Virgin American followed suit.
State Farm said it would back off its sponsorship, putting it on hold, TMZ said.
“While those involved sort out the facts, we will be taking a pause in our relationship with the organization," a State Farm representative told TMZ.
Sports stars Johnson and Michael Jordan both denounced Sterling’s comments.
"He shouldn't own a team anymore," Johnson told ESPN,
adding that he knew Sterling for years. "I had a friendship with him. So for him to then make these comments, or alleged comments, about myself as well as other African-Americans and minorities, there's no place in our society for it. There's no place in our league, because we all get along. We all play with different races of people when you're in sports. That's what makes sports so beautiful."
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