Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling is under fire after TMZ released a nine-minute tape recording of him purportedly chastising his girlfriend for associating and bringing black people to Clippers games. The Clippers have reached back out to TMZ, releasing a small statement on how the recording is the "antithesis" of his beliefs. Here's the statement, via TMZ:
"Mr. Sterling is emphatic that what is reflected on that recording is not consistent with, nor does it reflect his views, beliefs or feelings. It is the antithesis of who he is, what he believes and how he has lived his life."
And there's this: "He feels terrible that such sentiments are being attributed to him and apologizes to anyone who might have been hurt by them."
Clippers players reportedly met late Friday night to discuss the tape once it was released, and star point guard Chris Paul has stated the National Basketball Players Association will address Sterling's statements "aggressively." The Clippers are in the middle of their playoff run, leading the Golden State Warriors 2-1 in the first round.
Reaction to Sterling
Magic Johnson, who was a specific name dropped during Sterling's rant, LeBron James and figures from around the league have already begun reacting to the tape from Sterling. James took a strong stance, stating there's "no place" for Sterling in the NBA. Sterling has historically been linked to racism, and a small statement like this isn't likely to stop the damage the recording is spreading across the NBA.