Good morning, the Clippers saga has taken an expensive turn

Stephen Dunn

Full coverage of the Clippers sale and much more can be found in Friday's NBA newsletter.

Good morning. Let's basketball.

THUNDER DOWN: It was a home game for the Spurs, so of course they won by a bunch (28) to take a 3-2 series lead. Here's our recap. We are on pace for San Antonio to win Game 7 at home by 56.

Tim Duncan led the way with 22, and the Spurs only allowed Russell Westbrook to take 12 shots, which is some kind of miracle. One of those attempts was a soaring tomahawk jam, for what it's worth. But those dried up. It got so bad that Westbrook eventually kicked Duncan in the groin on a drive.

First, Gregg Popovich danced to "Pony" and everyone loved it. Then he eviscerated a local reporter and many shook their heads. Personally, I think the NBA has bigger problems than Pop's japes with reporters.

TONIGHT: Miami will try again to end the Pacers' season. It's at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.

CASH MONEY BILLIONAIRE: Steve Ballmer agreed to buy the L.A. Clippers for $2 billion. Two. Billion. Dollars. This is where I explain the seven reasons the Clippers are actually worth $2 billion. And here's an explanation of who Steve Ballmer is.

Clips Nation reacts. 

By the way, to all of my friends in Seattle asking: no, the Clippers are not being relocated. Ballmer has openly said the value of the Clippers is tied to Los Angeles.

Of course, because this is Donald Sterling, nothing is easy. Shelly Sterling announced the sale formally at midnight, about eight hours after the news broke. That came as Donald Sterling's lawyer continued to tell the media Donald had a change of heart since signing the team over to Shelly on May 22, and that he adamantly wanted to fight the forced sale.

Ramona Shelburne of ESPN reports that Donald was recently determined to be mentally incapacitated, which means that he loses control of the family trust, which owns the team. If that's the basis on which the team was sold, and if Sterling intends to fight it, this is going to court very soon.

Mandatory reading, as always: Michael McCann on the legal path forward.


HERE THEY ARE: The most annoying ads of the NBA playoffs.

LANCE STEPHENSON IS BLOWING A LOT OF THINGS. (Word of advice: DO read the comments.) Speaking of which ...

#WOJ: "Lance Stephenson is dying for LeBron James to lose his mind and deliver pro basketball the public service of a punch in his mouth." 

#LOWE: On Ibaka's impact.

OH: This says LeBron was the league's most efficient shooter in the clutch this season. How about that?

HUH: The Pacers have been the team penalized the most for flopping this season. By a huge margin.

DRIVE & KICK: Paul Flannery's podcast catches up with Chris Herrington to talk about the madness in Memphis.

EXTEND LAMARCUS: Why a contract extension makes sense for LaMarcus Aldridge.

GREATEST CHRISTMAS CARD EVER: From Barbara "Sign Lady" Rust, the Kings superfan who was inducted into ESPN's Fan Hall of Fame on Thursday.

CO-SPELLING BEE CHAMPS! It's time for sudden death overtime, Scripps! But whatever, THIS DUDE is the real champ.

Happy Friday. (Friday!) See you next time.


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