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article imageReport: NBA Clippers could be sold this week

By Nathan Salant     May 27, 2014 in Sports
Los Angeles - Co-owners Shelly and Donald Sterling are preparing to drop their legal challenges and could sell the Los Angeles Clippers baskeball team as early as this week, sources say.
Shelly Sterling has assumed full control over the transaction and is "moving quickly" to make a deal for the embattled franchise, Cable News Network said Tuesday.
Last month, National Baskeball Association Commissioner Adam Silver fined and suspended Donald Sterling for life, and demanded he sell his team, after being recorded making racist comments about blacks.
But Donald Sterling, who insisted all along that he was not a racist, initially pledged to fight efforts to force him from the league.
"This looks like the Sterlings are throwing in the towel on any sort of legal fight," CNN senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin said.
"They are recognizing that their choice is to sell now or sell later," he said.
Donald Sterling faces a deadline of midnight tonight to respond to the NBA's demand that he sell the team.
The NBA's Board of Governors is set to vote June 3 on whether to legally require such a sale, and approval is said to be extremely likely.
Forcing a sale requires the votes of 23 of the league's 30 teams.
Toward that end, Shelly Sterling has reportedly been meeting with very well-known potential bidders for the franchise, which has been valued at between $1 and $2 billion.
Silver is "very much involved" in Shelly Sterling's negotiations with possible buyers, the source said.
Groups reported vying for the team include investors assembled by former NBA star Grant Hill; former Microsoft Corp. CEO Steve Ballmer; David Geffen and Oracle founder Larry Ellison; and retired NBA star Magic Johnson and investment firm Guggenheim Partners, which bought the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team two years ago, CNN said.
Johnson had a role in the controversy from the beginning because some of the comments attributed to Donald Sterling were directed at the former Los Angeles Lakers player.
But one very well-known potential bidder, Oprah Winfrey, has dropped out of the bidding, CNN said.
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