Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, his wife Shelly, and actor George Segal attend the NBA basketball game between the Toronto Raptors and the Los Angeles Clippers at the Staples Center in Los Angeles

Shelly Sterling’s lawyers promise fight to keep her share of team


Shelly Sterling has been a fixture at Clippers games. She sits courtside, she and her friends turn the media dining room into “club Sterling” at Clippers games. Like her estranged husband, she basks in the celebrity (sycophantic though it is) of owning the Los Angeles Clippers.

She owns half the team and is not going to give it up willingly.

She said as much already and Thursday her attorney promised a fight to keep her share of the team, as he told the Associated Press.

“She will not agree to a forced or involuntary seizure of her interest,” said Shelly Sterling’s attorney, Pierce O’Donnell. “As her lawyers we will fight vigorously to defend her property rights….”

O’Donnell said Mrs. Sterling “abhors” the comments and that Silver had “exonerated” Mrs. Sterling in his statement last week by saying there was no decision made about other members of the family….

O’Donnell said Mrs. Sterling is an ardent Clippers fan and plans to attend Friday’s playoff game against Oklahoma City.

“We abhor guilt by association in America,” O’Donnell said. “The sins of the husband cannot be imputed to the wife or children.”

Well, except for Shelly Sterling shows up all over some of the housing discrimination lawsuits filed against Sterling. She is no innocent bystander here. She allegedly posed as a government inspector to both find out what race the tenants of their buildings were and to harass some of them. Just a week ago she said her husband was not a racist to the cameras. She is far, far from clean in all this.

But she could be tougher to remove.

Here is what NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said at his press conference regarding Shelly (it’s far from the exoneration her attorney claims):

“No, there have been no decisions about other members of the Sterling family, and I should say that this ruling applies specifically to Donald Sterling and Donald Sterling’s conduct only.”

As far as the players association has said — and very likely the sponsors and some of the fans feel the same way — there is no difference between her ownership and his.

That said, the Sterlings fight and bully in court. Silver had to know this was coming. When he stepped to the podium he had to be prepared for a fight in the courts. He seemed to be.

Mark Cuban suggests supplemental draft for undrafted free agents

Mark Cuban
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A lot of people around the NBA have ideas to improve the draft, free agency and the D-League, and Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has never been shy about sharing his. His latest idea seems pretty logical: a supplemental draft for undrafted free agents.

Via Hoops Rumors:

“I would have a supplemental draft every summer for undrafted free agents of the current and previous 3 years,” Cuban wrote in an email to Hoops Rumors. “If you are more than 3 years out you are not eligible and just a free agent.”

The supplemental draft would have two rounds, and teams would hold the rights to the players they select for two years, Cuban added. Players can opt out and choose not to make themselves eligible, but those who get picked would receive fully guaranteed minimum-salary contracts when they sign, according to Cuban’s proposal.

“That would make it fun a few weeks after the draft and pre-summer league,” Cuban wrote. “It would prevent some of the insanity that goes on to build summer league rosters.”

It’s an interesting proposition. Most undrafted players who sign during the summer don’t get guaranteed contracts, so when deciding to enter this supplemental draft, they would have to weigh the value of having guaranteed money versus getting to decide where they sign. It’s unlikely that anything like this could happen anytime soon, because of all the hoops to jump through to get the league and the players’ union to sign off on it, but it’s a worthwhile idea that deserves some consideration in the next CBA negotiations.

Kevin Love to practice with Cavs on Saturday

Kevin Love
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The Cavaliers’ training camp has so far been filled with bad news and uncertainty, from Tristan Thompson‘s continuing contract holdout to Iman Shumpert‘s wrist injury (which will sideline him for up to three months) to Kyrie Irving continuing to be limited. But here’s some good news: Kevin Love will fully participate in practice with the team on Saturday for the first time since suffering a shoulder injury in last year’s first-round series against the Celtics.

From Cleveland.com’s Chris Haynes:

Head coach David Blatt announced on Wednesday that power forward Kevin Love will make his first full practice debut on Saturday. The three-time All-Star has been rehabbing ever since undergoing shoulder surgery in May.

“He’s coming along real nice,” Blatt said.

On Monday Love was cleared to participate in 3-on-3 basketball workouts. Prior, he was only allowed to do individual work that consisted of absorbing contact from a pad in the post.

It’s unclear when Love will be able to play in a game, but the fact that he’s been cleared to return to practice is undoubtedly a good sign for Cleveland, and there’s hope that he’ll be able to play on opening night against the Bulls on October 27. With all the bad breaks the Cavs have caught this summer, it’s nice to see some good injury news for once.