|(NBA) League to decide Clippers fate on June 3
The NBA charged Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling on Monday with racist conduct detrimental to the league, setting a June 3 hearing where owners could strip the team from him.
The charges mark the official start of the process by the league to oust Sterling from the NBA -- and it hopes draw a line under one of the most unsavory episodes in the sport's recent history.
Under NBA rules, Sterling has the right to respond to the claims by May 27.
"Termination of the (Clippers) entire membership... is called for by the Constitution and related agreements and is the only viable means for bringing Mr. Sterling's interest in the Clippers to an end,'' the league said.
Sterling, who received a life ban and $2.5 million fine for racist remarks made public last month, can attend and make a presentation at the special hearing of the NBA Board of Governors (team owners) that is set for just two days before the start of the NBA finals.
A vote of 75 percent of league owners is required to uphold the charge against Sterling and terminate his interest in the Clippers, opening the door for the club to be sold to new owners -- it is expected to fetch in the region of $600 million.
Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor, the chairman of the governing board, will preside over the June 3 meeting.
Sterling has asked the league to give him a three-month extension to answer the charges, Sports Illustrated reported. --AFP