Sterling does not believe that the NBA League owners will vote to force him to relinquish ownership of the Clippers. That claim may not be as incredible as it sounds. 75% of the owners would have to agree for the punishment to stick. His confidence in the favor of his fellow owners is consistent with the delay in announcing the vote. It has been twelve days since the commissioner said Sterling has to go. In another month, the players will have dispersed and the championship will be over. And The Sterling camp may be betting that public interest in the story will die down in another few weeks.
There is an indication that Stiviano is being investigated for possible extortion. Sterling implied that Earvin “Magic” Johnson was in communication with Ms. Stiviano. He contradicts the assertion that Stiviano was his “archivist” and routinely recorded his conversations to help him remember them. Sterling says Magic offered to help him because he knows Stiviano and that Johnson wanted to buy the team. This is turning into a sordid mess. Billionaires don’t go quietly into any good night. Sterling did not have lawyers or PR people with him during the Anderson Cooper interview. But some of his statements were PR 101. Profess innocence. Blame others – the woman made me do it. (An excuse as old as Eve in the Garden of Eden.) Claim incompetence – his wife now says she thinks Sterling is demented.
Sterling denies being a racist, but admits he was jealous that Stiviano was interested in black men. She was proving not to be the delicate Latina he fantasized. Black men are often blind to the charged resentment that some white men have about black romantic pursuit of white women, often to their tragic detriment. Sterling’s resentment and jealousy are exactly what racism is made of.