Donald Sterling vs Shelly Sterling vs NBA: LA Clippers tangle continues

Donald Sterling protest Staples Center

Shelly Sterling appeared to have been given the go ahead by her estranged husband Donald Sterling to sell the team, despite initially indicating he wanted to hold on as long as possible.

The saga has now taken another twist, with Donald Sterling’s lawyer Max Blecher telling ESPN that he’s no longer interested in selling and that he will fight “to the bloody end”.

TMZ broke the news that Shelly Sterling had started the bidding process for the auction Of the Los Angeles Clippers, that she wanted to agree a deal before the NBA’s June 3 deadline, by which time the sale process would be taken out of their hands.

Shelly reportedly hired the Bank of America to sell the franchise, and according to TMZ there were six serious bidders, the front runner being former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

NBA analyst Bill Simmons projected on Monday that the bidding would start at $1.8 billion.

If there was surprise at Shelly Sterling given permission to negotiate a sale there is less about a change of heart from Donald sterling. He has a reputation for being extremely litigious and stubborn, even in the face of intense legal pressure.

Donald Sterling submitted a 32 page document to the NBA in response to the leagues termination notice by the May 27 deadline.

The NBA previously suggested that Donald and Shelly Sterling are “inextricably intertwined” despite the pair maintaining they are as good as divorced already. Whether they are working together or not this latest development isn’t the first twist in the Sterling drama and it probably won’t be the last.