NAACP Dumps Donald Sterling From Awards

As a fuller picture of Clippers owner's history emerges
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 28, 2014 7:30 AM CDT
Updated Apr 28, 2014 9:08 AM CDT
NAACP Dumps Donald Sterling From Awards
Donald Sterling, center, and V. Stiviano, left, watch the Clippers play the Los Angeles Lakers Dec. 19, 2010.   (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)

Amid the firestorm over Donald Sterling's alleged racist comments, the NAACP has perhaps unsurprisingly backed off its decision to give the LA Clippers' owner a lifetime achievement award next month, USA Today reports. But Sterling has in fact received an NAACP award in the past, Deadspin notes, despite a history of alarming comments. He got the award in 2009, with the Los Angeles NAACP branch president citing his "unique history of giving to the children of LA," per the Los Angeles Times.

Meanwhile, a range of outlets are digging into the history of the man who, the New York Times notes, has been called "the worst owner in professional sports."

  • Among the stories from the Times: The Clippers' health insurance wouldn't cover a $70,000 prostate cancer surgery for then-assistant coach Kim Hughes in 2004. Ex-Clippers GM Elgin Baylor said Sterling's goal was "a Southern plantation-type structure." And describing a relationship with a mistress whom he consulted on hiring, he testified, "It was purely sex for money … I probably didn’t tell my wife."
  • When a federal lawsuit accused him of pushing minorities and families with kids out of his apartment buildings, he settled for $2.7 million, the Times notes. In the housing lawsuit, he was quoted as saying, "Hispanics smoke, drink, and just hang around the building," while "black tenants smell and attract vermin," the Washington Post reports. He also faced a 1996 lawsuit for sexual harassment, the paper notes. Deadspin offers a lengthy list of similar quotes.
  • The Los Angeles Times describes the suit filed by Sterling's wife, Rochelle, against V. Stiviano, the woman allegedly at the other end of the racist recording. In the suit, to which the team has pointed in the current controversy, Rochelle Sterling calls on Stiviano to give up a $1.8 million apartment and $500,000 worth of cars; Sterling's wife says he gave the items without her knowledge—even though the money belongs to them jointly.
  • Part of Stiviano's response in a court document: "This is an action brought by a very angry wife whose husband is a highly public figure and who is well known to be 'keeping women' other than his wife and who has done so for very many years with a big toothy grin brandishing his sexual prowess in the faces of the Paparazzi (sic)." Interestingly, Stiviano contends that Sterling has never been her boyfriend—at least according to TMZ sources.
(More Donald Sterling stories.)

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