The Court of Appeal denied former Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling's appeal of the sale of the team on Aug. 13.
The Court of Appeal has denied former Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling's appeal of his old team's sale.
An Aug. 13 ESPN update indicates that the sale of the Clippers to new owner Steve Ballmer "has closed":
"Donald Sterling lost what would appear to be his final move to block the sale of the Los Angeles Clippers.
"Sterling's appeal of Tuesday's decision that closed the sale of the Clippers was denied Wednesday.
"The appeal, a writ of supersedeas and request for an immediate stay, was Sterling's last-ditch maneuver to block the sale of the franchise to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.
"'The evidence before this court indicates the sale of the Los Angeles Clippers to Steven Ballmer has closed,' the Court of Appeal said in its ruling. 'Thus, there is nothing for this court to say.'
"In addition, the court ruled that Donald Sterling 'has failed to show that the balancing of the relative harms favors granting a temporary stay or supersedeas.'
"'We who represent Donald Sterling are deeply disappointed that he has been deprived from ownership of the Clippers after 33 years without being accorded appellate review of this harsh result,' Max Blecher and Bobby Samini, attorneys for Donald Sterling, issued a statement Wednesday night.
"'Nevertheless, we are confident Donald will be completely vindicated in his federal case against the NBA. More importantly, we believe that the 'popular' ruling in the Probate matter is a serious blow to the Privacy rights for all Americans.'
"Ballmer is now the Clippers' primary owner after bidding a record $2 billion to purchase the franchise.
"Ballmer's lawyer, Adam Streisand, issued a statement on Wednesday night in light of Sterling's appeal denial.
"'While we have no doubt Donald Sterling will appeal to the Supreme Court, we are beyond thrilled and gratified and supremely confident that this is now over and done and Steve Ballmer is the undisputed owner of the Los Angeles Clippers,' Streisand said.
"The lawyer for Shelly Sterling, Donald's wife and the person approved to sell the franchise, also issued a statement on Wednesday.
"'Shelly is thrilled that her decision to sell the Clippers to Steve Ballmer has been upheld by the Court of Appeal,' said Pierce O'Donnell, lead counsel for Shelly Sterling. 'It is time for Donald to accept that the game is over and he has run out of courts. For the Clippers, it is a new era under a new owner whose commitment to excellence and passion will take the team to an NBA championship.'"
For his part, ESPN LA's Arash Markazi described the team's sale to Ballmer as "the greatest day in Clippers history":
"The Los Angeles Clippers have never held a rally at Staples Center.
"Ever since the arena opened 15 years ago the Clippers have been nothing more than silent tenants, watching the Lakers, Kings and Sparks win titles, raise championship banners and retire Hall of Fame jerseys.
"There has nothing been greater than a win or two in the second round for the Clippers to celebrate.
"Moments after the NBA announced Steve Ballmer's record $2 billion purchase of the Clippers officially closed on Tuesday, the Clippers announced they would be holding a rally at Staples Center on Monday to introduce Ballmer.
"Doc Rivers, Chris Paul and Blake Griffin will be there. Clippers Spirit dancers will be throwing #ItsANewDay shirts at the crowd. Clipper Darrell will no doubt be dancing through the aisles in his red and blue suit. And Ballmer may or may not be running around the stage, screaming at the crowd as he was prone to do when he gave speeches at Microsoft.
"It will serve not only as the first-ever Clippers rally at Staples Center, but as the greatest day in Clipper history.
"It's a history not only void of postseason success, but worse yet, saddled with the burden of Donald Sterling's ownership for the past 33 years. It was an ownership already tainted by housing discrimination lawsuits and multiple lawsuits from employees ranging from age and race discrimination to sexual harrassment. All of this took place years before his racist rants were recorded and disseminated, forcing the league to ban him for life.
"Celebrating any kind of Clippers success was always bittersweet because their success was his success. Anyone who knew Sterling or took the time to look into his sordid past would never root for such a man to succeed and enjoy the fruits of victory.
"That's why it's only right that Sterling will be tucked away in one of his many palatial estates dotting Los Angeles on Monday, out of sight and out of mind, while the rest of the city celebrates the Clippers new owner."
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