Donald Sterling makes public apology

LONGMEADOW, Mass. (WWLP) – The owner of the LA Clippers has broken his silence after making racist remarks caught on tape.

“I’m not a racist, and I’ve never been a racist,” said LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling.

Donald Sterling is apologizing for his racist comments caught on tape that shocked his players and fans, the league, and the country. The LA Clippers owner spoke for the first time since he was hit with a lifetime ban from the NBA and a $2.5 million fine.

Sterling said he was jealous his back female friend was spending time and being seen with other African Americans including Hall of Famer Magic Johnson. Sterling has apologized to Johnson for the comments, and after more than 3 decades in the league he deserves to make a mistake.

But some fans are questioning whether he’s truly sorry for his words — or just sorry he got caught.

“When you think about the fan base and players on the team, I’m not sure he thought things out when he was making those comments. I honestly think those were his legitimate thoughts on the topic. I feel it would be more appropriate for him to remove himself as his own punishment,” said Michael Verteramo from Springfield.

Another fan told 22News while everyone deserves a second chance, he can see why Sterling might need to be made an example of.

“I think you also want to send a signal that this kind of behavior is inappropriate beyond the pale. As a society we should be moving passed these things and we have to embrace people of all backgrounds,” said Joshua Weiss from East Longmeadow.

Sterling’s estranged wife Shelly said she’ll fight to keep her ownership of the Clippers, but according to NBA rules, “if a controlling owner’s interest is terminated by a three-fourths vote, all other team owners’ interests are automatically terminated as well.”

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