Donald Sterling, the Los Angeles Clippers owner banned from professional basketball games after being caught in a private racist rant, broke his silence after a weeklong media feeding frenzy, referencing girlfriend V. Stiviano when he told DuJour magazine “I wish I’d just paid her off.”
That was all DuJour was apparently able to glean from Sterling, who — perhaps facetiously — told the magazine he was limiting interviews to Barbara Walters and the NBA.
V. Stiviano, whose voice can also be heard on the tape, is widely believed to have set Sterling up. The Clippers owner’s new comment suggests he feels that theory holds a lot of weight.
A video report aired on CNN added context to Sterling’s defiant comment, noting that he is often contentious when challenged over other offensive or illegal actions.
“I’d be very surprised if he doesn’t make a big battle out of this,” said Douglas Bagby, a lawyer who once opposed Sterling in court.
V. Stiviano’s lawyer also denied that she was Sterling’s girlfriend — hardly a surprise at this point — and that she did not leak the recording.
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