Donald Sterling's wife, who is co-owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, says she plans to hold on to the team even if the NBA manages to oust her husband for making racist comments, the Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday.
Rochelle "Shelly" Sterling said she believes she is legally entitled to maintain ownership of the team.
She told the paper she is a "die-hard" Clippers fan and that the she believes the sanctions against her husband do not apply "to me or my family."
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Her position presents a "wild card" for the NBA, a league official told the Los Angeles Times.
Donald Sterling, 80, was slapped with a lifetime ban from having anything to do with the team or the league and a $2.5 million fine for making racist comments during a recorded conversation with a woman named V. Stiviano.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, who made the decision to sanction Sterling, has said he would urge league owners to force Sterling to sell the franchise he has owned since 1981.
On Wednesday, the NBA advisory/finance committee held its second conference call in the past two weeks, reviewing the timing and process for forcing Sterling to sell.
League spokesman Mike Bass said in a statement that the committee also discussed the search for a new CEO for the Clippers and got an update on Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum's visit with Clippers employees. The owners plan to meet again next week.