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“On behalf of the National Basketball Players Association, this is a very serious issue which we will address aggressively,” Paul, the president of the NBA Players Association, said in a statement. “We have asked Mayor Kevin Johnson to expand his responsibilities with the NBPA, to determine our response and our next steps. As players, we owe it to our teams and our fans to keep our focus on our game, the playoffs, and a drive to the Finals.”
Earlier on Saturday, the NBA announced that it would be investigating the audio of Sterling’s remarks, posted on TMZ.
The team owner and real estate mogul is heard chastising girlfriend V. Stiviano for bringing “minorities” to Clipper games. “It bothers me a lot if you want to broadcast that you are associating with black people,” Sterling stated.
“We are in the process of conducting a full investigation into the audio recording obtained by TMZ,” the league said in a statement from spokesperson Mike Bass. “The remarks heard on the recording are disturbing and offensive, but at this time we have no further information.”
Sterling’s comments drew fire from NBA Hall of Famer Magic Johnson, who posted a series of tweets pledging that he would “never go to a Clippers game again” as long as Sterling owned the team.
Sacramento mayor and former NBA player Kevin Johnson, who is taking on the expanded role in the NBA’s response, said in a statement: “The reported comments made by Clippers owner Donald Sterling are reprehensible and unacceptable. The National Basketball Players Association must and will play a very active role in determining how this issue is addressed. There needs to be an immediate investigation and if the reports are true, there needs to be strong and swift action taken.”
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