Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Ballmer closing in on Clippers

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LOS ANGELES -- The NBA has called off a hearing to oust embattled Los Angeles Clippers co-owner Donald Sterling in advance of a vote on a potentially record-breaking deal negotiated by his wife Shelly Sterling to sell the team to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer for $2 billion.

Shelly Sterling negotiated the deal despite objections expressed through her estranged husband Donald Sterling's attorneys. She said in a statement late Thursday she agreed to sell the team to Ballmer "under her authority as the sole trustee of The Sterling Family Trust, which owns the Clippers."

The NBA said in a statement Friday the league, Shelly Sterling and The Sterling Family Trust had "resolved their dispute over the ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers."

"Under the agreement, the Clippers will be sold to Steve Ballmer, pending approval by the NBA Board of Governors, and the NBA will withdraw its pending charge to terminate the Sterlings' ownership of the team," it said.

But Donald Sterling is still fighting, filing suit in federal court against the NBA and commissioner Adam Silver and asking for damages in excess of $1 billion.

The suit was filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles.

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 31, 2014 C5

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