Clippers owner Donald Sterling found himself in exceedingly hot water after audio recordings surfaced in which he could be heard saying some unforgivably racist things to his one-time female companion, V. Stiviano. Or, as she has classified herself, his "silly rabbit."
The investigation into the recordings was swift and the fallout harsh, with NBA commissioner Adam Silver slapping Sterling with a $2.5 million fine and lifetime ban within days of their publication. Silver also announced his intention to force a sale of the team.
Sterling remained silent on the matter for more than two weeks before finally agreeing to sit down with CNN’s Anderson Cooper. Any thought that we’d see a contrite and apologetic Sterling was put to bed the moment he opened his mouth.
Sterling expressed some level of “remorse” for what he said, but maintained he is not a racist and that he was “baited.” Then he addressed Magic Johnson specifically, who was personally referenced in the audio.
Sterling called Johnson a “good guy,” then went on to say that he’s a bad example for children, has done nothing to help minorities and that he slept with every woman in America. Basically his overarching message was, “Yeah, I’m sorry…sorry Magic Johnson HAS AIDS.”
It was the most ill-advised interview and one of the worst public relations disasters in sports history.