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SBD/June 10, 2014/Franchises
Donald Sterling Reverses Course, Announcing He Still Plans To Sue NBA To Keep Clips
Published June 10, 2014
PLAN B: In N.Y., Scott Cacciola notes in a front-page piece when Rochelle Sterling and Steve Ballmer on May 29 "agreed in principle to the deal," Rochelle and her advisers gathered in a conference room with Donald Sterling "on speakerphone." He told the room that he "refused to sell -- at any price -- and vowed to fight the NBA." He then "hung up." Pierce O'Donnell, Rochelle's lawyer, then reportedly said to the room of lawyers, investment bankers and financial advisers, "Time to go to Plan B." Cacciola notes it was a "reference to a provision in the trust that controlled the Clippers that stipulated that if Mr. or Mrs. Sterling was found to have a cognitive impairment, the other had a fiduciary responsibility to become sole trustee." That "legal maneuver, so closely held that some of Mrs. Sterling’s advisers were unaware it existed, capped a hectic, weekslong effort to wrest control of the team from Mr. Sterling." Sources said that on May 13, the day after Rochelle "watched her husband give a rambling interview" to CNN's Anderson Cooper, she called Donald and "urged him to undergo neurological testing." She reportedly "told friends that she was motivated by concern for her husband." Donald "agreed to an appointment for that Friday, May 16, at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center." Sources said that O'Donnell was "well aware of the legal ramifications of the hospital visit" (N.Y. TIMES, 6/10).