Donald Sterling has been reportedly looking to sell the Los Angeles Clippers to avoid the NBA’s proceedings to make him sell the team. According to the Los Angeles Times, they’ve found a buyer in former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.
Ballmer is reportedly set to buy the team for the incredibly high price of $2 billion. It looks like Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban’s not-so-bold prediction that the Clippers would sell for “far north” of $1 billion came to fruition.
According to a report from Forbes, Ballmer had reportedly offered $1.8 billion but that number is lower than what the agreed upon price would actually be.
Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has offered $1.8 billion for the Los Angeles Clippers, according to a person familiar with Ballmer’s interest in the NBA team. Ballmer, who retired as Microsoft’s CEO four months ago has a net worth of $20 billion. Another source, with intimate knowledge of the bids that Rochelle Sterling has thus far received for the basketball team, said offers have come in between $1 billion and $2 billion and that the Ballmer package is strong.
Shelly Sterling reportedly met with Ballmer Sunday afternoon and it is likely that they’ve spent the week finalizing the deal and terms of the sale. Ballmer had been interested in buying an NBA franchise, like the Sacramento Kings, and bringing them to the Pacific Northwest to replace the Seattle SuperSonics, which moved to Oklahoma City and was rebranded as the Thunder. Unfortunately for Seattle basketball fans, that isn’t in the plans for the Ballmer owned Clippers.
“I love basketball, and I’d love to participate at some point in the NBA. If the opportunity is outside of Seattle, so be it. I will learn about any team that comes up for sale at this point,” Ballmer said before news of the sale broke in an interview with the Wall Street Journal.
“If I get interested in the Clippers, it would be for Los Angeles. I don’t work anymore, so I have more geographic flexibility than I did a year, year-and-a half ago. Moving them anywhere else would be value destructive.”
[UPDATE:] There might not have been a sale after all according to Los Angeles Daily News reporter Dakota Smith.
Source says that LAT jumped the gun on reporting the sale. News was leaked to LAT by another bidder, source said.
— Dakota Smith (@dakotacdsmith) May 29, 2014
There is now a signed, binding agreement between Ballmer and the Sterling family trust to sell the Clippers for $2billion, ESPN has learned
— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) May 30, 2014