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NBA to appoint CEO to supervise Los Angeles Clippers

T-shirts cover empty seats before Game 7 of an opening-round NBA basketball playoff series between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Golden State Warriors, Saturday, May 3, 2014, in Los Angeles. (Mark J. Terrill)

May 3, 2014 12:00:00 AM PDT
The NBA will appoint a chief executive officer to supervise the Los Angeles Clippers' operations in the wake of the Donald Sterling scandal. The league says it is in the process of identifying the right person to take over the team.

"The best way to ensure the stability of the team during this difficult situation is to move quickly and install a CEO to oversee the Clippers organization," said NBA Executive Vice President of Communications Mike Bass.

The announcement was made as a few sponsors also resumed their partnership with the team.

Red Bull has become the third major sponsor following Adidas and Samsung to re-establish a partnership with the Clippers.

On Tuesday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver banned Sterling for life for racist comments made on an audio recording, fined him $2.5 million and urged league owners to force him to sell the team.

An audio recording captured Sterling telling his girlfriend V. Stiviano not to bring black people to Clippers' games or post photos of herself with black friends on Instagram. At least a dozen sponsors broke out of suspended ties with the company earlier this week over the remarks.

V. Stiviano spoke Friday to ABC's Barbara Walters in an exclusive interview, defending Sterling for his controversial comments and revealing details about their relationship. She said she doesn't believe Sterling is racist, but has urged him to apologize for his incendiary comments.

"Part of the audio the world heard was only 15 minutes," Stiviano told Walters. She added that Sterling was from a different generation.

The league announced its decision Saturday a few hours before the Clippers faced the Golden State Warriors in Game 7 of their first-round playoff series.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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