Donald Sterling vows to fight ‘draconian’ punishment

Donald Sterling

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, despite reports that his wife Shelly has the go-ahead to sell the team, remains defiant over the NBA’s “draconian” punishment for his private conversation that he claims was illegally recorded.

Sterling’s attorney, Max Blecher, told USA TODAY Sports that Sterling is not at all interested in selling.

Blecher has fired off a giant 32-page response to the league.

Some excerpts:

“A jealous rant to a lover never intended to be published cannot offend the NBA rules…”

“Judging in terms of the punishment already imposed, and the Commissioner’s current request, Mr. Sterling’s offense is far and away the worst offense that any player, coach or owner has ever committed in the history of the NBA,” his attorneys wrote. “In the past, the NBA has either punished offensive speech with a modest fine or ignored it.”

“We do not believe a court in the United States of America will enforce the draconian* penalties imposed on Mr. Sterling in these circumstances, and indeed, we believe that preservation of Mr. Sterling’s constitutional rights requires that these sham proceedings be terminated in Mr. Sterling’s favor,” the response says.

*Warning: educational: Draco (/ˈdrk/; Greek: Δράκων, Drakōn) (circa 7th century BC) was the first legislator of Athens in Ancient Greece. He replaced the prevailing system of oral law and blood feud by a written code to be enforced only by a court. Draco’s written law became known for its harshness, with the adjective draconian referring to similarly unforgiving rules or laws.

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