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Trial Begins in Battle Over Los Angeles Clippers

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The trial to determine ownership of the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers began on Monday following a brief delay, according to The Chicago Tribune. The delay occurred because lawyers for owner Donald Sterling wanted to move the trial from probate court to federal court.

Sterling, the embattled owner, was called to testify on Monday, but was not present in the courtroom. This caused another delay.


Shelly Sterling is attempting to sell the Clippers for $2 billion to former Microsoft executive Steve Ballmer. The trial was supposed to begin early in the day Monday, but it did not get underway until the afternoon.

After two doctors said that Donald Sterling suffered from dementia, Shelly Sterling took the proper steps to have him removed from the family trust that controls the team. The doctors also said that Donald Sterling could not manage his own affairs.

The petition to move the case to federal court was filed last-minute by the lawyers for Donald Sterling. They claim the release of the medical records of their client violated his privacy.

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The trial, which does not have a jury, is being held to determine if Shelly Sterling has the authority within the terms of the family trust to negotiate the deal.

The judge has to approve the sale. NBA owners are going to vote on July 15 regarding the sale and the league could take ownership of the team if there is no sale by September 15.

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