Clippers Owner Takes on Wife Regarding his Competency to Sell his Team
Whether or not Donald T. Sterling is a bitter old racist who, known for his general gross life-style of walking nude before visitors of his household, and for the $1.8 million house he bought for his mistress last year, there is plenty of reason to wonder whether the owner of the Clippers is competent to decide whether or not to sell the team. His wife used a competency test that determined Donald had a form of dementia. The test determined that he "probably had Alzheimer's." Shelly thereby gained control of the trust that owns the Clippers, and was to proceed with her sale of the Clippers for $2 billion to Steve Ballmer, former CEO of Microsoft.
For those seeking corporate attorney jobs in Los Angeles, landing on either of the teams representing this high profile case would be career setting. Shelly Sterling's team is headed by Pierce-O'Donnell, whom Forbes calls the "Perry Mason of Hollywood." O'Donnell is from Greenberg Glusker.
At his side is Hollywood legend lawyer Bert Fields, also of Greenberg Glusker, who has represented such notables as Michael Jackson, the Beatles, and George Lucas. O'Donnell and Fields had taken adversarial sides in the case of Paramount versus Art Buchwald.
Donald's team meanwhile is backed by Bobby Samini, Gary Ruttenberg, and Max Blecher, a wall of egos who are as concerned with their own reputation as they are with the dealings of such high profile figures as Donald Sterling, who recently made headlines for a racist rant caught on tape, and as his wife Shelly, who is currently her husband's caretaker for health and business. Samini comes from Samini Scheinberg P.C., Ruttenberg is from Bloom and Ruttenberg, and Blecher is from Blecher Collins Pepperman & Joye P.C.
"He's been getting more forgetful, he's slurring his words, he's agitated a lot, he gets mad for no particular reason. He's just not the same person he used to be," testified Shelley, as reported by LA Weekly.
Indeed, turning down the $2 billion sale is questionable enough, as Sterling has been more or less forced to sell the team after the NBA commissioner Adam Silver banned him from life for the racist words he said against blacks in general, and Magic Johnson in particular.
Referencing an interview Donald had given to Anderson Cooper, she noted that he had mood swings and changed topics unpredictably. "I couldn't believe that was him," she testified. "He started attacking Magic Johnson, talking different things that had no relevance to the questions, starting saying white Jews take care of their people. Totally out of context and out of reality."
Corporate lawyers in Los Angeles understand the fun of representing such figures, who may, after all, be no more crazy than the rest of us, but who have a prominent position to beacon their instability to the world. At least Shelly has so far kept her head throughout the case, and may gain control of the trust, keeping the trust viable, despite Donald's attempt to dissolve it.