Business & Economy

Attorney: Shelly Sterling wants to keep LA Clippers, will fight to retain ownership (updated)

Shelly Sterling, wife of Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald, watches the game while seated alone during action from game 7 between the LA Clippers and the Golden State Warriors in their NBA first round series on May 3, 2014 in Los Angeles.
Shelly Sterling, wife of Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald, watches the game while seated alone during action from game 7 between the LA Clippers and the Golden State Warriors in their NBA first round series on May 3, 2014 in Los Angeles.
Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images

An attorney representing the estranged wife of Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling says she will fight to retain her 50 percent ownership stake in the team, the Associated Press reported. 

Attorney Pierce O'Donnell of Greenberg Glusker told KPCC that Shelley Sterling said she and her husband have been separated for a year but she has owned 50 percent of the Clippers since 1981 through a family trust, of which she and Donald Sterling each own half.  

"We hope to make it a mutually acceptable resolution with the NBA and if it's not, we'll be considering our legal options," said O'Donnell, who noted he and Mrs. Sterling are in "cordial" ongoing discussions with the NBA.

RELATED: Clippers stage silent protest to Sterling; NAACP pulls lifetime achievement award

Last week, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver banned Donald Sterling from the NBA for life and urged league owners to force him to sell the team after a recording surfaced in which Sterling made racist comments.

O'Donnell told KPCC Mrs. Sterling has condemned her husband's racist comments and finds them abhorrent. 

Mrs. Sterling "loves the team," is a "huge fan" and "has immense respect for the professional staff that runs the team," O'Donnell told KPCC.

"Mrs. Sterling has the support of the NBA's move to seek a new CEO and she's supportive of the NBA's decision to put long time president Andy Rooser on indefinite leave of absence."

O'Donnell told AP that Mrs. Sterling plans to attend Friday's playoff game against Oklahoma City.