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Ex-Citi chairman Parsons to lead Clippers - 12 News KBMT and K-JAC. News, Weather and Sports for SE Texas

Ex-Citi chairman Parsons to lead Clippers

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By Patrick M. Sheridan

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- The NBA will name former Citigroup and Time Warner chairman Richard Parsons as the new CEO of the NBA's embattled Los Angeles Clippers, CNN has confirmed.

The move follows the lifetime ban given team owner Donald Sterling last month by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver after he was recorded making racist comments to his girlfriend.

Silver also fined Sterling $2.5 million and asked the league's other owners to force Sterling to sell the team.

But Silver said at the April 29 announcement that the punishment did not apply to Sterling's family members. "This ruling applies specifically to Donald Sterling and Donald Sterling's conduct only," he said at the press conference.

Shelly Sterling, the estranged wife of Donald Sterling, is in talks with the National Basketball Association about retaining her 50% ownership in the team.

Pierce O'Donnell, the attorney for Sterling, told CNN that she wants to retain her interest in the team, even though her husband is being forced out. O'Donnell said she is not interested in taking an active role in managing the team, nor would she participate in decisions over trading players.

Since Silver's announcement, several high profile bidders for the team have emerged. A spokeswoman for Oprah Winfrey said she had been in contact with media mogul David Geffen and Oracle CEO Larry Ellison about a joint bid. Geffen's spokesman also confirmed his interest. Retired boxer Oscar De La Hoya has also said he wants to make a bid.

Sterling reportedly bought the team for only $12 million in 1981. Its current value is estimated at $575 million by Forbes, which tracks team valuations.

But Patrick Rishe, a professor of sports business at Webster University, said the team is worth at least $750 million, and that a bidding war could take the sales price up to $1 billion or more.

Time Warner is the parent company of CNNMoney.

--CNNMoney's Chris Isidore and CNN's Rick Davis contributed to this report.
   
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