Magic Johnson Praises NBA’s Ban On Sterling - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Magic Johnson Praises NBA’s Ban On Sterling

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SAGINAW, Mich. (WLNS) – During a brief visit to Michigan to help raise scholarship money for students in Saginaw, NBA Hall of Famer and Lansing hometown hero Earvin “Magic” Johnson took a moment to praise the NBA for banning Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life

“It’s great,” he said. “It was a great day for the United States, it's a great day for the NBA, it's a great day for people of all races, but especially African-Americans and Latinos who he was speaking out against.”

Johnson spoke to reporters before also sharing his thoughts on the ban with crowds at the annual Magic of a Promise Fundraiser. Johnson found himself at the center of the controversy after Sterling allegedly forced his girlfriend to remove a picture she took with Johnson from social media. An audio recording of Sterling quoted him as saying, "It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you're associating with black people." 

Those remarks led to a backlash within the NBA and across the country. At a news conference on Tuesday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announced Sterling would be banned for life “from any association with the Clippers or the NBA.” Sterling was also fined $2.5 million. The NBA said those funds will be donated to organizations that promote anti-discrimination. 

“I’m just happy that commissioner Adam Sliver came down hard and showed that we can’t let people get away with this, even if you’re an owner,” said Johnson, who added he hopes Clippers fans now return to games. “Hopefully we all can move on. And hopefully God will bless [Donald Sterling], too.”

Johnson said he has no plans to buy the Clippers. 

Emerald Morrow is a reporter with WLNS-TV. Like her on Facebook, Follow her on Twitter or email her at emorrow@wlns.com.

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