The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

July 10, 2014

Clippers' Sterling berates NBA, wife in court, calls her a 'pig'

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling made a dramatic scene from the witness stand then an even more dramatic one from the audience.

In his second day on the stand in a trial to determine whether he can be declared mentally incompetent, Sterling shouted at attorneys for both sides Wednesday. Later, he raged at the wife who's seeking the right to sell his team.

"Get away from me, you pig!" Sterling yelled from the front row of the courtroom seats when wife Shelly Sterling tried to approach him after her own testimony. A judge admonished him to make no more comments.

In her testimony that is scheduled to continue Thursday, Shelly Sterling declared that despite being estranged in many ways she loves her husband of 58 years and still acts as his principal caretaker, especially in medical care.

She said she was frightened at the changes she saw in him while watching a CNN interview where he addressed the recorded racial remarks that began the league's efforts to remove him.

"I couldn't believe it, and I started crying," she said. "I felt so bad. I couldn't believe that was him."

She said she suggested radiological tests or imaging to examine his brain, and was told eventually that he had early signs of Alzheimer's.

She became slightly tearful as she described her understanding of the disease, which becomes progressively worse.

In his earlier testimony, Sterling denounced both his wife and the league, saying he will never sell the Los Angeles Clippers and vowing a lifetime of lawsuits against the league.

"I will never, ever sell this team, and until I die I will be suing the NBA for this terrible violation under antitrust," Sterling shouted from the witness box.

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