It's no secret that Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers is fed up with Donald Sterling. During the playoffs, Rivers was dismissive of Sterling's interview with Anderson Cooper in which the embattled Clippers owner attempted to exonerate himself for the comments he made in a now-infamous conversation with V. Stiviano. Said Rivers of Sterling's CNN interview: "Whatever it is, that doesn't sound like much of an apology to me."
However, thanks to Sterling's protracted legal battle with the NBA to retain control of the Clippers, Rivers is reportedly ready to terminate his position with Clippers as the team's head coach and President of Basketball Operations. According to a tweet from ESPN's Arash Markazi, the Clippers' interim CEO Dick Parsons, who is currently involved in the legal proceedings surrounding Sterling, has testified that Rivers is ready to jump ship if Sterling sticks around.
According to Markazi, Parsons is vehement in his support for Rivers, and believes that Rivers' departure would trigger a "death spiral" for the club. Apparently, Rivers "is the guy who leads the effort" in the Los Angeles clubhouse. Without him around, team morale would likely plummet.
It appears that the Clippers' glory days as a franchise would quickly come to an end if Sterling is able to continue in his tenure as the team owner. Given the franchise's famously bad luck in the past, this sudden turn of events couldn't be more fitting. Sterling has a serious decision to make: does he try to stay on as the owner and further subject himself to public scorn or does he cut his losses and retreat from the spotlight? If he chooses the former, he's sacrificing his franchise's future for the sake of being able to call it "his franchise".
In an attempt to reach a settlement yesterday, prospective Clippers owner Steve Ballmer and Sterling sat down for a "friendly conversation". Unfortunately, the talks were unable to reach a suitable conclusion for either party. As such, the battle rages on.