LA Clippers owner banned for life over racist comments

Clippers owner Donald Sterling has been banned from the NBA for life. Credit: REUTERS/Danny Moloshok

The owner of the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team has been banned from the NBA for life after being found guilty of making racist comments.

Donald Sterling was also fined $2.5 million after American network TMZ broadcast a conversation of Sterling apparently telling a girlfriend not to bring black people to the team's games.

The 80-year-old's comments led to Clippers players making a silent protest ahead of their NBA Western Conference play-off series defeat to the Golden State Warriors on Sunday evening, while financial backers have been withdrawing their support for the club.

Following its own investigation, the NBA later announced their punishment - a ban for life. This means he is prohibited from attending any NBA games or practices and the association added it would be urging the board of governors to exercise its authority to force a sale of the team.

The NBA has banned Donald Sterling for life after the leaked conversation was investigated. Credit: REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

Retired basketball star Earvin "Magic" Johnson, welcomed the ban, describing it as a "great day" for the US and the NBA: