Donald Sterling’s wife Shelly, who after some legal wrangling won the right to sell the Los Angeles Clippers to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, originally wrote down a $1.5 billion price for the team. Ballmer ultimately paid $2 billion–more than has been paid for any other NBA franchise in history.
An AP report out of LA says that when asked what she wanted for the team Ms. Sterling “handed a piece of paper to her lawyer with two numbers: $1.5 to $2.” Everyone knew that meant billion(s). Music and entertainment mogul David Geffen put together a group that also reportedly bid on the team–possibly offering $1.65 billion, though that figure is unconfirmed. But Ballmer apparently kept raising his paddle at auction against himself. What’s an extra $400 million anyway, he must have thought, except what you could buy the Milwaukee Bucks for?