In a recording released by TMZ two weeks ago, Sterling tells a female friend,
"When I listen to that tape, I don't even know how I can say words like that.... I don't know why the girl had me say those things," he said. "I was baited ... I mean, that's not the way I talk. I don't talk about people for one thing, ever. I talk about ideas and other things. I don't talk about people."
Sterling on Sunday also apologized for his comments.
"I'm a good member who made a mistake and I'm apologizing and I'm asking for forgiveness," he said on CNN. "Am I entitled to one mistake, am I after 35 years? I mean, I love my league, I love my partners. Am I entitled to one mistake? It's a terrible mistake, and I'll never do it again."
He added: "I'm not a racist. I made a terrible mistake."
Sterling said he was distraught over the scandal, telling Cooper: "The reason it's hard for me, very hard for me, is that I'm wrong. I caused the problem. I don't know how to correct it," he said.
Excerpts of the CNN interview, which will be broadcast Monday, were released hours after Shelly Sterling spoke with
Shelly Sterling said she may eventually divorce Donald Sterling and will fight efforts to force her to sell her share of the Clippers.
In the ABC interview, Shelly Sterling also suggested that Donald Sterling was suffering from
"I was shocked by what he said," Shelly Sterling told Walters. "But I don't know why I should be punished for what his actions were."
The NBA responded to the recordings by banning Donald Sterling for life and saying it would seek to force him to sell the team. But Shelly Sterling said she sees the Clippers as part of her family legacy.
"I'm wondering if a wife of one of the owners, and there's 30 owners, did something like that, said those racial slurs, would they oust the husband? Or would they leave the husband in?" she said.
"We haven't yet seen this interview, which is scheduled to air tomorrow, but regardless, we still believe a change of ownership is in the best interests of the fans and our city," Yusef Robb, the spokesman for Mayor