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Doc Rivers sees 'difficult situation' if Shelly Sterling is in control

Professional BasketballDoc RiversDonald SterlingLos Angeles ClippersRussell WestbrookKevin DurantNBA

Clippers Coach Doc Rivers says that although Shelly Sterling hasn't done anything wrong, it would be tough to envision her running the Clippers because she is Donald Sterling's wife.

"I think it would be a very hard situation," Rivers said Thursday. "I can guarantee you every person wouldn't be on board with that. Whether I would or not, I'm not going to say, but I just know that would be a very difficult situation for everybody ... because of the relationship. I think it would be a difficult situation because we wouldn't know really who was in charge."

Shelly Sterling said Wednesday that it is her legal right to keep the Clippers, a team she has co-owned since 1981. Her husband was banned for life from NBA activities because of a racially insensitive audio recording in which he argued with a female friend. The league is urging him to sell the team.

Rivers said he hadn't spoken with Shelly Sterling since she called him last week and asked if it was OK for her to attend a playoff game. She also told him at the time to tell the players that "she loved them," Rivers said.

The Clippers' next playoff game against Oklahoma City is Friday at Staples Center. Rivers was asked about her possible presence at the game.

"That's her choice," Rivers said. "She can be a ticket-buyer or whatever."

But would it be appropriate?

"There's no playbook," Rivers said. "I think what's appropriate is what everyone thinks is appropriate. It's not whether I think it is or not. It's what the masses think is. And that doesn't mean the masses are right. If we've learned anything, the masses can be wrong too. Who knows what's right in this? We do know what's wrong in this. We don't know what's right."

Rivers said he didn't ask players if they would be uneasy with Shelly Sterling maintaining control of the team.

"I don't ask. There's certain things I need to bring up," Rivers said. "We need to be uneasy about Westbrook and Durant. That's who we need to be really uneasy about, because they're putting more pressure on us right now."

Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant combined to score 63 points in Oklahoma City's victory over the Clippers on Wednesday.

Rivers knew one thing for sure.

"It's not going away. I swear, every day I hear something different," he said.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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Professional BasketballDoc RiversDonald SterlingLos Angeles ClippersRussell WestbrookKevin DurantNBA
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