The NBA announced Friday that Richard Parsons has been appointed interim CEO of the Clippers. Parsons, formerly a chairman with Citigroup and Time Warner, will represent the Clippers as the franchise goes through the process of finding a new owner, on the heels of Commissioner Adam Silver’s decision to impose a lifetime ban on team owner Donald Sterling.
Parsons talked to the Los Angeles Times’ Clippers reporter Brad Turner not long after the announcement and discussed his thoughts on his new job.
“I am going to be the interim CEO of the team. In terms of the management of the team, I’ll be the owners’ representative, in terms of the relationship of the team for the NBA and its ongoing function.”
What he’ll do:
“The team from a business perspective is leadership. Now [Coach] Doc [Rivers] is the man on the basketball side. Thank goodness for him. But in terms of operation of the team, well, you don’t have an owner who can be present and you don’t have a CEO who is running the shop. And you have probably hundreds of employees, a score of players, you have advertisers, fans and ticket holders who are saying, ‘Who’s in charge here? Where is this thing going?’ We’re going to try and answer that question for them and settle things down and get things stabilized and make sure that this franchise does not lose value. We want it to continue to move in an ascending direction as it has been.”
How long does he plan to be around?
“Hopefully we’ll get things in order. I know that the NBA and Commissioner Silver are committed to moving forward ideally with cooperation with Mr. Sterling to change ownership, a transition ownership. So my initial thought is I would be there through the period of transition. A, to get things in order, and B, to keep things in order.”
His reaction to the news that Shelly Sterling wants to keep the team.
“That is really between the Sterlings and the NBA. My job is to really be a conservator of the assets, to manage the assets so it runs properly, we keep the momentum, we build the value while that question of ownership is being bought out in another arena, an arena in which I’m not standing.”
“I plan to run it until we A, restore order and then B, maintain it and hopefully through a transition process.”
When does he start?
“I’ll be out next week.”