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Report: Clippers owner Donald Sterling agrees to let wife Shelly negotiate sale of team

Donald Sterling (Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images) The Clippers have been owned by the Sterling family since 1981. (Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images)

Clippers owner Donald Sterling has agreed to allow his wife Shelly negotiate a forced sale of the team, sources told ESPN.com's Ramona Shelburne on Friday.

Shelly Sterling and her lawyers have been negotiating with the NBA since commissioner Adam Silver banned Donald Sterling for life on April 29.

Writes Shelburne: "While the league has yet to formally accept this arrangement, sources said, if she is willing to sell the team in its entirety, this could bring a startlingly quick end to what appeared to be a protracted legal battle."

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Donald Sterling has reportedly changed his mind on his ownership position over the last week, Shelburne reports. He initially intended to fight the NBA, which filed charges to terminate his ownership of the team earlier this week.

His lawyer, Max Blecher, asked for a three-month delay of the hearing and subsequent vote, which is scheduled for June 3 in New York, but the request was immediately denied by the league, sources told ESPN.com.

Blecher argued that Sterling did not do anything to deserve such a punishment.

It is unknown whether Shelly Sterling intends to sell 100 percent of the team, which is reportedly the only way the NBA will accept the terms of this deal.

Sterling, 80, is the longest-tenured owner in the NBA.

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