Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin said he was not surprised upon hearing the tape of former owner Donald Sterling making racist remarks because he was already aware of Sterling's racist past.
In an interview with the magazine GQ, Griffin said he did some research on Sterling after the Clippers told him they were going to draft him in 2009.
When the draft lottery came out and the Clippers said they were gonna draft me, I went to Google to find out more about the Clippers, because I didn't know a lot. And I was like, "Okay, team owned by Donald Sterling." So then I typed in "Donald Sterling" in Google, and the first thing that pops up is "Donald Sterling racist." And I was like, "Whoa!" So obviously I explored that, read a whole bunch of articles, read the deposition at one of his court cases. Which was awesome, if you ever have time to read some of the depositions. [laughs]
Griffin was asked how he felt listening to the tape.
It was unfortunate. I mean, for me, like I said, the first thing I ever Googled about the man, the first thing that popped up was "racist." So I was aware. I hate to say this, and it might sound ignorant, but I wasn't surprised that all this came up. Not necessarily the manner in which it was said, or the exact things, but like I said: This was my first impression of him.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver issued Sterling a lifetime ban and a maximum $2.5 million fine after the tape was released. Donald's wife, Shelly, completed a $2 billion sale of the team to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer earlier in July. The NBA announced in August that Ballmer is the team's legal owner.