Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling may be an accused racist and he may be a bona fide tightwad, but it doesn’t mean that he ever discriminated against Elgin Baylor during the Hall of Famer’s 22 lackluster years as the team’s general manager. That last part was the unanimous verdict of a Los Angeles County jury on Wednesday when they rejected Baylor’s lawsuit against Sterling and team president Andy Roeser for age discrimination.
The 76-year old Baylor originally included a claim for racial discrimination as well, but it was dropped earlier this month. Even still, he was looking for $2 million in economic and mental distress damages from his 2008 split with the team after 22 seasons. During that time, the Clippers posted just two winning seasons and won just one playoff series.
Over the years, a litany of nasty accusations have been heaped at Sterling – the least serious of which is being a bad NBA owner, regardless of how true it may be. Nonetheless any past instances of discrimination that may or may not be true are hard to apply when you’re consistently one of the league’s worst GMs yet somehow hold on to your job for more than two decades.