LA Clippers Owners' Alleged Tape Probed by NBA

Last month, CBS reported that Rochelle Sterling, Sterling's wife, filed a lawsuit against Stiviano, alleging she had a sexual affair with her husband. The suit, which states Sterling and Stiviano began their relationship after meeting at the Super Bowl in 2010, asks for a return of all cash, land cars and other items that under California law are the community property of the Sterlings.

Sterling, a real estate mogul, bought the Clippers in 1981. He's been the longest-tenured owner in the NBA since Lakers owner Jerry Buss died last year.

He has been frequently criticized for his frugal operation of the Clippers, although in recent years he has spent heavily to add stars such as Chris Paul and Doc Rivers, who led the team back to the playoffs in his first season as coach.

Sterling has been involved in several lawsuits over the years, including ones with discrimination accusations.

In November 2009, Sterling agreed to pay $2.73 million to settle allegations by the government that he refused to rent apartments to Hispanics and blacks and to families with children. The Justice Department sued Sterling in August 2006 for allegations of housing discrimination in the Koreatown area of Los Angeles.

In March 2011, Sterling won a lawsuit against former Clippers general manager Elgin Baylor when a jury rejected the Hall of Famer's claim of age discrimination and harassment. Baylor, who was 76 at the time, had sought about $2 million after claiming he was forced out of the job he'd held for 22 years. The team said Baylor left on his own and a jury awarded him nothing.

Sterling is a courtside fixture at home games. He rarely visits the team's locker room at Staples Center, although he made an appearance in December 2012 after the Clippers had won their 11th straight game, when he led an awkward locker room cheer.

Information from ESPN The Magazine's Chris Broussard, ESPNLosAngeles.com's Arash Markazi and Dave McMenamin, and The Associated Press was used in this report.

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