SAN ANTONIO — While the rest of the NBA world waits in limbo for LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony to decide where they are going to play next season, the San Antonio Spurs just keep quietly making sure the band is getting back together for a run at a second straight title.
In the middle of the James hysteria on Wednesday, the Spurs issued a two-sentence press release announcing that coach Gregg Popovich had agreed to a multi-year contract extension. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
After beating the Miami Heat for the franchise’s fifth championship last month, the Spurs quickly found out that Tim Duncan would indeed return next season. Deals with Patty Mills and Boris Diaw ensured that the roster would remain largely intact, so there was little doubt that Popovich would return for a 19th season.
That was confirmed in a presentation that was predictably light on fanfare.
Popovich, 65, shows no sign of slowing down. He led the Spurs to a league-best 62 wins in the regular season, and guided the team past Miami in the NBA Finals.
Popovich is 1,116-533, including the playoffs, in a career that started in 1996. He is the longest-tenured coach in any of the four major American pro sports.
Sterling calls wife ‘pig’
LOS ANGELES — A raging Donald Sterling denounced his wife, her lawyers and the NBA from the witness stand Wednesday, saying he will never sell the Los Angeles Clippers and vowing a lifetime of lawsuits against the league.
“Make no mistake today,” Sterling shouted toward the end of his second day of testimony in the trial to determine his wife’s right to make a $2 billion deal to sell the Clippers, “I will never, ever sell this team, and until I die I will be suing the NBA for this terrible violation under antitrust.”
He was followed to the stand by wife, Shelly, who tried to approach him after she was done for the day.
“Get away from me, you pig!” Sterling shouted.
He began his testimony by saying he loved his wife, but then denounced her.
“She deceived me. I trusted her,” Sterling said. “I never thought a wife wouldn’t stand for her husband.”
Donald Sterling’s lawyers are challenging the authority of Shelly Sterling under the family trust to unilaterally cut a deal for the team with former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.