File photo of Los Angeles Clippers owner Sterling putting his hand over his face in the second half of an NBA basketball game in Los Angeles. Reuters

[UPDATE 1:46 p.m. EST]: The NBA issued a statement through a spokesperson Friday following the news of Donald Sterling request to allow his wife Shelly to negotiate a sale of the Clippers:

“We continue to follow the process set forth in the NBA Constitution regarding termination of the current ownership interests in the Los Angeles Clippers and are proceeding toward a hearing on this matter on June 3.”

Original Story

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling has reportedly bowed to intense pressure from the NBA and agreed to allow his wife Shelly to negotiate a sale of the team, according to media reports.

Known for his highly litigious ways, Donald Sterling was expected to drag his battle with the league over his ownership of the Clippers into court even if the 29 other owners ousted him following a hearing and vote on June 3.

The NBA has yet to make an announcement regarding the possible sale and at this early juncture, along with the unpredictable ways of the Sterling Family, it’s unclear when or if any sale will actually go through.

On April 26, a private audio recording between Sterling and former girlfriend V. Stiviano was published by TMZ during which the 80-year-old billionaire chastised her for bringing African Americans to Clippers games as well as posting photos with them on social media sites.

The recording set off a firestorm with threats of a player boycott surfacing, and sponsors pulling out from any association with the Clippers. Four days later NBA Commissioner Adam Silver banned Sterling for life from the league and imposed a maximum $2.5 million fine.

Sterling was likely to face an intense uphill battle against the league after it accused him of taking and supporting discriminatory actions and positions that have had an adverse effect on the league and its teams, destroying and falsifying evidence during the league’s investigation.

On Tuesday, Sterling was even accused of asking Stiviano to lie to the NBA and deny it was his voice on the salacious recording.

The scandal earned Stiviano and Shelly Sterling interviews with ABC’s Barbara Walters, while Donald Sterling appeared flustered and confused while only solidifying further the perception that he is racist during a sit down with CNN’s Anderson Cooper.

Now comes the question of who will actually buy the Clippers, a team recently valued at $575 million by Forbes but possibly worth as much as $1.5 to $2 billion when the size of the Los Angeles market and lucrative television contracts are taken under consideration.

ESPN’s Bill Simmons had more than a few suggestions after the news broke Friday, naming several high-profile billionaires, under-the-radar possibilities and former groundbreaking center Yao Ming.