« The Washington Racial Slurs: Leonard Pitts on the NFL team name controversy | Main | Changing course(s): Michael Gerson on the state of U.S. higher education »



Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


In his article,“ Who Should Really Own the Clipper? The Answer Will Surprise you.,” Bob Katz insists that Donald Sterling be removed and the city of Los Angeles should take ownership. He States, “The Clippers should be sold to the city of Los Angeles, or Los Angeles County, or a community-based ownership structure comparable to the non-profit (yes, non-profit!) corporation that since 1923 has run one of the most storied and successful franchises in all of sports, the Green Bay Packers.” I do not agree because Katz is comparing Los Angeles and Green Bay. Los Angeles is by far a larger city that Green Bay; with more people, a multitude of demographics, and ethnic groups. To say that it would be successful implies that a city with many teams cares as much as a city with only one. The Packer’s franchise has been successful because that city can maintain the people, programs, and the team simultaneously. In Los Angeles some of the school do not even have proper books for the student to be learning from. So buy the team would not be a good investment. He also writes, “They should renounce their pursuit to take over the disgraced Sterling’s ownership privileges and should put their influence and resources behind a campaign to have the Clippers sold somehow, via some mechanism, to a community-based entity representing the people and fans of greater Los Angeles”. The community based entities that Los Angeles already has is hard to maintain by governing officials. It is better for an outsider to buy the team in my opinion tan a community base organization because Los Angeles needs to work on its city and not increase its debts.

Patrick Hill

Through out the NBA offseason a major debacle that occurred was how the ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers should be handled. There were talks of transferring private ownership to owners such as Oprah, Magic Johnson, David Geffen, and so on. In Bob Katz article, “Who Should Really Own the LA Clippers? The Answer Will Surprise you,” he states that the ownership should not remain private. He points out that inevitably the Clippers are bound to be profitable. Therefore he explains that private capital is not needed. Instead Katz provides the suggestion that the Clippers should be sold to the city of Los Angeles. Katz points out that this is how the Green Bay Packers have been doing it since 1923, and they are one of the most successful franchises in the sports world.
I agree with Katz on his suggestion of having the Los Angeles Clippers not being privately owned, popular assumption may be indifferent to this. Donald Sterling made a few racist remarks, and we can all agree with that statement. With that being said the fans and players of the Clippers want to see ownership change. How the change will go about is the issue. I agree with Katz that selling the team to the city of Los Angeles would be a great idea. With this there would be no ownership problems and the team would be run basically like a publicly traded company. There are people whom are indifferent to this for the reason being it is an abstract idea. Only one other professional sports team does this. That fact can mislead the public, even though the Packers are successful with it. The Packers are also doing it in an awful market, as opposed to LA, which is a great market.

Collin Leonard

Usongo makes a great point when they say that Los Angeles and Green Bay are much different cities. I like the idea of a professional sports team being under community ownership and the Green Bay Packers show that it can work, but as Usongo says, Los Angeles and Green Bay cannot be compared. The cities are just too different in order to make that comparison and Los Angeles has much more diversity that it would have to deal with. I think that Katz has a good idea, but I think that it works better in smaller cities, like Green Bay. The concept of community ownership definitely works, but I agree with Usongo that it would not work in Los Angeles due to how big and diverse it is.


Overall, I don't believe the city of Los Angeles buys the L.A. Clippers. This is because Los Angeles is already a huge city and is more in need of supplying school supplies to children's school so they can learn to read and write. The thought that a big city like L.A. would take on the responsibility of taking on managing and owning their own sports team.

matthew foix

I completely agree with the author's idea of taking sports franchises out of the hands of greedy business men and turning them into non-profit organizations controlled by the city. Its like he said if the packers can do it in green bay then teams in high commercial cities like LA could totally do it.

Michael Rapp

The comments above provide really good insights into the dilemma of new ownership for the Los Angeles Clippers. Bob Katz suggests a publicly owned team that would work as almost a non-profit organization. This idea works in a perfect world situation such as the Green Bay Packers. They are located in a nice small town in Wisconsin, where everyone is of the same demographic. Decisions can be made easily without debate, and they also have the money to spend to create a great franchise. However, like Usonga mentioned, Los Angeles is a completely different place. Los Angeles is has a massive population filled with a plethora of different ethnicities and demographics. Decisions would be widely debated, and therefore be too long for the ever-changing, quick decision-making landscape of the NBA. For a community-owned team to be successful, the people of that community need to be together. Los Angeles already deals with a multitude of cultural, and monetary issues, that throwing a professional sports team in the mix would be too much for the city to handle. I believe that the best way to find a new owner for the Clippers is by intense examination. The potential buyers should have a lengthy background check, as well as multiple interviews to determine the personality of the potential owner. Once the owners are narrowed down to a few, they must appeal to the public. The city of Los Angeles should determine the new owner, but not be involved once they have decided. This will allow the city to be happy with their decision, and will not have to continually make decisions and debate after the initial result.


i think what readers need to know to understand Katz point of view is that Donald sterling was not a nice man he would be raciest toward the team and that wasn't the first time he has said something racist he has done it many time but this time it was a lot worst because he got caught saying it and it was but on television. I do think what katz posted gave a lot of insight a god information. I think in order for the team to be successful and go win a championship ring is to fire Donald sterling and hire a new owner. which they did end up doing and i think the team has got was better and will continue to get better and win the championship this year because of it.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

By signing up you agree to W. W. Norton’s
privacy policy and terms of use.

About They Say / I Blog

  • New readings posted monthly, on the same issues that are covered in “They Say / I Say” with Readings—and with a space where readers can comment, and join the conversation.

Follow us on Twitter to get updates about new posts and more! @NortonWrite

Become a Fan