Winfrey has joined entertainment mogul David Geffen and Oracle Corp. Chief Executive Larry Ellison in a bid to buy the team, according to ESPN.
“Oprah is not interested in running the team,” Geffen told ESPN. “She thinks it would be a great thing for an important black American to own [another] franchise.
“The team deserves a better group of owners who want to win. Larry would sooner die than fail. I would sooner die than fail. Larry’s a sportsman. We’ve talked about this for a long time. Between the three of us, we have a good shot.”
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is urging Sterling to sell the Clippers after league officials determined that Sterling made racially charged remarks in a recording that was released late last week.
Silver subsequently fined Sterling $2.5 million and banned him for life from the NBA for his incendiary remarks.
Winfrey, in reference to Sterling’s comments, told TMZ on Tuesday that “the plantation days are over.” She also denied having interest in purchasing the team on her own.
However, Winfrey’s spokesperson, Nicole Nichols, issued a statement Wednesday confirming that she’s in talks about becoming an investor.
“Oprah Winfrey is in discussions with David Geffen and Larry Ellison to make a bid for the Los Angeles Clippers should the team become available,” Nichols said in the statement, according to ESPN.
Magic Johnson, Mark Walter and their Guggenheim Partners group are also being mentioned as potential bidders for the Clippers, though Johnson in an appearance on ESPN on Sunday said he was focused on bringing an NFL team to Los Angeles.
Additionally, boxing star Floyd Mayweather Jr. and music mogul Sean Combs have each expressed interest in buying the team.