Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer now officially owns the Los Angeles Clippers, the NBA announced today. After some temporary hurdles, Ballmer's $2 billion purchase of the team has now apparently been finalized and he can count himself among the league's 30 owners. Bloomberg was first to report the sale's closing.
Ballmer's purchase was made possible after former owner Donald Sterling was permanently barred from the NBA after the firestorm that resulted from his own racist remarks. Sterling was also fined $2.5 million for the controversy. The NBA's lifetime ban of Sterling essentially necessitated the team's immediate sale, with the transaction largely handled by Sterling's wife. The disgraced former owner tried to block Ballmer's purchase — or anyone else's, for that matter — and hold onto the Clippers, arguing that his wife didn't have legal standing to sell the team on his behalf. But a judge quickly dismissed that argument, clearing the way for Ballmer to take ownership.
The former Microsoft boss, who still sits on the company's board, has said he has "a big, bold dream for the Clippers." Naturally a huge part of that dream is reaching the pinnacle of professional basketball and winning the NBA championship. Ballmer has long tried to bring more pro sports teams to his hometown of Seattle, but has pledged to keep the Clippers in Los Angeles, where he unsurprisingly now plans to spend a "considerable" amount of time.