The West

Oprah to bid for basketball team
Oprah Winfrey. Picture: Jonathan Short/AP

Oprah Winfrey is serious about bidding for the Los Angeles Clippers, her spokesperson has confirmed.

The OWN Network founder could pair with music mogul David Geffen and Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison if a sale of the team is forced, after its current owner Donald Sterling was captured on audio recordings making racist remarks about African Americans.

"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," said Nicole Nichols, a spokesperson for Winfrey, in a statement.

Sterling was this week banned for life from the National Basketball Association (NBA) for making the racist remarks.

Sterling was handed the severe punishment and fined $US2.5 million ($A2.7 million) by NBA commissioner Adam Silver on Tuesday after an audio recording of him rebuking a girlfriend for posting a photo of herself with basketball legend Magic Johnson on Instagram went viral.

Silver also declared he plans to strip Sterling of ownership.

Geffen told ESPN on Wednesday that Oprah is not interested in running the team, but owning it.

"She thinks it would be a great thing for an important black American to own (another) franchise," Variety reported.

"The team deserves a better group of owners who want to win," he said.

"We've talked about this for a long time.

"Between the three of us, we have a good shot."

Oscar-winner Whoopi Goldberg, a New York Knicks supporter, has also expressed an interest in buying the team.

Speaking on her US talk show The View on Wednesday Goldberg said: "I'm very happy about all of this (Sterling's punishment), because I'm personally looking for a kerbillionaire (sic) to help me buy this team.

"I'm serious because there are no women who own any NBA teams or no teams anywhere seem to be owned by women."

Meanwhile, hip-hop entrepreneurs Dr Dre and Sean 'Diddy' Combs, who recently topped a Forbes poll as 2014's Wealthiest Hip Hop Artist with an estimated fortune of $700 million have also expressed an interest in buying the Clippers.

Diddy tweeted: "I will always be a Knicks fan, but I am a business man DiddyBuyTheClippers NameYourPrice".

And Dr Dre, who placed second on the Forbes rich list with a $550 million fortune, tells entertainment website TMZ: "I'm thinking about it... yes."

Reports suggest boxing champs Oscar De La Hoya and Floyd Mayweather Jr, and Clippers fan, actor Frankie Muniz, are also interested in purchasing the Clippers from Sterling.

The West Australian

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