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Sneed: Clippers coach’s son speaks out on Sterling’s racist rant

Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers answers questions during pregame news conference before Game 4 an opening-round NBA basketball

Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers answers questions during a pregame news conference before Game 4 of an opening-round NBA basketball playoff series against the Golden State Warriors on Sunday, April 27, 2014, in Oakland, Calif. | Marcio Jose S

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Updated: June 1, 2014 6:39AM



The Sterling scandal . . .

It’s hoop hell.

The uproar over Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling’s recorded racist comments to a former mistress has not only turned the game of basketball upside down — it is turning it inside out.

The nightmare of it can be seen in tweets Jeremiah Rivers, son of Clippers coach Doc Rivers, who does not want his father’s team to be hurt by Sterling’s racism.

◆ Tweet No. 1: “People want to #BoycottClippers because of one man? My house has been burned to the ground, animals tortured and burned as well.”

◆ Tweet No. 2: “Along with anything we ever loved, and held treasured, because of the color of my dads skin. We lost everything and had to start over.”

◆ Tweet No. 3: “Did we hate the collective of people, culture, and race who’s skin was responsible for our hardship? No.”

◆ Tweet No. 4: “One man, cannot have the power to make me feel hate towards a group, race, or another persons skin color.”

◆ Backstory: Doc Rivers is African-American. His wife, Kris, is white. They met when Rivers, a Maywood native, was going to school at Marquette University in Milwaukee.

According to a story this week in the Orlando Sentinel, Rivers and Kris dealt with racial slurs while dating — causing Rivers to eventually leave school and join the NBA.

Years later, while living in San Antonio with their four kids, the Rivers’ home burned down and the family dog was killed while trapped inside. Their son, Jeremiah, thought the cause of the fire seemed suspicious.

Life is hard enough. Why do we insist on making it heartbreakingly so much harder?

Food fare . . .

Hoorah! The legendary watering hole and grub joint for journalists and PR mavens, aka the Billy Goat Tavern and upscale eatery Phil Stefani’s 437 Rush — formerly Riccardo’s Restaurant — just got the news. The building that houses them both will not be torn down. Drinks all around.

Taxi fare . . .

Is this a case of cash for cabs?

Nawwww.

◆ Translation: Ald. Bob Fioretti (2nd), who loves to rant about Rahm, led the charge recently against Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s new licensing proposal for drivers who offer rides in their personal vehicles for fees — a proposal that cab companies think isn’t tough enough on the burgeoning ride-sharing industry.

◆Buckshot: Critics of Fioretti wondered whether he was attempting to woo the taxi industry in hopes of snagging campaign coffer cash if he decides to run against Rahm next year. Sneed is told Fioretti has received more than $16,000 in campaign donations from the taxi industry between 2008 and May 2013.

◆ Bob’s side: “That’s ridiculous! I am no big fan of the taxi industry, but I am concerned about consumers when it comes to the way the city ultimately handles ride-sharing,” Fioretti said. “This is absolutely not about campaign donations.”

“It’s true, however, that I am being encouraged to run for mayor,” he chirped.

Clooney tunes . . .

Legal briefings: Amal Alamuddin, the brainy and beautiful British lawyer who is engaged to actor George Clooney, was a law clerk for Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor when she sat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit — and Alamuddin was a post-graduate student at New York University’s law school.

I spy . . .

Actor Vince “Wedding Crashers” Vaughn, a Chicago native, and his wife, Kyla Weber, were spotted dining at Rosebud Steakhouse on Sunday night not far from their Chicago digs . . . New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman lunched at Chicago Cut on Tuesday.

Sneedlings . . .

Wednesday’s birthdays: Isiah Thomas, 53; Kirsten Dunst, 32, and Cloris Leachman, 88.



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