Los Angeles Clippers coach Doc Rivers says that team owner Donald Sterling reached out to him but that he declined to speak to him. Rivers, who said he slept 45 minutes Saturday after the Sterling comments came out, talked to reporters for a while Monday.
"I'd just like to reiterate how disappointed I am in our - in the comments attributed to our owner, and I can't tell you how upset I am, our players are," Rivers said.
When asked about addressing the situation, Rivers said, "The longer we win, the longer we keep talking about this and that's good. That's where I'm at, and I haven't changed from it. "We've all decided that this is the right course, but it doesn't mean we haven't wrestled with it."
Rivers said he met with quite a few employees in the organization about it.
"When you're around all these people (in the organization), you realize that they're just as upset and embarrassed," he said. "That's the thing I got from them. They didn't sign on for this, but they're part of this."
Facing a Warriors team in Game 5 of the Western Conference playoffs first round series, that's tied 2-2, Rivers was asked about how to keep the players focused despite the obvious distractions.
"It's very difficult to get everyone to think in one likeness right now, and that's what we're trying to do," Rivers said. "That's what I'm trying to do."
Something that has been discussed the past couple of days is how Clippers fans could and should react. Rivers was asked if he thought they would show up to Tuesday's game at the Staples Center.
"We need them. I can tell you that," he said. "We need unbelievable support right now from other people, and we're hoping we get that tomorrow."
Warriors coach Mark Jackson said he thinks they should stay away from Staples Center, and Los Angeles radio host and former Los Angeles Lakers player Mychal Thompson agreed.
"I think Mark has a right to his opinion, you know?" Rivers said. "And I don't think there's a wrong opinion here. ... If this was a normal thing, I would say that Mark's trying to get no fans to come because he wants to win this game. That has nothing to do with Mark's comment. It really doesn't. I think he's speaking from his heart, and from his emotion, and I can't fight Mark on anything with this, or anyone. I think everyone has their own opinion. I don't share that. I hope it's packed and people are cheering for us. ... But if they feel differently, who can say they're wrong?"
Rivers was asked if he or someone else with the team would address the crowd. "Yeah, that's still being discussed, and we're going to continue to discuss it. I don't know which way we'll go with that," he said.
"We don't know the right answer. I can tell you this. We want to do right here," he said. "We want to make the right decisions here. We're doing our very best to try to do that. If we feel like that is something that will help our fans, then it will be done. If we feel like that's something they don't need, then we won't do it."
"We want them to cheer for their players, and their team, because it's still their players and their team and it will be their players and their team."
On what he told his players: "One of the things I told them was (that) the way to keep this alive is by continuing to win," he said,"If you want a big statement, that's it. The more we win, the more this (conversation about racism) stays alive. And that's what we're going to try to do."
Rivers was asked about how the league should handle and he said that he was confident it would be handled correctly.
"There's a lot of people involved in this, when you think about it. From one man's statement, a lot of people have been affected, and the conversations that we're all having need to be had. And we're going to do our best."