So what exactly happened to make Elton Brand spurn the Clippers and want to move to the East Coast yesterday? We got one very powerful, inflammatory side of the story this afternoon as Brand’s agent, David Falk, laid into Clippers owner Donald T. Sterling during Brand’s introductory press conference in Philadelphia.
Falk said that Sterling essentially presented a “take-it-or-leave-it” offer to Brand, and wouldn’t even make himself available to discuss it. That, Falk said, was taken as an insult by Brand’s camp and “set off a chain of events that led us here (to Philadelphia) today.”
“We were told, midafternoon on monday June 30, that offer was on the table,” Falk said. “And it was explained to us that Coach Dunleavy, who acts as the quasi general manager in LA, had really gone to the mat on Elton’s behalf and was able to get a certain amount of money from the owner, and I believe he did. Mike explained that the owner realy wasn’t comfortable with the offer and that if Elton turned the offer down, he’d be just as happy as if he’d accepted it.
“I think that what you want when you’re a franchise player, when your’e a franchise worker in any organization, you want to feel that you’re wanted by the team. And I think it was very distrurbing to feel that when the management tells you that if you turn it down, they’d be just as happy and they basically told us that the owner was unavailable to discuss the offer any further and it was basically accept it or don’t accept it. That’s a very difficult position to accept when you’re a player of Elton’s stature and you’ve done as much for the franchise as Elton has over the past seven years. I think that set in motion a chain of events that led us here today.”
A Clippers spokesperson said they didn’t plan to have any comment on Falk’s statements.