Speaking to USA Today, Redick went into detail about how his four-year, $27 million sign-and-trade deal almost fell apart despite being initially agreed upon.
“I’ve been told both ways: one, that he didn’t want to pay me because I was white, and that he didn’t want to pay me because I was a bench player,” Redick, the former Duke University star told USA Today. “I didn’t know until after the face. I just got a weird phone call from Doc (Rivers) on July 4, and I got off the phone and said to my wife, ‘Something’s going on.’ He’s like, ‘You better play for me (expletive).’ And I was like, ‘Yeah, that’s the plan. We figured this out two days ago, right?’
Redick continued: “And then he just rambled a bit … but he never really got into the nuts and bolts of what was happening. And then I got a call about 48 hours later from my agent, and he said, ‘We wanted to keep you out of it, but here’s what happened.’”
Sterling reportedly almost nixed the Redick deal because of the $52 million he doled out to white center Chris Kaman, who averaged only 11.8 points per game for the Clippers before being traded to the New Orleans Hornets in 2011.
Despite the stories he heard about Sterling, Redick wanted to come to the Clippers to play for Rivers.
“I came here for Doc. I came Here for Chris (Paul) and Blake (Griffin),” Redick told USA Today. I looked at this incredible opportunity for me on the basketball court, but also from a personal standpoint. I looked at this as there were great people in the organization, and it’s been backed up by that. I think you’ve seen that over the last week, regardless of one person’s opinion, you’ve seen that throughout the organization.”
Redick said Sterling’s comments caught on an audio recording pissed him off.
“[I]n the days after, it was the first time in my life where I was conscientious of the fact that the people I was talking to were black or Asian or Mexican,” Redick told USA Today. “I don’t look at people like that, so to hear those things come out of someone’s mouth, it pisses you off.”
Rivers said employees on the team’s business side considered not working for the franchise after Sterling’s racist comments were exposed.