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Sarver announces plans to sell Suns and Mercury amid racism and sexism controversy
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Robert Sarver purchased the Phoenix Suns in 2004
Robert Sarver purchased the Phoenix Suns in 2004

Robert Sarver has announced his intention to sell the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury after an investigation found him to have engaged in racist and sexist conduct at the workplace.

Sarver was suspended for one year and fined $10million by the NBA last week after an investigation questioned 320 people on allegations of Sarver's behaviour over his 18 years spent with the Suns.

The investigation prompted widespread criticism of both Sarver and the NBA's response, including four-time MVP LeBron James saying: "Our league definitely got this wrong."

In a statement, Sarver declared: "Words that I deeply regret now overshadow nearly two decades of building organisations that brought people together – and strengthened the Phoenix area – through the unifying power of professional men's and women's basketball. 

"I expected that the commissioner's one-year suspension would provide the time for me to focus, make amends and remove my personal controversy from the teams that I and so many fans love.

"But in our current unforgiving climate, it has become painfully clear that that is no longer possible – that whatever good I have done, or could still do, is outweighed by things I have said in the past.

"For those reasons, I am beginning the process of seeking buyers for the Suns and Mercury.

"I do not want to be a distraction to these two teams and the fine people who work so hard to bring the joy and excitement of basketball to fans around the world.

"I want what's best for these two organizations, the players, the employees, the fans, the community, my fellow owners, the NBA and the WNBA. This is the best course of action for everyone.

"In the meantime, I will continue to work on becoming a better person, and continuing to support the community in meaningful ways. Thank you for continuing to root for the Suns and the Mercury, embracing the power that sports has to bring us together."


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