By Steve Large

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Mayor Kevin Johnson returned to Sacramento after spending the morning in Los Angeles praising a decision by the NBA commissioner to ban the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers for life.

Commissioner Adam Silver handed down a $2.5 million fine and a lifetime ban for owner Donald Sterling, and the league is acting swiftly to try and force him to sell the Clippers.

Johnson praised the commissioner’s actions at Sacramento City Hall.

“I felt like America, this country has a new hero,” he said. “I feel like Adam Silver, in one single act, became an american hero.”

Johnson’s return followed a day declaring a civil-rights victory on the national stage.

“I hope that every bigot in this country, sees what happened to Mr. Sterling, and recognizes that if he can fall, so can you,” he said.

Silver’s severe sanctions leave no room for the billionaire owner to return to the NBA:

“As for Mr. Sterling’s ownership interest in the Clippers, I will urge the Board of Governors to exercise its authority, to force a sale of the team, and will do everything in my power to ensure that that happens,” Silver said.

The ban comes after a player boycott was reportedly planned.

“I believe that today stands as one of those great moments where sports once again transcends, where sports provides a place for fundamental change for how our country should think and act,” Johnson said.

A landmark decision in American sports with Sacramento’s mayor in the NBA spotlight.

“I felt like there was a gasp in this country when Commissioner Silver made his remarks and I felt like all of us, we just kind of exhaled, and said you know what this turned out to be a good thing because of his sanctions,” he said.



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