- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 13, 2014

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Steve Ballmer is officially the new owner of the Los Angeles Clippers.

The team says the sale closed Tuesday after a California court confirmed the authority of Shelly Sterling, on behalf of the Sterling Family Trust, to sell the franchise. Her husband, Donald Sterling, had unsuccessfully fought the sale of the team he owned since 1981 in court.

The NBA Board of Governors had previously approved the sale.

Ballmer says he will be “hardcore” in giving the team, coach Doc Rivers, the staff and players the support they need.

Rivers calls it “an amazing new day in Clippers history,” and says he’s inspired by Ballmer’s passion for the game.

Ballmer, Rivers and Clippers players will attend a new fan festival announced for next Monday at Staples Center.

TENNIS

MASON, Ohio (AP) - Top-ranked Novak Djokovic beat Gilles Simon 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 in his opening match at the Western & Southern Open on Tuesday night. It is the only Masters series event he has never won, finishing as the runner-up four times.

If he wins this week, he will become the first with titles at all nine ATP Masters events. Djokovic has beaten Simon eight straight times. The opening game of the third set went 20 points and 15 minutes, with Simon turning aside six break points.

Djokovic finally broke through for a 4-3 lead and served out the 2-hour, 9-minute match. The last set took 59 minutes. Djokovic had 36 unforced errors in the breezy evening conditions.

The tournament lost its other defending champion on Tuesday when Victoria Azarenka withdrew because of an injured right knee. Defending champion Rafael Nadal withdrew before the tournament because of an injured wrist.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Venus Williams made quick exits after leaving their winning touch in Canada.

Two days after he beat Roger Federer for his second Masters title in Toronto, Tsonga fell to Mikhail fell to Mikhail Youzhny 6-1, 6-4.

Williams knocked off sister Serena while reaching the finals in Montreal on Sunday, finishing runner-up. She lost to Lucie Safarova 6-7 (2), 6-3, 6-4 in the first round Tuesday.

Fifth-seeded Maria Sharapova broke Madison Keys to go up 3-0 in the final set and held on for a 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 win.

Story Continues →