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The NBA's Constitution and Bylaws is 79 pages and alternately boring and fascinating in language crafted by lawyers.

The document is littered with "thereofs" and "shalls" and "including but not limited tos" and "therebys" and "herebys" and "directly or indirectlys" and "bindings."

It is not only an important charter for owners but for NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, too. Silver is using to guide him in his mission to terminate Donald Sterling's ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers and force him to sell the team.

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The document was not made public until Tuesday, when Silver banned Sterling for life, fined him $2.5 million and invoked a constitutional article which allows the NBA to kick Sterling out its exclusive club.

The articles in the constitution spell out how NBA can terminate Sterling's ownership, the procedure for terminating his ownership and what recourse an owner has in such a situation, among other items, including the transfer of ownership.

This is an extremely complex case for Silver, other owners, the NBA's team of lawyers and Sterling.

If three-fourths of the NBA's owners vote to terminate Sterling's ownership, article 14(j) under 'Procedure for Termination' in the NBA's constitution states, "The decisions of the Association made in accordance with the foregoing procedure shall be final, binding, and conclusive, and each Member and Owner waives any and all recourse to any court of law to review any such decision."

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That doesn't prevent Sterling from going to court, but the clause "does set up a barrier to Sterling successfully challenging a decision by the owners to strip him of his team, but I don't think it means we won't see litigation," Toledo law professor and sports law expert Geoffrey Rapp said.

There is no indication yet what Sterling will do, and his attorney, Robert Platt, has offered no comment when asked.

It is not yet known if Sterling has even received a written notice of the Constitutional violation the league alleges he has committed. Article 13(a) states an owner may be terminated if he or she "willfully violates any provisions of the constitution ... or agreements of the Association."

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While no article in the NBA's constitution addresses the Sterling incident specifically – racially insensitive comments he made in a recorded conversation — Article 13(d) is a catch-all violation.

That article states an owner's may be terminated if the person fails or refuses "to fulfill its contractual obligations to the Association, its Members, Players, or any other third party in such a way as to affect the Association or its Members adversely."

Article 24 in the NBA's constitution also lists the authorities and duties of the commissioner. Silver is charged with "protecting the integrity of the game of professional basketball and preserving public confidence in the League," the article says.

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That gives Silver broad authority. He has the right to make decisions in the best interests of the league in situations not covered by the Constitution and By-Laws, including coming down with penalties such as his lifetime ban of Sterling. Silver wouldn't have taken such a bold and unprecedented step if he and lawyers didn't believe their case against Sterling is solid.

Once Sterling receives the charges in writing from Silver, he has five days to respond. After Sterling responds, the Board of Governors will hold a special meeting within 10 days of that response.

Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor, the chairman of the Board of Governors, will preside over the meeting. Sterling is entitled to counsel, but the league constitution states, "Strict rules of evidence shall not apply, and all relevant and material evidence submitted prior to and at the hearing may be received and considered of the charge or charges he is accused."

Then, the board will vote and it requires three-fourths of the vote to terminate Sterling's ownership and force him to sell the team. There is a strong sense Sterling will take this to court, and there will not be a speedy resolution.

Outside of going to court, Sterling's options may be limited. Transferring his ownership to this wife or another family matter is not easy. Article 5 covers transfers and 5(f) states, "A transfer shall only become effective if approved by the affirmative vote of not less than three-fourths of all Governors at a meeting duly called for such purpose."

The NBA crafted a constitution to cover a range of issues, both specific and not specific, and used language to protect itself when serious issues arise.

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