Demon Deacon, NBA superstar and self-professed family man Chris Paul (’07) admires his new boss, based on comments he made in an article published in The Wall Street Journal Aug. 26.
Steve Ballmer, who retired as Microsoft CEO in February, purchased the Los Angeles Clippers on Aug. 12 for $2 million after a dramatic process described in detail by writer Monica Langley.
Five days after the purchase was closed, Ballmer met with his new team at a trendy L.A. restaurant. “Arriving at the Spago restaurant in suit and tie, Mr. Ballmer shook hands with Clippers players he had admired: all-stars Chris Paul and Blake Griffin; center DeAndre Jordan; forward Matt Barnes,” writes Langley. “There were halting comments, polite laughter and much cellphone checking. Clippers Coach Doc Rivers was struck by the body language: “They were suddenly all nervous.” But, Langley notes, tensions subsequently eased.
“The players jumped up to shake Mr. Ballmer’s hand,” writes Langley, and “Mr. Paul made plans to golf with him.” Quoting from the article: “What we loved is how competitive he is,” Mr. Paul said later. “And that he said he will miss some of our games if they conflict with his son’s basketball games. I have two kids, and that means a lot.”
— Cherin C. Poovey (P ’08)