Atlanta Hawks co-owner self-reports racially charged email

Bruce Levenson will sell his stake in the NBA team after releasing the text of a message that included statements about how ‘the black crowd scared away the whites.’

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When then-Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling was banned for life from the NBA, Atlanta Hawks co-owner Bruce Levenson was one of many team owners who chastised Sterling, saying the NBA should have a zero-tolerance policy with regard to racism.

This weekend, Levenson decided to practice what he preached. He voluntarily released the text of a 2012 email in which he stated that “the black crowd scared away the whites” at Hawks games.

The body of the email was a list of improvements Levenson believed the team could make. One change he pushed was to make Hawks games more appealing to “a 40 year old white guy if that’s our season [tickets] demo.”

“This is obviously a sensitive topic, but sadly I think it is far and [away] the number one reason our season ticket base is so low,” he wrote.

In a statement released Sunday, Levenson announced he would sell his controlling stake in the Hawks. He also wrote:

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