Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling has been banned for life from the NBA. It is independent of forcing the sale of the team, which must be approved by 75% of NBA owners.
"I fully expect to get the support I need from other NBA owners to remove him [from owning the team," Silver said in conclusion.
Silver knew it was Sterling's voice when he heard the tapes, but wanted independent verification.
Sterling's people were informed right before the press conference of the decision, and the NBA did not wait for (or want) response.