- Darren Rovell, ESPN.com Sports Business reporter
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Donald Sterling isn't just disliked; he's the most hated man in America.
That's according to the results of a poll by E-Poll Market Research that was released Thursday.
The company said that, out of the people who were familiar with the Los Angeles Clippers' owner, 92 percent said they disliked him. In the impressionable 13- to 24-year-old male demographic, 97 percent disliked him, according to the poll.
Sterling is hated more than Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff, who is disliked by 90 percent of the population, O.J. Simpson (88 percent), Michael Jackson doctor Conrad Murray (88 percent) and Justin Bieber (86 percent). Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez, who pleaded not guilty to two first-degree murder charges Wednesday, finished seventh on the list.
"Donald Sterling made these callous statements, and then he has more than doubled down on them since then," said Gerry Philpott, president and CEO of E-Poll, which said it polled 1,100 people between ages 13 and 49 whose demographics were representative of the U.S. population.
To put Sterling's numbers into perspective, Philpott said the athletes in his company's database are disliked by an average of 15 percent of the population.
Sterling said this week that he would fight the NBA's attempt to kick him and his ownership group out of the league for his racist comments, even though he had given written permission to his wife, Shelly, to sell the team.
Shelly Sterling, acting on behalf on the Sterling family trust, has signed an agreement to sell the Clippers to former Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer for $2 billion. Donald Sterling bought the team in 1981 for $12.5 million.
7dEthan Sherwood Strauss