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NBA to Hold News Conference on Sterling; Shooting at Georgia FedEx Facility; NBA To Hold News Conference; Company Says It May have Found Wreckage

Aired April 29, 2014 - 08:30   ET


DOUG ELDRIDGE, FOUNDER, DEL (ph) SPORTS MANAGEMENT GROUP:, Chris, this isn't (INAUDIBLE) the NBA. We're seeing something similar in the NFL right now and I know some of our NFL clients have said the same thing about the commissioner in so far as how they're treated when they step out of line versus some of the owners on the NFL side. So, you know, when we talk about - when we talk about comparative accountability amongst the players on the court and the owners that sign their checks, this is a very real grievance, this is a very real frustration among the players. So when we're trying to read tea leaves in so far as to how this is going - you know, how justice is going to be meted out by new Commissioner Silver, it's a completely different set of standards and guidelines. It's almost unclear insofar as the scope and reach of what ultimately can be done. Sure we know, you know, effectively a lifetime suspense, but as we pointed out a few moments ago, that doesn't - that doesn't do anything to effectively eliminate his ability to deal with the team, let alone the day-to-day operations. So it's discipline but the question is, it discipline tantamount to justice? And I don't know the answer to that.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Doug Eldridge, Sean Gregory, thank you very much. I know you'll be staying on this and we'll be staying on it too with you.

SEAN GREGORY (ph): Thank you.

CUOMO: Take care, guys. Thank you.

ELDRIDGE: Thank you.

CUOMO: Kate.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: All right, coming up next on NEW DAY, we're following the breaking news out of Georgia where we have reports of an active shooting situation at a FedEx facility in a town that's just outside of Atlanta. We're going to go back to the scene to get the very latest.

Plus, more from inside the cockpit recordings of Flight 370. We are hearing the final audio communication for the very first time. Can investigators learn anything from those haunting words?


BOLDUAN: Welcome back to NEW DAY. Once again, breaking news coming into CNN. An active shooting scene is underway still going on at a FedEx facility in Kennesaw, Georgia, which is outside of Atlanta. You're taking a look at some live pictures of the scene. Multiple people have been wounded, or the reports that we're hearing, and also taken to a local hospital. Let's get to CNN's David Mattingly, who is on the phone, on the way to the scene.

David, what have you heard so far?

DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (via telephone): Well, Kate, just a short time ago we're hearing from local police saying that they do have an active and fluid situation at this FedEx distribution facility. They say that they have secured the area around the facility and they're now working inside with officers to clear that facility. But then again, they're emphasizing this is still a very active and fluid situation, indicating they really don't know exactly what they're dealing with right now, or what they're going to find inside that building.

But the call came in about two and a half hours ago. There's a very large police presence there now. We have reports from a local hospital saying that six people from the FedEx facility have been taken to the hospital for a variety of injuries. They won't say what those injuries are, but they say at least one of the six was able to walk into the hospital, at least one of the six is now in surgery. But, again, not confirming exactly what those injuries are.

There was a statement released by FedEx a short time ago saying that they're aware of the situation. Their primary concern is for the safety of their employees and for their first responders there. But at this moment, Kate, again, police describing what they call an active and fluid situation after responding two and a half hours ago to an active shooter report at this FedEx facility. Again, they have secured the area outside the facility. They're now working inside to clear the building and to find out if the shooter is still inside.

BOLDUAN: That's what I was going to ask you, David. So the police -- local police are saying that they have secured the area around the building. Still calling it an active situation. Do they give any indication of the status of the -- what they believe is the shooter or shooters?

MATTINGLY: No. Only the vague "active and fluid" as the way they're describing the situation right now. The fact that they've secured the outside and are proceeding with such caution inside right now indicates they're not sure if the shooter is inside the building or not, but they are proceeding just according to their training right now. Security outside, and then inch by inch, and very carefully, go through the building and see what they still have to deal with in there.

BOLDUAN: Absolutely. And the fact that they haven't given any indication about the shooters status does tell us that they don't know at this moment, at least it would suggest that. A local reporters telling us that this is a very large area - a very large area for them to work. Our David Mattingly is on the way to the scene and will be bringing us updates throughout.

David, thank you so much.

We'll continue to follow that breaking news for you. A lot of other news happening. Let's get over to Michaela.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: All right, Kate, thanks so much. We're going to give you the five things you need to know for your new day, starting at number one.

We've been watching these dozens of tornadoes touching down in the southeast killing eight people in Mississippi. Three people lost their lives in Alabama, two in Tennessee. More tornadoes are expected today.

A possible breakthrough for Flight 370 investigators. An Australian marine exploration company says it has discovered what they believe could be the wreckage of a plane in the Bay of Bengal (ph). That south of Bangladesh. Also new, cockpit recordings from the last communications were just released.

The European Union sanctions 15 people in connection with Russia's actions in Ukraine, this a day after the U.S. targeted seven officials and restricted exports. Russia is criticizing both sets of actions.

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling could learn his fate today for alleged racist comments that outraged pretty much everybody. The NBA commissioner will hold a news conference on the league's investigation of the Sterling affair.

The Supreme Court today tackling the controversy issue of whether police officers need a warrant to search the cell phones of people they arrest. A final decision on that is expected by late June.

We always update those five things to know, so be sure to go to for the very, very latest.

A quick reminder, if you would like to help out the victims of the tornado outbreak, just visit

Kate. Chris.

CUOMO: All right, thanks, Mic. Thanks for that reminder also.

Coming up on NEW DAY, did someone find 370? An exploration company says they used sophisticated equipment that located what could be the plane far north from the current search area a month ago and told investigators but no one replied. We will test their claim.


CUOMO: So today L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling could learn what his alleged comments are going to cost him. After promising a quick investigation into the matter, the NBA's new commissioner, Adam Silver, could deliver tough sanctions. He's set to give a press conference today at 2:00. We'll be monitoring it here on CNN. We're joined now by Cedric Maxwell. He was a member of the L.A. Clippers back in the mid '80s. He's better known as a Celtics player and obviously a two-time NBA player -- champion with them. So let's bring him in now. He was an MVP once. Can't leave that out, Cedrick. It's great to have you. But this isn't about playing.


CUOMO: This is about the larger relevance of the game and what this means if these racial statements hold true and come out of the mouth of this man, Sterling. Now, back in the day, you played with the Clippers when he was new with the team in the early '80s. Tell us about the man in your experience.

MAXWELL: Well, he really wasn't involved in day-to-day operations. He became an owner and that's all it was. It was an employee - I was an employee. He was an owner. And it kind of went for that. So it really wasn't that kind of hands-on operation as you see Donald Sterling now more involved with the Clippers.

CUOMO: Now, these rumors about him that supposedly existed over the years, were you aware of them? Do you put any stock in them?

MAXWELL: Well, yes. I mean, I talked to Baron Davis (ph), who played for him at one time, and he would tell everyone who wanted to listen that, you know what, Donald Sterling would come to a game and scream and yell obscenities to me and he was the highest paid player at the time. Nobody wanted to hear what Baron Davis had to say and now it looks like a lot of that has come true.

CUOMO: But sitting there and berating your player, that's bad. But if it's on a racial basis, it's even worse. I mean these rumors that he believes you only pay a lot of money for a black player because they're the real athletes, not white ones and the stuff that happened with Elgin Baylor and all this other -- the idea that he harbored racial sentiments, do you believe that?

MAXWELL: Well, absolutely, the way it's being said now. And Chris I'm going to go a bit further. You know what, I didn't like the way the information is gathered also. Let me make sure I put that out there. I am not discounting anything and not letting Sterling off the hook when I talk about Sterling, but at the same time, let's look at what happened.

This is a horrible situation. The thing about the NBA right now, I'm not sure if you can appease everybody unless Donald Sterling is out of basketball. And I'm not sure if the NBA has the bylaws really to do that the way they're talking about.

CUOMO: Well, I think you make two strong points there, Cedric. First is, this is undoubtedly fruit of the poisonous tree. This was shady. It's coming through TMZ. The girlfriend seemed to be recording this intentionally. It seems like, you know, that she was baiting him during the conversation.

Yes, that's speculative, but that's what it seems like, in absence of other evidence, and it was a private conversation to be sure, at least he thought it was. That's all a little suspicious but he said what he said.


CUOMO: And that then takes you to your second point which is, what can the league really do? If this were a player, God forbid, Adam Silver could have his way with him as the commissioner of basketball. He could make the final determination about whether that player remains in the league. He can't do that with an owner now, can he?

MAXWELL: Well, I think that's really what it comes down to. The rights of the owners are really different. If you pay your bills, if you don't pay your bills, I think that maybe you can do something with an owner. You can get him out of basketball or make him sell that team.

For bad behavior, I'm not sure what you can do with an owner. He has tainted the product. So there's a lot of presence which comes here. I think the thing that the new commissioner has -- he has to make a tough, decisive decision. This may be one of the biggest decisions we've seen in professional sports in a long time. This is going to change, really, the whole climate really, when you think about how teams deal with owners and how teams deal with players.

CUOMO: Could it even go a step further? Could it even be bigger than that, Cedric, in that this will be somewhat of a test of what wins, money or morality? And what is done to Donald Sterling?

MAXWELL: Absolutely.

CUOMO: He's a rich guy. You know, he paid his way, it seems, almost getting a lifetime achievement award from the NAACP. Will money win out or will he be punished for his morality as it is deemed to be imperfect.

MAXWELL: I think that he's going to be punished for this. I don't think you can effectively go at him. He's a two-time billionaire. So the money is not going to bother him. I don't think he's going to go down without a fight, and you know, because Donald Sterling has done that.

He's been sued by a lot of different people over the years so one more lawsuit really isn't going to bother him. The pressure of the NBA, the pressure of the owners, I think that's going to be the big thing right now. The owners are going to put pressure on the new commissioner to make a stand and one which is going to have to be strong, decisive and make a difference.

CUOMO: And Cedric, you're reaffirming a point that we've heard from other people. It's what was said here but there was a lot more known about him -- this just became the proof for everybody else. So there's more going on here than just this one recording.

Cedric Maxwell thank you very much for coming on NEW DAY -- appreciate your perspective -- Kate. MAXWELL: Thanks for having me.

BOLDUAN: Coming up next on NEW DAY, a new lead in the search for Flight 370 in a completely new area. An Australian exploration company believes it found wreckage that may belong to the missing plane. Is this possibly the break investigators need? An airline accident investigator weighs in.


PEREIRA: And welcome back to NEW DAY.

A potential new lead in the search for Flight 370: an Australian exploration company called GeoResonance says it has discovered what it believes could be plane wreckage from Flight 370 in the Bay of Bengal. It could be plane wreckage.

Malaysian officials are responding to the announcement this morning say they're looking to verify this report. Now this sighting would put the plane wreckage on the northern arc of the search, where Australian teams suspended search operations weeks ago.

Joining us now is airline accident investigator, Shawn Pruchnicki, really a pleasure to have you here with me.


PEREIRA: So let's talk a little bit about it. I think we're going to try and get this map back up here because we want to talk about the fact that it was where they're talking about is in the Bay of Bengal. Geo Resonance says they have this information, this data -- in fact, they had a report from a month ago, a month ago, saying they saw evidence to believe that there was plane wreckage in this area.

First of all, just even the location, the Bay of Bengal, some 2,000 miles north of where we've been looking?

PRUCHNICKI: Yes. You know, given the range of the aircraft, it's certainly possible to be this far out and the fact the data points we have further down closer to Australia, although we were putting a lot in those, you know, there's still variability in those data points.

So I mean this is still a possibility. But there's so much more to this that needs to be considered, the analysis. We're quite a distance from needing to send resources out there to take a look.

PEREIRA: Now it says -- the joint international team says they're satisfied that the final resting place of the missing aircraft is in this southern portion. But we've had voices on our air that said don't forget about this northern arc?

PRUCHNICKI: I agree. I think this needs to be considered. Here's the problem, we need to take a look at the data. We need to have independent experts look at the data and verify what they're reporting is actually valid enough to send resources in that direction. We're not ready to go there yet. PEREIRA: Do they have a dog in this fight? They're said to be a scientific research company not necessarily looking for this information, but they said, Shawn -- this is really interesting -- they had data from before the plane went missing. They looked at that same area after the plane went missing and materials that their information, their technology detected, chemical elements and materials that make up a Boeing 777 -- aluminum, copper, titanium, steel alloys. That's what we're looking for?

PRUCHNICKI: Well, you're exactly right. Those are the elements we're looking for. But those are also the elements that are found in ships and found naturally as well. So we're a long way from confirming that that is potentially, the location of an aircraft.

PEREIRA: What's the harm, 53 days in, when this is netting nothing? Bluefin's netting nothing, to send some, a ship from the army of Bangladesh, another resource from this area that's already relatively close? What's the harm in sending them out there to investigate?

PRUCHNICKI: I don't think there's any harm in doing that. Obviously huge, you know, taxing resources to get them all the way up there. And there's significant delay -- right.


PRUCHNICKI: But before we do that we need to take a look at the data closer and bring some experts in to consider that before we do anything like that.

PEREIRA: We expect that's going to happen today?

PRUCHNICKI: I would hope so.

PEREIRA: All right. Shawn Pruchnicki, always a pleasure to have you with us here on NEW DAY -- Kate.

BOLDUAN: All right. Still ahead, we're tracking some dangerous storms. 75 million Americans are still in the path today of severe weather and some potential tornadoes. Everything you need to know, just ahead.


CUOMO: All right. A lot of news for you this morning. We have a developing story in that FedEx shooting. Of course, the tornadoes are going on. These new implications for the search of 370, and, of course, we're all waiting on the NBA commissioner to make his announcement about those alleged racist statements from the L.A. Clippers owners.

So let's get you right now to the "NEWSROOM" with Carol Costello to give you all the local news that's going on -- Carol.

CAROL COSTELLO CNN ANCHOR: It is a busy day. Thank you, Chris. Have a great day, all of you.