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Why Donald Sterling’s punishment could make him millions

L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling stands to make hundreds of millions of dollars if he sells the team, and potential buyers are already lining up. However, Forbes executive editor Michael Ozanian said he must act fast.

"There's a huge pent up demand to buy sports teams and there is very, very little supply coming on the market right now," Ozanian told CNBC's "Street Signs."

Sterling bought the team in 1981 for $13 million, and Ozanian thinks Sterling will sell the franchise for at least $700 million and possibly as much as $850 million.

Sterling was banned for life by the National Basketball Association on Tuesday and fined $2.5 million for racist comments caught on tape and made public over the weekend. On the recording, released by TMZ, the embattled Clippers owner was heard criticizing a friend for associating with "black people."

Read MoreClippers owner Sterling banned for life, fined $2.5M

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said he would call for a vote by the other 29 team owners to force Sterling to sell. Three-quarters of the owners must agree.

Donald Sterling
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Donald Sterling

Ozanian doesn't think Sterling should put up a big fight.

"If he fights it and tries to hang on, more sponsors are going to stay away, season ticket holders won't renew and the value of the team will plummet," he said.

Right now, the Clippers are a much more valuable team than the Milwaukee Bucks, which is being sold for over $500 million, he said. Plus, the NBA's new TV contract will likely be at least double the $930 million average of the current deal.

Big names are already being tossed around as potential buyers.

Oprah Winfrey, music mogul David Geffen and Oracle Founder and CEO Larry Ellison have expressed an interest in banding together to purchase the team if it went up for sale.

Read More Oprah Winfrey, billionaire media maven

Rumors circulated that basketball great Magic Johnson, who was singled out by Sterling on the tape as someone his friend should not bring to games, was interested. However, he's since denied that report, according to the Chicago Tribune.

On Tuesday, actor Matt Damon told CNBC he'd be willing to jump in as "super tiny minority investor."

"I think a lot of us are really excited to get [Sterling] out of the NBA. So whatever it takes," he said.

Read MoreMatt Damon: I'd invest in the Clippers

Boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. has also tossed his hat into the ring.

By CNBC's Michelle Fox. Reuters contributed to this report.

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