Sterling, whose racist comments prompted NBA commissioner Adam Silver to ban him for life, had announced last week through his attorney he had agreed to sell the Clippers for Steve Ballmer for $2 billion.
"The deal is off," Sterling attorney Max Blecher said Monday in an e-mail to ESPN, which also reported that Sterling has instructed the lawyer to pursue a $1 billion lawsuit against the league and Silver and withdraw support for a sale.
Blecher would not say if the decision to change his mind came as a result of the NBA being unwilling to back off the life ban and $2.5 million fine imposed by Silver.
"I have decided that I must fight to protect my rights," Sterling said in a statement to NBC. "While my position may not be popular, I believe that my rights to privacy and the preservation of my rights to due process should not be trampled.