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NBA center comes out

NBA center comes out

UPDATE: statement from Wizards

“We are extremely proud of Jason and support his decision to live his life proudly and openly. He has been a leader on and off the court and an outstanding teammate throughout his NBA career. Those qualities will continue to serve him both as a player and as a positive role model for others of all sexual orientation.”

Jason Collins, NBA center comes out. Sports Illustrated has the story:

I’m a 34-year-old NBA center. I’m black. And I’m gay.

I didn’t set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport. But since I am, I’m happy to start the conversation. I wish I wasn’t the kid in the classroom raising his hand and saying, “I’m different.” If I had my way, someone else would have already done this. Nobody has, which is why I’m raising my hand.

I realized I needed to go public when Joe Kennedy, my old roommate at Stanford and now a Massachusetts congressman, told me he had just marched in Boston’s 2012 Gay Pride Parade. I’m seldom jealous of others, but hearing what Joe had done filled me with envy. I was proud of him for participating but angry that as a closeted gay man I couldn’t even cheer my straight friend on as a spectator. If I’d been questioned, I would have concocted half truths. What a shame to have to lie at a celebration of pride. I want to do the right thing and not hide anymore. I want to march for tolerance, acceptance and understanding. I want to take a stand and say, “Me, too.”

Read More: here

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Gary Paul Gilbert

The stats don't tell the whole story, CJ:

The dining room table of Jason Collins' home features an interesting centerpiece. A Celtics game ball balances atop a leather holder. Paul Pierce presented Collins with the ball after Pierce went for 40 in Boston's defeat of the Cavaliers last Dec. 19. Collins, the starting center that night, had one point, didn't attempt a field goal and fouled out in 23 minutes. But he set screens, grabbed rebounds, blocked a shot, protected the paint and played unrelenting team defense.

Collins features the ball prominently in his home, he says, because it is a metaphor for his NBA career. While he's started almost 500 games -- including six in the NBA Finals a decade ago -- he's made his bones as a durable, physical, flourish-free big man, capable of having an impact on a game without touching the ball. "I'm the guy on the court who doesn't like to draw attention to himself, who wants to lead by example," he said last week. "I've just been a guy who's accepted his role."

See also the update from the Wizards that Ann has posted:

He has been a leader on and off the court and an outstanding teammate throughout his NBA career.

.

Nate Silver in his New York Times statistics column examined the cases of basketball players with records similar to Collins's and found that a little over half of them got new contracts. Collins's new prominence may help him or hinder him. In any event, he sounds like a nice guy. He's known for meticulous preparation, which he passes on to teammates.

Coming out hype, CJ? Maybe. I'm content to await developments.

Posted by Murdoch Matthew (Typepad wouldn't let me sign in as myself.)

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Tenorbruin

You listened to your heart. Thank you and God bless you.

Lan Green

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Christopher Johnson

Considering that he was pretty much Washington's worst player:

http://espn.go.com/nba/team/stats/_/name/wsh/washington-wizards

it's either that or dude's trying to hang on to whatever's left of his NBA career in any way that he possibly can.

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tgflux

Kudos, Congrats and God bless! Good on ya, Jason!

JC Fisher

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