Sporting World Celebrates Jason Collins For Coming Out

News that veteran NBA center Jason Collins had become the first active player in a major American sporting league to come out of the closet generated a massive response over Twitter on Monday from a number of individuals in the athletic community. Below, TPM’s round-up of responses from the world of sports.

Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant said he’s “proud” of Collins:

Former NBA All-Star Baron Davis echoed Bryant’s sentiment:

Two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash retweeted Davis, adding, “The time has come”:  

Former NBA player John Amaechi, who came out of the closet following his retirement from the league, said “society couldn’t hope for a more eloquent & positive role model” than Collins:

 Former New York Giants defensive end and Super Bowl champion Michael Strahan saluted Collins for “having the courage to stand up and out for who he is”:

Tennis great Martina Navratilova, who is also openly gay, called Collins “a brave man”:

Denver Nuggets power forward Kenneth Faried, one of the league’s top rebounders and already an outspoken advocate for gay rights, said he was “all smiles”:

NBA commissioner David Stern issued his statement in a series of tweets on the league’s official feed:

 The Washington Wizards, Collins’ latest team, posted a link to its official statement on Twitter:

 Bradley Beal, a teammate of Collins on the Wizards and one of the best rookies in the NBA this season, called Collins a great “mentor and better person”:

Utah Jazz point guard Earl Watson hailed Collins’ “great character” and “great family”:

 Tennis champion Billie Jean King, one of the first marquee female athletes to come out of the closet, said she was “thrilled” by the announcement:

New York Knicks guard Jason Kidd, who played alongside Collins for the New Jersey Nets, said the announcement “doesn’t change the fact that he is a great friend and was a great teammate”:

Minnesota Timberwolves star power forward Kevin Love expressed happiness for Collins:


This post has been updated.

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