Found April 29, 2013 on
Fox Sports Midwest:
ST. LOUIS The Cincinnati Reds second baseman who is known for speaking his mind sat with his back to the clubhouse TV. While Brandon Phillips played cards with teammates, two men on the screen talked about Jason Collins. The topic, printed below the talking heads, read: "Thoughts on Collins Coming Out."
"More power to him," Brandon Phillips said after he turned his chair away from the table. "I don't judge anybody for anything. I'm happy for him for coming out and wanting to live his life like that. I wish him all the best. I have no problem with anything like that. That doesn't bother me. Hopefully, he gets a job and gets to keep on playing in his career."
The news that NBA veteran Jason Collins is gay announced in an essay he penned for Sports Illustrated that featured a gripping first line of "I'm a 34-year-old NBA center. I'm black. And I'm gay." rippled through the country Monday. Collins, a free agent with hopes of playing next season, now joins a small community of active professional athletes who have come out publicly.
"I didn't set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport," Collins wrote. "But since I am, I'm happy to start the conversation."
That conversation includes a question: Will this encourage other gay professional athletes to follow in Collins' footsteps? Yes, there are gay players in professional sports, whether it be the National Basketball Association, the National Football League or, as Phillips confirmed without a moment of hesitation, Major League Baseball.
"Hell yeah," he said. "Hell yeah. To tell you the truth, man, I feel like there might be one on every team. You never know."
There's a thought that Collins coming out might help blow apart the cone of silence, that his announcement can make him a pioneer for those who want to play their sport at its highest level without feeling they need to hide who they are in order to do so.
"It just depends on the person," Phillips said. "Some people have enough guts to come out and say it. Some people just want to live in the shadows and wait until their career is over People are going to do what they want to do. He wanted to do it, and all the power to him. How they treat him, and how everything is going to go, it might encourage other people to come out."
It's too early to determine how Collins will be treated, but the discussion he wanted to create has started. It's taking place across the country, and it's present in MLB clubhouses.
"If somebody came out and said he was gay, we would still respect him as a player and as a man," Phillips said. "I don't care about that stuff. It doesn't bother me. As long as he goes out there and does his job, that's the only thing I really care about, man."
So, a player gay or straight should be judged only on his ability to do his job?
Sounds like a pretty good idea to me.
You can follow Ben Frederickson on Twitter (@Ben_Fred) and contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org
BEST OF MAXIM
Boston Celtics players are voicing support for Jason Collins.
The Celtics practiced for the first time Tuesday since their former teammate said he was gay on Sports Illustrated's website Monday.
Kevin Garnett says he's happy Collins can be himself. Jason Terry says it seems like a tremendous weight has been lifted from Collins. And Jeff Green called him an ''awesome...
photo via Kwaku Alston/SI
So, yesterday it happened. A male athlete, Jason Collins, of a major American professional sport announced that he’s gay in a cover story for Sports Illustrated. The reactions have been pouring in nonstop. Here’s my obligatory response.
Honestly, it bothers me that this is a thing. That gay athletes feel they must hide who they are from the world...
Don MacLean thinks Jason Collins is 'courageous' for announcing he is gay while still playing in the NBA.
MacLean, who works on the Clippers' pre-and post-game shows for FOX Sports West and Prime Ticket, played in the NBA from 1992-2001 and was named the league's Most Improved Player in 1994 while with the Washington Bullets.
"I know he did it for personal...
Former Celtics center Jason Collins‘ announcement Monday morning that he is gay has been met with overwhelming support, with everyone from his fellow NBA players to former President Bill Clinton to average fans taking to social media to give Collins words of encouragement.
Collins, who is currently a free agent, chronicled his decision to come out in a column that was published...
Jason Collins is America’s first openly gay athlete in a major male team sport. (Photo: Mark J. Rebilas, USA TODAY Sports)Effective today as of when the online edition of Sports Illustrated went live, the major male American team sports finally have one openly gay player. Jason Collins, a 12-year veteran of the NBA, published a first-person essay in Sports Illustrated in which...
Doc has always been extremely supportive of Jason Collins. On several occasions he referred to him as a great locker room presence and he even put him in the starting lineup at one point.
It's possible that Doc already knew the news we all learned about Collins today. Either way, he certainly liked what he brought to the locker room and somehow he might have also been possibly...
A couple more videos from today's practice. Jason Terry obviously isn't phased by Kenyon Martin's funeral trash talking. Doc says that Jason Collins had previously confided in him, so that yesterday's news that Jason Collins is the first active player in any of the four major American sports to come out as gay wasn't a surprise.
The star of recently announced gay athlete Jason Collins just continues to grow. Now, it appears he is set to really go prime time. Collins reflects on the worldwide reaction following his decision to reveal that he is a gay man and how he hopes his story will further the conversation around equality. Oprah and [...]
Jason Collins received largely positive support in the aftermath of his announcement that he is gay.
Kobe Bryant, Jason Kidd, Steve Nash, Tony Parker, Kenneth Faried and Rudy Gay were amongst the dozens of players to publicly offer their support to Collins.
Collins also received encouragement on Twitter from Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Michelle Obama, Martina Navratilova and Spike...
Jason, no need to give Tristan a facial.
So we finally got our first active professional athlete to come out of the closet. Jason Collins gets the distinction of that. Good for him. Hopefully, he can spawn others to do what Mike Piazza never could. So far, the majority of the reactions to this news have been very positive (at least according to him) which is good to hear. As far...
This is true: Because of Nick Swisher's Wife, Jason Collins Asked Ex ☆NSYNC Star Lance Bass For Advice After Coming Out:
Lance Bass: “He’s been trying to plan this for a very long time,...
Full story at Bob's Blitz ~ http://www.bobsblitz.com
HOW YOU REMIND ME...
Tweet One of the more major announcements in the world of professional sports happened yesterday when SI released their cover story with Jason Collins becoming the first active athlete to come out as gay in professional sports. This sparked a mostly positive reaction for Collins’ courageous act from athletes across all sports. However, no one [...]
I would take credit for pointing out days ago this would happen, but it should have been so clear to anyone who uses their brain, so it wasn’t like I was going out on a limb.
These networks, media and entertainment sites could care less about Jason Collins is gay, all they see are dollar signs and ratings. They are going to milk this until every cow is begging for mercy. Collins...
NBA center Jason Collins announced Monday in a story for Sports Illustrated that he’s gay, becoming the first active player in a major American team sport to announce that he is gay.
In the wake of Jason Collins announcing to the world that he’s gay, everyone in the media business is scrambling to get the reaction of any and every athlete they come in contact with.Erik Kuselia is part of the media business and when former Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Hines Ward joined him on NBC Sports radio, Kuselia followed suit and asked about his reaction to Collins’...